After college, I moved back into my parents’ house in the suburbs outside of Wilmington. I’d been to Trolley Square a few times, but I never really looked very close. It wasn’t until all my friends starting buying homes there that I realized I would soon be next.
Trolley Square is an old neighborhood northwest of Wilmington’s central business district. In the past decades, it’s become a hotspot for everything millennials are looking for after college. When my friends first told me about the parks, the nightlife, the events, and the friends they’ve made since moving there, I thought, “Okay, it’s a nice place. I get it. But why buy a house?” But after just a few visits there, I knew why they made the commitment.
Let me frame this for you the way it was framed for me. Then you’ll understand why I fell in love with it.
Old sycamores lean over familiar brick sidewalks, roots gently push against and spill over the worn red blocks. As you walk to the grocery store, the aroma of flowers from a nearby garden greets you. A labrador sleepily watches you from behind a large bay window. Cyclists buzz past toward Brandywine Park and neighbors stop to chat at corners on their way through quiet streets. This is what Trolley Square feels like everyday. Everything is pleasantly walkable; you’ll be hard-pressed for a reason to start up your car.
Everything you might need or want can be found within walking distance. Not only does Trolley Square contain a large shopping plaza with everything from nail salons to Cafe Verdi’s authentic Italian cuisine, but small shops dot its neighborhoods as well. It all adds up to a European feeling where you can walk down the street to a French bistro like De La Cour nestled between old brick houses. Not to mention the Acme grocery store right around the corner for any last minute dinner essentials. And if you want to dine out, you’re a five minute walk to an eclectic selection of everything from Asian fusion, fine Italian, Greek, subs, pizza, gourmet burgers, frozen yogurt, to oysters!
Trolley’s most important feature for some: its parks. Several small parks dot the neighborhood around Trolley Square, sprouting jungle gym play areas and swing sets, dog parks, and even outdoor workout equipment for adults. But the biggest draw are Trolley’s large parks like Brandywine, Rockford, and Alapocas, all of which are within arm’s reach and feature unique scenic nature trails that look out over insulating wilderness or impressive city skylines. They make the perfect destinations to walk the dogs, go for a daily run, or just get out of the house and reconnect with nature under green canopies and the fluttering of birds and insects.
If you’re working in the city, Trolley Square is the perfect hub from which to access all the public transportation needed to get to downtown Wilmington, which is a mere five minute drive. If you’re a cyclist, commutes are an enjoyable fifteen minute breeze. Trips into Philadelphia are also made simple by the nearby Amtrak station and the city’s sheer proximity - an easy thirty minute car ride into the heart of downtown Philly. Compounding the benefit of the commute is the peace and safety afforded by Trolley residents. As you leave the city behind, the warmth of Trolley Square greets you after a long day’s work, reminding you there’s so much more joy to discover in your own backyard.
Speaking of after work, there’s no better place to unwind than in Trolley Square. Let’s face it, you’re heading there anyway. Why not be within walking distance of the finest selection of taverns, gastropubs, fine dining, and food from nearly every culture within a few square blocks? While spending a night out with your friends at Kelly’s Logan House or Scratch Magoo’s you can enjoy local craft beers and happy hour specials without worrying about how you’ll get home. And the great thing about Trolley’s nightlife is that it’s not only close, but it’s exceptional. A local speakeasy, Hummingbird to Mars, is hidden in the midst of hot hangouts like Catherine Rooney’s, Gianni’s Pizza, and Trolley Tap House. Bar hop in style all across Trolley’s well lit brickscape until the moon is high, and then retreat back to your place for the afterparty just a few blocks away.
Living here makes socializing hassle-free. Now that college is over, making new friends can seem like a daunting task. If you don’t live near a hot spot, you’ll end up missing out. What most people tend to miss while living in the suburbs is the ease of bumping into a neighbor and getting to know them casually, rather than being forced to join online groups or goad an unwilling coworker into joining you downtown. Trolley residents seem to make it their past-time to chat up new people and make impromptu plans upon meeting a friend while out and about.
You’re young and starting a new life out in an often unforgiving world. You’ll need friends to help you get through it, and a welcoming home to retreat to at the end of a stressful day. Don’t spend the next phase of your life in a suburban wilderness, disconnected from community and the full potential of your waking dreams. Trolley Square is a place to see yourself for who you want to be.
It’s seems so easy to rent anymore. Just sign your name, pay the rent, and the landlord takes care of the rest. But do you ever lament that you’ll never see a dime of that money again? I know I did. In some areas and some houses, buying would be a huge risk. But when you find the right place, the risk is small and the reward is so much greater. In Trolley, you’ll be hard pressed to find a property that isn’t worth investing in.
Imagine turning your rent into equity. Renters of 2 bedroom apartments in the Wilmington area will pay an average of $1100 per month. The average owner of a similar or slightly larger home will pay roughly the same, and in some cases less, in mortgage each month. And as home values rise, so too does the equity of your new home. The chances are very high that your property will be worth more than you bought it for when it comes time to sell.
When you’re ready, make an informed decision (trust me, you won’t find anyone who won’t tell you to do it) and invest in this neighborhood while it’s still affordable. Values continue to move, and realtors are seeing a constant shortage in the housing market in and around Trolley Square.
And when you’re ready to sell, you know you’ll get close to all or more of your money back when all is said and done. If you ever move out, you’ll have been staying in a convenient, safe, pleasant neighborhood basically rent free. That’s a benefit renters will never experience.
More millennials are choosing Trolley Square to live the lives they’ve dreamt of from the suburbs of their youth. And as Trolley fills with proactive young professionals, the positive spirit and safety of the community grow and flourish. In our lifetime, Trolley Square is sure to become a beacon for all those who value community, nature, and the rewarding lifestyle in the middle of it all.
A solid real estate transaction begins with a good plan. We will help you create a plan to achieve your objectives. We will guide you through the entire process, provide you with the right team; loan specialists, inspectors, legal representation among just a few and get you to the finish line! We will be there for you ever step of the way. Click below to learn more.