New Homes Delaware

2020 Homebuyer Preferences Post-COVID

Though the coronavirus pandemic has created uncertainty in so many areas of our lives, homebuyers have remained optimistic and active, and the real estate market has become increasingly robust in recent months. In this new era of remote working, schooling-from-home, historically low mortgage rates, and no clear answers as to when the COVID-19 pandemic will abate, consumer commitment to buying a new home is as strong as ever – though how have homebuyer priorities shifted in 2020?

Homebuyers are looking for larger homes

Recently, Realtor.com partnered with HarrisX to conduct a nationwide survey of consumers to determine how homebuying activities and behaviors may have changed in the wake of the pandemic. It might have been assumed that the COVID pandemic would have encouraged consumers to become more conservative with their homebuying plans. However, the survey actually revealed that more home buyers are thinking of purchasing more spacious homes at higher price points.

The shift toward purchasing homes with ample square footage likely reflects the fact that families are dealing with the reality of remote working and schooling arrangements, which give rise to the desire for more spacious living quarters.

Walkable communities are a big hit with homebuyers

Even as gyms and entertainment venues open back up, many people are still hesitant to gather together in large crowds. For many, it’s simply safer to enjoy outdoor recreation in areas that give everyone plenty of space for social distancing. This is a major reason why walkable communities in suburban areas – such as Montchanin Builders’ Darley Green, featuring plentiful open green spaces – have become big hits with homebuyers.

Homebuyers are saving larger down payments

The onset of the pandemic has forced many individuals to reconsider their savings goals, with many people reporting that they are saving more than previously and paying down debt more quickly. The same behaviors can be seen with home buying activities. According to one survey, 63% of consumers report saving more money than before, which they could potentially use for a larger down payment on a house. Many consumers report that sheltering in place has allowed them to save more money by cutting expenses on things like transportation.

Often, saving is thought of as a long-term goal, and so one might assume that more consumers are delaying their homebuying plans. However, this isn’t the case. In fact, 41% of consumers say the pandemic is encouraging them to think about buying a home sooner rather than later. This is a sharp contrast from the 15% of consumers who are thinking of buying a home later down the road.

Find your dream home in Wilmington, Delaware

You may have spent the past few months dreaming about a better future after the pandemic, but why wait? Right now is the perfect time to explore the move-in ready homes in Delaware available from Montchanin Builders. Our walkable communities are welcoming places where you can enjoy plenty of space for safe outdoor recreation. Plus, they’re just a short distance away from attractive amenities like restaurants, entertainment venues, and parks. Get in touch with Montchanin Builders today to request a socially distant tour of our model homes.

Top 5 Reasons People are Moving in 2020

It’s safe to say that 2020 has shaken up the norm for just about everyone. A lot of people’s priorities have shifted due to mandated home quarantines, social distancing, and other lifestyle changes, and for many, the time now seems right to move to a new home. For some buyers, this decision is spurred by current events, while others may have been planning a move for years. With that in mind, here are the top 5 reasons people are relocating in 2020.

#1 – To Escape the City

This reason is two-fold. Large metropolitan areas were amongst the hardest hit areas for COVID-19, and many residents realized that while city life can be fun and exciting, its density also makes it a breeding ground for contagions. Close proximity to your neighbors also makes following social distancing protocols challenging. As a result, many have been migrating to less risky suburban and rural areas.

The second reason that city-dwellers are considering relocating because of the pandemic is the absence of all the things that brought them to the city in the first place, such as easy access to endless dining, shopping, and nightlife options. With most of these activities being canceled or bogged down by restrictions, many residents are rethinking their high-priced cramped apartments.

#2 – More Home Amenities

Due to COVID-19, our homes have become our world, serving as our office, gym, entertainment venue, restaurant, and resting place. While things won’t always stay this way, some of these new lifestyle changes may stick for the long term. For many homebuyers, finding a place that can offer a variety of amenities—including a home office or gym—has jumped high on the priority list. The value of outdoor access has also risen, with a growing desire to be near open, airy parks or have a large private yard.

#3 – Remote Working

One of the biggest shake-ups of 2020 was remote working. Before COVID-19, some companies were already experimenting with the possibility of remote workers and flexible office hours, but the closing of offices forced the working-from-home concept into full implementation. More and more employees now expect to be working remotely on a near-permanent basis, even after the pandemic subsides. Working from home frees people to make the move they’ve always wanted without having to worry about long commutes or switching jobs.

#4 – Virtual Schooling

Adults aren’t the only ones who are doing their work online these days. Many school districts and higher education institutions have started their school year online, which is also eliminating an obstacle for some homebuyers that have school-aged children or who are attending classes themselves. It also brings with it a need for additional workspace, which may be hard in a crowded apartment or small home.

#5 – More Value

Many homebuyers are moving out to find more bang for their buck. Some are leaving their small and pricey city apartment for a more spacious, affordable home in the ‘burbs. Others are just looking to trade their current suburban home for a slightly more modern floorplan and a tax-deductible home office.

Schedule a Home Viewing Today

If you’re in the market for new construction homes in New Castle County, Delaware, schedule a tour of Montchanin Builders’ spacious move-in ready homes near Wilmington, DE. Our award-winning walkable communities let you enjoy plenty of open green space while being only a short drive from Wilmington’s plentiful restaurant and shopping options. The housing market has never been more buyer-friendly, and financing options available through our preferred lending partner make buying a new home more affordable than you think.

Schedule a tour today and make your 2020 home owning dreams a reality!

Moving In? 5 Steps to Help You Feel Quickly at Home

Buying a new house can be tremendously exciting, but on your first day in the new place, the bare walls, empty spaces, and monotonous stacks of boxes can make it feel impersonal and daunting – not like “home” at all! Before you start questioning your decision to move, remember that there are many things you can do immediately to make your new home feel a little more like yours.

Follow these five simple moving steps to make your new house feel like home:

#1 – Do a deep scrub

Empty home? Now’s the perfect time to make sure everything from the ceiling corners to the floorboards are sparkling clean. Some older homes will probably require a good deep cleaning, but even for new builds, dust from construction work and walk-throughs can collect along floor edges, ceiling fans, and countertops. Plus, giving things a good thorough scrub will help make the place feel fresh and new (or newer).

#2 – Organize your moving boxes

Unpacking can be fun. You get to slowly see your style take over the blank walls, floors, and shelf space. It can also be overwhelming if not organized properly. Keeping your boxes labeled and ensuring they’re moved to the right room the first time around will prevent the task from feeling monumental and will let you quickly unpack the necessities and the home favorites you’ll need from the very first night in your new place.

#3 – Transform one room at a time

In addition to organizing your boxes, you may also want to consider which rooms you want to unpack and set-up first. Focusing your energy on one area of the house, then moving to the next gives you a completed space you can retreat to when it’s time to take a break from the cardboard boxes. For some, this might mean ensuring the bedroom is put together for a good night’s rest. Others might prefer getting the kitchen unpacked and in order so it won’t be back-to-back pizza nights. Even simply hooking up your TV in front of a few comfy chairs can allow you the comfort of a familiar nightly ritual.

#4 – Make Small Touches

Sure, hanging a door wreath may not seem like the most logical first step in getting your new house together, but it is a quick, easy win and will almost instantly make your space feel more welcoming and homey. It may be prioritizing a few family photos, getting your favorite piece of artwork hung, or displaying your prized book collection.

#5 – Paint

A clean coat of paint can bring color and personality to your home. It’s also a good way to cover up scratches, marks, or nail holes left behind by the previous owners when moving into an older home. For move-in ready homes in Delaware that are already painted with neutral colors, painting just a simple accent wall or going bold in one room can be enough to incorporate your taste and style into the house.

New homes for sale in Delaware

Find your new dream home with a little help from Montchanin Builders! Our new-construction townhomes and condos in the exquisite walkable community of Darley Green allow you to choose your own floor plan and finishes, so you can personalize your space to make it instantly feel like home-sweet-home. Contact us today to learn more about our move-in ready homes in Delaware and to schedule a home tour!

Why Walkable Communities Are Attracting Homebuyers During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed many aspects of daily life, including how we conduct business, how we obtain goods and services, and even where we choose to live. There has been a surge of interest in walkable communities set in suburban locations as home buyers seek to escape urban centers characterized by high population density. Moving to a walkable community is certainly a smart choice during a pandemic, but it’s also one that makes sense in the long run. Even after life gradually returns to normal, homebuyers can continue to reap the rewards of life in a walkable community.

Health and safety considerations

It’s likely that the number one reason for the rising interest in suburban areas and walkable communities is health and safety considerations. During the coronavirus pandemic, it’s essential to maintain a safe distance between yourself and non-household members. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to do this in an urban area. Those who live in apartment buildings, for example, will inevitably come near people in common areas like the elevator, entrance, and laundry facility. In contrast, a walkable community offers plenty of space for all residents, enabling them to safely maintain distance.

Amenities within easy reach

Another major reason why homebuyers are looking to walkable communities during the pandemic is the availability of a wide variety of amenities within a short distance. Although the population density in these areas is much lower, there are still plenty of local amenities nearby. Some walkable communities are located close to libraries, restaurants, grocery stores, and other shops, for instance.

In addition, since a lower population density generally equals a lower volume of COVID cases, there is a reduced likelihood of exposure when residents do go out for essentials. Local shopping centers, for example, are likely to be less crowded than in the cities.

Wide-open, green spaces

Now that the pandemic has forced most entertainment venues to close their doors, people are enjoying the opportunity to get outdoors and enjoy the fresh air. Of course, it’s easier to find wide open, green spaces in a walkable community than in a city. All you have to do is step outside your door to stroll along tree-lined streets, play catch in a neighborhood gathering area, or put walking and biking trails to good use. As an added bonus, some walkable communities are located near parks.

Explore the walkable communities of Wilmington, Delaware

If you’re ready to trade in urban density for spacious living in a walkable community, it’s time to take a closer look at the new construction homes in New Castle County, Delaware. Montchanin Builders is the area’s foremost walkable community planner and homebuilder. Our beautiful townhomes of Darley Green in our walkable communities offer have everything a homebuyer could want.

Explore our move-in ready homes in Wilmington, Delaware online, or by setting up a personal appointment. We take strict precautions to protect the safety of visitors and staff. Connect with us today, and be sure to ask us about our special partnership with one of the nation’s premier home lenders!

Additional resources for home buyers:

Housing Market Soaring: Now Is the Time to Buy!

Looking at current market trends, now may be the right time to finally buy the home you’ve always wanted!

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) has noted an astounding rebound in the U.S. housing market. In May of 2020, pending home sales (a key metric in housing market strength) spiked more than 44 percent — the highest month-over-month gain in nearly 20 years.

With August arriving, there is a growing demand for housing inventory, as buyers are eager to jump back into the market and take advantage of record-low mortgage rates.

Low interest rates = lower payments

Federal mortgage rates continue to decline, meaning that home buyers will enjoy a significant decrease in their monthly payments. As of July 30, 2020, the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 3.106%, and the average rate on a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage was 2.682%.

Compare this to exactly one year ago, when the rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage was 3.813%. Depending on the purchase price of your home, you could save around $100-$150 per month.

Factors driving housing sales

According to Lawrence Yun, home prices could increase in the coming months “due to heavy buyer competition and a significant shortage of supply.” Whether driven by attractive mortgage rates, rising rental costs, or a yearning for more space to accommodate work-from-home orders, housing sales are taking off – particularly in suburbs where green spaces are accessible and home prices tend to be more affordable.

Pent-up demand for home buying

Though the pandemic and economic slow-down hit the spring housing market hard, homebuyer demand is spiking now that summer is here. According to NAR Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun, “This has been a spectacular recovery for contract signings and goes to show the resiliency of American consumers and their evergreen desire for homeownership.”

NAR projects that new home sales may reach 690,000 this year, and 800,000 in 2021.

New construction homes in New Castle County, Delaware

As the economy gradually re-opens and the housing market takes off, Montchanin Builders is ready to meet the demands with our selection of move-in ready homes in Wilmington, Delaware. Contact our representatives today to schedule a tour of our new construction townhomes and condos at Darley Green. This master-planned community is one of the most sought-after neighborhoods in the area, with peaceful walking trails and green spaces for homeowners to enjoy.

Be sure to ask about our custom financing options and low closing costs that can help make your homeownership dreams come true!

What COVID-19 Means for First-Time Homebuyers

We’re all facing many challenges because of COVID-19, but buying a home doesn’t have to be one of them! You don’t have to put your first-time homebuyer dreams on hold because of the pandemic. In many ways, now is a better time than ever to buy a home.

Many first-time buyers are seeing their dreams come to fruition during this unprecedented time, but things are a bit different now than they were before coronavirus. If you’re looking into buying a new home right now, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Shopping for a new home during COVID-19

Social distancing means shopping for a new home is a bit different than it used to be.

Most realtors and construction management companies have instituted new showing procedures in order to keep themselves and their customers safe. For example, many showings require buyers:

  • Wear masks and maintain social distancing at all times
  • Avoid touching surfaces such as light switches and doorknobs
  • Make appointments to allow for one-on-one showings

Buyers can take live FaceTime, Zoom, or Skype tours of homes or visit realtor websites for 3D virtual tours of available listings. The internet is an incredibly valuable resource when it comes to shopping for a new home during the pandemic. Rather than driving around or visiting locations, you can do online research to find good neighborhoods. Google Maps lets you navigate areas within a certain mile radius of any home you’re interested in, and websites allow you to search for communities that fit your needs.

Low mortgage rates

The Fed cut interest rates to 0% because of the pandemic, sending mortgage rates down to record-breaking lows. Some economists think that the drop isn’t over yet, and the coming months will see mortgage rates fall even lower. First-time homebuyers have a chance to lock in an amazing mortgage deal right now.

Gorgeous new homes for sale in Wilmington, Delaware

Montchanin Builders is open for business! We are taking all the necessary precautions to protect our staff and customers. Call us today to learn more about our new homes in Northern Delaware and the amazing financing options offered by our lending partner, Katherine Dunckley with Cardinal Financial.

Additional Resources:

  1. com, COVID-19 First Time Homebuyer, https://time.com/nextadvisor/mortgages/covid-19-first-time-homebuyer/
  2. com, Buying a Home During COVID-19 Pandemic?, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/04/13/buying-home-during-covid-19-pandemic-it-can-be-done-under-right-circumstances/

Why Summer Is the New Spring for Real Estate

Spring has traditionally been a great season for home sellers. After a long winter, buyers are eager to jump in their cars, tour through new neighborhoods, and set up viewings of move-in ready homes. However, many regular routines have been put on hold in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now that some regions are phasing into re-opening, home buyers are once again starting to venture out to take a look at new homes in northern Delaware. If you’re ready to move into your next home, right now is the perfect time to begin your search!

The current state of the housing market

In this time of economic uncertainty, there is at least one reason to be optimistic: This summer is actually a great time to buy a house. In fact, the rates for 15-year and 30-year fixed-rate mortgages are at historic lows. Furthermore, experts predict that the mortgage rates will continue on their downward trend for the foreseeable future. This makes it a great time to lock in a historically low interest rate.

Apartment living isn’t conducive to social distancing

Stay-at-home orders may have begun to ease, but that doesn’t mean social distancing is any less critical. In fact, certain areas of the country are seeing alarmingly high spikes in COVID-19 cases. This means that it’s still important to exercise precautions by wearing a mask and keeping your distance from others. Unfortunately, it’s hard to practice social distancing when you’re living in an apartment building. You’ll inevitably run into people in the hallways, elevators, and the laundry room. This is just one more good reason to start looking for a new home this summer. You can keep yourself safer by giving yourself more living space.

Homebuyers are reconsidering their priorities

Like a lot of Americans, many homebuyers have shifting priorities. A great number of people have been working from home these days, and this arrangement can create some challenges. It’s essential to have a designated workspace that limits distractions and boosts productivity. Since working from home is a trend that’s likely to continue (some companies have stated they will continue to have work-from-home employees on a permanent basis), homebuyers often crave a floor plan that includes space for a home office.

See new homes for sale in Wilmington, Delaware

Montchanin Builders is pleased to be open for business to help you find your dream home. If you’re looking for a floor plan with flex space for your home office, we invite you to tour our master-planned community of Darley Green. The manor townhomes, such as The Montgomery model and The Clemson model, feature flex space that is perfect for a productive workspace. We’re taking all necessary precautions to protect our visitors and staff members. Please wear a face covering and maintain a six-foot distance between yourself and others while visiting our Sales Center or Model Home.

Get in touch today, and make sure to inquire about our competitive home pricing and buyer-friendly lending partner!

Additional resources for home buyers:

Rent or Buy? 4 Questions to Ask Yourself

Do you have the home-buying itch? The urge to nest and have a place that you can truly call your own? Homeownership is one of the greatest feelings in the world. It confers a certain sense of pride, stability, and security that’s hard to beat. But is homeownership always better – and financially wiser – than renting?

Wouldn’t it be better to make a monthly mortgage payment, instead of throwing away those hard-earned dollars on a property that doesn’t appreciate?

Buying a new home may be one of life’s most thrilling moments, but it’s not always the right decision. If you’re contemplating whether to rent or buy, ask yourself the following questions. The answers should steer you in the right direction.

Can you afford homeownership?

Buying a home will be one of the largest purchases of your life. Are your finances up to the challenge? Most experts agree that your housing budget should not exceed one-third of your income. It’s not just a monthly mortgage payment to consider, but also insurance, taxes, routine maintenance, potential HOA fees, and repairs that factor into the equation.

In terms of interest rates, is it a good time to buy?

Most people aren’t buying a home with cash. They need to finance and borrow money, which means looking at federal interest rates. The higher the rate, the more money you’ll be shelling out over the life of your mortgage. Right now, the 30-year fixed rate is at an all-time low, hovering around 3.30 %. For motivated home buyers, this is excellent news!

Will my credit score help or hinder?

You’ll need a decent credit score to qualify for the best mortgage loans. While getting a mortgage is not impossible with poor credit, the terms will be less favorable, meaning you’ll pay more interest over the long-term. There are various websites to check your FICO credit score, some of them free of charge. Credit scores can range from 300 to 850. Generally speaking, you want a score of at least 620 or higher to be in the ‘good’ to ‘exceptional’ categories.

What are your individual goals?

Much of the rent vs. buy dialogue revolves around simple economics, but if your finances are in order, ask yourself if you’re ready for the stability and responsibility that comes with owning a home.

Lifestyle and future goals also come into play. Homeownership gives you privacy, freedom, and the ability to put roots down in a community. On the flip side, renting offers a degree of flexibility and convenience, but you’ll never be able to customize the look of your home without complying with rules and regulations.

Montchanin Builders homes for sale in Wilmington, Delaware

There are many factors that play a role in the decision to rent or buy. When starting your search for new homes in northern Delaware, turn to Montchanin Builders for expert craftsmanship, superior construction, and modern floorplans in the most desirable communities.

Explore the beautiful move-in ready homes for sale at our master-planned community of Darley Green. Get in touch today to schedule a personal tour, and learn more about financing options available!

What Sellers Can Expect From a Home Inspection

The home inspection does not need to be the most stressful aspect of selling your home. Even if your inspection report reveals areas that need to be addressed with the property, you’ll have the opportunity to address anything that comes up and entice potential buyers to seal the deal.

One of the great advantages of buying a new construction home from Montchanin Builders is that you never have to worry about hidden surprises – from the roof to the plumbing to the warranted interior finishes, everything is brand-new, working perfectly, and up to code. The old home you’re selling may have to pass inspection, but your new move-in ready home at one of our breathtaking walkable communities has already passed a thorough building inspection process with flying colors. There’s nothing you need to do but move in and start enjoying your new amenities, appliances, and finishes – and the gorgeous open-space floor plan of your choosing!

Selling a house before moving into your Montchanin Builders dream home? Here are the most important things that sellers need to know about the home inspection process.

You can schedule a pre-listing inspection

It’s customary for the home buyer to arrange for the inspection of the home after making an offer, but prior to closing. However, as the seller, you can schedule a home inspection before you even put your home on the market. This may be a good idea if you have an older home and you’re motivated to fix items in order to get the highest possible purchase price.

However, you should know that there is a legal obligation to disclose this home inspection report to potential buyers.

What to expect from your home inspection

Regardless of whether you’re having a pre-listing inspection or the buyer’s inspection, it will generally take a few hours for the inspector to check out the property. The report will typically be available within a few business days.

The home inspector will carefully review both the interior and exterior, checking for potential concerns. Note that home inspectors are not concerned with cosmetic issues, like peeling paint or stained carpeting. Occasionally, however, a cosmetic issue may indicate a more serious issue, such as a stain on the ceiling that indicates water damage or cracks in the corner of a room that may indicate a shifting foundation.

In general, home inspectors focus on these main areas:

  1. Structural integrity
  2. Plumbing
  3. Electrical system
  4. HVAC system
  5. Roof
  6. Water damage
  7. Insect/pest infestations (especially termites)

How to prepare for a home inspection

There are a few things that home sellers should do to make the process go as smoothly and quickly as possible. Gather together all receipts for maintenance work, such as service visits for the HVAC system. Clear away any clutter from near the furnace, water heater, and electrical panel, as the inspector will need to access them. Similarly, the inspector should have easy access to the attic, basement, garage, and crawl space.

It’s also a good idea to exterior areas, like if any tree branches are close to the roof or overhanging it, they’ll need to be trimmed back.

Check out these homes for sale in Wilmington, Delaware!

The home buying process can be stressful when you are forced to await the results of a home inspection report. But when you buy a beautiful and affordable new-construction home from Montchanin Builders, you never have to worry about your new home’s condition.

We have stunning move-in ready homes available for sale right now in our master-planned community of Darley Green. Enjoy peaceful, tree-lined streets, and wide-open spaces paired with the convenience of restaurants, shops, and other amenities within walking distance.

Get in touch today to chat about our new homes in northern Delaware. Be sure to ask us about our special financing offers!

Additional resources for home buyers:

Why the Real Estate Market Will Heat Up This Summer

It’s been a rough year so far. Health and public safety concerns have all contributed to economic uncertainty. However, the news isn’t all bad. In fact, there are signs that things are starting to turn around already. Businesses across the country are beginning to open up, people are going back to work, and they are even buying new houses—a significant vote of confidence that the economy will improve. In fact, the summer of 2020 could be one of the best seasons for home buying in recent memory. For proof, just check out the historically low mortgage rates.

Mortgage rates are historically low

Toward the end of May, Freddie Mac released the results from its Primary Mortgage Market Survey®. The results indicated that mortgage rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages were below 3.30 percent for the fourth consecutive week. One year ago, the rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.06 percent. In addition, the rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averages 2.70 percent.

All of those statistics are great news for home buyers looking to save money. Sam Khater, the chief economist at Freddie Mac, predicted that mortgage rates could continue to decline even as the demand for new housing rises.

Mortgage applications are on the rise

Toward the end of May, CNBC reported that mortgage applications had increased by six percent compared to the previous week. That is a stunning rise and may point to a growing sense of consumer confidence in an economic rebound. It also underscores the significance of historically low mortgage rates.

Overall, mortgage applications have increased for five consecutive weeks. FHA, VA, and USDA loans (government purchase applications) are five percent higher than they were a year ago. In addition, the purchase volume is only 1.5 percent lower than it was one year ago, signaling a remarkably fast recovery in the housing market.

More home buyers are taking advantage of virtual home tours

Another factor in heating up summer sales in the real estate market is the increased use of virtual home tours. Not only is it a safe, socially distant way to view homes available for purchase, but it allows home buyers to easily plan long-distance moves. A virtual home tour enables buyers to effectively evaluate whether a particular property will suit their needs without having to travel there.

Get a jump start on your home search before the summer heats up

With so many other people eager to buy a new home this summer, it’s in your best interest to act quickly. Montchanin Builders is open for business, with architecturally exquisite new construction homes in New Castle County, Delaware. Visit our Sales Center to find out why so many people have chosen a Montchanin Builders townhome, condo, or single-family home.

Get in touch with us today to set up a tour or ask about special financing offers for our homes for sale in Wilmington, Delaware.

Additional resources for home buyers