Wellesley & Weston Real Estate News

April 12, 2024

Market Update Week of 04/12/2024

 

No surprise here, the inflation numbers went up in March, and now it looks like we won't see a rate decrease in June. This may upset some people when I say this, but I do think they have to wait on lowering interest rates right now. Home prices are escalating at such a rapid level that infusing the market with new shoppers revved up by even more buying power will drive demand even higher and prices will swell even more in turn. That's a mouthful, but it's true.:)

I won't lie, it's been a draining week. I deeply care for my clients and together we have witnessed 15%-20% over the asking price after grueling bidding wars. Agents and buyers alike are stunned at where these houses are selling. This is mostly in the under $2M range in all towns. Comparable properties that sold even 3-4 months ago no longer serve as an equal comparison nor does it help us predict where a house will sell since the emotion driving the buyers is not rooted in fundamentals, but the need to nest and own a home at any cost. 

Many homes are not appraising at a sufficient level for the bank, and buyers are being forced to make up the difference. The appraisal system is somewhat flawed since they can't use homes that are under contract and are the best reflection of the current conditions. Instead they are looking back three to six months, and like the weather in New England the housing climate can pivot in just weeks. It is not accurate data.

 

The luxury market is also starting to make moves, and a few notable properties over $4m have also sold. Yet, the high end is the only place where we see inventory building up. For example in Weston as of today, 72% of the properties on the market are above $3M.

The rest of the country is not dealing with exactly what we are. In fact, there are areas where the market has softened considerably after experiencing a huge surge during the Covid years when working from home meant you could live anywhere. Cities and towns in Florida, California, Texas, and the Midwest have settled down and are not experiencing the frenzy we are seeing, as stated in this interesting article from the NY Post.

 

https://nypost.com/2024/03/08/real-estate/the-10-us-markets-where-home-prices-are-falling-the-most/

 

 

I hope you have a great weekend ahead and if you are on spring break- make it a good one! See below for my listings and some ideas for a good time near you!

 

12 Durant Road, Wellesley

$1,275,000

Click here to see 12 Durant 

 

 

11 Roanoke Road, Wellesley

$2,895,000

Click here to see 11 Roanoke Road

 

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

Boston Marathon

Click here for more information

 

Sheepshearing Festival

Click here for more information

The Swan Boats in Boston

Open this Weekend

Click here for more information

 

 

And...

 

In May you will find me at a gymnastics meet which is a stop on the road to the Paris Olympics and it's just in Hartford, CT! Below is a photo of my gymnastics squad!

 

Click here for more information

 

 

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in MGS Group
April 8, 2024

Market Update Week of 04/08/2024

This week was filled with emotion for me and my clients. There are highs and there are lows happening all the time in the real estate world, and everyone in the game is on this roller coaster.

 

Happiness comes with "victory," which is reserved right now for sellers who are getting "Holy ***" prices for their homes. That same emotion is bestowed upon the winners of bidding wars or the really bold buyers who step up early going way over the listing price to snap up a property before anyone else can. Happiness is an agent whose client gets their dream home.

This is reserved for the buyer's agents who are thrilled for their clients who got the house, but are up all night hoping that the bank appraises the property for the price their buyer paid. Worry is also reserved for agents who are concerned that someone will bid on a property before their client sees it. Worry sets in while waiting at home after submitting your bid. This can be hours that seem like days. Worry can be combatted by being proactive and tackling any obstacle the best way we can so there is a better outcome.

 

Concern sets in for people whose homes don't sell in a matter of days. They question why they are left on the market while their competition is disappearing from the active listing page. Concern is alleviated by reminding everyone that not every house sells immediately. It can take time. All properties will sell eventually; you just need a good professional to read the market for you and react accordingly. This is where part time therapist comes in.:) Concern is the buyer who fears they will never get a house. I am here to tell you that you will! People reading this who are on the other side of the process relaxing in their new living room, have a deep wisdom now and I am sure agree it really does all work out. No one's journey is the same, and the experiences along the road get us to where we need to be. I promise!

 

This is what buyers are experiencing the most. They are doing a lot of waiting these days. Waiting for a house to come on that meets their criteria, waiting to see if they offered enough. If they do come in on top in a bidding war, refer above to Happiness. If it is lost we move into, "disappointment." The ladder disappears quickly as we head back out even more determined and smarter.

 

This is an emotion some will feel unfortunately these days. It isn't long lasting and a healthy attitude coupled with the realization that looking for a house or selling one can be a marathon sometimes and not always a sprint. 

While buying a house is a huge life decision, it can also be a fun and rewarding experience. Not only do you see lovely properties along the way, you are also learning valuable lessons in finance, design, negotiation, compromise, and what makes a good deal. The thrill of the chase can be fun and I am sure we will have laughs along the way! 

 

 

Looking for something to do in the coming weeks to lift you up? How about...

The Boston Marathon

The 128th Boston Marathon is coming through many of our towns very soon! Monday April 15, 2024. 

 

 

 

Wellesley Kitchen Tour

 

While this sold out fast, if you are able to get a ticket I highly recommend you take advantage! So proud to be the official sponsor of the Wellesley Hills Junior Women's Club.

 

 

 

Earth Day Celebration at Land's Sake Farm

 

April 20th, 2024.

https://landssake.org/events/earth-day/

 

11 Roanoke Road, Wellesley

$2,895,000

Click here to see 11 Roanoke 

 

 

 Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

12 Durant Road, Wellesley

$1,275,000

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in Home Decor
March 29, 2024

Market Update Week of 03/29/2024

 

Wow! It is truly amazing just how revved up the real estate market seems. We are back to witnessing houses flying off the market, and in some cases, landing in a different stratosphere from where they started. Five-ten-fifteen offers per property are stacked up for most listings. I used to be able to gauge how much over asking a house will sell based on the number of bids, but even with two offers on a property the winner is paying at least ten percent over asking. It is hard to pin down pricing within this climate. 

 

All this said, I am not discouraged for my buyers, and I don't want them to be either! Strategies, preparedness, relationships, and frame of mind will help us power through this and will in turn reap success. Right now there may not be an immediate satisfaction, but each showing, offer, and pre-inspection gets us closer to the right place. I was brought to tears by my lovely buyers who recently lost out on a house, yet they told me they were popping the champagne because they were so proud to have taken that first step. Way to look at things as a glass half full! Love it!

I do think with the promise of interest rates lowering in the second half of the year will trigger a flood of new people entering the market and potentially drive prices even higher. Maybe that expectation is what's fueling buyers now to act knowing they can always refinance later.

 

Breaking it down by price range, the most robust segment is under $2M of course because there are so few houses and so many in search of their homes in that space. The high end is not sitting stagnant by any means, and well-priced homes are trading quickly with strong prices, BUT if you overprice from the beginning, the market will not reward you. You have heard me say it before, and it is still true. There are some stragglers sitting.

Only 7 of the 12 Launcher Way homes are left for sale. Here is a sneak peek of upcoming listings.

 

 

12 Durant Road, Wellesley

$1,295,000

 

 

11 Roanoke Road, Wellesley

$2,895,000

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

Our daughter Allie rode horses at Loveland Special Needs Horseback Riding for many years. It changed her life and ours. Every two years they host their biggest fundraiser which is a good old fashioned hoedown with a headlining band. This year it is the Spin Doctors. The top chefs from all over Boston attend serving their favorite dish. It is not to be missed and I would love to see you there! Here is a link with more information and how to get tickets. Thank you!

Hoedown Landing Page

Finally, for those who celebrate, wishing you a joyful Easter and a fantastic weekend ahead!

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in Home Ownership
March 22, 2024

Market Update Week of 03/22/2024

The agreement between the National Association of Realtors and the Department of Justice is something I am following closely. The main takeaways are that the Multiple Listing Service can no longer have a column that outlines what the Realtor fees will be during a transaction. As it has always been, sellers can decide if they want to offer payment to a buyer agent. I believe that most will continue to do so, but it remains to be seen. This adjustment forces an honest and open conversation on commissions and who pays the broker. Buyer agreements (contracts between buyers and their agents) will most likely become normal protocol. Sellers already sign what we call an engagement letter when listing their home. Transparency is always good and is the basis of what all successful agents should be building their brand around. Think of these changes as an added step towards authenticity in my field. In the end, I hope the goal is even stronger connections between agents and clients.

 

Despite the inaccurate headlines you are reading, my focus will remain the same: to put my clients' needs and objectives first and to deliver and execute the top-tier service that I offer. My buyers and sellers need it and depend on it to purchase or sell the largest asset that many of them own. That thirst for guidance, experience, and an expert won't go away. There is no basis for the media saying that prices are going to plummet or that an agent's skills become irrelevant. It is reckless and dangerous to report this, in my opinion.

 

In many fields, fees are negotiated, and it has been no different in residential housing. Redfin is a discount brokerage that grew its business on a competitive fee structure that was below market value. Yet, in many of the surrounding towns, only one or two houses are listed each year by Redfin. Sellers had the chance to pay less and decided not to. Ryan Serhant, a top NYC broker, wrote today, "A great service, in any industry, can be expensive- but bad service or no service, can cost a fortune."

 

I will continue to monitor the agreement and dig deep into how these changes will affect you. Some things will be beneficial to the consumer, and some may not. The most vulnerable will be first-time homebuyers who are entering uncharted territory as they embark on the buying journey. Finding a way that continues to support them is essential, and they most certainly need guidance and support since they will wade into dangerous territory if they try and buy a house alone without representation.

 

 

Change can be good and it can also be scary, but it's something I have always embraced knowing that I will tackle the uncertainty with a positive attitude and a sense of adventure. The settlement that the National Association of Realtors and Department of Justice landed on will help us all grow and evolve. Once you are through the start of a new path forward, things calm down and adjustments are made and in most cases relationships or businesses are made stronger with excellent service as the foundation that carries you to success. Don't believe everything you read in the paper. Take it from this former reporter.

 

 

 

76 Crest Road, Wellesley

$1,800,000

Click here to see 76 Crest Road 

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in MGS Group
March 14, 2024

Market Update Week of 03/14/2024

Last week Forbes Magazine published its list of the most expensive zip codes to buy a house in the US, and Boston is ranked as the number TWO city in the country. As you can imagine swelling prices just down the pike have a rippling effect out here. Nationally all of the top ten cities are near coasts and are the usual nominees, but isn't it interesting how San Francisco is no longer on the list? 

 

Forbes Magazine List of Most Expensive Zip Codes

Source: https://www.forbes.com/home-improvement/features/most-expensive-zip-codes-us/

 

Back home stunning new highs are being fetched across all price ranges. The 5 to 10 person bidding wars are back, that's if a house even makes it on the market long enough to have that many showings. Determined buyers are bidding 10-20% over the listing price immediately to stop anyone else from having a chance at a property. As two buyers said to me this week, 'I now understand that if I want a property, I just have to go for it.' Truer words have not been spoken. An impressive number of houses went under contract in the past few weeks!

St. Patrick's Day is Sunday! Want to head out to an Irish Pub to celebrate? Here are some local picks for you to enjoy.

Dunn Gaherin's Pub of Newton

 

Brendan Behan Pub

 

Owen O'Leary's Restaurant & Brew Pub

 

Quinn's Irish Pub

 

The Burren Pub and Restaurant

Excited to bring to market two great houses near Wellesley center. Each is impressive in its own way. And our Launcher Way homes are selling quickly. Once these are gone, there will be nothing like it. Call now for a showing!

68 Crest Road, Wellesley

 

$3,295,000

Click here to see 68 Crest Road 

 

 

Launcher Way, Wayland

 

5 Sold 7 More to go!

 

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

76 Crest Road, Wellesley

 

$1,749,000

 

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in MGS Group
March 1, 2024

Market Update Week of 03/01/2024

Expect prices to go up! It's that simple. Most new listings are receiving stunning offers, sometimes before they even hit the market. Redfin reports that year over year in January, prices were up nearly 7% nationally.

 

Does it feel like more of the same? In a way, it is, and I don't think this year will be dramatically different from what we have been seeing. There won't be a huge correction coming, that mantra needs to go away. Rates went up so quickly, and people adjusted to them. While they are flat since January (hard to believe we are already in March), analysts predict the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates in the second half of the year. What will that do? Just drive the demand even more and hopefully motivate homeowners who are enjoying their sub 3% interest rate to break free and make a move.

 

My sellers have been triumphant in selling their homes with quick sales and closing dates that work for them. What a brilliant first quarter for me, my clients, and MGS Group Real Estate.

 

170 Benvenue Street Wellesley 

$1,795,000

 

 

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

 

4 down, 8 to go for Launcher! 

 

14 Audubon Road, Wellesley

$1,649,000

 

12 Dean Road, Weston

$9,875,000

11 Winding River Circle, Wellesley

$3,195,000

 

It's almost as if there is a low-grade anxiety as the backdrop to this market. Buyers are so excited to get out there and find a house, and sellers are a little bit nervous, but also enjoying the launch of their home when the world takes notice. A property in Wayland, which was swamped during open houses, took in 8 offers by their deadline - even though at face value, it seemed a little steep in the asking price. Who knew?

 

Another classic home due to come on in the Country Club section of Wellesley was given an offer that was too good to pass up and sold off-market before it came on.

 

Now that public school vacation is behind us, the coming weeks will be littered with new listings across all towns. Let the fun begin!

 

The Belclare Unit 306

580 Washington Street, Wellesley 

$3,149,000

Click here to see The Belclare

 

6 Cottage Street, Wellesley

$2,295,000

Click here to see 6 Cottage Street

 

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in MGS Group
Feb. 16, 2024

Market Update Week of 02/16/2024

Each week, I write about all the great towns just west of Boston. Do you know the details that make up these areas? You do now!

 

Tax rates in many towns have decreased in recent years, BUT of course the sales price and in turn the assessments have gone up dramatically.

Credit to: Massachusetts Census Data and MLS

The towns above continue to be incredibly appealing to buyers from all over. The number of houses under contract is still stunning.

170 Benvenue Street Wellesley 

 

$1,795,000 

 

I am proud to share this Cape style home coming on the market next week. 

 

 

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

 

 

Only 10 left at Launcher Way. Two of the houses were sold in the first weekend. Lots of excitement around this development.

 

The Belclare Unit 306

580 Washington Street, Wellesley 

$3,249,000

Click here to see The Belclare

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in MGS Group
Feb. 9, 2024

Market Update Week of 02/09/2024

This week, I thought it would be interesting to outline some of the tax benefits that come with owning real estate. Investing in real estate, in my opinion, is one of the best ways to build wealth. Not only are you saving on taxes, but you are also generating income and building equity the longer you hold onto a property. Here are really simple explanations of important tax-saving tools. This will get you started in understanding these options, but check in with your accountant for more details.

Simply put, a 1031 exchange allows you to defer paying capital gains taxes on a property that you are selling. Capital gains are taxes imposed on the profit when you sell an investment. With a 1031 exchange, you can reinvest the profits from a property sale into another similar property that is the same price or greater. You have a certain amount of time to do that. It's an amazing tool and one worth exploring. It can't be used on your primary home most times.

This offers significant savings on your property taxes, giving Massachusetts homeowners the chance to reduce their taxes in exchange for letting their land be used for public benefits, such as:

There is a minimum acreage requirement that must be met to qualify for the tax savings. For example, a dedication of at least 10 acres is necessary if you intend to use your land for growing Christmas trees or harvesting forest products. Some owners choose to lease out their additional acreage to farmers, ultimately benefiting from Chapter 61 and paying minimal property taxes. The minimum amount of land required for farming purposes is 5 acres. Who doesn't love a farm?!

Cost segregation is a method for investors to accelerate the depreciation on their properties, resulting in tax savings. For those unfamiliar, depreciation is officially defined as "a reduction in the value of an asset with the passage of time, due in particular to wear and tear." Owning investment properties comes with the perk of depreciation. Rocket Mortgage succinctly explains cost segregation: "Cost segregation allows you to expedite this depreciation schedule, increasing the deductible amount each year. Through this strategy, you can reduce the income taxes you owe annually, consequently lowering the expenses associated with owning investment real estate." It's an excellent tool! However, it's essential to conduct research to ensure both you and your property qualify for this.

 

Finally, it was enjoyable to be quoted in the Boston Globe a few weeks ago regarding the luxury market in Metro West. Here is an excerpt. Enjoy and have a great week.

14 Audubon Road, Wellesley

$1,649,000

Click here 14 Audubon Road

 

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

 

The Belclare Unit 306

580 Washington Street, Wellesley 

$3,249,000

Click here to see The Belclare

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in Home Decor
Feb. 2, 2024

Market Update Week of 02/02/2024

We need a new name for the "spring real estate market." The party really begins in January when we are navigating snow storms and bundled in our winter coats, there's nothing springlike about it! How about calling the 2024 selling season, "The Great Race"? Not very original, I know. 

 

It is safe to say that no matter what you call it our main selling season has begun, and it's off to a good start. Not very different from the last few years—the number of homes going under contract is greater than the new listings, leaving buyers to scramble.

I often hear from people that they will wait to enter the market when things cool down. At this point, those overly cautious clients have been on the sidelines for years waiting for a correction that hasn't happened and barring something unexpected, there won't be a dramatic change ahead. To move this market, it would take hundreds of people in each town to decide to put their houses on the market all at once, and that's not going to happen.

 

In mortgage news this week, the Federal Reserve kept rates where they are waiting a little longer for inflation to ease and in turn putting off an interest rate cut for a while. Redfin predicts the decrease we are hoping for will probably be closer to the end of the year rather than March, which is when the feds meet next. That said, current mortgage rates are still a little easier to digest compared to last year. In turn, this allows more people to step up with stronger buying power. An influx of buyers tips the scales even further creating a stronger demand for the few houses that are for sale.

I don't mean to be discouraging at all! Bold buyers who are prepared, ready to go with financing, and have a strategy in place will get a house. Sellers who put forward a great product will be rewarded nicely. There is a dance here and with the right steps it ends up being a very rewarding journey.

 

I am excited about my new and current listings! Check them out. Have a great week!

14 Audubon Road, Wellesley

$1,649,000

 

Launcher Way, Wayland

$859,000

Click here to see Launcher Way

 

The Belclare Unit 306

580 Washington Street, Wellesley 

$3,249,000

Click here to see The Belclare

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in Home Ownership
Jan. 18, 2024

Market Update Week of 01/18/2024

Bold Textiles and Wallpapers

Charlotte Zawel: Textiles and wallpapers are going bold, with lots of color and fun patterns—from florals to geometrics and everything in between. However, furnishings and fixtures are staying on the simple and timeless side.

For me, in 2024 and beyond, I want to balance the bold with the serene. White walls or a textured wall covering with a large-scale pattern on a chair or sofa, mixed with smaller scale prints as accents. I also see people moving away from grays to creamier palettes, using REAL marble/stone (don't be scared) in kitchens and bathrooms, and having lots of fun with decorative molding—think fluted wood built-ins, lighter-stained wood panels, and a move away from lacquer and painted furniture to lighter stained wood tones.

Charlotte Zawel Design

www.charlottezaweldesign.com

Instagram: @charlottezaweldesign

Hidden Doors

 

Nikki Dalrymple: Our clients are loving the surprise of a jib door, commonly known as a hidden door, installed in their homes. We've designed hidden doors for clients between kitchens and pantry spaces, family TV rooms to game rooms, and even hallways to bathrooms. This is definitely a trend that's continuing into our 2024 designs.

7 remaining"

 

Company: ACQUIRE

Website: www.acquireboutique.com

Instagram: @acquireboston

Bright Colors

Cara Fineman: I predict that we are going to see a lot more color and pattern in 2024. I think we are all craving more joy in our lives. There is so much heaviness in the world around us, between the wars in the Middle East and Ukraine, and a contentious presidential election in the US, that I think more and more people will be looking to their homes as a place that sparks joy. Sometimes called Dopamine Decor, this is a trend we can all embrace. Who doesn't want to surround themselves with colors and patterns that make them happy? Here's to more joyful interiors in 2024!

Email: cara@dagdesignboston.com

Website: www.dagdesignboston.com  

Phone: 617-447-4324

Instagram: www.instagram.com/dagdesignboston

Quiet Luxury 

Nancy Hill:In 2024, embrace Quiet Luxury—melding warmth, comfort, and timeless elegance. Nancy Hill Interiors loves this trend. Picture a plush armchair by a crackling fireplace, surrounded by velvet throws. Quiet Luxury features light oak accents, wide plank flooring, and sumptuous carpets. It encourages personal expression, blending vintage and modern pieces, and embracing furniture wear for character. While cherishing light spaces, Quiet Luxury adds dark, moody accents—dark burgundy and bold black. Slow living and intentional design define this trend. Invest in high-quality, timeless pieces with craftsmanship. At its core, Quiet Luxury is about spaces with soul, filled with inspiring, joy-inducing objects. Let your personality shine through every corner.

Website: www.nancyhillinteriors.com
Email: nancy@nancyhillinteriors.com

 

I'm always available and more than happy to provide an analysis for you! Email me at teri@mgsgrouprealestate.com or call at 617-306-3642 to schedule a meeting.

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Posted in Decorating Tips