The New Castle area features a mix of properties with views of the Delaware River, historical homes downtown and suburban neighborhoods with more spacious lots.
What draws home buyers to the area about about six miles south of Wilmington?
“I’ve been told by visitors that it is the best kept secret in Delaware,” said Timothy Scully, who’s been licensed Realtor in New Castle for 35 years and a broker for 18 years.
He touted the “walkability and living history, top notch restaurants and shops.”
The location is a draw for many because of easy access to Routes 13, 40 and 141, I-95 and I-295 and the proximity to Wilmington, Newark and Philadelphia. It’s a short drive to the beaches, Baltimore and Washington, D.C.
The population in city limits in the 2020 U.S. Census was 5,462, up from 5,285 in 2010, but thousands more live in the New Castle zip code.
Scully said residents and visitors enjoy Battery Park, walking paths along the Delaware River, the Jack A. Markell Trail to the Wilmington Riverfront and events such as “A Day in Old New Castle” house and garden tour, antique shows, Christmas tours and Separation Day.
The city’s website highlights New Castle’s standing second only to Williamsburg, Virginia for “the number and authenticity of its historic structures” from the colonial/federal period in the United States. Originally named Fort Casimir, the city was founded in 1651 by the Dutch as a strategic location to command river traffic.
The New Castle Court House Museum is part of the the First State National Historical Park, and the New Castle Historical Society offers tours and activities.
So what are the “dream homes” for sale in the New Castle area? Here are the most expensive listings on Realtor.com as of Nov. 10 for existing homes, not new construction, on a maximum of 3 acres. As noted, some sales are pending or contingent and one has gone to settlement since the research for this story began.
10. $399,999 – 514 Frank Orchards Lane, sale pending
4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 2,700 square feet, 0.4 acres, listed by Melinda Proctor, RE/MAX Premier Properties.
Highlights: In Bayview Manor on a corner lot.
Main level with large family room and sunroom.
Open kitchen with 42-inch cabinets, wall oven and cooking Island.
Spacious main bedroom with bathroom that includes a garden tub, standalone shower and double sinks.
9. $400,000 – 126 Harmony Street, sale contingent
3 bedrooms, 1.5 bathrooms, 1,450 square feet, 0.03 acres, listed by Timothy Scully, Curt Scully Realty Company.
Highlights: The Hugh Mercer House, built in 1803, in the heart of historic New Castle on corner of Harmony and Second streets.
Exterior walls of Flemish brick bond.
Tall 9-over-9-pane, double-hung windows on the first floor for lots of sunlight.
Center stack chimney allows for fireplaces in 5 rooms that have recently been lined with gas logs installed.
Elegantly-crafted mantels, woodwork and random heart pine floors throughout the home.
Updated kitchen overlooking an established garden and a brick patio.
Recent upgrades include central air, new hot water heater, new privacy fence and new roof.
Near restaurants, shops, trails, museums, Battery Park and the Delaware River.
8. $439,999 – 406 John Vineyards Lane, sale contingent
4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 2,700 square feet, 0.42 acres, listed by Sherry Lynch, RE/MAX Associates.
Highlights: Kitchen recently remodeled with white cabinets, marble countertops, tile backsplash and island with seating, stainless steel appliances and breakfast nook with windows overlooking the backyard and trees.
Open layout flows from the kitchen to the family room with fireplace and then to the sunroom with skylights.
Formal dining room with wainscoting.
New low-maintenance flooring on main level with new carpeting upstairs.
Owners’ bedroom suite features upgraded bathroom with shower, separate soaking tub and dual sinks.
From sunroom, sliding glass doors lead to a screened-in porch and backyard with patio overlooking a wooded area.
Full unfinished basement provides lots of storage.
7. $450,000 – 224 Keller Beyer Road, sale pending
4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 2,600 square feet, 0.18 acres, listed by Andrea Harrington, co-listed by Heather Mackson, Andrea Harrington & Associates, Compass Realty.
Highlights: In Bayview Manor, backing up to woods, near the Kirkwood Soccer Club.
Wide, bright foyer leads to living room with crown molding and formal dining room.
Kitchen enlarged and upgraded with granite countertops, an island and a breakfast area that opens to a Trex deck.
Family room with Brazilian teak wood floors, two-story ceiling, fireplace, skylights and a wall of windows with a wooded view.
Main floor office or den.
Main suite with vaulted ceilings, walk-in closet and a bright bathroom with lots of storage and large soaker tub.
Clean basement for a variety of uses.
Yard with spring blooms and plantings for privacy, near open space and woods.
6. $510,000 – 324 Friedman Drive, sale pending
4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 3,625 square feet, 0.55 acres, listed by Jackie Ogden, Long & Foster Real Estate, Greenville.
Highlights: On cul-de-sac at the back of the neighborhood.
Open floor plan with new luxury vinyl flooring throughout nearly all of the main level.
Living room and dining room flank the entry.
Two-story family room features a wall of windows and a gas fireplace with mantle.
First-floor office and powder room.
Kitchen includes a large center island with seating and new pendant lighting, 42-inch cherry cabinets, granite counters, stainless steel appliances and an eating area with built-in bench seating.
Master suite features a sitting area with custom built-ins, two walk-in closets and bathroom with soaking tub, separate shower stall, double vanity and water closet.
Sliding doors in kitchen lead to the rear deck and fenced yard.
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5. $514,900 – 325 Wheatsheaf Drive, sale pending
4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 3,075 square feet, 0.9 acres, listed by Colleen and Dan Mawn, RE/MAX Associates, Newark.
Highlights: Almost an acre lot, backing to woods.
Hardwood floors in living, dining and family rooms.
Four spacious bedrooms, including a complete master suite.
Unfinished basement provides a large amount of storage space.
Deck leads to the backyard oasis, complete with in-ground saltwater pool.
4. $529,900 – 300 Harmony Street
3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 2,800 square feet, 0.09 acres, listed by Chris Cashman, Patterson Schwartz Real Estate, Newark.
Highlights: In the heart of the historic district, well-maintained and updated with modern conveniences.
Large living room and dining room with hardwood floors.
Gourmet kitchen features soapstone countertops, double wall oven, large island with gas cooktop, bar sink and seating.
Family room with built-in bookcases and glass door cabinets.
Large primary bedroom with a walk-in closet in addition to a wall of closets, en suite bath with whirlpool tub, two vanities and a large tiled shower.
Laundry room on the upper level near bedrooms.
Fenced yard with a stone patio.
Detached 2-car garage, rare in the historic district.
3. $650,000 – 103 The Strand
2 bedrooms with library that could be 3rd bedroom, 2.5 bathrooms, 2,650 square feet, 0.39 acres, listed by Chris Cashman, Patterson Schwartz Real Estate, Newark.
Highlights: Detached riverfront home in Old New Castle.
Main level with 10-foot ceilings.
Living room with wood-burning fireplace.
Bright and airy great room area includes the kitchen, dining area and family room that looks out to the garden and the Delaware River.
Kitchen has a cooktop, wall oven, island and large window and doors with views outside.
Main bedroom with skylights.
Second bedroom with soaring ceiling and loft.
Library could be the 3rd bedroom.
Two full baths on upper level.
Backyard deck with views of river.
Yard features garden and mature plantings.
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2. $699,999 – 1247 Caitlin Way, sale pending
4 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms, 4,125 square feet, 0.26 acres, listed by Michele Colavecchi Lawless, RE/MAX Associates, Wilmington.
Highlights: Home in Toll Brothers community with upgrades including 9-foot ceilings, hardwood flooring on most of the main level along with recessed lighting, crown molding, chair rails and wainscoting.
Open first-floor plan with living room, formal dining room, office, den or playroom.
Two-story family room with lots of natural lighting, floor-to-ceiling fireplace and raised hearth.
Eat-in kitchen upgraded with granite countertops, backsplash, 42-inch cabinets, stainless appliances, double oven, built-in microwave and refrigerator, pantry closet, center island with breakfast bar.
Laundry room with built-in cherry cabinets, granite at the sink area and ceramic tiled floor.
Main bedroom suite with two walk-in closets, tray ceiling, bathroom with double sinks/vanities, garden tub, separate toilet room, separate desk/vanity, double shower, ceramic tile and walk-in closet.
Sunroom addition leads to the custom brick paver patio with firepit and built-in seating, fenced yard and private views.
Walk-out lower level is finished with recreation room, full bathroom, workshop and storage area.
Community has clubhouse with event center, fitness center, in-ground pool and separate playground.
1. $989,000 – 120 The Strand, went to settlement Nov. 12
5 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms, 3,725 square feet, 0.52 acres, listed by Stephen Mottola, The Mottola Group, Compass Real Estate.
Highlights: Classic center hall colonial at the end of The Strand in historic New Castle with oversized windows for panoramic views of the Delaware River, Bull Hill Park and the Delaware Memorial Bridge.
Slate entry foyer flanked by the formal living room with fireplace and the spacious dining room.
Kitchen with Wolf 6-burner range, warming drawer, Sub-Zero refrigerator, warming drawer, walk-in pantry, counter seating and butler’s pantry area with beverage refrigerator.
Breakfast room filled with natural light from the large windows and skylight.
Family room next to kitchen with bay window for water views and painted brick fireplace flanked by built-ins shelves.
First floor main bedroom suite with large walk-in closet and renovated full bath with stunning views of the Delaware Memorial Bridge.
Home office could be a 6th bedroom.
Brick patio with river views, large fenced-in backyard and lovely landscaping.
Oversized 2-car garage and brick paver driveway with room for several cars.
Reporter Ben Mace covers real estate, housing and development stories. Reach him at [email protected]