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.


Stage to Sell Secrets: Home Photography

Today's selling tip is about photographing the home. First, it's important to understand that 66% of the decision to buy your home is not actually made "IN" the home. It's made based on the photographs of your home... Continue Reading

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Stage to Sell Secrets: Prepping the House for Photos

Today we're going to continue with last weeks photography theme. This week we're going to cover 'stripping' and 'positioning'. Before you draw the wrong conclusion, what I'm talking about here is prepping the house for photos. And right about now I lose all of the people who have spent a ton of money on interior designers, or perhaps who have a natural touch with the decor... Continue Reading

Stage to Sell Secrets: Paint and Flooring

Every time I visit a house I get the questions "Do I need to paint?" and "Do I need to re-carpet?" There's always a bit of an uncomfortable silence while I work up the nerve to tell my client the God's Honest Truth. My client looks at me with the expectation of pain, and I say in no uncertain terms ..... Continue Reading

Stage to Sell Secrets: How to get space back in your dining room and bedrooms?

This weeks tip is quick and easy. I'm going to tell you how to get space back in your dining room and bedrooms. Showing extra space here is important because these rooms tend to be smaller on average, and getting really good "airy looking" photos is tough... Continue Reading


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Stage to Sell Secrets: Highest and Best use

In this blog we'll talk a little about presenting to emphasize "highest and best use". You're always going to get the most traffic and best results by catering to the masses vs. the off beat niche. For example, while 'some' people will certainly be interested in the innovative way you might have been able to take a dining room and turn it into an art studio, unless they share your exact requirements, what you've likely done is inadvertently obliterated... Continue Reading

Stage to Sell Secrets: How to make your home impressive

Have you thought at all about what you're going to do to make sure that your home makes a great impression from the driveway? It's not just a cliche; First impressions are lasting. In fact, from a brain and behavior perspective, they're darn near permanent. When you're in 'seek' mode, you enter into a heightened mental state with respect to the subject of your search.... Continue Reading

Stage to Sell Secrets: How to get your buyers to act NOW!

Can you guess the first move a buyer makes when walking into a home for the first time? I'll let you ponder that one for a moment while I talk to you about the content of this installation of "Stage to Sell Secrets".
This episode is about the psychological warfare tactics that can be waged on your prospective... Continue Reading


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Stage to Sell Secrets: Let there be Light

A famous person once said "LET THERE BE LIGHT". And there was. I'm beginning this way, not to start a theological discussion, but because when you sell your home, "LET THERE BE LIGHT".
This is a quickie article, but really important. This may be the cheapest, easiest, and most impactful thing you can do when selling... Continue Reading

Stage To Sell Secrets: How to make a bed like a REALTOR?

In this episode we're going to learn to make a bed like a REALTOR. Not interested, you say? Ok, then go ahead and skip this one. Otherwise, let's continue.
When a REALTOR makes a bed,... Continue Reading

Good people, bad appraisal. Now what?

What happens in a real estate transaction when a home
under-appraises?

In this episode of Market Mechanics 101 I’m going to give you the
blow by blow recount of a sale gone right…..and appraisal gone wrong….
and I want your opinion. Should this be? If not, how do you think it
should it play out?... Continue Reading


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Do You Need Flood Insurance if You Live in the Middletown Area?

The cleanup effort in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey is ongoing here in Katy, Texas, where I’ve joined Keller Williams’ relief initiative with many others to lending a helping hand to those in need... Continue Reading

Market Updates

Today we’re going to talk all about the summer market: what happened, what it means for you, and what you can expect as we transition into fall.

There are five long-term indicators that show how our market is doing, along with one short-term indicator. The long-term indicators include:... Continue Reading


Why Is the Negotiation Gap So Important In Pricing Your Home?
What effect does low inventory and high demand have on pricing in our market? The short answer is it allows you to get a higher sale price for your house than you would’ve been able to last year.

There’s something I want to caution you about, though. Every single time I sit down with a homeowner and ask how much they want to pad the price of their house to leave room for negotiation, I get the same answer—10%. In this market, the reality is that you only need to pad the price by a little less than 3%... Continue Reading


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Don't Underestimate Your Front Door

Statistics show that your front door is actually one of the few places in your home where you can spend money on an update and get a positive return on your cash when you sell. Why is this?

Most homeowners don't even use their front door, preferring the garage door or a side door that's closest to where you park. It's there for show, but it actually gets less attention thanks to how little most homeowners use them. Bugs get into the lamps by your entryway and the glass gets dirty from fingerprints... Continue Reading

How to Juggle A Home Sale and a Home Purchase

A lot of people have been asking lately how they can buy and sell a home at the same time. How can you get those two transactions to hook together?

Inventory is low right now, so there isn’t much to choose from on the market. This is good news for sellers, but they are still hesitant to put their homes on the market because they aren't sure what they will do when their home sells more quickly than they can buy. There are a few different ways you can manage it... Continue Reading

How Can Sellers Time Our Spring/Summer Market?

When exactly does the spring/summer market start? When is the best time to enter the spring/summer market?

Houses sell all year long, but what happens in the spring and summer is a large influx of buyers come from a specific demographic: folks who have school-age children. This subsection of buyers produces two rushes of market activity....... Continue Reading


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Should You Try Selling Your Home as a Pocket Listing?
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... Continue Reading

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

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... Continue Reading


How to Add Value to a Home With DIY Projects

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 face-lift 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... Continue Reading


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How to Quiet Your Creaky Staircase

Today we’re discussing how to get rid of creaky stairs. I’m on the job so I can walk you through this process.

Creaky steps have been a plague on this particular house for years and years. In fact, if someone goes up and down these stairs, you can hear it throughout the entire home.... Continue Reading

What Impact Has the Presidential Election had on our Housing Market?

I’ve been through several elections in my lifetime, and the one thing you can always count on after a controversial election such as the one we just had is everybody getting riled up over it. For a short period of time, there’s usually a great deal of concern from the half of the population who didn’t get their preferred candidate. However, eventually everyone slides back into their normal routines. Continue Reading

What Do You Do With Family Photos During Home Showings?

You have probably heard about the importance of staging your home before you put it on the market. Today, I want to focus on one specific aspect of staging: removing your family photos.

Everybody sets up their homes to be attractive and comfortable to live in, but the way we live in a home and the way we sell a home are very different. Of course, you love your family and take pride in your family photos. However, in the eyes of a buyer, family photos are actually a territory marker... Continue Reading


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How to Determine if an Agent Is Right for You

If you’re selling your house and an agent is trying to buy your listing, they’re simply over-guaranteeing on the sale price in order to convince you to list with them.

This typically happens when multiple agents are competing for the same listing. Sellers have every right to interview multiple agents, but keep in mind that one single agent can’t make the market move. A house will sell for what it’s going to sell for. What’s more, agents who become aware that there is competition for the listing also have a tendency to slant the figures and promise you more of a net payout on the house than what can actually be obtained. They do this knowing that they can always talk you into a price reduction later on... Continue Reading


How to Re-Enter the Market the Right Way

If you tried to sell your home and were unsuccessful, how long should you keep it off the market before resetting and trying again?

The official reset time period for the MLS is 60 to 90 days, but buyers tend to be active on the market for anywhere between six and 18 months. This means the MLS will reset your house’s number of days on market back to zero, but the buyers won’t be fooled. They’ve been watching homes roll through for much longer to see what kind of deals they can get... Continue Reading

When’s the Best Selling Season in Delaware?

When is the best time to put your home on the market? This is one of the most frequently asked questions that I get as a real estate agent.

The general public seems to believe that spring is the best time of year to sell a house. However, I've seen that the decision to sell your home is usually triggered by a life-changing event. A baby being born, someone dying, someone getting married, someone getting divorced, someone’s job being transferred, a home burning down, or maybe wanting your kids to get into a different school - these are all the types of life events that could dictate when to move that aren’t tied to a certain month or season.... Continue Reading


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Just How Accurate Is My Zestimate?

Automated home value tools like Zillow and other real estate websites aren’t always reliable. Although the conversation is often about how accurate these tools are, I’d like to bring up a new question. How accurate is the information that’s going in?

These algorithms predominantly rely on information given about your home. This information, derived from public sources, compares your property to the homes you compete against.... Continue Reading


Lois Houston Reviews Jason Morris

"Everything was as good as it could be. There were times where we were a little freaked because something wasn't going the way it should, and Jason was really good about taking care of the situation. Each time we got off the phone with him we felt relieved. He did a great job marketing our home and had great advice on how to get the home ready to sell, which helped the house sell quickly." ... Continue Reading


How to Sell Quickly in Middletown

How long does it take to sell a Middletown home? Typically, buyers in our marketplace don’t have any requirement for how long a property has to be on the market. In fact, we find the most motivated buyers are anxiously waiting to purchase your home.

If you have a home in excellent shape and priced appropriately, you’re likely to receive an offer immediately. However, if you’re lagging on condition or price, expect your home to sit on the market... Continue Reading


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Be Aware of Your Septic System in the Delaware Market

We recently reached out to Delaware clients to find out which topics you’d like to see covered in our video blogs. Surprisingly, the top answer was septic systems.

The last revision of the agreement of sale that's used as a bit of a template for real estate agents has language to put responsibility on the seller to provide a septic pump and certification within a certain number of days of going under contract... Continue Reading


What Happens When You Overprice Your Delaware Home?

Today, I want to talk about a topic that comes up frequently: pricing.

Many home sellers think they can’t earn the listing price for their home. Although it varies by neighborhood, the difference between the offer price and listing price is not nearly as big as you might think. For instance, they overwhelmingly think they’ll earn 10% less than the initial asking price.... Continue Reading


Repairs vs. Upgrades: Which Is More Important when Selling a Home?

A lot of homeowners think that they can raise the value of their property before selling by installing multiple upgrades or doing a wide array of repairs. However, I’ve seen a lot of people dump a lot of money into repairs that would never bring a return that they wanted.... Continue Reading


What to Expect From the Middletown Market This Spring

Today we are excited to talk about what’s going on in the local housing market here in Middletown. While each neighborhood market can vary, overall we are seeing an increase in the number of sold properties. We’re up by 21.3% from this time last year! At the same time, we are only seeing a slight increase in the number of new homes available, at 1.3%. There is a pretty big gap of what’s been sold and what’s coming on the market... Continue Reading