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What Goes On In Real Estate And Chester County

We are happy to share with our visitors some interesting information on a regular basis.

7 Tips For Smoothly Selling Your Home

Selling your home can certainly be exciting, fun and the start of something new – a relief! But for many, it’s also often a difficult and emotional process. When deciding to put your home on the market, there is a greater chance of a smooth and successful sale if certain pitfalls are avoided.  Here, Holly, Stephen and Stewart Gross list 7 Tips for Smoothly Selling Your Home:

Holly has approximately 40 years of experience in Real Estate and has encountered pretty much every possible real estate situation:

1. Looking Objectively at Your Home

“I honestly think that the hardest thing for people to do is to separate the house they are putting on the market from the home that has been the center stage in their life. Separating the personal significance of their home from the unemotional objectivity of the market is difficult. It is often hard for people to take a step back and discount the emotional value they attach to their home.” 

2. Making It Marketable

“If you are selling your home, you have to present it in a way that is as appealing as possible, for as many people as possible. There is a reason staging has become such big business – it is simply about presenting the home in a manner that makes it possible for potential buyers to envision themselves living there. Often, this means presenting the home as a plain canvas on which the future memories of a potential buyer will come to life. We do not normally recommend hiring a stager to conduct a complete home makeover, but at the very least one should clean up inside and outside, remove the most personal items and artifacts and possibly repaint key rooms in neutral colors. And I can’t emphasize this enough: de-clutter, de-clutter, de-clutter!”

3. Choosing The Right Realtor

“Selling is a complicated process with plenty of pitfalls. A good realtor will negotiate not only the price, but many other terms of the deal; market your property well; put a team of outside experts together when necessary to keep the transaction running smoothly and help with issues beyond their expertise; and be your project manager and source of support throughout the whole process.”

Stewart, Holly and Stephen Gross with the Holly Gross Group

                                                                                          Stewart, Holly and Stephen Gross 

Stephen is an analytical number cruncher with sharp insight in Real Estate pricing and offers some insights from that perspective:

4. Asking Too Much

“Although it is generally true that the price should be set somewhat higher than your expected settlement price in order to leave room for negotiations, it is important to have realistic expectations. A price that is too high can actually scare off potential buyers and not net you more money while increasing your days on market. If you are priced too high, you may not even get buyers in the door. Whether we like it or not, it is the current market situation that decides what your home is worth and what a buyer is willing to pay. That said, for some higher end properties, it can sometimes be wise to anchor the buyer at a higher number and then be prepared to reduce, reduce again and negotiate.”

5. Do A Home Assessment

“Do a pre-listing assessment and address issues before they come up as a surprise in negotiations. Proactively addressing problems can save both time and money.”

Stewart worked in Real Estate in Boulder, CO, before joining the Holly Gross Group, and adds to further points to the list:

6. Welcome Interested Buyers Into Your Home

“A potential buyer who wants to view your house should be accommodated even if it means that it may be a bit inconvenient for you. I know it’s a lot of work, but it should be clean and shiny every time someone comes to see it, as that can mean the difference between getting an offer or not getting an offer.”

7. List The Home With Good Photos

“80% of buyers search for properties online, and they want to see pictures of the properties they are interested in. However, nobody wants to see photos of rooms with TV cords, laundry, piles of papers or a camera flash reflecting in a mirror. Make it look nice and ensure that your Realtor produces photos that bring out the best in your property. With so many people screening online, good photos make are a key component of good marketing.”

Amazing Christmas Hacks

Yes, yes, we are only about a week away from having a strange man with a big white beard climbing down our chimney while his raindeers are waiting on the rooftop. As stressful as it may be to get everything ready for the big day (some of us may or may not still have "clean the house and put out decorations" on the to-do-list...), it is a wonderful time of the year. Here are a few Christmas Hacks that will make your celebration easier and/or more magical!

1. Use plastic cups to store ornaments

This is brilliant - why haven't we thought of this before??

Cups for ornament storage














2. Wrap Christmas lights around a hanger

Oh the hours we have spent trying to un-tangle those lights...! 

Wrap lights around hanger













3. Use pumpkins to make snowmen

It makes total sense to reuse the pumpkins instead of throwing them out.

Pumpkins as snowmen













4. Glue together two candy canes to make placement cards

And you can eat them, too, if you have enough room after dinner...

Candy canes for place cards













5. Create a Christmas chandelier by hanging ornaments in it

Actually, this can be applied for all seasons by just using different ornaments.

Ornaments in chandelier

























6. A waste basket makes perfect wrapping paper storage

A wine crate works too!

Store wrapping paper in basket

Wine crate for storage



5 Things To Do In Chester County In September

Having no weekend plans is a great opportunity to do nothing but relax and maybe spend some well-deserved time at home. When busy week schedules are filled with work, school, dropping off and picking up kids, chores and all those things that we call "daily life", an empty weekend calendar can be a luxurious break. However, if you are looking for something to do the weekends of September, we have a few suggestions:

 1. September 23 - Coatesville Int'l Vintage Grand Prix

This is an individually timed driving event through Coatesville that is open to race cars from 1900-1965 and motorcycles from 1940-1965. If you don't have a vehicle that qualifies for participation, you can be a spectator!   

Coatesville Vintage Grand Prix copy






 2. September 30 - Kennett Brewfest

For beer lovers and food lovers alike. Local, regional and craft breweries fill the streets together with food, music and vendors. Also, the Brewfest won the Main Street's "Best of 25 Years Award". 

Kennett Brewfest 2017








 3. Sundays through October 1 - Brandywine Polo

A perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon - spectators picnic and tailgate while watching the pologame. Relaxed and casual. 

Brandywine Polo Toughkenamon









 4. September 30 - Phoenixville VegFest

A vegan food and street festival with live music and vendors. 

5. September 24 - 44th Annual SPCA Benefit Horse Show

Hunters, jumpers and equitation.


Tally-Ho! A Fox Hunting Photo Exhibit

One of the things that is a bit unique about living in Chester County is that it is a longtime stronghold for fox hunting. Mr. Stewart's Cheshire Fox Hounds, or the Cheshire Hunt (Conservancy) for short, is located right outside Unionville and has been an important part of the community since the early 1900s. The hunt and the conservation of open space has a long and historic relationship that can be read about here

Ellie Glaccum is the Cheshire Hunt Conservancy's Secretary and also a talented amateur photographer. She is often seen, camera in hand, following the fox hunt, and the Holly Gross Group now have the pleasure of displaying her photos to the public. We have a great commercial space available for rent that is newly renovated and a perfect spot for exhibiting her images. 

For more information about the event, click the image below:

Tally Ho Fox Hunting Through The Lens Of Ellie Glaccum




Drinks, Food and Art in Kennett Square, PA

There are so many wonderful restaurants and bars in the Chester County area, but one of our favorites is The Creamery in Kennett Square. This seasonal beer garden has introduced a concept unlike any other in the area! Only open during the Summer, there is no fixed restaurant menu. Instead, there are new food trucks there every night (it's open Wednesday-Sunday) who serve delicious meals at reasonable prices. As the name indicates, the venue used to be a creamery and the owners have done an amazing job transforming the old industrial building into a gorgeous rustic yet elegant and cozy place for the whole family. Beer lovers will get their need well satisified by the extensive beer selection; there is live music on a weekly basis and even a play area for the kids. The most recent addition will appeal to art interested guests; renowned local artist Robert C Jackson has recently painted a mural in the back room, depicting his characteristic and humoristic balloon dogs enjoying themselves over a burger and beer. The Creamery really is worth a visit if you haven't been there yet!

The Creamery Kennett Square7


The Creamery Kennett Square2

The Creamery Kennett Square8

The Creamery Kennett Square5


Chester County Real Estate Market Is STRONG

Curious about the Chester County, PA real estate market? Here's a quick update for you:

  • There is an ongoing a positive trend in Settlement Prices for the past few years
  • More properties are being sold
  • Average Settled Price as of April 2017 is $366,000  

If you are thinking about potentially selling your property, this is the time! Give us a call at 610-430-3030 for a free consultation.  

Real Estate Prices Chester County PA 2015-2017