Have you heard anyone recently say that they've been in a highly competitive multiple offer situation while trying to buy a condo in Boston's South End? We certainly have and the numbers, seen below for January 2014, support this existence. Prices are up 26%, there were less new listings and inventory, which was already low, is down about 15%. If you are looking to buy a condo, be prepared to make a strong offer and if you are thinking about selling now might be a great time to get top dollar. Either way, contact the experts at the Boston Realty Team at 617-987-4811 or visit our South End Real Estate Guide!
Take a look at the info below, which represents the data for January of 2014 for closed sales and median home prices for single family and condo/townhome properties. Contact the Boston Realty Team with any questions, anytime, at 617-987-4811!
A look at some data from December of 2013 may shed some light on how the year treated the multi-family housing market in the greater Boston area. As you can see in the infographic below, comparisons are made directly between the stats from December of 2013 compared to December of 2012, and comparisons between the year-to-date (YTD) totals for 2013 and 2013.
Although December 2013 had 8.6% less multi-family closings than the same month from 2012, the YTD totals were nearly identical. Could this be because of the declining inventory? Inventory declined sharply from December 2013 compared to 2012, as there were 497 multi's on the market then and only 311 in December 2013. Lower inventory levels usually mean that the competition heats up between buyers, creating a seller's market. Finally, we look at the all-important median sale price, which was up about 15% when comparnig the YTD numbers of 2013 to 2012, bringing the median up from $380,000 to $437,000.
We are only a few months into 2014, so as we await more recent data, hopefully this analysis will give you some indications as to the strengths (and weaknesses) of the Boston multi-family housing market for investors. Our experts at the Boston Realty Team have guided many investors to the properties they desired, call us today at 617-987-4811 or visit our extensive Boston Multi-Family Guide for Investors!
As part of the January 2014 implementation of the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, we now have the Qualified Mortgage or "QM" rule and its potential impact on the consumer housing market. Meant to protect consumers, the rule requires that loan originators make a good faith effort to verify a borrower’s ability to repay (ATR) and can impose strong sanctions for not doing so. Really, the question is how this will affect consumers and lenders trying to close a deal.
All mortgages applied for after January 10th are required to comply with the new QM rule which includes documentation of income, assets and employment, a 43% debt-to-income ratio cap, and other limitations. A survey of lenders, conducted by the National Association Of Realtors, showed that 55% of the respondents felt that the QM rule would affect 2.6% to 20% of their originations.
Buyers should expect to have to extensively document their income, employment and resources and if you have a high debt-to-income ratio, the FHA as well as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac might be your best option outside of a specialty lender. Keep these facts in mind as you search for a property and don't hesitate to utilize the help of our trained experts at the Boston Realty Team by calling us 24/7 at 617-987-4811.
Referred to by many as the hottest market in Boston and sometimes called the hottest in the country, Boston's Seaport District, or Innovation District as many have started to call it, has seen some skyrocketing prices for commercial transactions, according to recent news reports. Senior Housing Properties Trust has reportedly agreed to a deal to purchase two Seaport District towers for a stagerring $1.1 Billion, with a price-per-square-foot of around $682, dwarfing the $400/sq.ft. paid last year by TIAA-CREF, according to the Boston Business Journal. The SHPT deal represents another step towards making the area into Boston's version of Cambridge, with a burgeoning biomedical and technology center. In fact, the primary tenant of the buildings being acquired is Vertex Pharmaceuticals, a company that recently relocated from Cambridge.
What do you think, will this neighborhood come to be known as Boston's Kendall Square, a.k.a. the Innovation District?
According to recent Massachusetts home sale statistics, December 2013, comared to the year before, saw a 15% rise in condo sales while single-family sales dropped by 1%. Within these numbers, the median home price jumped 6.3%, to $320,000, and the days on market dropped from 130 to 99. Condo prices were up more than the market averages, rising 8%, to a median of $305,000 and condo sales were up 15% compared to December of 2012.
Do these end-of-the-year indications tell us that 2014 will see a dominance of condos over single-famiy homes? Only time will tell. In the meantime, contact the Boston Realty Team with any questions or visit our Boston Condo Guides!
If you recently purchased a new home, are moving soon, or have moved before - then you know that moving can be a very stressful activity. Since most pets can pick up on your emotional state and can experience stress on their own, moving can be a very stressful time for our furry friends also. Here are some simple tips to help with the stressload on your pet during your next move:
Give your pet a "heads up": As soon as you are aware that your move is impending, start making subtle changes around the house. Out-of-season clothing and items you don't use on a daily basis can be packed up. This subtle change in environment will hopefully give your pet a warning of what's to come.
Get your pet out of the house for the move: For pets the most stressful part can actually be the moving day itself. If you don't have friends or family that can watch your pet that day, consider using a kennel so that your animal is not there while the movers clear out your old living space. (It's also difficult to have a pet there as the movers will have doors propped open, etc.)
Gather your pet's records: In addition to your vet being able to give you some specific tailored suggestions for how to reduce the move's stress on your pet, you should also gather all their history and medical records to facilitate the ease of finding a new vet near your new home.
The Boston Realty Team has experts that can make finding your new home a breeze - on both you and your beloved pets. Call them today at 617-987-4811 with any concerns or questions about finding and relocating to that perfect property!
Most everyone is familiar with the adage that "cash is king" when negtioating on anything, particularily real estate. This is generally a true statement as sellers don't have to worry about the dreaded financing contingency in a cash deal and often times cash buyers can and do close more quickly. Take a look at this infographic for a good state-by-state comparison of cash deals from Sept. 2013. Notice the stark difference between the states of Massachusetts (24%) and New York (56%)!
As we head into another snowstorm and possibly another frigid-cold polar vortex, we thought we would share with you five essential jobs that need to be done for the winter to keep you warm and save you money!
1 - Update Your Thermostat
During the cold winter months, many of us are constantly adjusting the thermostats to save heating costs while we are sleeping or not home. The best way to maximize this ability is to get a programmable thermostat, or better yet, one that is learning. The new learning models will adapt their cycles to your living habits and patterns.
2 - Insulate Your Pipes
This might seem obvious to some of you, but the real issue here is insulating the places where pipes enter the home. 30% of cold air that leaks into homes comes through the pipes, vents and electrical conduits.
3 - Clean Your Furnace
In addition to replacing your filter once a month, you should have an HVAC professional clean out any debris and dust, which will allow your furnace to run at maximum effeciency.
4 - Caulk Windows and Doors
According to the U.S. Dept. Of Energy, another 10% of the cold air that leaks into homes is through the gaps in doors and windows. Get your caulking gun out, handle this and cut down on those annoyingly cold drafts!
5 - Add Gutter Extentsions
You want to keep melting and freezing water away from your house and the foundation in the winter too. Add extensions to your gutters to pull this water farther from your house - and clean the gutters when possible to keep additional water from freezing and plugging them up.
Many of you may have been on the fence over the last twelve months, trying to decide when it's the right time to buy a new home. For those of you that fall into this category, it is important to examine how waiting has cost you during 2013 and what it might cost over the following twelve months. It's not only important to look at how median home prices are changing, but also to look at the history and future of mortgage interest rates.
Looking at the infographics below, if you purchased a median priced home, at $227,900 with a 3.32% interest rate in November 2012, your P&I payment would be about $1,000. If you waited until November of 2013 and bought a median priced home at $244,500 with a 4.29% interest rate, your P&I jumps to $1208, meaning that the one year wait has increased your monthly payment by about $207. When multiplied over the life of a 30-year loan this is nearly $75,000 of additional payments.
What if you wait until November of 2014? You might be staring down a $1412 payment, because of a higher median price ($254K) and higher interest (5.3%).
If you're ready to capitalize on the present and not miss out on the future, contact the Boston Realty Team and our experts today at 617-987-4811 to get the process started!