Blog :: 10-2012

Renovating for Sales

Investing in upgrades can always help in regards to selling a home.  We recommend that you definitely discuss possible renovations with an experienced broker---this could increase marketability and the selling power of your home. Correcting deficiencies in your home can make sellers see the property more favorably--and makes them willing to pay a higher price. After all, renovations and upgrades can help to increase the listing price of your home--and that is great for you, especially in a seller's market like Boston, where supply is low and demand is high!

"- Energy efficiency upgrades and/or replacements that will reduce utility bills (i.e.boiler/furnace replacements) or enhance comfort (i.e. insulation). Replacement windows enhance comfort in addition to conserving energy. These improvements make a home's resale more appealing and begin to pay back their cost almost immediately. There are also rebates, tax credits and incentives available from time to time. - Cosmetic upgrades (i.e. paint, siding or hardwood floors) that are often done when ongoing home maintenance is required, but just as often done to personalize the property to the owner's taste. When done as part of the maintenance cycle, some of these projects don't cost as much out of pocket and some of them (i.e. paint or siding) prevent potential damage. - Lifestyle and convenience modifications and additions (i.e. adding bathrooms, closets or living space) often done to better suit the lifestyle or needs of homeowners. These are often big ticket items that might not pay back all of their cost unless they are done to correct a deficiency in the property (i.e. adding a first floor lavatory in certain markets)."

For more info visit: http://www.boston.com/realestate/news/blogs/renow/2012/10/renovation_cost.html

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Comparing Boston Real Estate

We understand that the real estate market hasn't been the easiest over the past five or so years, and we've written plenty of posts recently about how the market is bouncing back, but we thought it would be best to compare Boston real estate sales with those in other markets. Movoto.com has proved to be a great tool that allows us to plug in any city and compare real estate markets right on a graph. Below are a few graphs representing cities across the country and their median sale price points in comparison to Boston's.

Median Sales Price Comparison

As these graphs clearly demonstrate, the Boston real estate market is strides ahead of these major cities. Very few cities are seeing higher sales numbers than Boston (San Francisco and Washington D.C. are really the only two major markets with slightly higher sales prices than Boston). We all know there are plenty of reasons to love this city, but what makes it even greater is the opportunity to invest. Sales prices are still climbing right now, and this is the time to buy. Home values are expected to continue rising, and within a couple of years you can see a real profit. It's a quick turnaround and buying a home can be a painless process for you.

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Introducing the Wall Street Journal's Newest Section: "Mansion"

The Wall Street Journal released their newest print and online section today, which is entitled, "Mansion."  WSJ managing editor Robert Thomson in a statement that, "we all like to think of our home as a mansion, even if it is a humble abode, and we all have the license to aspire."

The section is all about residential luxury real estate in the US and internationally. The section will include WSJ's Private Properties section, feature a 'Home of the Day,' article, and adds other print and video exclusives, such as Portfolio, "a look inside the real estate portfolio of a well-known person." The first day's articles included "Wealthy Investors Flock to Puerto Rico," "The Inner Rooms of Maya Angelou," "Parking Spot in the Sky," and "Asylum, Interrupted," among others.

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Political Real Estate (Romney vs. Obama)

Click to enlarge!

The Estately Blog recently created a fun and playful comparison of the housing situations of the two presidential candidates (excluding the White House). The website compared Obama's Chicago home with the five homes Romney has owned in the past few years. Both the presidents live in high-end houses. The average American home value is $221,800, but Romney's (in total) is $32 million and Obama's is $1.6 million. Check out the image above for all the info Estately gathered---including information on their neighbors. While Obama has had political neighbors in Chicago, Romney has had some rather interesting neighbors in Utah---including Cheech Marin of Cheech & Chong. Both candidates have some luxe amenities in their homes. For instance, Obama has a 1,000 bottle wine cellar and a third floor ballroom. Romney is doubling the size of his La Jolla, CA beach home and adding an elevator for his cars. Decide for yourself who has the better digs!

The White House is the most luxurious. It has a bowling alley, basketball court, a missile defense system and lasers for security, and a home brewery. It is 55,000 square feet, has 11 bedrooms, 35 bathrooms, 28 fireplaces, and is worth a whopping $100 million dollars.