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Questions to Ask When Buying a Home in Delaware and Pennsylvania

by Katina Geralis

Buying a home in Greater Wilmington, Chester County and Delaware County PA can be both an exciting and overwhelming process. In fact, it's easy for buyers to get so caught up in the commotion of finding the perfect property, applying for a mortgage and securing a loan that they forget to ask their real estate agent important questions.

As your local real estate experts in Delaware and Pennsylvania, the Kat Geralis Home Team has provided five essential questions to ask your agent before buying a home— a few you may be inclined to overlook in all of the home buying hustle!

Has the home had any upgrades, major renovations or additions?
If the sellers of a home in Wilmington, Newark or the surrounding areas have made any major changes, you will want to know what they did and how much it cost them. Why? This gives you a sense of how much money they have invested into the property and how much they intend to get out of it in the sale. And before you begin to stress about having to match what they spent on the upgrades, keep in mind that return on investment varies by which renovation or upgrade was made.

What is the home's history?
Before you purchase a home, you will want to research its sales history. Find out the last time the home sold and how much it sold for in order to get an idea of what the sellers may expect a buyer to pay. However, it's also key to remember that home values are based on comparable properties and the current market which could be quite different depending on the last time the property was for sale.

How old are the major features?
Home features like the roof, furnace, A/C, plumbing and electrical are all crucial to research prior to signing on the dotted line for a home. These can all be quite costly to fix should any problems arise, so you will want to know their age and if they've been repaired or replaced recently.

What are the property taxes?
The property taxes of a home in Greater Wilmington DE, Chester County and Delaware County PA can make a big impact on your mortgage payment— so budget accordingly! Take into account what the sellers paid, but also remember that these are based on the value of the home which could be affected by your ultimate purchase price.

How much are the monthly maintenance fees?
If you're looking into buying a townhouse, condominium or single-family home in a homeowners association, take the time to research their monthly fees. You can also ask the sellers in advance what the average utility bills look like in order to factor them into your budget.

Wondering what else you're forgetting to ask when house-hunting in Delaware and Pennsylvania? Give the Kat Geralis Home Team a call! We will ensure all of your questions are met and you are prepared with all of the necessary information to avoid any later hiccups in the homebuying process.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
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Updated! New Castle County DE Real Estate Market Stats

by Katina Geralis

Now that spring has arrived, many homeowners and potential homebuyers are wondering if now is the right time to make a move. The KG Home Team is always happy to provide information about the local real estate market, including these updated market statistics for New Castle County Delaware!

For the first quarter of 2016, there were 2,362 homes for sale— a 4.4 percent decrease in inventory from this time last year. And while New Castle County is indeed experiencing the low inventory that can be found throughout much of the country right now, both the sales prices of homes in the area and the number of closed sales are up from 2015! 

The average sales price for the first quarter of 2016 was $230,441—up 2.5 percent from last year—and the number of closed sales totaled 1,230— up 9 percent from last year! Home sellers in New Castle County DE were also reported to have received 93.5 percent of the original price at closing, which is an increase of .4 percent from 2015!

As you can see from the infographics above, buyer demand is high despite the lack of inventory in the local market; the first quarter is showing inventory at a 4.5 months supply, 15.9 percent lower than last year's inventory during the same time.

It is a great time to be a home seller in Greater Wilmington and Southeastern PA, with sales prices and closed sales increasing, in addition to a great time for buyers with mortgage rates still at historic lows! Remember, these updated statistics provide a brief snapshot of levels in the local real estate market, so do not hesitate to contact the KG Home Team with any questions about homes for sale in the area!

Our top-notch agents are here to help with any of your needs this year, from finding your dream home in Delaware or Pennsylvania to selling your current property! We look forward to hearing from you!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
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Whether you're relocating to the Greater Wilmington area for work or simply ready to move to a new home, there are dozens of factors that help to determine the location of your next home. And as the spring real estate market begins to heat up in Delaware and Southeastern Pennsylvania, you will want to make sure you cover all of your bases before deciding on a property.

Below are four factors that Wilmington DE, Chester County and Delaware County PA homebuyers will need to look into further before purchasing a home in a given neighborhood:

Crime statistics
In your home search in Greater Wilmington, you may have found a home that looks perfect— but how much do you really know about the area? It's important to research crime statistics before falling in love with a property and lucky for buyers, it's relatively easy to do. Local government websites typically keep a crime database where residents can look into crimes on a specific street or in a specific area. You can also break the crimes down by type so you can determine the seriousness of each. 

School districts
Homebuyers with children will be increasingly concerned about the school district a Delaware or Pennsylvania home falls into. Compare homes across school districts and keep in mind that those in great districts tend to appreciate faster and could help you sell quickly in the future.

Property taxes
Before you decide to purchase a home in Wilmington, you will need to consider all factors surrounding the property, including property taxes. Include down payment, closing costs, and annual property taxes into your budget to get a better idea of how much home you can afford. It is also wise to compare property taxes in different areas to see how they differ and which realistically fit into your price range.

Your credit score
We've mentioned in the past the importance of your credit score when buying a home. For instance, the better the score, the better the loan terms and lower mortgage rate you may be able to secure. As you search for homes in Delaware and Pennsylvania, especially keeping certain neighborhoods in mind, decide if you will need to raise your score to keep your mortgage both affordable and attainable. Sooner is always better when it comes to improving your credit score!

Do you have questions about which neighborhood might be the best fit for you? The KG Home Team has years of expertise in helping Wilmington, Chester County and Delaware County PA buyers find the best home and we are happy to help!

Give us a call today!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
Find me on Facebook

The official beginning of spring is now just a week away and the weather is gradually getting warmer in Greater Wilmington and the surrounding Brandywine Valley. This is the time of year many Chester County and Delaware County PA area residents begin to think spring and head outside to both enjoy the weather and what the local communities have to offer.

Lucky for us, the Greater Wilmington area has dozens of spring-centered events planned for the coming weeks and as your local real estate experts, we're happy to share a few of them with you!

Spring Wine Festival
March 19-20, 2016; 12 PM to 6 PM
Chaddsford Winery
Chadds Ford, PA

Complimentary treats, live music, food trucks, wine and garden demonstrations are ready to be enjoyed at this festival celebrating the start of spring!

Orchid Extravaganza at Longwood
Through March 27, 2016; 9 AM to 5 PM
Longwood Gardens
Kennett Square, PA

With over 5,000 orchids in various arrangements and forms, the Orchid Extravaganza at Longwood Gardens is a uniquely spring event! You can find the popular orchid meadow, large orchid baskets, an oncidium waterfall display and this month, the rare sky-blue poppies in bloom!

Newark Annual Egg Hunt
March 19, 2016; 10 AM
White Clay Creek State Park
Newark DE

Newark's annual egg hunt begins at 10 AM this Saturday! The Walking- 2 years old category and 3 and 4 years old category both at 10 AM, 5 and 6 years old category and 7 to 9 years old category at 10:30 AM. Admission is $4 for Delaware vehicles, $8 for out of state.

Easter Bunny Express
March 19-26, 2016; 11 AM to 4 PM
Greenbank Station
Wilmington DE

Come aboard the train for a 1 1/2 hour round-trip ride to Ashland with the Easter Bunny! Trains depart at 12:30 and 2:30 and all kids get a special treat and picture with the Easter Bunny.

Chester County Antiques Show
April 1-3, 2016
The Phelps School
Malvern, PA

The Chester County Antiques Show is now in its 34th year, benefiting the Chester County Historical Society. The show attracts numerous visitors and vendors alike every year to view and display the show's furniture and antique items. This year's theme is Tomfoolery!

If you have questions about moving to Delaware or Southeastern Pennsylvania this year, do not hesitate to give the KG Home Team a call! Our team has been named a 5 Star Real Estate Agent over and over again and we are here to put our expertise to work for you!

Happy spring!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
Find me on Facebook

Millennials Love Working with Wilmington DE Real Estate Agents

by Katina Geralis

Did you know Millennials (the age group of those born between 1980 and 1995) love working with real estate agents? According to the National Association of Realtors 2015 Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends Report, Millennials are the largest homebuying generation in the U.S. and work with real estate agents more so than any other generation.

For instance, the Home Buyer and Seller Report found the following interesting statistics surrounding Millennials' real estate behaviors:

And despite the vast number of Millennials using an agent to buy or sell a home, they have the lowest percentage when it comes to using an agent again or recommending them to others (63 percent of home sellers).

Why is that? As stated by real estate news platform Inman, Millennials are harder to please than any other generation. They grew up with smartphones and the internet, thus they are different than any other real estate consumer.

Millennials are looking for the following in a real estate agent:

  • Texting, but also phone calls
    More than any other generation, Millennials appreciate when their real estate agent communicates via text message. However, 75 percent of them also appreciate phone calls.
  • Homes online
    Millennials appreciate browsing homes online more so than any other generation. The majority (58 percent) use iPhones, while 32 percent use Androids.
  • Website information
    Millennials are more likely to use website information in their home search as well as throughout the buying and selling process. They want real estate agents who provide this readily and easily!
  • Honesty and trustworthiness
    More than a quarter of this group of homebuyers look for agents who are both honest and trustworthy.

We understand how overwhelming choosing a real estate agent can be and The Kat Geralis Home Team is proud to provide all of the above to homebuyers and sellers in the Greater Wilmington DE area! If you are searching for a highly-rated real estate agent to walk you through the process this year, do not hesitate to reach out to us

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Millennials are also now putting less down on their future homes! In fact, 64 percent of Millennials put down less than 20 percent, with 36 percent putting down less than 5! Don't let the down payment factor hold you back from purchasing a home this year— homeownership is well within your reach.

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
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8 Things to Do and See with the Family in Wilmington, DE

by Katina Geralis

Now that it's May, most of us likely have our sights set on summer— Warmer weather, a schedule free from school and more fun events to attend. Wilmington, Delaware is a great place to spend the spring and summer months with numerous activities, events and attractions to visit with the whole family. 

Whether you're relocating to Wilmington or Newark DE, simply visiting for the weekend or wanting to get out and explore the community, consider the following 8 things to do and see. There's something for everyone on the list!

  • DuPont Environmental Education Center

FREE! Hands-on activities and exhibits are housed in this 4-story nature center located on Wilmington's Riverfront.

  • Delaware Center for Contemporary Arts

FREE! With rotating exhibitions among its seven galleries, this local museum has been called "one of the most innovative and prominent organizations of its kind on the East Coast," by the Philadelphia Inquirer. 

  • Delaware Museum of Natural History

Here you can find life-size dinosaurs, an African watering hole, undersea adventure and even get up close to a jaguar! 

  • Brandywine Park

Enjoy a stroll, have a picnic, bike from Brandywine Park to Rockford Park. 

  • Wilmington & Western Railroad

The railroad has become one of the East Coast's premier scenic tourist railroads and is ready to celebrate its 50th season this year. 

  • The Riverfront

A great place to catch a baseball game, have dinner, watch a movie or enjoy the entertainment planned for the day.

  • Hagley Museum

An example of early American industry situated on 235 acres along the banks of the Brandywine. 

  • Downtown Wilmington

Visit the Farmer's Market opening May 6, ride the Wilmington Trolley, tour local shops and businesses. Downtown is a hub of creativity! 

The KG Home Team is proud to call Wilmington, DE our home and we know you will be too! As your local real estate experts, we can provide local suggestions and fill you in on what it takes to become a homeowner in New Castle County

Contact us today!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
Find me on Facebook

Kat Geralis Ranked Top Keller Williams Agent in Delaware

by Katina Geralis


When you are ready to buy or sell a home in the Greater Wilmington Delaware area, you want to work with the best. That's why I am happy to share that I've been ranked the Top Keller Williams agent in Delaware!

Choosing from over thousands of real estate agents, Real Trends takes into account both transactions and sales volume when compiling their list. Given these factors for this year's Best Real Estate Agents in America, I was ranked 3rd Best Agent in the State of Delaware and the Top Ranked Keller Williams Agent! 

So, don't work with just any agent in the Wilmington, DE area this year, work with the best. A real estate agent can accomplish so much on your behalf, whether you're buying a new home or selling your current property in Wilmington or Newark, so don't go it alone. It's always best to leave it up to the pros in order to have a smooth and less stressful real estate journey.

Below are just a few of the things a great Realtor can do for you:

The KG Home Team offers all of these services and more— our experience in the Greater Wilmington area is unparalleled and available to assist you in achieving your Delaware real estate goals. 

Contact us today!

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With mortgage rates this low, waiting to buy a home in Wilmington, DE no longer makes sense. In fact, did you know that buying a home is 38% less expensive than renting? It's true! Nationally, rates would have to rise to 10.6% for renting to be cheaper than buying and rates haven't been that high since 1989!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
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Are you looking for a new place to call home? Consider Wilmington, Delaware

Located conveniently between New York City and Washington, DC, Wilmington has become a hub of culture and commerce given its low cost of living, low property taxes and ZERO sales tax! Not only is Wilmington one of the best places to live if you hate paying taxes, but it's also been ranked the 6th Most Tax-friendly State for Retirement.

The Kat Geralis Home Team with Keller Williams can get you moving this year, whether you're looking for new construction homes, investment properties, 55+ communities, or are preparing to buy your very first home

Last year, Keller Williams helped over 2,000 families move to a new home in Delaware and we'd be happy to help you do the same. Relocating to the area? Our team is well-versed in all things Wilmington!

Ranked the #1 Keller Williams agent in Delaware in 2013 and chosen as one of America's Best Real Estate Agents by Real Trends, I know the in's and out's of the community as well as the local market. My team of talented professionals is what drives our success and together, we have more than 50 years of combined experience to assist with your buying or selling a home in Greater Wilmington

Our services are a cut above when it comes to the real estate market— we are prepared to help both buyers and sellers with the following:

If you have questions about relocating to Wilmington, where to retire, or simply buying or selling a home in Delaware this year, don't hesitate to reach out! We can provide recommendations on everything from neighborhoods to local events to mortgage lenders. 

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
Find me on Facebook
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Enjoy Wilmington, Delaware with the Riverfront Blues Festival

by Katina Geralis

The blues are coming back to the Wilmington waterfront! The Riverfront Blues Festival is set to return to Tubman-Garrett Riverfront Park next weekend. 

According to Delaware Today Magazine, the 3-day music festival weekend planned for this August 1 through the 3rd is the "rockin'est weekend of the year!" Rain or shine, the event is held outdoors on two stages and features some of the best blues musicians around. 

In the past, the Riverfront Blues Festival has included free harmonica lessons and free sessions with guitarist Gary Cogdell, as well as a free children's craft tent and refreshing misting tent available in the park to cool attendees during those dog days of summer. This year's event is expected to be just as successful, with the talents of treasured blues musicians Marcia Ball, James Harman and Tommy Castro gracing the Blues Festival's stages. 

Wilmington residents and visitors alike can also expect to find the following musicians on this year's Blues Festival main stage:

Friday, August 1: 
5 PM— Popa Chubby
6:45 PM— Southern Hospitality featuring the Damon Fowler Band & Victor Wainwright and the Wild Roots
8:30 PM— Tommy Castro & the Painkillers

Saturday, August 2:
Noon— Jimmy Pritchard Big Band
1:30 PM— Curley Taylor & Zydeco Trouble
3:15 PM— Carolyn Wonderland
5 PM— Paul Oscher
​6:45 PM— Kinsey Report
8:30 PM— James Harman's Bamboo Porch Revue

Sunday, August 3:
12:30 PM— Jarekus Singleton
2:30 PM— Wayne Baker Brooks Band
4:30 PM— Marcia Ball

Single day passes for the event range from $25 (online)/$35 at the gate on Friday and $30 (online)/$35 at the gate on Saturday and Sunday. Three-day Riverfront Blues Festival weekend passes can be purchased online for $75.

The Kat Geralis Home Team is happy to provide recommendations for enjoying the Wilmington and Newark, DE area, from local events to Wilmington real estate resources. If you're ready to call this great community home and relocate to Delaware, contact us today!

Ready to sell your current home and move to a new property in the area? We'd love to hear from you!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty


Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
Find me on Facebook
Follow me on Twitter

 

4 Must-See Father's Day Events in Wilmington, DE

by Katina Geralis

Summer is the time to get outdoors, explore your Delaware community, slow down and visit the attractions— everything Wilmington and Newark have to offer. From spending a weekend on the Riverfront to catching a baseball game, this season will be filled with great events and something for the whole family to enjoy. This Father's Day weekend is no exception! Dad will love to catch a baseball game or take in an exhibit at the local museum, so mark these on your calendar. Below are 4 must-see events to attend with Dad this Father's Day:

Just for Dad 
Friday, June 13, 2014 through Sunday, June 15
10 AM to 3 PM
Delaware Children's Museum
Wilmington, DE


Admission to this Father's Day event is free (with general admission), held at the Delaware Children's Museum this Friday through Sunday. This is a great opportunity for kids to bring Dad out for a day of fun and create a special, one-of-a-kind Father's Day card for him. A chance to celebrate Dad and bonus, enjoy the rest of the museum this weekend!

Retro*Active Performance Art from 1964-1987
Saturday, June 14, 2014; 10 AM to 4 PM
Delaware Art Museum
Wilmington, DE


Performance art was made popular in the mid 1960's and has grown over the past few decades to include music, theater, technology, dance and most importantly, audience participation. This is an interactive event that goes hand-in-hand with the Museum's "Performance Now" showing. This historical view of performance art will be available nearly all day Saturday and involves artists like Chris Burden, Dan Graham, Joan Jonas, Paul McCarthy, Yoko Ono, and Carolee Schneemann to really showcase the movement.

Little Shop of Horrors
Friday, June 13, 2014; 8 PM to 10 PM
Wilmington Drama League
Wilmington, DE


Kick off Father's Day weekend early with a performance of Little Shop of Horrors by the Wilmington Drama League. The showing includes three musical female narrators, star-crossed lovers, and a crazy florist for one fun-filled evening. Little Shop of Horrors put on by this great local group is just the entertainment you need to segue into a relaxing weekend.

Blue Rocks vs. Carolina Mudcats
Saturday, June 14, 2014; 7:05 PM to 9:05 PM
Frawley Stadium
Wilmington, DE


What better way to spend a Dad-dedicated weekend than at a baseball game? And the local Wilmington Blue Rocks at that. Saturday is part of the "Dog Days of Summer" series, so you can bring your pup along too! Not to mention the first 1,000 fans will snag a dog-themed giveaway prize from Concord Pet Food and Purina. Baseball, pets and a night under the lights— Dad will love it!

The Kat Geralis Home Team is always here to help you learn more about the Wilmington and Newark areas, from recommendations to local happenings to buying and selling homes. Questions? We'd be happy to hear from you!
 

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

Wilmington Real Estate
Wilmington Homes for Sale
Visit My Website
Contact Me
Find me on Facebook
Follow me on Twitter



 

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