Here's Why We Love Back Bay Real Estate

It’s chic, it’s vibrant and it’s charming, but those aren’t the only reasons Back Bay is one of our top picks for those looking at real estate in Boston.  Though it’s one of the pricier neighborhoods in the city, condos for sale in Back Bay are in high demand and don’t stay on the market for long.  Here’s why:

Back Bay Real Estate is Timeless

If you’re worried about your real estate investment going south with another bubble burst, you can feel secure that purchasing real estate in Back Bay is likely safer financially than most other neighborhoods in the city.  As Boston’s top shopping and dining destination - with designer boutiques, art galleries and patio cafes - Back Bay is an affluent neighborhood with elegant brick townhouses, and they will be in high demand as long as there are people in the city that can afford them.  In 2008’s real estate bubble burst, Back Bay fared better than other trendy neighborhoods that lacked the history, charisma and depth of this coveted area.  

It’s Vibrant Energy

Back Bay is made up of residents and visitors who thrive on the effervescent energy of the neighborhood.  At any time of day you’ll find people strolling the streets - out to visit the unique shops that fill the Prudential Center and Copley Place and line Newbury and Boylston streets, or on their way to meet friends at the one of the many alluring cafes and bars that make Back Bay a sophisticated social destination for Bostonians.  When you buy a condo in Back Bay you get both historic architecture and genteel elegance, as well as immediate access to culture, activity and luxury at every turn.

Something for Everyone

Young professionals, tourists, children, historians, students, baseball fans - Back Bay is walkable to pretty much anything you might want to do in Boston.  It’s a remarkable area in it’s own right, but Back Bay is also bordered on all sides by 3 of Boston’s most desirable and entertaining neighborhoods - The South End, Fenway / Kenmore, and Beacon Hill.  This means that you can easily have breakfast and stroll through the Public Gardens, spend the afternoon at Fenway Park watching the Sox and then have a sumptuous dinner at one of the chic restaurants in Beacon Hill or The South End - talk about having it all!  Condos in Back Bay are more appealing to families than many other neighborhoods in the city because there are an abundance of high quality education and childcare options, as well as parks, museums and other kid-friendly activities.  Most condos in Back Bay are in close proximity to beautiful parks and green spaces like the Boston Common and the Esplanade, making it an ideal location for exercise enthusiasts.  

Most condos for sale in Back Bay are more expensive than similar condos for sale in The Seaport, The South End, South Boston, East Boston, or really any neighborhood other than Beacon Hill.  But, if you’re buying a home in Boston and you want convenience, elegance, quality, entertainment and resiliency, Back Bay real estate is where you should look first.  Here’s a look at all of the available condos for sale in Back Bay right now.  




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    9 Tips for Managing your Moving Budget

    Boston real estate isn't cheap, so when you've purchased a home in the city, its likely that you'll want to keep your moving costs as low as possible.  So, we partnered with our friends at TSI to put together some tips that will help you create (and stick to) a moving budget.  Here's what they have to say:

    There’s no way around it—moving is expensive. Whether you’re looking for a Back Bay condo or real estate in the South End, creating a budget before you start researching Boston real estate and planning your upcoming move is the most effective way to manage the cost of your relocation. Not creating a budget for your move can actually cost you more in the long run, especially if unexpected expenses arise during the moving process. 

    The trick to creating an effective moving budget is to account for all the expenses you know or suspect you will have to cover throughout the entire moving process. So, what exactly should you include? We’re here to share 9 of our best tips on creating and managing your moving budget.

    1. Hiring movers vs. moving yourself

    After you sign the paperwork on the perfect house or luxury condo in Boston, your next decision will be whether to hire movers or rent a truck and move yourself. Whichever option you choose, this cost will likely comprise the bulk of your moving budget, so it’s important to take all the costs associated with each option into consideration when planning your moving budget. Here’s a closer look at the costs you might encounter whether you hire movers or move yourself:

    Hiring movers

    • Company fee: This will likely comprise the bulk of your moving budget. Every company prices moves different, so call around and get at least three quotes before you commit.

      TSI TIP: Create your budget using the highest quoted amount—that way, if your movers end up costing less, you’ll have a little extra wiggle room.
    • Moving insurance: Don’t assume your moving company will provide insurance. Always ask what coverage is included, and speak to your home and auto insurance provider, as well as your credit card company, to see if you already have coverage.
    • Extra services: Some movers charge additional fees for services like packing, storage, moving heavy or difficult items, disassembling and reassembling furniture, long carries, and stairs. 
    • Damage costs: There’s always a chance something will get broken during your move. To account for this possibility, add a 5-10% buffer to your budget.
    • Tips: The standard tip is about 10% of your moving rate, divided between your movers. However, the tip you provide should always reflect the quality of service you received and is always optional.

    Renting a truck

    Many people assume that hiring a truck and wrangling some friends to help you move will be cheaper than hiring professionals. This may be the case if you don’t have much stuff to move or are moving from one condo in Back Bay to another right down the street, but if you’re moving a full house or apartment, or are relocating to Boston long distance, hiring movers may actually be cheaper, and they’ll also save you time and energy. 

    Here are some common costs associated with renting a truck and moving yourself:

    • Truck rental: The cost of your truck rental will depend on the distance of your move, the size of the truck, whether you’ll be dropping it off in the same city where you rented it, and any additional supplies you might need.
    • Mileage and gas: Ask about the truck’s fuel mileage per gallon when you book so you can get a rough idea of how much you’ll spend on gas.

      TSI TIP: Try to avoid moving during rush hour. Getting stuck in traffic will only increase your fuel costs (and your stress).
    • Insurance: Ask your truck rental agency whether insurance is included, then speak to your regular auto and home insurance provider and credit card company.
    • Road tolls: If you’re moving long distance, you may encounter road tolls along the way.
    • Extra equipment rental: Some truck rental companies charge extra to use equipment like dollies and moving blankets.
    • Food: Include funds to feed your friends and helpers, as well as for yourself if you’re driving a long way. 
    • Damage costs: Always include a 5-10% buffer to account for possible damage and other unexpected costs.

    Other costs

    There are a couple of other costs to keep in mind, whether you hire movers or rent a truck and move yourself:

    • Shipping: If you’re moving long distance and have a lot of bulky, antique, or valuable furniture, you may want to ship it separately. Professional shipping companies are the best equipped to transport these items safely.
    • Lodging: If you have a long drive, you may need somewhere to stay overnight en route.
    • Child and pet care: Budget for child and pet care so you aren’t surprised by these costs down the line. If you can, leave kids or pets with family or friends while you pack and unpack. 

    TSI TIP: No matter which moving method you opt for, book early. It may not be cheaper, but you’ll avoid any fees for booking last minute.

    2. Declutter

    Reducing the size and weight of your move can significantly reduce your moving costs. Hosting a garage sale or selling things online can even help you earn back a little cash you can use to fund your move. 
    TSI TIP: If you have junk you want hauled away, make sure you include the cost of this service in your moving budget. 

    3. Timing

    If you have the flexibility, try to move in the off-season between September and May—moving rates are usually a little lower during these months. Moving during the middle of the month (or any day that isn’t the first or last day of the month), or during the week, may also be cheaper.

    4. Supplies

    You can’t move without moving supplies, and these supplies cost money, but there are ways to reduce these costs:

    • Use travel suitcases for clothes and shoes.
    • Ask friends and check online for people selling or giving away used boxes.
    • Check grocery and liquor stores—these places often have used boxes available.
    • Look for a moving kit—moving kits contain the right number of boxes for your move, as well as other supplies like tape.

    You’ll also need bubble wrap and newsprint. For inexpensive and non-sentimental items, coffee filters, socks, and other soft linens can help cushion your belongings and save you a few bucks, but you should always use proper packing materials for valuable or fragile items.

    5. Buying and selling costs

    The costs associated with buying and selling real estate in Boston, or renting a new Boston apartment are often overlooked when creating a moving budget. Always include these costs:

    • Commissions
    • Legal fees
    • Security deposits
    • Property taxes and land transfer taxes
    • First and last month’s rent
    • Repair costs
    • Fees for transferring utilities and changing addresses. Most companies will require you to pay a change or activation fee.

    6. Hidden costs

    Other hidden costs to account for when creating your moving budget include:

    • Utility costs: You may use more water, electricity, and other utilities while you’re packing, so plan for a slight increase in your regular utility bills.
    • Cancellation fees: Services like gyms, community associations, and daycare facilities may charge cancellation fees.
    • Lost wages: If you have to take time off work, account for any lost wages in your moving budget.
    • Restocking your kitchen: Most moving companies won’t move food because it can attract unwanted pests. This means you’ll have to replace any non-perishable pantry items you had to toss or donate, so make sure you budget for a few higher-than-normal grocery bills in the weeks following your moving day.

    7. Contingency fund

    Always include a buffer in your moving budget to account for unexpected costs like vehicle breakdowns, larger-than-expected deposits, or personal injury. 5-10% is usually sufficient.

    8. Make a plan

    Create a plan for how you’ll tackle the rest of your moving tasks, including packing. Set deadlines, and stick to them as much as possible. This will help you be ready when your moving day arrives so you can avoid any last minute fees or extra charges associated with delays. 

    TSI TIP: Include any regularly scheduled bill payments in your moving schedule so you can prevent any late fees if you miss a due date or don’t receive the bill at all thanks to an address change.

    9. Take inventory

    As you pack, make an inventory of all your belongings, including the food in your fridge and pantry. You’ll need an inventory of all your items in case something gets lost of broken in transit and you need to make a claim against your moving insurance.

    TSI TIP: Creating an inventory of your fridge and pantry will help you determine if there’s any food or supplies you can use up before you go, which means you can get the most out of the money you’ve already spent and avoid throwing things out. 

    Get More Tips with our Ultimate Guide

    Creating and managing your moving budget is easy with our tips. Check out TSI’s Ultimate Guide to Preparing for your Move for more expert advice on getting ready for your upcoming move, including decluttering tips, how to move with kids, downloadable timelines, checklists, and more.

    Rachel Hazzard is a moving expert and content manager at TSI, a leading provider of long distance moving and shipping services for residential and commercial moves. TSI has been in the moving and shipping business for almost 30 years and offers simple and affordable solutions for almost any move or shipment. Call TSI at 1-800-626-1257 or visit us online at to learn more.


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      Looking to Buy in Back Bay or Beacon Hill? Here's an Inside Look at What's Available RIGHT NOW, And What's Coming Soon.

      The Boston real estate market is a little tricky for buyers right now, with far less supply than there is demand for condos in Back Bay, The South End, Beacon Hill and other popular neighborhoods.  Because of this, it's important for buyers to always have updated and current information about condos for sale in Boston neighborhoods, and about new construction opportunities offering pre-sale.  If you're looking for real estate in Back Bay or homes for sale in Beacon Hill you'll need to be informed in order to beat out the competition, so we've put together an insider's look at what's recently become available, and what's soon to come in two of the most historic and charming neighborhoods in the city.

      Available Now:

      The Wheatland - These five luxury condos in Back Bay make up a magnificent six story attached limestone row house overlooking the Commonwealth Mall. Each home has the finest finishes and contains three bedrooms, two baths, gas fireplaces and private parking.  Three of the five Back Bay condos are sold or are under agreement.  

      The Abbott - Located on the corner of Marlborough and Exeter streets, these 8 sunny Back Bay condos are the perfect combination of modern luxury and historic charm.  The building is a complete restoration and modernization of the 1872 Peabody and Sterns brownstone that once served as the home of Samuel Appleton Browne Abbott.  The two bedroom condos, which are now available for pre-sale, start at $1,500,000 and the three and four bedrooms start at $3,750,000

      67 Saint Botolph St. - These four new construction luxury condos in Back Bay are scheduled to be completed late Fall 2018, but are being offered now for pre-sale.  The first two floors of the building will be the grand duplex, which will have three bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms. All other units will have similar floor plans with large, open concept living and dining room, two bedrooms and two baths.

      25 Beacon St. - Overlooking the State House gardens and Boston common, this boutique building of six luxury condos in Beacon Hill offers superior design, the finest finishes and fixtures and luxurious amenities including an on-site garage with valet parking, 24-hour doorman, direct elevator access, dedicated storage rooms, bike storage, wine cellar and fitness room.  The six floor-through homes offer sunlight from three exposures.  

      The Whitwell - If you've heard about The Whitwell but have yet to check it out for yourself, now's the time as this boutique corner building offering 13 luxury condos in Beacon Hill is 90% sold.  All homes have gracious floor plans, lovely views, an abundance of natural sunlight,  and secluded outdoor space, as well as direct elevator access to a private parking garage.  

      Maison Vernon - There's only one unit left in this elegant and thoughtfully designed building at the top of Beacon Hill with breathtaking views of the Massachusetts State House.  In total the building has seven luxury condos, all of which offer the finest features, extraordinary craftsmanship and state-of-the-art conveniences.  

      Coming Soon:

      One Dalton - The most anticipated new construction building in Boston is not scheduled to open until the first quarter of 2019, but it's worth mentioning as the luxury Back Bay condos are sure to sell very quickly.  Each home will feature floor-to-ceiling windows, generous layouts, and top-of-the-line appliances and fixtures.  The building will house the Four Seasons hotel as well as a floor for private amenities like an indoor lap pool encased by floor-to-ceiling windows, a spa with massage and treatment rooms, a private yoga and pilates studio, a private theater room, and a golf simulator room to name a few.  

      Ames Mansion - If the finest luxury real estate in Boston is your thing, keep an eye on the historic Ames Webster mansion located in the heart of Back Bay.  The three luxury condominiums, each of which will be listed for over $20 million, are expected to be completed in 2019, and will give residents access to a garden and on-site garage parking.  

      The Archer Residences - Though these homes are not yet complete, the sales center is taking appointments with interested buyers who want to learn more about these luxury Beacon Hill homes.  The Archer Residences is located across from the Massachusetts State House and will offer resident amenity space like a roof terrace and fitness rooms, and below-grade parking for 54 vehicles.  The 71 luxury condos in Beacon Hill will be a combination of one, two, three and four-bedroom homes, all of which are masterfully designed and elegantly appointed. 

      When purchasing luxury real estate in Beacon Hill and Back Bay, or anywhere for that matter, it's critical to utilize the expertise of a real estate agent that has extensive knowledge of that area, even when purchasing new construction homes.  For more information about all of the new construction projects in Back Bay, check out this previous blog, and contact us with any questions or to schedule a showing.  



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        Here's the 2018 Inventory for New Apartments and Condos in Allston-Brighton

        Boston is one of the most dynamic cities in the country, full of history, rich with culture and loads of entertainment - it’s a great place to live and everybody knows it.  But it’s always been a national leader in housing costs, and the extreme lack of real estate for sale in Boston is causing both demand and prices to skyrocket.  Thousands of buyers are stretching themselves thin trying to find a home that offers them the best of city living - access to good food, short commutes, convenience of public transportation and a bounty of entertainment options.  Luckily, developers and city officials have begun to invest in neighborhoods surrounding the city, turning many “stopover neighborhoods” into destinations for families and professionals.  Falling squarely into this category is optimally located Allston-Brighton.  What was once an area populated by recent graduates with 3-digit bank accounts has become thriving neighborhood, appealing to buyers who are looking for proximity to downtown and lower cost of living.  Adding to the increasing swagger of the neighborhood are the luxury apartment buildings and condos for sale in Allston-Brighton, as well as some of Boston’s hippest dining and entertainment venues.  Here’s the list of new apartment buildings and luxury condos in Allston-Brighton that have recently become, or will soon be available for sale, pre-sale and pre-lease:

        Penniman on the Park - Though the building will not be completed until September, pre-sale has begun for these Allston condos located steps to Union Square and the Boston Landing development.  The 36 condos include top-of-the-line finishes and will have starting prices of approximately $500,000.  A parking garage located underneath Penman on the Park will have 17 space with another 10 spaces in a parking lot adjacent to the building.  

        40 Malvern -This building offers 48 luxury apartments for rent in Allston.  The residents are on a nd two-bedrooms, and building amenities include a green roof garden outdoor green space and access to the neighboring Commonwealth Sports Club.  These new Allston apartments are now available for rent. 

        W. Ave - Scheduled to open this November, this building will offer 132 apartments for rent in Allston, as well as 5,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space.  Amenities will include a rooftop common room, fitness center and outdoor deck, as well as 108 parking spaces.  This building has not begun pre-leasing, but will likely do so in the next couple of months, so stay tuned!  

        24-26 Hichborn Street - Located next to the Boston Landing development is this upcoming 5-story mixed-use building with 20 condominiums and 1,800 square feet of ground-floor retail space.  Each residence will have a private balcony and the roof of the building will be a common green deck.  The building will also have a parking garage with 26 spaces. 

        Nova Residences - This recently completed luxury apartment building offers 85 luxury apartments for rent in Brighton.  Residences include 51 studio and 19 two-bedroom apartments, all of which will feature modern cabinetry, stainless steel appliances and other state-of-the-art amenities.  The building’s amenities include manicured outdoor spaces, a fitness center, on-site management and indoor common rooms.  

        99 Tremont Street - These 62 luxury condos in Brighton are now on sale, and include garage parking, a fitness center, a game room, a lounge and a landscaped courtyard.  Residents can choose from one and two-bedroom condos.  The building is located steps from Oak Square’s shops and restaurants.

        Lantera - This 17-story mixed-use building with 295 apartment residences is scheduled to be completed in June, but pre-leasing for this building will begin this month, so if you’re looking for apartments to rent in Allston-Brighton, now is the time to look at this building located in Boston Landing.  Residences include studios, one-bedrooms, two-bedrooms and three-bedroom apartments for rent.  Amenities include a fitness center, a pet grooming room, multiple courtyards, roof decks, an active lounge with a pool table and a 20,000 square foot landscaped patio with a swimming pool and cabanas.  

        Because it is rapidly growing, buyers can expect to see far more new construction apartment buildings and new condos for sale in Allston-Brighton in the coming years.  As popularity increases prices are sure to rise, but Allston-Brighton condos will certainly remain more affordable then condos for sale in Back Bay, The South End and Beacon Hill. 


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          Looking to Rent or Buy in The Seaport - Here's What's Available RIGHT NOW

          If you're overwhelmed by all of the new construction in The Seaport, you're not the only one.  No other neighborhood in Boston is growing with such fervor, or adding as much to the Boston real estate inventory.  But as a buyer looking for condos for sale in The Seaport, it can sometimes be difficult to determine which buildings have units for sale, and whether they're complete or pre-selling units. Here's a look at the buildings that either currently or will soon have condos for sale or apartments for rent. 

          50 Liberty - These 120 luxury waterfront condominiums in The Seaport are currently on sale and available for move in. 50 Liberty offers views of the Boston Harbor and the Downtown Boston skyline, as well as a private waterfront club room, a board room for meetings, a private gym, 24-hour concierge service and underground garage parking.  The homes have floor-to-ceiling glass window walls, warm wood floors and high ceilings throughout. 

          Pier 4 - Located next to the Institute of Contemporary Art, this boutique condo building in The Seaport offers phenomenal harbor views in each of its 106 homes.  Amenities include garage parking, personal concierge services, fitness center, a private lounge with terrace overlooking the water, pet-friendly facilities including The Dog Spa and on-site dog washing room.  As far as luxury condos in Boston, Pier 4 rivals many of the city’s other buildings, with designer finishes, waterfront living and white glove service.  The residences at Pier 4 are not expected to be completed until Fall 2018, but the sales gallery is now open.

          Lovejoy Wharf - Nestled between The Seaport and The North End, this Boston condo building has a suite of luxury amenities and finishings.  Available floor plans include 1 bed / 1 bath and 2 bd / 2 bath condos of varying square footage.  These Seaport condos are currently listed for between $995,000 - $1,590,000 and are available for move in.  

          The Benjamin and VIA - This mixed-use project offers 832 apartments for rent in The Seaport.  These buildings have sweeping views of the Boston skyline and Boston harbor, luxury features and over an acre of landscaped courtyards.  Apartments range from studio to three-bedroom penthouses, and are currently available for lease and move in.  

          Watermark Seaport - This building features 346 luxury rental apartments in The Seaport, with 25,000 square feet of ground-floor retail beneath.  Residences include studios, one-bedrooms, two-bedrooms and three-bedrooms and well as 65 lofts in a building adjacent to the main tower.  There are a number of apartment building amenities, from a billiards room to a fitness center and rooftop terrace with city views.  Many of the units are still available for rent.  

          Park Lane Seaport - For those looking for luxury apartments for rent in Boston that offer waterfront views and a burgeoning neighborhood, Park Lane Seaport is a great option.  Rentals range from studios to 3-bedrooms and feature luxury finishes like quarts countertops and stainless steel appliances.  Amenities are plentiful and every corner of the building, which is currently leasing and available for move-in, is thoughtfully designed. 

          If you’re looking at new construction real estate in The Seaport, or for new luxury rental buildings you have several options, but one thing is for certain - the area is hot and condos and apartments are moving quickly.  As always, the best strategy for buyers in Boston’s competitive real estate market is to work with an agent who knows the area intimately.  Contact us for more information about any of these buildings or for more general questions about real estate in Boston.  Also, to learn more about some of the other new construction projects being developed now in The Seaport, take a look at this previous blog post. 




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            Infographic: Tips for A Stress-Free Moving Day

            Moving is stressful, but moving within the city, from a Back Bay condo to a piece of real estate in The South End for example, can be especially tricky because you have things like city regulations, traffic and a bustling pedestrian population to contend with.  In these cases, it's critical to create a thorough plan for moving day - one that considers details like children's nap times, parking and snacks or lunch for your movers.  And that's just the beginning!  Once you get your belongings through the front door, most people want to focus on unpacking their clothes and arranging furniture, but there are important tasks that, once completed, will help you settle into your new home without worry.  Our friends at E.E. Ward Moving and Storage put together this nifty infographic and checklist for move-in day preparations, and for the activities you should focus on as soon as your moving truck pulls away.  Let's take a look:

            Bonus helpful tip: Another great way to eliminate the stress of moving day is to work with a full-service, committed Boston real estate agent that uses their expertise to facilitate your move in any way possible.  The importance of having an agent that is deeply familiar with your neighborhood and any nuances that might affect your move can not be understated.  With the current Boston real estate market, buying a home in Back Bay, The South End or any other city neighborhood can be difficult because there are so many other buyers to compete with.    Once you find the perfect home, don't let stresses of moving day damper your enthusiasm.  

            The Charles Realty has had its finger on the pulse of Boston real estate for 34 years.  Our agents have unparalleled knowledge of the city and it’s neighborhoods, and oftentimes have access to information not yet made public.  For more information about Boston real estate, finding condos for sale in Boston, or if you'd like to talk to a sellers agent about listing your home, please contact us.  


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              Here's What Buyers Need To Know About S&P's Latest Report That Indicates An Increase in Boston Real Estate Prices

              It’s been a difficult couple of years for those looking for affordable real estate in Boston.  According to the Massachusetts Association of Realtors, the median home value citywide increased 12% in 2016 and a staggering 47% in the last five years.  Though there has been a slight and likely temporary drop in prices for real estate in Back Bay and condos in The South End, which fell in median value by 33% and 55% respectively in 2016, most Boston neighborhoods are seeing consistent double digit increases year over year.  And according to a new report from Standard & Poors, the Boston real estate market will continue the upward trend over the next several years, with an estimated 24% jump in home value by 2020.  This estimate is dependent on some unpredictable variables like the performance of the economy, but the report also indicates that if another recession like the economic downturn of 2007 were to hit, home prices in the Boston area would fall by less than 2%, while the rest of the nation would see a 27% plunge.  

              What does this mean for Boston real estate and buyers looking for homes for sale in Back Bay and other Boston neighborhoods?  Because Boston is one of the three or four lowest-risk markets in the country due to a broad scope of industries, an abundance of universities and medical institutions and an exceptional employment market, buyers should be assured that purchasing a home in Boston will likely remain a sound financial investment.  But with an increase in prices and mortgage rates on the horizon, those looking for real estate investments that are likely to yield significant return should consider buying sooner rather than later.  They should also work with an agent who understands how real estate in Boston neighborhoods has changed over the last 10 years, and has done significant research on which Boston neighborhoods are likely to grow the most in the next 5 years.  For example, a savvy real estate agent should know that real estate in Somerville has increased 48% in the last 5 years, but the median home value fell by 1% in 2016, indicating a major shift that affects it’s desirability from an investment perspective.  Other neighborhoods with similar proximity to the city - East Boston, Dorchester and South Boston for example, saw a very healthy increase in 2016 that, coupled with a flood of new residential and commercial development projects, make them likely to have significant increases in both short and long-term home values.  

              The Boston real estate market is undoubtedly one of the most desirable in the nation - and for good reason.  The lifestyle is great for it’s residents and the city is able to withstand economic hardships much better than most other markets.  But desirability and affordability are inversely proportional, and if the aforementioned S&P report holds true, the longer buyers wait, the less return they are likely to see on their investment.  Regardless of timing, it’s critical for buyers to be well-informed about not only the Boston real estate market, but the factors that contribute to growth within the city’s different neighborhoods.  When it comes to condos for sale in Back Bay and real estate for sale in Charlestown, a savvy buyer must consider many things beyond the differences in characteristics of each neighborhood.  The Boston housing market will only become more complex for buyers as home values increase.  Working with an agent that has deep expertise in Boston real estate and a well-researched perspective on it’s future is the best way for a buyer to make satisfying and fiscally smart choices.  

              The Charles Realty has had its finger on the pulse of Boston real estate for 34 years.  Our agents have unparalleled knowledge of the city and it’s neighborhoods, and oftentimes have access to information not yet made public.  For any questions about listings in the aforementioned buildings, other new projects in Boston, the status of projects, availability of new construction homes, or anything pertaining to Boston real estate, please contact us.  


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                7 Hot New Construction Buildings in Fenway/Kenmore

                The Fenway / Kenmore area may be home to “America’s most beloved ballpark,” but Bostonians know that there’s a lot more to the neighborhood then the iconic home of the Boston Red Sox.  The 1.24 square mile neighborhood is bursting with vitality thanks to a unique blend of cultural institutions, universities, and the natural beauty bestowed by the Emerald Necklace - a chain of parks linked by parkways and waterways that spreads through Fenway/Kenmore and beyond.  Young professionals and students from nearly a dozen colleges and universities located in the neighborhood fill the many bars, restaurants and nightclubs lining the streets of Fenway/Kenmore, giving it a perpetually animated feel.  The neighborhood also attracts a cerebral and cultured population of Bostonians who  enjoy spending time at the Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts and Symphony Hall.  It’s a diverse and dynamic area, and has a seemingly endless amount of entertainment making it an appealing neighborhood for those looking at Boston real estate.  

                But like other neighborhoods in the city, real estate in Fenway/Kenmore is transitioning.  Not long ago the majority of housing was student-centric and affordable, but over the last several years a surge of new development has helped establish a prominent luxury real estate market in the neighborhood. Those looking for condos for sale in Fenway/Kenmore can expect to see prices that are approaching those of Back Bay real estate and condos for sale in The South End, and luxury condos in Fenway/Kenmore are now more common than those with basic features and amenities.  But for an area that has as much to offer as Fenway/Kenmore, it’s not surprising that demand has increased so significantly.  Here’s a list of the top 7 Fenway/Kenmore new construction projects that are adding to the much needed supply of new housing in the popular neighborhood.

                Pierce Boston


                This behemoth project had to top our list, mostly because it’s one of the most prominent new construction projects in all of Boston, but also because it’s scheduled to be finished any day now.  Here are the details of what this 30-story luxury tower will contribute to luxury real estate in Fenway/Kenmore:

                • A mix of 240 rental apartments and 109 condominiums
                • 20,000 square feet of retail located at the tower’s base across the first two stories
                • An underground parking garage will contain spaces for 80 cars
                • Amenities will include a Levity Lounge on the buildings top level, as well as a sky deck with a kitchen and a gas fireplace and a sky top pool, a library, a fitness center and a private dining room

                Fenway Center


                Another massive project underway in the neighborhood is Fenway Center in Kenmore Square.  The project will be constructed in two phases, with phase one expected to be completed in early 2020.  Here’s what this 1.1 million-square-foot development project will include:

                • Five new buildings, including a 27-story tower above the Massachusetts Turnpike
                • A total of approximately 550 residential units, 160,000 square feet of office space and over 50,000 square feet of retail
                • 30,000 square feet of park and green space
                • A seven-story parking garage will include 1,290 parking spaces
                • A 12,000-square-foot air rights deck and landscaped pedestrian walkway will be constructed over  Yawkey Station as part of phase 1.  

                Symphony Court Phase Two


                This luxury condo building in Fenway/Kenmore is sold out, but it’s worth mentioning because you never know when one of these homes will come back on the market.  Here are the details:

                • 34 luxury condominium residences
                • Amenities include a resident club room, an outdoor community terrace, a fitness center and garage parking
                • Residences feature natural light, high ceilings and views of the Boston skyline
                • A number of residences feature private decks 

                The Harlo


                This 17-story, recently completed building offers luxury apartments to rent in Fenway/Kenmore.  With a convenient location, The Harlo “connects historic legacy with modern city living.”  Here are the features:

                • 212 luxurious apartment residences ranging from studio to three-bedrooms
                • Residences include elegant finishes like exposed concrete ceilings, quartz countertops, hardwood floors, oversized window and panoramic views of Fenway Park, the Charles River and Downtown Boston
                • Select homes feature loft floor plans and private terraces
                • Amenities include a long with a billiards area and open workspaces, a work and study area, private dining and entertaining space, a fitness center, a library and conference space.  
                • Multiple private outdoor spaces including a yoga terrace, a fifth-floor outdoor terrace featuring cabanas, a fire pit and grills and a top-level sky deck with sweeping views of the Emerald Necklace, the Boston skyline and Fenway Park
                • A two-level underground parking garage with 105 spaces and bicycle storage

                839 Beacon Street


                Located steps from Kenmore Square, the upcoming apartments at 839 Beacon will have modern amenities but a classic brick-and-bay townhouse look.  These Kenmore Square rentals will also have:

                • 45 apartment residents and 4,500 square feet of ground-floor retail
                • Apartments will include 16 studios, 23 one-bedrooms, 4 two-bedrooms and 2 three-bedrooms
                • Homes feature quartz countertops, stainless steel appliances, vinyl plank flooring and in-unit laundry
                • Amenities include a lounge, meeting room, fitness center, a dog washing station and a roof terrace featuring a kitchen facility on views of the Boston skyline
                • 30 parking spaces with Zipcars available on site as well as electric car charging stations 

                50 Symphony Road


                This recently approved building will include modern-contextual design and 20 condominiums for sale in Fenway.  Here are the details:

                • First-floor residential space will be 6 feet above grade, providing privacy for residents
                • 17 condominiums will be market-rate and 3 will be offered to buyers earning 80-100% of Area Media Income (AMI)
                • The building’s basement will have parking for 11 vehicles
                • All floors are elevator accessible
                • Conveniently located to MBTA stations at Symphony (Green Line), Hynes Convention Center (Green Line) and Massachusetts Avenue (Orange Line)  
                • MBTA Bus lines are just steps away
                • Easily walkable to major Boston neighborhoods including Fenway, Copley, Back Bay and South End

                Gateway Boston


                These high-end apartments in Fenway were completed a little over a year ago, but are a great option for renting in Boston.  The building is right in the heart of the Fenway neighborhood, and offers:

                • 32 one and one plus-bedroom apartments
                • State-of-the-art finishes
                • Garage parking on site
                • 4,470 square feet of ground-floor retail space

                Residential new construction projects are seemingly ubiquitous in Boston right now - having a massive impact on real estate in The Seaport, East Boston and other neighborhoods that were ripe for rejuvenation.  Though Fenway/Kenmore is a well established neighborhood that isn’t seeing quite as many individual projects, new buildings like the Pierce are major-league (pun intended) and are capturing the attention of every Bostonian interested in Boston real estate and general buzz about the city.  One thing seems certain, with a number of new luxury housing options and a bright future of growth, buyers are going to be paying much closer attention to real estate in Fenway/Kenmore.  

                The Charles Realty has had its finger on the pulse of Boston real estate for 34 years.  Our agents have unparalleled knowledge of the city and it’s neighborhoods, and oftentimes have access to information not yet made public.  For any questions about listings in the aforementioned buildings, other new projects in Boston, the status of projects, availability of new construction homes, or anything pertaining to Boston real estate, please contact us.  



                A Detailed Look at the Improper Bostonian's 9 of the Best Bars in Boston

                One of the best things about living in Boston (arguably the best thing) is how full of life it is.  You could spend an entire month exploring the city and still miss some if it's best attractions.  So, as some of the most experienced real estate agents in Boston, we've made it a priority to acquaint ourselves with the city in every way, which hasn't been too difficult since our agents live, work and play in the neighborhoods they work in.  Whether it's a question about luxury condos for sale in Back Bay, the best Italian restaurant in the North End, pet friendly buildings in Fenway, or what Bostonians can expect from the massive amount of development in The Seaport, we have all kinds of answers.  But while our agents love exploring the city and gathering information for clients (a job perk for sure), we also like to consider the opinions of others around town.  So, we partnered with our friend Jessica Kane to get the details on The Improper Bostonian's list of the 9 Best Bars and Clubs in Boston.  Here's what Jessica had to say:

                The Improper Bostonian, a lively, alternative newspaper serving the community, likes to develop lists of the best. An important "best list" from The Improper Bostonian addresses bars, taverns, and nightclubs in Boston.

                If you are planning a trip to Boston, or if you live in or near the city and want to learn more about nightlife in your community, there are nine establishments that made the longer "best list" that are well worth a look.

                Best Beer Bar: The Publick House

                Although beer bars have been popping up in Boston at a rapid pace in recent years, The Publick House has been and remains ahead of the ever growing pack. The Publick House is described as the "sultan of suds" by The Improper Bostonian. 

                The Publick House features over 30 styles of beer, served in over 80 bottles. In addition, the establishment offers its patrons an ever rotating selection of brew on tap. 

                Best Cozy Bar: Anchovies

                Anchovies is recognized as the best cozy bar in Boston. Anchovies is a dimly lit joint, that comes complete with a dark wood bar. It is a neighborhood tavern, that includes nick-knacks about the place, and bartenders who are generous in their pours.

                Anchovies is a friendly spot, a pub that serves a large cast of regulars. In addition, Anchovies serves a full menu of delectable, authentic Italian food until 1:30 a.m. 

                Best Dance Club: Royale

                When it comes to Boston dance clubs, Royale is a survivor. Dance clubs in the city, indeed across the country, come and go in a flash. Royale is now in its seventh year, and no other venue has come close to taking the perch as the best away from this venue.

                Royale is located in the Boston Theatre District and packs crowds in each and every weekend. Royale features a wide array of marquee DJs and EDM stars. In addition, the venue is outfitted with a tremendous light and sound system. Royale is also home to some great live concerts each year, thanks to its partnership with Bowery Presents. 

                Best Dive Bar: Drinking Fountain

                Who doesn't like a fun dive bar? And Boston has more than a few. With that said, Drinking Fountain is the best dive bar in town.

                Drinking Fountain has been able to withstand the trend towards gentrification that has been sweeping the city in the past couple of decades. In addition, Drinking Fountain offers some of the most affordably priced drinks to be found anywhere in Boston.

                Best Date Bar: The Gallows

                Despite the establishment's name, The Gallows is regarded as the best date bar in Boston. The Gallows is a lively, vibrant South End gastropub. In addition to reasonably priced adult beverages, the establishment offers a nice selection of small plates. It is a perfect place for comfortable conversation, even well suited to that all important first date.

                Best Gay Bar: Club Café 

                In business for 30-plus years, Club Café remains the best gay bar in Boston. People still line up down the block to get in. This remains the case even as gay bars shutter as LGBT patrons venture towards partying in "mainline" establishments. 

                Club Café offers the best cabaret stage in town. In addition, there is a lively dancefloor located at the rear of the establishment. 

                Best Hotel Bar: Hojoko

                If you are visiting Boston, or if you are a resident that wants to try out something not normally seen in a hotel bar, Hojoko is the place to go. The establishment is located in the trendy Verb Hotel.

                The establishment features a vibrant décor not normally associated with a hotel lobby bar. The colorful décor provides a marvelous backdrop for the best sake selections found anywhere in Boston. Midnight snacks of ramen are served daily. On a seasonal basis, beverages from Hojoko can be enjoyed poolside.

                Best Irish Pub: The Field

                What would Boston be without its wonderful Irish pubs? There are plenty of them. And, The Field is considered the best.

                The cash-only pub offers patrons pints of Guinness, pool, and darts. Keep in mind that The Field is not located in Southie, but in the Cambridge area (not necessarily where you'd expect to find the best Irish Pub). Because of its location, The Field attracts a truly eclectic array of patrons, people from all walks of life and a myriad of backgrounds. It is a truly friendly gathering place.

                Best Jazz Club: Wally's Café

                Wally's Café tops the list as the best jazz joint in Boston. Wally's Café, in its 70th year, is a Boston institution. 

                The establishment has featured nightly jazz performances by veteran musicians and up-and-coming performers. There are early evening sessions at Wally's Café, followed by scheduled performers.

                Jessica Kane writes for TIPS Alcohol Training, offering TIPS responsible alcohol service training online for both on and off premise needs.  

                The Charles Realty has had its finger on the pulse of Boston real estate for 34 years.  Our agents have unparalleled knowledge of the city and it’s neighborhoods, and oftentimes have access to information not yet made public.  For questions about homes for sale in Boston, or if you're looking for the most dedicated seller's agents in Boston, please contact us.  


                Demand For Real Estate In Dorchester Is Growing Quickly - Here Are Our Picks For The Neighborhood's Best New Buildings

                For years, Dorchester has been a neighborhood poised for transformation.  What was once it’s own city settled years before Boston, Dorchester offers a combination of attributes not found in other neighborhoods - 9.46 miles of waterfront, residential neighborhoods, commercial corridors and a university campus.  But parts of Dorchester have seen higher crime rates than other areas in Boston, which has given the neighborhood a somewhat negative reputation. Because of this the cost of real estate in Dorchester has remained lower than other neighborhoods.  But much of this crime is sequestered to a few small areas in the largest neighborhood in Boston, and from the perspective of many who live there, Dorchester (lovingly referred to by locals as Dot) is a hidden gem - an under-appreciated neighborhood where the good far outweighs the bad.  

                The area is beginning to attract attention, however - from first time home buyers who can’t afford the increasing costs of real estate in South Boston and other Boston neighborhoods, from artists who appreciate the neighborhood’s history, culture and diversity, and from Boston’s mayor Marty Walsh, who has emphasized his commitment to improving the areas infrastructure, transportation and public spaces, while still preserving it’s unique identity.  It’s also attracted the attention of local developers, who are grappling for the neighborhoods affordable land to build apartments, commercial space, and condos in Dorchester.  Here’s a look at the 10 new construction buildings changing the housing game in Dorchester.  



                The much hyped about DotBlock at the juncture of the Savin Hill, Jones Hill and Meeting House Hill neighborhoods will transform a collection of vacant parcels into 388,400 square feet of mixed-use space.  DotBlock will include:

                • 362 residential units across five mixed-use buildings, including both apartments and condos
                • 37,000 square feet of retail
                • Five story parking garage
                • Amenities will include a pool and fitness facility, as well as a 20,000 square foot landscaped roof deck.
                • Located steps to Savin Hill Station and the MBTA Red Line

                New England Heritage Homes


                These residences will add a suburban flare to the urban housing boom in Dorchester, and will include nine new buildings, seven of which will be attached, side-by-side duplexes and two that will be single-family homes.  Here are the details:

                • 16 affordable two- and three-bedroom condominium residences totaling nearly one acre
                • Steps from Codman Square and the Talbot Avenue MBTA commuter rail station
                • Eight residences will be sold to residents earning 80% of Area Median Income (AMI) or below
                • Eight residences will be sold to residents earning 100% of AMI or below
                • 20 parking spaces will be constructed in addition to bicycle storage
                • Completion is expected in November of 2018

                South Bay Town Center


                This new, pedestrian-oriented development will open in 2018 and will transform a 10-acre section of the existing South Bay Center shopping mall. In the 720,000 square foot space will be:

                • 475 residential units
                • 120,000 square feet of retail space
                • A 60,000 square foot cinema and 130-room hotel
                • 5 new buildings in total
                • Active ground-floor uses and open spaces
                • Three parking garages along with a surface lot and street parking for a total of 1,095 parking spaces

                Indigo Block


                This 125,400 square foot project will include residential apartments, homeownership condominiums and light industrial commercial space.  The expected completion is Spring of 2018.  The details are:

                • 80 residential apartments constructed in an 86,000 square foot building.  44 of these apartments will be designated affordable
                • Four new buildings with eight residential townhouse-style condominiums will be constructed
                • A two-story, 20,000 square foot commercial building will be constructed offering light industrial space, with office space on the second floor
                • 86 parking spots will be included in construction.  

                Flats on Savin


                The 14 modern luxury apartments recently completed in Savin Hill are now leasing.  This building is located directly across from the Savin Hill MBTA Red Line station, making it an optimal location for commuters.  Here’s more about what the building has to offer:

                • Four studios, two 1-bedrooms and eight 2-bedroom apartments
                • Apartments feature state-of-the-art flooring and lighting fixtures, kitchens with white Ceasarstone counters and top-quality appliances, oversized windows and private balconies
                • Amenities include an on-site fitness center, elevator access, an intercom system, video surveillance and bicycle storage.  
                • Leases start at $1,850 / month
                • 4,650 square feet of commercial space will be on the ground floor of the Flats on Savin building, including street level and basement space
                • The existing Savin Bar and Kitchen restaurant will be incorporated into the new building

                1943 Dorchester Avenue


                This mixed-use building across from the Ashmont rapid transit station is currently under construction.  It will feature:

                • 64 rental apartment residences - 42 studios, 15 one-bedrooms, 3 one-bedrooms + den and 4 two-bedrooms
                • 8 apartments will be designated affordable
                • 2,100 square feet of retail space will be available on the ground floor
                • 24 at-grade parking spaces will be available

                110 Savin Hill Avenue


                Savin Hill is bustling with development, including this 23,984 square-foot mixed-use project across from the Savin Hill MBTA Red Line station at the corner of Savin Hill Avenue and Sydney Street.  There are a lot of details on this one, and here they are:

                • Three-story with mezzanine residential building featuring nine-market-rate condominiums and 13 parking spaces
                • Residences will include 1 one-bedroom, 770-square-foot adaptable unit, 6 two 2-bedroom units averaging 1,146 square feet and 2 three-bedroom units averaging 1,816 square feet
                • Three-story, 10,574-square-foot commercial building fronting onto Savin Hill Avenue
                • The first floor will have 3,555 square feet of commercial/retail/restaurant space
                • The second and third floors will contain 3,646 square feet and 2,55 square feet respectively, intended for a a single commercial/retail/restaurant tenant

                54 Pleasant Street


                This approved Dorchester condo building will be located at the intersection of Pleasant and Stoughton Streets in Savin Hill bordering Jones Hill, convenient to the Savin Hill MBTA Red Line station.  The building will include:

                • 17 residential condominiums
                • 5 one-bedrooms averaging approximately 907 square feet, 9 two-bedrooms averaging approximately 1,063 square feet and 3 three-bedrooms averaging approximately 1,540 square feet
                • An underground garage will house 20 vehicle parking spaces and 10 bicycle storage spaces

                Neponset Wharf


                This project is still under final review, but if it’s officially approved it will be huge for real estate in Dorchester.  The development will be 307,000 square feet of mixed-use waterfront space overlooking Boston Harbor.  The list of waterfront outdoor spaces and facilities created for residential and public use is extensive, including a boathouse, a public fishing pier, the upgraded marina, a kayak launch, a refreshment stand, a boardwalk, a tidal garden, a game court, enhanced public access to the Neponset River and a potential pedestrian bridge link across Pine Neck Creek to Teenan Beach (Source:  The development’s three buildings will feature:

                • 150 condominium residences
                • A 25-room boutique hotel
                • A 4,000 square-foot ground-floor restaurant
                • Parking facilities with capacity for 185 cars and 152 bicycles available to both residents and the public

                1120-1132 Washington Street


                This proposed development, which is also under final review, will certainly help with the supply of condos for sale in Dorchester if approved.  The mixed-use building would be located steps from the Neponset Greenway and the MBTA Red Line.  Here’s what it would entail:

                • 57 one- to three-bedroom condominium residences, 7 of which would be designated affordable
                • 3,600 square feet of ground floor commercial space
                • Open space on site, including a lawn, a patio and a toddler play area
                • 86 parking spaces for residents and 8 for the building’s commercial space, as well as bicycle storage 

                There’s a transformative energy building in Boston’s largest and most diverse neighborhood, and it’s sure to have an impact on the area’s desirability, and in turn, real estate in Dorchester.  The key for city planners and officials will be to find the right balance between helping the neighborhood reach it’s full potential, and maintaining the rich culture and affordability it currently offers.  One thing’s for certain, if you’re looking for real estate in Boston, condos in Dorchester are sure to yield significant return on investment in both the short, and the long term.  


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