It’s 2013 and buyers the world over are asking what our agents expect to see happen in Boston’s condo market. Buyers, especially first time buyers, are nervous as they hear tales of crazy multiple offers situations and homes being snapped up before many have even had the chance to see them. While there is some truth behind these stories it’s better to look at the straight facts. So first a quick review of 2012 and then some of early data so far.
2012 was a great year for Boston real estate. We saw increased prices for sellers and in many neighborhoods the average price per sq.ft. hit record levels. A strong spring season turned into a white hot fall market. If we take a look at listings that came on in the spring vs the fall we can see that time on market is cut in half in virtually every neighborhood.
Now as we look at whats happened so far in 2013 we see the market is currently off to its best start in at least 3 years. We’ve had more listings come on the market in the first two weeks of this year than the two previous years. Furthermore, we’ve had more listings hit accepted offer or under-agreement in the first two weeks of this year than we had listings come on last year.
So what does all this means for buyers looking to purchase a Boston condo in 2013? It can be boiled down to these four main points.
Multiple Offers: Buyers should be prepared to deal with multiple offer situations when looking at properties in popular neighborhoods. This is especially true for first time buyers who are looking for properties under $650,000. This is one of the hottest markets in the city right now.
Be Flexible: Flexibility is the key right now when making an offer. When your going to be dealing with multiple offers you need to be flexible in what you offer. Quicker close, more money down, it’s all about finding out what’s most important to the seller and trying to match that. For first time buyers who currently live in the city and don’t want to close until june, close early there are brokers all over the city who need rental listings so don’t worry about needing to get out of your current lease.
No Showings Until the Open House: This isn’t something we’ve seen in the past few years but it started to make come back in the last 3 months of 2012 and seems to be continuing into 2013. This has been the main strategy listing agents have used to get multiple offers. The packed open house tends to cause buyers to bid potentially more than they should and creates a frenzy around the home. For buyers this strategy means be prepared to fight it out on Sundays with everyone else.
Great Sellers Market: If your home is priced right it’s a great time to be a seller right now. Prices are back on the rise, money is still cheap for buyers, but it’s still important to be priced right. Pricing your home at the right price can make a big difference in the time it sits on the market. Homes that are priced right are generally selling in a week or less right now.
We believe these are the main ideas that are going to drive the market in 2013. If you’re thinking of buying or selling your home in Boston, give us a call at 617-449-3642.