The 4 Must-Have Features Home Buyers Are Looking for in 2017

luxury homesAside from great neighborhoods, great schools, and great locations (the perennial must-have features for most homeowners), many people don’t know what else to look for as they browse through various houses for sale. Often, square footage and price are given such high priority that house hunters overlook other important features.

If you are searching for Philadelphia homes for sale, then here are four popular features that buyers should be on the lookout for. 

Homes with no problems with electricity or plumbing
Despite the popularity of reality shows about house flipping, the era of the fixer upper is fading fast. According to the National Association of REALTORS, roughly 34% of recent buyers who bought new homes were looking to avoid dealing with any serious plumbing or electrical issues at all costs. Though these are important factors of a fully functioning home, it’s best to find properties that have new or recently replaced plumbing, electrical, and appliances. This way, you don’t have to worry about spending money on unnecessary repairs in the near future. 

Luxury homes
Though homeowners enjoy working on a few home improvement projects throughout their time as a property owner, they would much prefer making these decisions on their own terms — not out of necessity. As a result, luxury homes are particularly popular right now. Although “luxury” can be an overused term in the real estate world, it generally means new homes with upscale amenities, fixtures, and appliances. In addition, luxury homes are usually located in private neighborhoods in a prime location.

Energy-efficient properties
According to Zillow data, about 48% of all recent home buyers who were interested in newer luxury homes stated that “energy-efficiency” was their most desired home feature. As more and more millennials break into the home buying market, there will likely be an even larger shift to luxury homes with smarter, greener technology. 

Homes that have never been lived in
Another popular feature that home buyers are searching for nowadays is originality. According to Zillow, 48% of home buyers are looking for properties that have never been lived in before. This is a popular trend because people feel much more personally connected to and invested in a property because it’s specifically for them. At a time when housing supply is low, new builds are often the place to start when browsing Philadelphia homes for sale.

Ultimately, everyone’s must-have list of home features will look different. As long as you know what kind of property you’re looking for, you should end up getting a great home for you and your family. If you’re in the middle of your search for quality real estate and want to check out some luxury homes in Philadelphia, contact West End Walk today. 

Avoid These 4 Mistakes When Searching For a New Home

new homesOf all the people who are looking to buy new properties this year, 32% are first-time home buyers, per National Association of REALTORS data. When it comes to buying a home, there are some lessons you really don’t want to learn the hard way.

Here are a few mistakes to avoid if it’s your first time going through the home buying process. 

Not setting a realistic budget
Emphasis on realistic. Perhaps the most common mistake that home buyers make is not organizing their finances properly. Unfortunately, many first-time buyers go through the arduous process of saving for the downpayment and securing financing, but forget about all the other expenses that come with new homes. Buying a home is expensive, but it’s also expensive to buy everything you’re going to need to fill and maintain your home. When you’re planning your budget, remember to think beyond the closing.

Only looking at large luxury real estate and not smaller new homes
Often, and this is especially true for luxury shoppers, home buyers look primarily at the square footage when evaluating homes for sale. If you’re searching for luxury homes, remember that size isn’t everything, and that square footage can often be exaggerated. Often, a smaller luxury home will fit your needs just as well as a larger estate.

“I think that’s great if you’ve thought about the financial situation and your top priority is having a beautiful place to live that you can enjoy,” said Dana Bull, a Boston realtor. “But I do think that millennials kind of do themselves a disservice if they don’t understand how the numbers work. The biggest mistake isn’t that people are buying starter castles, it’s that they aren’t exploring their options, and they’re making kind of a knee-jerk reaction to based on perhaps what they know.” 

Not doing a walk-through or inspection
You should never make a final purchasing decision if you haven’t done a walk-through yourself. You can look at a million pictures of a specific property and come to love it, but once you visit the home in person you could end up hating it. Likewise, working with a professional to have the home thoroughly inspected is also a must for home buyers. Though you should perform a walk-through of your own, you won’t be able to identify all the problem areas that a professional will. Because housing supply is so short right now, many people are skipping inspections to make their bid more attractive. In the long run, this is always a mistake.

Being unrealistic about home improvements
Far too many people still move into homes with a lot of problems because they think they can easily fix any property issue. The truth is that these home renovation projects take a lot of time, energy, and money to address. If you’re looking at a fixer upper, make sure you aren’t inspecting with rose colored glasses. There’s a reason most people prefer new homes for sale over lived-in properties. 

As long as you’re careful during your search for quality new homes and avoid making these four mistakes, you should be fine. If you’re ready to check out new homes in Philadelphia and begin the next chapter of your life, contact West End Walk today. 

4 Popular Factors Young People Look For In Homes

real estateThe average homebuyer is getting younger and younger and it’s affecting the entire real estate market. According to, about 61% of all 2017 homebuyers will be under the age of 35. It’s important to understand what makes this younger demographic tick, so here are a few real estate factors that younger homebuyers are looking for.

A home office
More and more people are working from home nowadays and millennials are leading this workplace trend. As Bankrate reports, because of the widespread technology use among young professionals, people are able to effectively get all their work done from the comfort of their own homes.

“Having a dedicated space is important because it will help keep them focused and concentrated on work while they are at home on a Skype call, planning a presentation, setting up their workday or simply paying bills,” said Lou Cardillo, of the Lou Cardillo Home Selling Team in New York.

An excellent location and nightlife
Although interior aspects like nice furniture and home offices are important, young people really want to make sure their homes are in a great area. Without a fun nightlife and exciting opportunities surrounding young homeowners, they aren’t going to enjoy their houses that much, even if they are amazing homes. As long as there are enough fun things for young professionals to do and an exciting nightlife with quality local bars and restaurants, they will love the area.

Luxury real estate options
This younger demographic will be looking for luxury houses for sale during their search for the perfect home. Although they want to live lavish lifestyles, they are still relatively tight on money as they are in the beginning of their careers. So they are still budgeting while searching for luxury property.

“The primary reason younger buyers seek updated kitchens and baths is because they have limited budgets,” said Jack Curtis, Ohio real estate agent.

The ability to customize
Although there are plenty of young homebuyers who would rather buy a home that is completely furnished and one that needs little or no work done, a popular trend among this demographic is major custom projects. Younger buyers want to put their personal stamp on their property and doing these household projects are great to add an individualized touch.

It’s important to understand how the younger generation is thinking about the property buying process. To learn more about luxury properties and find new homes in Philadelphia, contact West End Walk today!

The 3 Benefits of Neighborhood Walkability

new housesIf you’re looking for new houses for sale, you are probably focused intently on price, the home’s interior, and its actual location. Those, and others, and very important aspects of the home buying process. But if you’re serious about making an offer on one of the new houses you’re looking at, make sure you take a step back and look at another essential aspect of buying a home.

Walkability isn’t just something that homebuyers should hope for when looking for a new place to live, it should be a must. Whether you’re buying a small startup home or are considering luxury houses, the neighborhood’s walkability should be very high on your list.

According to a recent Urban Land Institute study, 50% of survey respondents said that walkability is either the top priority or a high priority in where they would be willing to live. Here are a few benefits of living in an area that has great walkability.

You’ll be able to have a healthier social life
As you walk around your new neighborhood, you’ll smile and wave to all your friendly neighbors. Perhaps these small greetings can even turn into friendships one day? But even if they remain brief, even these small greetings can benefit you because actually interacting with people has been shown to help raise happiness levels.

“Social connectedness generates a positive feedback loop of social, emotional, and psychical well-being,” said Dr. Emma Seppala of the Stanford Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education and author of the 2016 book The Happiness Track. “People who feel more connected to others have lower levels of anxiety and depression.”

You’ll be able to stay physically active
Physical activity has been closely linked with health benefits for years, so it’s best to get outside and walk around as much as possible. If you’re living in an area where you feel unsafe to walk around or you just don’t feel comfortable doing so, you’re going to end up being cooped in the house for too long and you’ll begin to feel the negative side effects of doing so. Rather than staying inside your home and avoiding your neighborhood altogether, get outside and walk around a nice neighborhood and enjoy the environment.

You’ll be able to stay safe outside your home
Perhaps the biggest factor in determining an area’s walkability is how safe it is. If you and your family are nervous about going outside because of high crime rates, that’s not good for anyone. Choosing a neighborhood that is safe to walk around in, however, will greatly benefit your entire family.

If you’re looking for new houses, take your time finding the perfect area. Don’t just buy a home in any random area that could be unclean or unsafe. Spend some time considering the neighborhood’s walkability. If you want to check out some safe new homes in Philadelphia, contact West End Walk today!

3 Benefits of Living in a Luxury Townhouse Community

luxury housesPeople move all the time and make decisions about their futures nearly every day. One of those major moving decisions is not just about location but more about what type of property you want to move into. There are plenty of options, but one in particular is gaining popularity, especially among the younger generation.

Renting luxury houses is becoming one of the best options for people who want to live in great areas without having to worry about too much. Here are a few additional benefits of living in luxury townhouses.

Avoid constant renovation and repair jobs

If you own your own home, providing constant maintenance and performing renovation projects can be extremely stressful. And if you don’t have the skills or knowledge necessary to successfully accomplish many of these household projects, you might actually make things worse and end up having to spend even more money to fix your mistakes. With luxury houses, however, you won’t have to worry about maintenance at all.

Roughly 34% of recent homebuyers who punched new homes were looking to avoid performing these kinds of complicated renovations like plumbing or electricity issues. So it’s much better to not have to worry about them at all and just enjoy your luxury place of residence.

Peace of mind knowing full security is granted

Luxury apartment complexes provide external security features that help ensure you and your family are protected at all times. There might be cameras throughout the area, security guards, and additional aspects of security in order to maintain the safety of the neighborhood and your family.

Wonderful environment and clean neighborhood

In a recent survey by the Urban Land Institute, about 50% of respondents said that “walkability” is either the top or a high priority in where they would choose to live. About 56% of millennials would much rather prefer to live in a more walkable neighborhood, as well. These rented luxury real estates provide a clean environment that is safe and enjoyable to walk around at any time.

If you want to learn more about living in these communities or want to checkout luxury houses for sale or rent, contact West End Walk today.

Why You Should Hire a Real Estate Agent During Your Next Housing Search

real estateWhen looking for new homes, most homebuyers have their hearts set on the luxury houses in high-end neighborhoods. And why not? They’re typically in a great location with an excellent school district and are usually more up to date than other houses. However, when you’re new to the house hunting game, you’ll soon learn that actually acquiring one of these luxury homes can be difficult.

Fortunately, real estate agents can help you find the right home for you in the right neighborhood. If you’re having trouble finding a house you love, then hiring a real estate agent to assist you in your search may be a great option.

Why should I hire a real estate agent?

Sure, searching for new houses online can be done by anyone, but only a real estate agent has easy access to other agents’ property listings. So while looking on your own may have you clicking through advertisements for homes and going through endless real estate websites, a real real estate agent can find you new homes with most if not all of the features you want in a house.

Additionally, hiring a real estate agent is like hiring a lawyer. It can be difficult to handle the market on your own if you don’t know what you’re doing, which is what a real estate agent is there for. They make calls to home owners, answer both your questions and the questions of the sellers, and make appointments on your behalf with your schedule in mind. With a real estate agent on your side, you’ll be able to keep up with the speed of the market and will be able to catch your dream home before it can be lost and given to someone else interested in the property.

Potential homebuyers don’t often have experience in negotiating with sellers either. A real estate agent can assist you in this area by looking out for your interests. During the negotiating process, they may be able to work as a messenger between you and the seller’s agent as a means of getting a deal on the home. They’re also able to keep professional in the face of difficulty, which you may not be able to do should a negotiating process become heated and emotional.

The next time you decide to check out the market for new homes, consider hiring a real estate agent to assist you in your search. A majority of millennials (56% to be exact) and 46% of baby boomers prefer neighborhoods that are more walkable; a real estate agent would be able to give you options in walkable neighborhoods you may not have been aware of. Therefore, to find the best home for you at the most reasonable price, consult a real estate agent on your next house hunt.

Your Dream of Buying Luxury Real Estate Isn’t As Far Off As You Thought It Was

luxury real estateSettling is a big problem for many people. Whether it’s settling on a career that you don’t really enjoy, settling on a major decision, or even settling on a spouse who might not treat you as well as you deserve; people have always settled, but they don’t have to. Especially when it comes to homeownership — settling can ruin someone’s appreciation for their own property.

Whether you’re buying a home for the first time (32% of the current homebuyer market) or are moving onto your third or fourth property, don’t settle for less than your dream home. Don’t think for one second that you can’t acquire your dream home. All you have to do is put in the work, seek help from people who can offer their services, and never, no matter what, settle for anything.

If you want to find luxury real estate, for example, that doesn’t have to be just an unobtainable dream. Luxury real estate, though extremely nice, doesn’t have to cost an entire lifetime’s worth of savings to afford. There are amazing luxury homes throughout the country that you can find for a reasonable price — you just have to know where to look and who to talk to.

Working with a trusted real estate agent can help a lot during your search for the perfect home. It’s important that you work with someone who really wants to help you and not just see the largest amount on their sales commission. Certain real estate agents can put you in touch with affordable developers and you’ll be able to check out amazing luxury houses that you will be able to afford.

In addition to working with a professional, knowing where to look, and realizing your dream home is eventually obtainable, you will absolutely have to put in plenty of work yourself. You’re going to have to learn to spend much more wisely if you want to live the lavish lifestyle you dream of. Start by outlining a strict but fair budget for you to stick to each year, month, and week and save as much as you can along the way.

Be smart with your money, work with a helpful real estate agent, keep searching for perfect luxury real estate, and never settle for anything less than perfect. If you want to look at wonderful new homes in Philadelphia, contact West End Walk today!

Millennial Home Buying: 3 Things Young Homebuyers are Looking For

luxury real estateHistory has partially waited for this significant moment: when millennials begin to buy property. It’s finally here and it’s an exciting time for everyone. According to, roughly 61% of homebuyers over the course of 2017 will be under the age of 35 years old.

These younger homebuyers, however, don’t necessary care too much about having big yards with obligatory white picket fences, having quiet living spaces, or areas with a lot of historical significance. Millennial homebuyers, rather, have a lot of contrasting options on what they consider makes a house a great place to live.

Here are a few aspects of real estate that this younger generation is looking for:

Luxury Real Estate
Millennials aren’t just looking for houses for sale that can provide them with a roof over their heads. These younger buyers are yearning for a seemingly lavish lifestyle with luxury real estate, although they don’t care much to actually play the part of the affluent. Millennials would much rather live in a beautiful place that makes them feel like kings and queens, but spend their own money doing much less luxuries activities. The more power to them!

Vibrant City Life
These homebuyers aren’t looking to settle down quite yet, so buying a house on a 100 acres isn’t in the mix. Millennials would much rather live in a great area that is close to a vibrant city life. They love having fun, trying new things, and interacting with a diverse group of people; all of which can be difficult in extremely rural areas.

Minimal Design
Again, millennials don’t care much for traditional home styles and would much prefer a simplistic layout. The minimalist fad has continued for a few years now and has since grown into an actual way of life, and one that millennials thoroughly enjoy. Although they want technologically advanced appliances and smart home capabilities throughout, they would still rather plain white walls with a plant or two, and some furniture to be all that’s inside their home.

You don’t need to live on a large farm with a huge yard to be happy. You can have luxury real estate in a great part of the city if you look carefully. If you want to check out some luxury houses or are looking for Philadelphia homes for sale, contact West End Walk today!

Here Are 5 Great Advantages of Living in a Townhouse Community

real estateIf you’re looking for new homes in Philadelphia and are curious about what type of real estate to purchase, then consider moving into a townhouse community. Townhouses offer a perfect blend of classic American style and modern living, and more and more aspiring homeowners are looking into these communities. In fact, according to Zillow, roughly 20% of home buyers actively seek to purchase a townhouse rather than a traditional apartment or house.

Why should you consider townhouses, too?

Here are a few reasons why you and your family should consider real estate in a modern townhouse community.

Professionally kept landscaping and beautiful scenery
Quality townhouse communities employ professional landscaping companies to keep the property looking great. If you live in a traditional home, you’d have to shell out a significant amount of money to achieve the visual quality of a professionally maintained landscape. By living in a town home, you’ll be able to enjoy the beautiful scenery as you look at the trees, gardens, and walkways throughout the community — without paying for a gardener.

Plenty of privacy
Despite the fact that you’ll be in close proximity to other families, you’ll still have the ability to keep to yourself whenever you want. Town homes are typically less exposed to the outside world, resulting in more privacy.

Community involvement and recreation
Although you and your family will be able to keep to yourselves whenever you want to have a little privacy, you will also have plenty of opportunities to spend time in a great community. As with most luxury real estate, you’ll have the chance to join a community of families like your own. You’ll build strong relationships that will potentially last a lifetime.

Peace of mind living in a safe environment
In a townhouse community, you’ll have trusting neighbors on each side of your home and all around you. That means you can always count on a friendly pair of eyes to ensure no burglars are entering the neighborhood or mischievous activity is taking place. Whenever looking at real estate for sale, safety should be a top priority, and that’s exactly what you’ll get in an upscale townhouse community.

Feeling of living inside luxury homes
If you’ve ever wanted to own a luxury home without worrying about roofing, siding repair, lawn maintenance, and potholes in the driveway, then traditional home-ownership probably isn’t for you. Fortunately, the best townhouses are also modern luxury houses — without the constant upkeep and repairs. So long as you find the right community, you can find town homes for sale that are every bit as luxurious as a more traditional home.

Want to learn more about quality townhouse real estate throughout the Philadelphia area? Contact West End Walk today.

Searching for a New Home? Make Sure You Take a Look at These 3 Things

new homesBuying a new home will be one of the most important decisions that you make in your life. It’s important to consider every single detail of each prospective property in order to ensure a happy life in your new home. If you act too quickly, or impulsively buy a questionable home, you might end up being forced to stay in a house that you hate for decades.

Whether you’re taking a look at brand new luxury homes or older homes for sale, make sure you take a look at these important aspects.

Whether or not the house will need significant structural repairs
If there is a lot of damage to the roof, windows, or wall paneling, you should decide on whether or not you’re prepared to put in that extra work once your purchase the property. This kind of structural wear and tear shouldn’t cause you to be afraid of purchasing the home, but it is important to realize that you might end up having to do a lot more work than you might’ve expected. If you’d prefer a brand new home with no wear and tear at all, you can find one of those properties, too!

If you like the interior paint job or not
Keep in mind that even if you loathe the existing paint job in the house, you can completely change any room you want. Don’t let a bad paint job deter you from making an offer on an otherwise excellent home. But you should have an idea of how much interior work you’re going to have to do after you purchase the home. Take a look at every room and try and figure out if you like the paint job or not.

If the neighborhood is a good place to live
When looking at new homes for sale, make sure that the neighborhood is just as nice as the property. You want to ensure that you’re moving to a place with a safe, clean, and welcoming neighborhood. According to a recent survey by Urban Land Institute, 50% of respondents said that walkability is a high priority in where they would choose to live. Just because a house is wonderful doesn’t mean the area is all that great. Take a look around for a few blocks and hopefully you’ll find a vibrant neighborhood.

Make sure to inspect the neighborhood, the interior, and the exterior of all the new homes you’re thinking about buying. If you are searching for quality new homes in Philadelphia, contact West End Walk today!