Home prices broke records in February in a somber hint at what to expect this Spring House Hunt season.

A report The Warren Group released on March 19 found that the median sales price of single-family home in Massachusetts jumped 10% year over year in February, to $548,250, a record high for the month.

Sales, meanwhile, remained relatively flat as home shoppers and real estate agents alike clamor for more inventory and proposed lawsuit settlements that would decouple commissions raise the question of whether buyers will be shouldering more costs.

Without a big influx in inventory, the future looks bleak.

“A lack of inventory is the biggest factor driving these trends, and with fewer and fewer homes hitting the market, we can fully expect to…

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Recent headlines may leave you wondering what’s next for mortgage rates. Maybe you’d previously heard there were going to be cuts this year that would bring rates down. That refers to the Federal Reserve (the Fed) and what they do to their Fed Funds Rate. While cutting, or lowering, the Fed Funds Rate doesn’t directly determine mortgage rates, it does tend to impact them. But when the Fed met last week, a cut didn’t happen — at least, not yet. 

There are a lot of factors the Fed considered in their recent decision and most of them are complex. But you don’t need to be bogged down by those finer details. What you really want is the answer to this question: does that mean mortgage rates aren’t going to fall? Here’s what you need to know. 

Mortgage…

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Before making the decision to buy a home, it's important to plan for all the costs you’ll be responsible for. While you're busy saving for the down payment, don't forget you’ll want to prep for closing costs too.

Here’s some helpful information on what those costs are and how much you should budget for them.

What Are Closing Costs?

A recent article from Bankrate explains:

“Closing costs are the fees and expenses you must pay before becoming the legal owner of a house, condo or townhome . . . Closing costs vary depending on the purchase price of the home and how it’s being financed . . .”

Simply put, your closing costs are the additional fees and payments you have to make at closing. According to Freddie Mac, while they can vary by…

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Thinking about buying a home? If so, you're probably wondering: should I buy now or wait? Nobody can make that decision for you, but here's some information that can help you decide.

What’s Next for Home Prices?

Each quarter, Fannie Mae and Pulsenomics publish the results of the Home Price Expectations Survey (HPES). It asks more than 100 experts—economists, real estate professionals, and investment and market strategists—what they think will happen with home prices.

In the latest survey, those experts say home prices are going to keep going up for the next five years (see graph below):

 a graph of green bars


Here’s what all the green on this chart should tell you. They’re not expecting any price declines. Instead, they’re saying we’ll see a 3-4% rise each…

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If you’ve been thinking about buying a home, mortgage rates are probably top of mind for you. They may even be why you’ve put your plans on hold for now. When rates climbed near 8% last year, some buyers found the numbers just didn’t make sense for their budget anymore. That may be the case for you too.

Data from Bright MLS shows the top reason buyers delayed their plans to move is due to high mortgage rates (see graph below):

 a graph of blue rectangles with text


David Childers, CEO at Keeping Current Matters, speaks to this statistic in the recent How’s The Market podcast:

“Three quarters of buyers said ‘we’re out’ due to mortgage rates. Here’s what I know going forward. That will change in 2024.”

That’s because mortgage rates have come down off their peak last…

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A six-story building in downtown Boston has secured financing for a conversion to residential, the first such project to move forward under a new city tax incentive program. 

Boston Pinnacle Properties' project to convert the 11K SF building at 281 Franklin St. into 15 rental units received $5.1M in financing from Rockland Trust, the lender announced in a press release Wednesday. Construction on the project is set to begin within the next few months and is projected to be completed within the year.

The six-story office building still has five tenants, with three leases set to expire in June, one in November and the last not until 2027, according to the Boston Globe. Boston Pinnacle Properties' President Adam Burns acquired the property for $3.8M in…

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There’s been a lot of recession talk over the past couple of years. And that may leave you worried we’re headed for a repeat of what we saw back in 2008. Here’s a look at the latest expert projections to show you why that isn’t going to happen.  

According to Jacob Channel, Senior Economist at LendingTree, the economy’s pretty strong:

“At least right now, the fundamentals of the economy, despite some hiccups, are doing pretty good. While things are far from perfect, the economy is probably doing better than people want to give it credit for.”
That might be why a recent survey from the Wall Street Journal shows only 39% of economists think there’ll be a recession in the next year. That’s way down from 61% projecting a recession just one year ago…

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The Great American Beer Hall, a 17,000 sq ft tap room with an outdoor beer garden and almost 100 brews on the menu, is coming to 142 Mystic Ave in Medford in late 2024 according to their recent social media announcement.  It will also offer casual American food selections and large screens for watching games, as well as a pickleball court.  You can read more about it here.

Check back on my blog for more updates as it gets closer to the yet-to-be-announced opening date!

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Three lots in Hyde Park close to the Readville train station are under consideration as the site of 115 new residential units.  According to plans filed with the Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA), 1690-1700 Hyde Park Ave would be home to studios, one bedroom, two bedroom and three bedroom apartments.  It would consolidate three parcels into one, and 20% of the new residential units would be income restricted.  It would also have 1,500 sq ft of commercial space on the ground floor.  Two other nearby project proposals have already won approval from the City.  

You can read more about this proposed project here.  

Contact me for more updates on this proposal!

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According to Altos Research, the Boston metropolitan area is the most robust in the nation as of February 23, 2024.  It had an Altos Market Action Index Score of 60.59, a full point over the second-highest market in San Francisco.  Altos considers anything over a score of 30 to be a seller's market.  A factor in the state of the Boston housing market is certainly the low inventory: as of February 16, there were 1,753 active single family listings on the market as opposed to 4,537 just 4 years ago in 2020.  You can read more here.

As rates have stabilized and even decreased, more buyers are entering the market.  As this trend continues, the competition will only increase so if you are waiting, you'll be too late.  Thinking of buying, selling or…

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