East Boston Real Estate Market Heating Up

Recent real estate sales activity in Jeffries Point demonstrates there’s a strong East Boston real estate market with limited inventory and more buyers than sellers.  Many properties are selling over their asking price.  Some have been purchased by investors; others are being purchased by owner occupants.  Here is a glimpse of that activity:

  • In March, 74 Everett Street, a regular size triple-decker needing renovations, was listed at $379,900 and sold for $377,000.
  • In May, 34 Cottage Street, a completely renovated brick three-family, sold for $550,000; asking price was $549,000.
  • This past week, 49 Jeffries Street, a beautifully renovated three-level two-family home with a rooftop deck and harbor views, sold for $430,000; asking price was $424,900.
  • Also this week, 66-68 Cottage Street, an older bank-owned two-family house needing renovations, sold for $331,000; asking price was $274,900.
  • And in April, 474 Sumner Street, an older ten-room single-family home sold for $302,000; asking price was $299,900.

Please check back as we continue to update you on East Boston real estate happenings.  To see all our property for sale listings, or to search MLS properties, head to the Tony’s Realty Website.

If you are curious about the East Boston real estate market or would like to talk about recent trends and activities, please feel free to email Tony.

East Boston Real Estate Market Heats Up

The East Boston real estate market has been crazy lately, especially for three-family buildings.  Traditionally, most buyers have been owner occupants intending to live in one floor and rent out the other two.  Lately, some real estate speculators, developers and investors have perceived East Boston as being “hot,” and this has increased the number of people looking at properties.  This can be helpful if you are a seller and it can be helpful if a developer or investor buys a property and improves it.  New facades, apartment layouts, and physical improvements can only help a neighborhood and improve the quality of life for those who live in the properties. But it can make it quite difficult for an owner occupant looking to purchase a first home. It can also be hurtful for a neighborhood if a speculator purchases a property simply to wait for it to appreciate in value while not making significant improvements.

Some recent Tony’s Realty sales and listings give a glimpse of what is happening in the Jeffries Point neighborhood.  In January, we listed 74 Everett Street for $379,000.  This was a decent three-family of average size that needed a lot of renovation.  Over two dozen parties viewed the property and we received multiple offers, two from speculators / investors and one from an owner occupant.  The house went under agreement quickly and sold to an owner occupant for $377,000.   Last December, a smaller three-family on Everett Street sold for $317,000. This also was purchased by an owner occupant.  More recently, 34 Cottage Street, a completely renovated, beautiful brick three-family went on the market for $549,000 and had over 15 interested parties view it on one day of showings.  It had multiple offers and went under contract in one day.

Currently there is no shortage of local renters wanting to buy properties in East Boston.  There is also a plethora of investors, developers, and speculators who have a more recently developed enthusiasm for East Boston. When properties are listed, it is almost impossible to make individual appointments for viewers, so instead, they are more commonly presented in “group showings.”  It is not unusual for properties to receive multiple offers, especially within the first few days of being listed.  Sometimes these offers are at or above asking price. This frenzy of buyers has created a sense of confidence among sellers who are “watching the market” and sometimes reluctant to “sell their property now” if they think the market is “improving.”  The result has been a complete lack of inventory, and sadly, not enough properties available for many home buyers who want to make East Boston their home.

Please check back as we continue to update you on East Boston real estate happenings.  To see all our property for sale listings, or to search MLS properties, head to the Tony’s Realty Website.

Email Tony with your questions or comments.

East Boston Immigrants Bring Vibrancy to the Neighborhood

A recent NPR piece brings up a theme that has much to do with the East Boston of the past 25 years.  When Tony’s Realty first began selling houses and renting apartments in East Boston, its population was less than it is now—many children and grandchildren of longtime residents had moved away, and lots of small businesses and storefronts were vacant.  The public transportation system was underused, and our T stations were often loitering areas for questionable activity.

But the surge of the immigrant community from places such as Brazil, El Salvador, Colombia, and Guatemala has led to the elimination of vacant apartments, vacant storefronts, and desolate T stations.   Storefronts that were once boarded up are now filled with shops, salons, restaurants and other small businesses.  Instead of establishments closing down at 4 or 5pm, store owners are open until 10 at night.  And instead of taking a T ride home to a station with no one around, there are hundreds of T riders every day and every night on the T.  Similar to what’s described in the NPR story, East Boston’s immigrant community has helped keep our T stations utilized and safe, our empty apartments rented, our boarded-up storefronts open for business until late in the evening, and ultimately, our streets more safe because they are filled with the same neighbors who, day after day, have things to do, places to go, jobs to get too, etc. That has helped eliminate the desolate feeling of East Boston a la 1980s and has helped give our neighborhood a safe urban-village feel.  Enjoy the NPR piece!

Please check back as we continue to update you on East Boston real estate happenings.  To see all our property for sale listings, or to search MLS properties, head to the Tony’s Realty Website.

Email Tony with your questions or comments.

Our Sincere Condolences to Maverick Square’s Roticería Cancun

Early this morning, Maverick Square’s Roticería Cancun, site of East Boston’s first Mexican Restaurant, had a fire that has, unfortunately, temporarily left it without a home.  We are saddened by the loss of such an important part of East Boston history, the temporary loss of a business that has made a strong positive contribution to the life of Maverick Square.

While no one was harmed by this morning’s fire, we know the loss in livelihood for the Betancourts, our tenants and the owners of Roticería Cancun, must weigh heavily on their minds—our sincere condolences go out to them.  It’s our hope Roticería Cancun is able to get back on its feet as soon as possible so that it can do what it’s always done well:  provide good fare at a reasonable cost to all who commute to and from the Square.  We encourage all to patronize Roticería Cancun, from whatever temporary location it operates, while the Betancourts rebuild their business in the Square.

Please check back as we continue to update you on East Boston real estate happenings.  To see all our listings, or to search MLS properties, head to the Tony’s Realty Website.

Email Tony with your questions or comments.

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Some East Boston Three-Families Selling for More Than $400,000

On May 13, Tony’s Realty completed the sale of 82 Barnes Avenue, a classic 3,582 square foot three-family home in Orient Heights for $450,000. This was the second highest priced three-family to sell in East Boston in 2011: In January, 1129 Saratoga Street, a 3,831 square foot three-family home sold for $460,000; in March, 75 Chelsea Street, a completely renovated 3,384 square foot three-family home sold for $405,000; and in April, 12 Chelsea Street, a totally renovated 2,605 square foot three-family home sold for $425,000.

It is becoming evident that well maintained, relatively large, or completely renovated three-family properties in East Boston are steadily selling for more than $400,000.

Please check back as we continue to update you on East Boston real estate happenings.  To see all our listings, or to search MLS properties, head to the Tony’s Realty Website.

Email Tony with your questions or comments.

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East Boston Has a Strong Demand for “Buyer Friendly” Multi-Families

March is the beginning of the Spring real estate market in East Boston. And there is a strong and steady demand for two and three-family properties in our neighborhood. What has become most important to a successful sale of late is that properties be in “buyer friendly” condition. Most buyers purchasing East Boston properties are obtaining loans, often FHA (Federal Housing Authority) loans, which require properties be in adequate and properly maintained condition and that they appraise at “current market value.” In other words, not only should properties being sold to buyers with such loans be in “working order,” they should be selling at prices that are comparable to other properties that have recently sold. If a porch, roof, electrical service, or a furnace needs repair, it makes sense to act on these repairs before selling a house. And it is important to be aware which similar properties are selling and to price one’s property accordingly so that there are no financing issues later.

During the past year, unfavorable tenant conditions have deterred many buyers from making offers on properties. Some landlords try to sell properties without delivering a vacant “owner’s unit.” About 90% of purchasers of two and three-family homes intend to live in those homes and need to know there’s an empty apartment in the building they’re purchasing—this allows them to place an offer with peace of mind. Many landlords also have tenants whose rents are far below market value. Before placing a home on the market, it’s a good idea to negotiate a market value rent with a current tenant or at least get an agreement from the tenant to pay market value when a new buyer takes over. The more financially sound a building appears, the more attractive it is to prospective buyers.

In summary, East Boston has a strong demand for two and three-family homes in decent shape with tenants who pay market value rent—and that come with at least one vacancy for a prospective buyer to occupy upon purchase.

Please check back as we continue to update you on East Boston real estate happenings.  To see all our listings, or to search MLS properties, head to the Tony’s Realty Website.

Email Tony with your questions or comments.

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Some East Boston Three-Families Selling for Over $400,000

Recent East Boston sales data show some high quality and well located three-family properties selling for over $400,000 again.  In fact, one property recently sold for $500,000, the first time a three-family has sold for that much in many years.

In August, 78 Frankfort Street, a 4,374 square foot property on a 2,882 square foot lot, sold in 22 days at full list price, $400,000. It was located a few blocks from the Airport train station and the new Bremen Street Park.  Also in August, 25 Gladstone Street, a 4,193 square foot property with 8 parking spaces and five garages, situated on a 7,500 square foot lot, sold for $460,000. This property took longer to sell; it was originally listed in January, 2010 for $600,000.

In Noveber, 18 Thurston Street, a beautiful 3,964 square foot three-family with two parking spaces on a 4,500 square foot lot broke all recent records, selling for $500,000. This property also took a while to sell because the initial list price in May, 2010, was $619,000.  Since January 2009, only 7 three-family properties have sold between $400,000 and $480,000.  Only 18 Thurston Street has reached the $500,000 sale price mark.

Please check back as we continue to update you on East Boston real estate happenings.  To see all our listings, or to search MLS properties, head to the Tony’s Realty Website.

Email Tony with your questions or comments.

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