darley green

Home Is Where the Heart Is: Why Homeowners Love Their Homes

Now more than ever, people are embracing the comfort, safety, and versatility of their homes. Weathering a pandemic has undoubtedly fueled this renewed appreciation, while sparking an uptick in potential buyers searching for their dream home.

According to data compiled by Unison, a whopping 70 percent of surveyed homeowners feel emotionally attached to their homes. Compare this to pre-pandemic figures, which topped out at 58 percent. For many, the home became a refuge during the COVID-19 outbreak — a safe place where they could make Zoom calls, help the kids with online classes, work up a sweat, and hone their cooking skills.

Homes Provide Sense of Safety and Security

Limited square footage was no problem for Americans transitioning to work-at-home positions. More than half of telecommuters came up with creative solutions to making functional home office space.

  • 29 percent converted a spare bedroom room into an office
  • 16 percent utilized an unfinished attic or basement
  • 13 percent converted a garden shed or tiny home into a work space

During these uncertain times, views on the benefits and drawbacks of homeownership have shifted dramatically. Now many say that owning and taking care of a home is one of the most treasured accomplishments in their life.

In fact, 91 percent of polled homeowners say they feel stable and more financially secure in their homes, a 60 percent increase from last year.

Home Buying in Chester County, PA

Purchasing a home can be one of the most rewarding things you do in life. Whether you are just starting a family or looking to transition from renting, it’s a life-changing part of the American Dream. The home may be a sanctuary that holds great emotional importance, but it can also be a sound financial investment. After all, you are building equity, and a potential nest egg that may help fund your retirement years.

The house-hunting process can be fun and exciting, especially when looking at quality new construction homes. Before you begin the search for the perfect residence, create a list of wants and needs, whether it’s focused on location, amenities, floor plans, or school districts.

New Town Homes for Sale Kennett Square

As we push into the second half of 2021, the home continues to be a haven of security, emotional fulfillment, and comfort. Ready to start searching for your dream property? Montchanin Builders is pleased to offer new townhomes near Kennett Square.

Kennett Pointe is an exclusive new home community in Chester County, PA that features luxury townhomes, loft-style apartments, and mixed-use commercial establishments. And it is just minutes away from chic restaurants, shopping, and entertainment in vibrant, charming Kennett Square.

Contact us today to learn more about our new homes at Kennett Pointe or Darley Green!

3 Myths About the 2021 Real Estate Market

The real estate market has been heating up this year, with home sellers eager to move and home buyers itching to find their dream homes. The market’s robust activity has given rise to a few myths about what home sellers and buyers can expect. Whether you’re worried about pricing your old home to sell or scheduling an inspection of a home you’re thinking of buying, you’ll want to get the truth behind these common myths.

Myth: When selling your old home, it’s best to price as high as possible.

One of the biggest mistakes homebuyers make is pricing their old home too high. Yes, you’ll want to get top dollar for your property, but if you set the price too high, you’ll scare off a slew of potential buyers. Plus, if you price your home above its market value, it will likely stay on the market for a long time. This can interfere with your plans to move into a new home. It’s always a good idea to talk to a licensed real estate agent about the value of your home and a strong asking point. Remember that there’s a good chance you’ll end up getting more than your asking price. If your home is in great condition, buyers may engage in a bidding war for it.

Myth: Renovating your old home is crucial before putting it on the market.

This myth is partially true and partially false. The truth is that it depends on your home. If your home is relatively updated, you might not need to make many changes beyond painting the walls in neutral colors or installing new carpeting. If your home is older, however, some renovations can go a long way toward attracting buyers and getting top dollar. Realtors generally recommend putting the most money in the kitchen and the bathrooms, as updated kitchens and bathrooms are highly attractive to home buyers.

Myth: Home buyers cannot tour new homes in person because of the pandemic.

Since early 2020 when many businesses temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, homebuyers have largely been shopping for houses online. Online listings can only tell you so much, however, even if they feature a video tour of the home. Fortunately, with the availability of vaccines and loosening of restrictions, it’s now possible to view potential homes in person.

If you’re planning to move to a new area entirely, such as from New York to Delaware, it’s still a good idea to check out new homes online first. Use the online information to narrow down your list, and then schedule viewings in person for a time when you plan to be in the area. Don’t forget when viewing new homes that you’ll also want to check out the local amenities, such as shops, dining, nightlife, and cultural or historical attractions.

Montchanin Builders offers home buying made easy

The home buying process can be complicated, but Montchanin Builders specializes in making it easy and hassle-free. We’ve partnered with one of the nation’s top mortgage lenders to give our home buyers the best possible rates. Find out more today about our master-planned community of Kennett Pointe in PA is an exclusive neighborhood with luxurious amenities. Or, explore our homes for sale in Wilmington, Delaware. The Darley Green community invites home buyers to explore our tree-lined streets and beautiful townhomes.

3 Myths About Transitioning From Renter to Homeowner

Homeownership is the American dream. It means freedom to design your space how you see fit, independence to live life on your own terms, and peace of mind knowing you always have a sanctuary to return to at the end of the day. Yet, for many people, homeownership remains elusive—not necessarily because they can’t afford to purchase a new home, but rather because they are held back by the many myths that persist about transitioning from renter to homeowner.

Myth: You need a down payment of at least 20%.

It’s long been the general rule of thumb that aspiring homeowners should save a minimum of 20% of the home’s value to serve as a down payment, with the mortgage lender picking up the rest. Yet, this isn’t always the case. Yes, paying a larger down payment will result in smaller monthly payments or a shorter loan lifespan. However, saving a 20% down payment need not be a barrier to homeownership.

There are plenty of mortgage lenders that do not strictly require a 20% down payment. Furthermore, there are advantages to purchasing a home as soon as possible, rather than waiting to save a larger down payment. For instance, you’ll get started building equity in your home sooner, instead of making your landlord richer.

Myth: You must have a perfect credit score and credit history.

Another common myth about transitioning from being a renter to being a homeowner is that aspiring homeowners must have a flawless credit score. It’s true that having a higher credit score will give you the best rates, but you definitely don’t need flawless credit. It’s perfectly acceptable to have a few blemishes in your credit history and a less-than-ideal credit score.

However, it’s still a good idea to request your credit reports. Look them over and see if there are any inaccuracies, such as old debts that you’ve paid off or other negative items that should have expired and dropped off the reports. Getting these negative items removed will give you a boost when it’s time to apply for a loan.

Myth: Renting is less expensive than buying a home.

It’s commonly thought that buying a home is more expensive than renting. Yet, this myth doesn’t take into consideration the fact that rent tends to increase over time—and that is something that renters have no control over. If the landlord decides to raise the rent and the renters don’t want to pay, their only choice is to avoid renewing the lease in order to move somewhere else.

In contrast, homeowners not only build equity in their homes over time, they can also control their mortgage payments. For instance, a smart option is to choose a fixed-rate loan, which will give you predictable payments over the entire life of the loan. While renters are watching their rent go up, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing your mortgage payments will remain stable—and will eventually disappear entirely.

Discover new construction homes in Delaware & Pennsylvania

Experience the benefits and freedom of homeownership for yourself. Montchanin Builders excels in creating master-planned communities with beautiful open spaces, tree-lined streets, and spacious floorplans. Discover our new townhomes in Kennett Square, PA, and schedule a tour of our new construction homes in New Castle County, Delaware, by calling today. Be sure to inquire about our special financing offers through our preferred lender!

Best Spring Daytrips Near Wilmington, DE

Delaware has often been called the hidden gem of the U.S., and spring is one of the best times to explore our state’s stunning scenery and wealth of amazing activities. If you’re looking for a fun and out-of-the-ordinary day trip this spring, there are plenty to choose from in the Wilmington area. For example, you could take a train ride on the historic Wilmington and Western Railroad, meet some furry friends at the 3 Palms Zoo and Education Center, or go on a stroll through the Enchanted Woods at the Winterthur estate. These are just a few of the many great day trips you can take advantage of when you live near Wilmington, DE.

Historic train rides

The Wilmington and Western Railroad was built in 1867 and still operates between Wilmington and Hockessin. Although it began as a freight train, today it is one of the area’s most popular attractions among both visitors and locals alike. Your old-fashioned train ride will pass through beautiful scenery. Upon leaving the train station, you’ll cross Red Clay Creek and travel past the last surviving mill along the route. Then, you’ll go through Brandywine Springs Park before entering the community of Faulkland.

You’ll also pass through the communities of Mt. Cuba (home to a 650-acre nature preserve), Ashland (where you’ll pass over a historic truss bridge), and historic Yorklyn before entering Hockessin. In Hockessin, you’ll have a layover, during which you can enjoy the various eateries and shops.

The 3 Palms Zoo and Education Center

The 3 Palms Zoo and Education Center located in Townsend, DE, is just a short drive from Wilmington. The zoo, which has been described as one of the state’s best-kept secrets, began as a safe haven for agricultural animals in need of a good home. Now, it’s the state’s largest zoo and the only one with an alligator exhibit!

The zoo operates under the laudable mission of rescuing animals and educating the public about them. They take in exotic animals that were kept illegally as pets, as well as rehabilitated wildlife that could not be released. Enjoy hand-feeding and petting many of the tamer animals, ranging from llamas to emus to giant tortoises. The zoo’s exotic inhabitants include peacocks, boa constrictors, and bearded dragons.

Winterthur and its Enchanted Woods

Winterthur is an exquisite estate built by Henry Francis DuPont in the rolling hills not far outside of Wilmington. It is home to a beautiful mansion that features a museum with a large collection of American artwork, along with an expansive library and about 1,000 acres of stroll-worthy grounds.

One of the most popular features at the Winterthur estate is the Enchanted Woods. This unique children’s garden rests on a three-acre plot that has been transformed into a woodland fairy landscape, including a Tulip Tree House, Troll Bridge, Faerie Cottage, and Acorn Tea Room. The Story Stones and Fairy Flower Labyrinth are particularly beloved among young children, and of course, beautiful plant life abounds.

Explore move-in ready homes in Delaware

There is much to do and see in the Wilmington area. You can enjoy the best of what this region has to offer when you come home to Darley Green—a master-planned community designed and built by Montchanin Builders. Our move-in-ready condos and townhomes are spaciously designed, with luxurious touches integrated throughout. Schedule a viewing of our new construction homes in New Castle County, Delaware, by calling our office today. Be sure to ask us about our special financing offers!

model Darley Green kitchen

Why Homebuyers Are in Love With Open Floorplans

An open floorplan joins together the living room, dining area, and kitchen into one large, open space, effectively creating a clear visual field throughout much of the main floor. Open floorplans became very popular during the 1990s and have been an enduring trend ever since. They mark a significant departure from older homes, which typically feature separated rooms branching off a main hallway, with the kitchen closed off toward the back of the home.

The shift toward an open floorplan is representative of the shift in socializing trends; today, guests are encouraged to mingle in the kitchen as the host puts the finishing touches on the meal.

There are numerous advantages to the open floorplan, which is why Montchanin Builders embraces this design technique in our exquisite, spacious townhomes and condos in Darley Green.

Open floorplans allow for better flow of traffic

One of the main reasons why homebuyers love open floorplans is that they allow for superior traffic flow. With fewer hallways to navigate, doors to open, or walls blocking space, it’s less likely that people will bump into each other. This is particularly advantageous when homeowners are hosting get-togethers.

In an open floorplan home, all of the guests can freely mingle without having to be crammed into one smaller room together.

They offer superior flexibility regarding the layout of the home

Homes that follow the traditional, pre-war floorplan that divides various areas into separate rooms can be challenging to furnish. There is little flexibility regarding the layout of the furniture. With an open concept floorplan, homeowners can more easily arrange the furniture to their liking. Furthermore, there are more configuration possibilities.

If the homeowners grow tired of the first layout or wish to purchase new furniture, it’s easier to adapt to a new layout without the interference of partitioning walls.

Homes with open floorplans tend to offer better real estate value

Many homeowners make house purchasing decisions with an eye toward a future sale. It’s typically preferable to purchase a home that can be reliably expected to increase in value over time. Another reason why home buyers are in love with the open concept floorplan is that it holds its real estate value over time. In fact, homes with an open floorplan are typically valued higher than those with the traditional layout.

Explore move-in ready homes in Delaware

If you’re in love with the open floorplan concept, you’ll be thrilled with the townhomes and condos of Darley Green, a master-planned community characterized by open green spaces, neighborhood gathering areas, and plenty of nearby amenities. Our new construction homes in New Castle County, Delaware, offer plenty of square footage coupled with thoughtful, customizable open floorplans.

Call Montchanin Builders today to schedule a tour and inquire about our special financing offers.

Why Home Sellers Are Thriving This Winter

Selling a home can be a lot of work. The good news is that you’ll have the opportunity to move into your dream home. Perhaps you’ve been dreaming of a more spacious home with plenty of storage, a flex room, or a guest room for visiting relatives. Thanks to the current market conditions, it’s an excellent time for home sellers to get to work staging their current homes and putting them on listing sites. Because of the limited inventory available and the historically low mortgage rates, home sellers have been thriving this winter.

A limited inventory makes now a great time to sell

This winter is turning out to be a home seller’s market. The reason is the limited availability of homes on the market. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), there is only about a 2.3-month supply of unsold homes right now, assuming that the current pace of home sales holds steady. This is lower than December’s inventory, which stood at about a 2.5-month supply.

Both of those figures are a far cry lower than the average. A neutral housing market—that is, neither a buyer’s nor a seller’s market—is thought to have about a six-month supply of homes for sale.

Selling your home in a seller’s market is advantageous for a number of reasons. First, you’re likely to get top dollar for your home, even if you don’t make an extra effort to renovate it beforehand. Second, when you do put your home on the market, it’s likely to sell quickly. This will allow you to pack up and move on to your dream home without having to waste time worrying about whether your old house will sell.

Rates are at historic lows

During 2020, the housing market saw incredibly low mortgage rates throughout the year. These historic lows are expected to continue throughout much of 2021. This is beneficial to home sellers for two reasons.

First, home buyers will have an easier time affording properties, which means your old home is more likely to sell quickly. Second, you’ll be able to save big bucks on your mortgage for your dream home. However, it’s not known exactly when those mortgage rates will start to climb. It’s best to act quickly to take advantage of current market conditions.

There’s never been a better time to move to the suburbs

If historically low mortgage rates and a low inventory weren’t enough to convince you that now is the time to sell your home, consider the pandemic. Even though vaccines are now available on a limited basis to certain individuals, it will be a long time before things get back to normal. Right now is a great time to move to the suburbs, where there is plenty of wide-open space for social distancing and green spaces for safer recreation outdoors.

Check out these new homes in northern Delaware

The suburbs around Wilmington, DE, are an ideal place for those looking to escape big city life. At Montchanin Builders, we build master-planned communities that are designed to provide an Old World ambiance, yet are close to major amenities. In our Darley Green community, you can enjoy wide open green spaces, along with close proximity to shops and restaurants.

Call today to schedule a tour!

Why Early 2021 Is a Great Time for Homebuyers to Act

If you’ve been thinking about buying a home, but aren’t sure whether right now is the best time to act, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn that market conditions are favorable right now. Mortgage rates are expected to stay historically low, and experts predict that home prices will stay relatively steady. Don’t wait too long to begin checking out beautiful new homes in northern Delaware.

Mortgage rates are expected to stay favorable

Last year, many first-time homebuyers took advantage of extraordinarily low mortgage rates. These favorable market conditions are expected to continue through at least the early part of 2021. In fact, the Mortgage Bankers Association expects 30-year loans will have an average rate of 3.1%. Fannie Mae is even more optimistic, predicting these home loans will have an average rate of just 2.8%. Freddie Mac has split the difference, with a prediction of 3% that it expects to last the entire year.

Price increases will slow down

Property is a commodity that can be relied upon to increase in value over time, which is one of the main reasons why people choose to buy homes. If you purchase a condo or a townhouse in the master-planned community of Darley Green, for instance, you can expect its value to rise throughout your ownership of the property.

The good news for homebuyers is that the average price of homes isn’t expected to rise as much during 2021 as in previous years. Last year, home prices rose by about 5.1%. This year, the Mortgage Bankers Association expects an increase of just 2.4%. Freddie Mac expects home prices to rise by an average of 2.6%.

The pandemic isn’t going away anytime soon

Despite the FDA approval of COVID vaccines, it will be quite some time before a significant portion of the population is vaccinated. It’s going to be necessary to practice social distancing and other public health protocols well into the summer and possibly beyond. Unfortunately, for those who live in apartment buildings or on busy streets, it isn’t always easy to stay at least six feet apart. Apartment dwellers often come into close proximity to each other while using the elevator or visiting the laundry facilities, for example.

The pandemic restrictions have encouraged many people to consider making the leap to homeownership. It’s more popular than ever to move out to the suburbs.

Walkable communities such as Darley Green are particularly popular, since they offer many opportunities for outdoor recreation, away from crowded gyms. Because of the popularity of these move-in ready townhomes, it’s best not to wait too long to start house hunting.

View new homes in northern Delaware

Take advantage of market conditions favorable to homebuyers by viewing the move-in ready homes in Delaware by Montchanin Builders. Our master-planned community, Darley Green, still has some home sites available. Contact us today to schedule a viewing.

When you tour Darley Green, you’ll note its neighborly ambiance, wide-open green spaces, and close proximity to community amenities, such as fine dining, shops, and exceptional schools. Call today to begin exploring our condos and townhomes, and be sure to ask us about our special financing offers!

5 Fun and Safe Ideas for Halloween 2020

Halloween is right around the corner, and this year’s celebrations may need to be more creative than they’ve ever been before. Because of the pandemic, trick or treating, haunted houses, and holiday parties may not be on the agenda this year. Fortunately, there are still plenty of ways to celebrate the spookiest day of the year while staying safe.

Here are some tips for celebrating Halloween in 2020:

Make a Front-Yard Pumpkin Display

One of the great things about Halloween is that it’s easy to participate in many of the holiday’s most beloved activities even if you’re staying in. Carving jack-o’-lanterns is something that people of all ages can enjoy, and 2020 is the perfect time to create a truly memorable pumpkin display for your front porch. You might carve an entire family of pumpkins, each with its own unique face and personality.

Have a Virtual Party

While in-person costume parties may not be feasible this year, virtual parties are! Thanks to Zoom and other video apps, you and your friends can dress up and impress each other with your costumes without ever leaving your homes. Since you won’t have to worry about walking or driving, this could be the year to indulge and create a more elaborate costume than usual.

Host a Candy Scavenger Hunt

If you have children to entertain, then having a scavenger hunt for candy—either in your backyard or your home—can be a fun substitute for trick or treating. Buy as many types of candy as possible, then give yourself at least an hour to hide them in different spots. If you use the backyard, make sure that you do a quick inspection after the hunt so you can be sure that you’ve found all of the candy!

Visit a Pumpkin Patch

If there is a pumpkin patch in your area that is following proper safety procedures, including social distancing, then visiting it to pick out pumpkins can be a fun and relatively safe outdoor activity. Make sure to bring hand sanitizer and to use it before and after touching the pumpkins, and wear masks whenever you are around others. Keep in mind that costume masks should not be used instead of proper face masks and that the two should not be worn together.

Try One-Way Trick or Treating

Another alternative to traditional trick or treating is one-way trick-or-treating, in which you put treats in individually wrapped bags and put them in a safe place for others to pick up. If you decide to do this, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before handling the treats.

Find Your Dream Home Near Wilmington, Delaware

If you are looking for a new home that combines spacious living, beautiful natural surroundings, and proximity to all the amenities of a thriving big city, the gorgeous townhomes and condos at Montchanin Builders’ walkable community at Darley Green in Wilmington, DE, could be perfect for you.

If you would like to learn more about our new homes in northern Delaware, then give us a call today to schedule a viewing! Our friendly team is here to answer your questions, and we can also provide you with information about our special financing offers for first-time home buyers.

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:

The 3 Surprising Things Homeowners Really Want

If you’re in the market for a new home, you likely have a very specific wish list of amenities and features that you can’t do without. How do your preferences stack up with those of other homebuyers? See what the latest research says about the unexpected home features that buyers are craving.

A generously proportioned garage

American homebuyers really love their garages. That’s according to a recent statement by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). The NAHB determined that most of all residential new construction during 2018 featured two-car garages. A full 64 percent of residential home builders included this feature as a must-have. In addition, 21 percent of new homes included a garage large enough to house three vehicles.

A great lighting package

Pre-installed lighting packages are another surprising thing that American home buyers look for in a home. It can be a hassle for homebuyers to find a contractor to install an additional lighting , which is why they often prefer to purchase a home that already features it or can have it added while building.

A walkable neighborhood

A third surprising thing that attracts a lot of homebuyers is living within a walkable neighborhood. These days, people often prefer to live close to nearby amenities, like great restaurants, museums, recreational spaces, and entertainment venues. Yet, they also want to live within a peaceful and spacious neighborhood setting with opportunities for walking and public gathering.  A walkable neighborhood provides the perfect blend of wide-open green spaces and nearby urban amenities.

New homes in northern Delaware with these great features!

If you’re in the market for move-in ready homes in Delaware, check out the properties available from Montchanin Builders. Our masterfully designed homes in the walkable community of Darley Green feature lighting packages, spacious garages, and so much more. We’re here to help! Call us today to learn more!

Additional resources for home buyers: