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Expert Tips for Home Buyers & Sellers

Our mission at The Home Gallery Team is to be your best resource for real estate advice. Whether you are a buyer, seller, or investor, our team of professionals can answer any questions you might have about real estate. Subscribe to this blog to get the latest news on local market trends and receive expert tips for buying or selling a home.

Should You Try Selling Your Home as a Pocket Listing?


Pocket listings have both pros and cons to them, but they typically don’t give you the best chance to get a great price on your home.


What is a pocket listing?

Basically, a pocket listing is when you have an agent who tries to sell a home before it hits the market. The agent tries to market that property to their internal list of buyers so they can get both halves of the commission. If you’re a seller, there are both pros and cons to this type of listing.

On the pro side, it’s a much quieter sale. You can avoid having a lot of showings or walkthroughs and your agent can sell the property directly to one of the few buyers who come to your house.

On the con side, not exposing the listing to the public market means not generating any competition. Less competition means the buyer who’s bidding on your house has no incentive to get aggressive on their offer price. Therefore, you won’t have the best chance to get a great price on your house.

Pocket listings don’t always allow you to get the best possible price for your home.

We’re seeing record-low inventory in our market right now, so there is fierce competition and multiple bids happening for many listed homes that end up selling over their asking price. Before you let an agent sell your home as a pocket listing, stop and consider what your aim is. The buyer doesn’t have to compete against other buyers and the agent gets both sides of the commission without the extra work, but what about you?

On our team, even if we have a buyer that’s perfect for one of our seller’s properties, we still suggest to that seller that it might be a good idea to expose that property to the public market before allowing the buyer to make an offer on it. By widening the number of potential buyers, you increase your odds of getting the best possible price for your home.

If you have any questions about this topic or have a topic in mind you’d like to see me discuss in a future video, please feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I’d be happy to help you.

Get a Bird’s-Eye View of the 301 Bypass Project


Today, I’m flying over the 301 bypass to give you a bird’s-eye view of the progress that has been made so far.


Today I am broadcasting from 3,000 feet over Middletown to show you footage of the 301 bypass project.

This project has been in the works for such a long time that many of us here in Middletown (including myself) doubted that it would ever make it from the drawing board to the groundbreaking ceremony. However, construction is underway. Believe it or not, there are actually plans to start placing concrete this summer! Click here to read the Delaware Business Times article

Now that I have seen the 301 bypass from the ground and the air, I want to tip my hat to the men and women responsible for planning it. They have done an admirable job of tucking this massive project away in copses of trees and farmland.

Of course, some people will have to adjust to additional traffic noise and may see their home values impacted while people get used to the change. The city planners did plan ahead, as most areas close to the bypass are already close to fairly heavy traffic. 

Flying over it, I just thought, ‘Wow!’

My hope is that the uptick in volume will be offset by the easing of traffic build-up in key areas. I also hope that people who purchased property close to the project knew about the bypass and negotiated prices accordingly. Although creating this bypass is a perfectly logical move, something like this springing up behind your home can be quite a surprise. A good Realtor can help you do some additional due diligence if you are planning on buying or selling in this area.

Flying over this project, though, I was mostly impressed by the progress that has been made. To get a complete bird’s-eye view, check out the video.

In the meantime, if you have any real estate questions, please don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I would be happy to help you!

How to Add Value to a Home With DIY Projects


I'm back at another remodel site to show you a cool example of how you can add some serious value to your home without hiring a contractor. In this case, the homeowner paneled their ceiling and added decorative trim and beams for just $1,400.


We're going informal again today as we're shooting from another remodel job to talk about making your own ceiling.

The ceiling you see in the video above needed a facelift really badly—it was what I call a cake frosting ceiling. It also had a couple big ceiling fans that just weren't very flattering. The whole ceiling needed to come down, so most of the work was just demo work to rip down the old drywall.

This job was done by a homeowner, not a contractor.

From there, we had a choice of going with drywall again for the ceiling or to do something that really grabbed the imagination. We ended up choosing a cedar ceiling for this house. It's just tongue and groove cedar strips that you can find at Home Depot or Lowes along with some pre-finished white trim. The white beams you see are actually just white two-by-fours that are bracketed to the ceiling and boxed in with more pre-finished trim.

Of course, this was detailed work that took a lot of effort working overhead with a nail gun and other tools. However, this was done by a homeowner, not a contractor. If you're thinking about doing some work in your house and you have just a little bit of skill, there's no limit to what you can do. Since this ceiling was a homeowner job, the cedar, the trim, and the beams were only about a $1,400 DIY job.

If you have any questions about these kinds of projects to lift the value of a home, don't hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I'd love to hear from you!