Well the summer is over and the Greater Boston Area real estate market is officially back from vacation. As if most often the case, the summer market is slow as everyone heads out for vacations, summer camps and general leisure concerns. It is the Labor Day weekend that snaps the housing market into gear and the many new listings available in the Greater Boston is evidence of that. So, if you are one of the many buyers who were unable to find your dream home in the Spring or are now entering the market in search of buying a home in MA, the Fall market is beginning. The question is, how to best navigate the market to find the perfect home.
The spring real estate market in the Greater Boston Area has been slow to start this year. But, since the mortgage rates have stayed low and the Greater Boston Area population and industry continues to expand at a record rate, the spring market looks to be very competitive for buyers once it gets underway. This means that properties will be on the market for very short periods of time before they are sold, and, as in last year’s competitive market, the Open Houses will be the prime available viewing time. So, as a buyer, you must be well prepared to take full advantage of the opportunity.
WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THE BOSTON AREA HOME MARKET THIS SPRING?
If you had been paying attention to any media source last year, you would have been aware that the Greater Boston real estate market was very active to say the least. If you were a buyer or seller in the Greater Boston real estate market last year, you know just how active it was. Here we are at the beginning of a new year, the start of the fabled spring market, so how are things looking for this year?
If your goal in 2016 is to buy a home in the Greater Boston Real Estate market, you'll need to keep this info in mind:
- The Federal Reserve increase in interest rates was a very eager .25% and has had little to no effect on mortgage rates. Current rates are hovering near the same values as those we saw at times last year. The current thirty year fixed rate is at 4.11%, the current 15 year fixed rate is at 3.38%.* It is not anticipated that the rates will increase greatly over the first half of the year so the Fed increase should not substantially effect a buyer’s ability to qualify for a mortgage in the near future when buying a home in MA.
The Fall market in real estate is often portrayed as a pale cousin to the famous Spring market which gets so much press. The oncoming holiday season and winter weather seem to threaten a precipitous end to the buying season and the buyers are alleged to disappear with the cold. Many feel that the holidays are a fabled “dead zone” for those trying to sell a home as well. But perhaps, there is more to the story. The real truth is that the Fall market is actually a great market for buying a home or selling a home in the Greater Boston Area and here are the reasons we think this is the case:
If you are trying to buy a property in the Greater Boston Area, you know full well that demand is exceeding supply. With the economy strengthening, companies moving into the area, academia expanding and mortgage rates still very low buyers are out in great numbers. Winter properties for sale were limited by our historic snowfall this winter which kept the market shut down. Everything is now packed into our current spring market, resulting in multiple offer situations on many homes. Multiple offers are not a new phenomenon in this area, but there seem to be a couple of new twists to the plot.
You're ready to hit some Open Houses this Spring but time is limited on the weekends due to chores, spring activities and of course, some much needed chilling time to catch-up on after a long work week! Therefore, we're suggesting these 4 steps that will prepare you to make the experience efficient, easy and professional!
Step 1: Begin right here at the MA Real Estate Open House Search. You can browse through all the towns in Massachusetts, find the listings for all the open houses in MA, check open house time and view property specifics in every property category. Once you have identified the properties you're visiting you can move on to step 2.
Step 2: Walkability Index. You will find this a very useful tool, especially if you are not familiar with the town and neighborhood of the homes, condos or multi-family properties you have identified in your price range. Just insert the address of a property and you will get the distance to the nearest public transportation, restaurants, shopping and even the commute to a work location! You'll find all that info right here: WalkScore.
In a market such as the one we are about to enter, it is not uncommon to find yourself in a multiple offer situation. While no strategy can guarantee success, here are three mistakes to avoid in order to increase your chances of being successful in buying a home in the Greater Boston Area.
When looking to live in or invest in any city or town in the Greater Boston Area, everyone looks for the liveliness and convenience of one or more “centers” of commercial activity. We want local shops and restaurants in our city or town to help create a vibrant atmosphere and make our community lives more interesting and convenient. A quick stop at the local bank, a (lifesaving) child’s birthday gift (on the way to the party), a bottle of wine (on the way to a different party), a light lunch or a lovely dinner all within a few minutes drive or a short walk from your home, makes your community more valuable to you and more enjoyable as well.
What these terrific local businesses need is our attention. In order to compete with the bigger stores and their ability to advertise, local businesses need your purchase power to help them succeed. A great way to support your local outlets is by visiting them on Small Business Saturday this November 29th. Begun in 2010 by American Express, Small Business Saturday works to promote local shopping throughout Massachusetts.
In a market such as this one, it is not uncommon to find yourself in a multiple offer situation. While no strategy can guarantee success, here are three mistakes to avoid in order to increase your chances of being successful in buying a home in the Greater Boston Area.