Devon, PA Real Estate News

By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
If only I could afford a little more, I could afford the perfect Main Line House. Many Main Line buyers go through the situation where they cannot find the Philadelphia Main Line house they want. Especially when inventories are low and prices have risen somewhat. But is it true that simply having some more money solves the problem? In some cases it might, but there is no perfect Main Line house out there. As a home inspection will often quickly reveal. It may not be anything big, but there is always something that comes up. Often by increasing the budget you still find homes that need changes. Sometimes, changing your search area helps to find homes closer to what you want, but they often still need some changes. Even a new construction home needs to be personalized. Buyers also often s...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
Should you hire a home inspector when the township issues a U&O? On Philadelphia's Main Line, many townships require a seller to have a township inspection before settlement. This is so that a use and occupancy certificate can be issued. This must be done before settlement. Pennsylvania Law requires a municipality to issue a conditional use certificate that gives the buyer 18 months to do repairs in cases where a home might be being sold "as is" perhaps by an estate, a short sale, a foreclosure or a bank owned property. In fact, here in Pennsylvania we have been hearing rumors that banks and mortgage companies are not accepting conditional use and occupancy certificates, this article from PAR Just Listed outlines the issues. But that is really another issue although related. The main di...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
So how much should you pay per square foot for a Philadelphia Main Line house? I often have buyers of Philadelphia Main Line homes tell me a home is priced at so much a square foot and that it is overpriced. But how much is too much? I was reading this story on Housingwire today about a home in Hong Kong that is $22,677 per square foot. Is that too much? It makes it the most expensive house in the world if only considering price per square foot. The most expensive house listed is actually in London if loking only at price. But what should you consider when buying a Main Line house? Is price per square foot something to rely on? Like a good lawyer, my answer will be, it depends. It depends on the features the house has, its location, does it meet your requirements, school district, crime...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
How confidential is your offer?   I was reading a post by Margaret Rome about confidentiality and it got me thinking about that. Firstly in Pennsylvania until you either sign a buyer agency contract or a listing contract the agent does not have to hold the information you tell them in confidence. You are unrepresented, and anything you share can be used against you in negotiations. Many buyers visit open houses and share information with the agent sitting the open house who represents the seller without thinking. Always be cautious in real estate what you share and with whom. In fact whenever you meet a real estate agent in a potential real estate transaction they should ask if you are represented andexplain agency to you and present you with a Consumer Notice which covers our duties an...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
What you can learn from going to yard sales? This post was inspired by Sharon Tara's post. Trudy and I love going to yard sales. You one never know what you are going to find and two what you will be able to buy even if you find something good. For example, Trudy went out to a yard sale on Friday morning she saw advertised. Well there was nothing at the yard sale, but across the road sat two wicker chairs with a sign on them saying FREE. We both love FREE. Sometimes you have to look elsewhere. She walked up the driveway and rang the door bell and indicated she was interested in the two wicker chairs. The lady in the house said I have another one as well, a rocker. I got the phone call, but was showing a home, so Trudy went and borrowed a van from a friend as she could not fit them all i...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
I need you to be present at every listing. When taking a listing, part of our job requires us to explain to sellers how each demand they make affects a buyer trying to see the house. As was commented in another post by Beth Atalay shoes off is common, and in our area we provide booties to wear over shoes when sellers request this because of new or freshly cleaned carpets. But, there are several reasons why sellers request an agent to be present.  They want the agent to sell the buyers on any special features in the house. They believe their agent knows the house best and can sell it best. They have an alarm system that is complicated to work. They have high value art and furnishings and want you there as a security guard. They want the house locked up correctly after the showing. But, l...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
What does it mean to be a Main Line Realtor? The Philadelphia Main Line is an area outside and west of the city of Philadelphia, it runs through parts of Montgomery, Delaware and Chester Counties. It is named because of the original train line that ran out of the city and some of the stations along the line are delightful. The Main Line has stretched over time, some older inhabitants would frown on areas that are referred to as being on the Main Line today, but newcomers know no difference. The Main Line is a very affluent area, with many multi-million dollar luxury homes and mansions. Over the years it has changed, but each of the townships vies to have the best school district, and there is a lot of competition. This can add up to put a lot pressure on the kids to perform as well. It ...
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By Matt DAntonio, Matt Sells Philly
(Space & Company)
Abordeau Townhomes and Flats Devon, Pa 19333 What's for sale in Arbordeau? Abordeau townhomes is located just off of Berwyn-Baptist Rd in Devon, Pa. Arbordeau is situated on 17 acres of beautifully maintained land, and features 120 townhomes and flats. Each unit feautres ample privacy as well as underground parking.  Townhomes feature two to three bedrooms with nine foot ceilings, private courtyards, and garden space, a wood burning fireplace, and balconies. Flats feature one to three bedrooms with elevators opening into each private flat. Parking for this complex is underground.    School Information: Arbordeau is located in Tredyffrin-Easttown School district, with a current school ranking as of 2014 of #5 in the state, and #341 in the country.  Detailed School report for Tredyffrin-...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
How much longer?   How much longer you ask will interest rates remain steady? How long do I have before I truly, really have to buy a home before the rates knock me out completely? Well they rose about 1% since last year. Many homeowners already fear moving because they have refinanced and have a low interest rate, maybe in the 3% range right now and don't think they can get such a low rate again. Although there are options that will allow you to buy a home and get a 3.82% rate right now.   But why are you thinking of moving? Is it just because of the interest rate? Or is there another underlying reason for your move, perhaps your family is growing or shrinking? So, why worry over the rate, think about that underlying reason and work around that, not the worry about the interest rate.  ...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
In Pennsylvania all homes sold require a seller disclosure, including homes sold on Philadelphia's Main Line whether sold by a Realtor/Broker or a For Sale by Owner. As seen here in the preamble for the seller disclosure form a seller must disclose all known material defects that are not readily observable.   As you can see, even if you are an exempt Philadelphia Main Line home seller you are obligated to complete the form even if you have never occupied the property. There are a few instances that do not require a Seller Disclosure as noted below.  The form allows Not Applicable and Don't Know answers, but the first few questions are about who is completing the form, so these can be answered by anyone, but many sellers just leave the form completely blank. As a Main Line Realtor this i...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
Five things to learn from Airbnb   This year we became Airbnb hosts. I heard about this site on the radio and mentioned it to Trudy. We had a room with it's own entrance and had been deciding what to with it. We ruled out renting it out long term due to the loss of privacy. But listening to the radio program I was intrigued and after mentioning it Trudy checked it out and hey presto we were hosts.       Things to note The site is focused on consumers. it is a community It is easy to use. Writing good copy is important. Good photos allow people to know what they are booking. It encourages rating and feedback. (We currently have 15 reviews) Lessons from Airbnb Trudy has really run it, purchasing things for the room to make it comfortable and adding items to the room following comments fro...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
Changing Shoes Which pair of shoes would you prefer?  The ones on the left nice and clean or the ones on the right, well worn but dirty? This is how buyers look at your Philadelphia Main Line house when you are selling. You may feel it is clean, because it is well loved, but worn. They see that pair of shoes on the right. What they want to buy is the pair of shoes on the left. No matter how well staged the house is, if it is dirty you are putting yourself at a disadvantage. So, when preparing your Philadelphia Main Line home for sale try to change your shoes, see your home as a buyer sees it and make it clean, fresh and new looking. Because I know when we go out to look at houses, you are going to want the pair of shoes on the left, not those on the right.
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
Using Video in your business?   As we see the rise of the use of videos by businesses, I have been trying to get used to using it myself. Initially, I hated seeing and hearing my voice. Then I took a different tack and started interviewing people and filming our listings. As the focus was not on me, I was more relaxed. Then I created a YouTube channel, SellingTheMainLine, and posted the videos there as well as on my website and recently created different playlists such as local community videos, places to visit, listings, mortgage information, local businesses, testimonials, etc. What about an AR "Featured Video"? I have filmed some about local communities and places to visit locally that got me in front of the camera. I had seen the featured video on my profile here on AR for weeks and...
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By David Henke, Realtor, Homes Just West of Philadelphia PA
(Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc)
Happy 4th of July 2014!     It may be a bit of a rainy start but be sure to take some time to relax, spend time with your friends and family, and enjoy. After today it looks like the perfect weekend. David HenkeLong & Foster Real Estate, Inc - Wilmington, DE/Devon, PAOffice:610-225-7400/Direct: 610-618-0808www.DelawarePAHomes.com
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
Tredyffrin and Easttown Townships are a great place to be this July 4th. Lots to do in the two townships if you are at home. Berwyn in Easttown Township has a Bike Parade and Picnic in Johnson Park at the end of Bridge Avenue, sponsored by Penn Liberty Bank, Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, Moon Bounce and Games. Registration at 10.15, Starts at 11.00 am. Lots of fun, seeing the kids parade their decorated bikes. Contact Tom Toscani 610-647-4901 Then get out of the heat for a while at home, celebrate with family or you can just head over to Valley Forge National Park.       Valley Forge National Park for a family picnic and to hear Thomas Jefferson read the Declaration of Independence 11am - 1pm, readings at 11.30, 12.30 and 1.30.         Then in the evening starting at 7.30 pm in Wilson Farm Park...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
Selling a Philadelphia main Line home has now become a multi round game of negotiation. 1) Agreement of sale 2) Inspections 3) Appraiser 4) Walk thru prior to settlement   For those who think a buyers agent does nothing you as a buyer cannot accomplish on your own remember as a buyer you are emotionally invested and sometimes to negotiate well you need to be calm, cool and relaxed. You focus on your goals alone while a good buyer's agent will dig to discover what the sellers goals might also be so that both sides reach settlement achieving most if not all their goals. They can advise you on value and price so that you don't overpay but also you don't miss a home that might seem expensive but which is packed with value due to location, features and benefits compared to other homes on th...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
Right behind our office in Devon PA is this great little Tredyffrin Township Park. Many may not even know it is there. It used to belong to the Italian American Club located nearby, but was purchased some time ago by the township and now provides some green space in a fairly built up area,right behind Devon BMW a place of  quiet where you can stop for a few minutes and relax and enjoy the trees and the grass. There is also a couple of places nearby you can stop for coffee and a sandwich on Berkely, Pour Richard's Coffee Co. and The Black Cat Cafe (hours here are restricted over the summer).  
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By David Henke, Realtor, Homes Just West of Philadelphia PA
(Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc)
Welcome to Summer! It's that time of year to recharge while the days are long, the temperature is hot, and there are a multitude of things to do and see.  Be sure to take some time to relax, travel, enjoy life, and - perhaps -  buy a house. David HenkeLong & Foster Real Estate Inc – Devon, PA/Wilmington, DEOffice: 610-225-7400/Direct: 610-618-0808www.DelawarePAHomes.com
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
I have over the last year had several frustrated clients who have been confused by how much money they need to buy a house. They see signs, and adverts saying "Only 3.5% down needed". But in fact it is always more. There are several additional add on costs to that 3.5% down that are needed. 1) Title Insurance - the mortgage company is going to insist that their interest is insured and you may choose to insure your own interest as well. The amount in PA is set by the state and depends on the price of the home and the mortgage. 2) Real Estate Transfer Tax, this can vary from state to state and county and township, for example it is 1% in many local townships around us for buyer and seller, but some charge 1.25% of the sales price. Philadelphia is much higher 2.5% to both sides. 3) If you ...
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By Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line
(Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400)
We all strive to be fit and healthy. We work out, play sports, encourage our kids to be active and try to set examples for them. But when was the last time you checked your house for how healthy it was for you and your family. When we buy a home we use a home inspector, to give us a snap shot of the home on that day. We may test for Radon, Termites usually, but if it was clear did you ever think to get a re-test, rarely test for Lead Paint, and unless there is an obvious issue probably don't think to test for Mold. But a house changes over time, just like us, it gets older, things fail just like us with knees or hips for example. So, that home inspection, which you pushed in a draw with all the other information from closing or put on a shelf and never looked at again, is probably outd...
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