Buying or selling a home can be one of the biggest challenges you will ever take on, but when you put your trust in The Home Advantage Team, you're guaranteed premier service and experience.
Realtor Steve McKenna of The Home Advantage Team is Arlington's No. 1 real estate agent. Having lived and worked in Arlington for almost 30 years, McKenna possesses a deep understanding and expertise when it comes to home value, neighborhood dynamics, schools and other critical factors when it comes to making life-changing real estate decisions.
Read on to learn more about McKenna and get a sneak peak of what to expect from The Arlington Home Show on April 22:
Patch: How long have you been doing business in town or how long has the organization you represent been around in the community?
McKenna: I have been with Bowes Real Estate since 1986, and have been the No. 1 agent in the area for more than 25 years. Time flies when you're having fun, and helping thousands of sellers and buyers over the years has been truly rewarding.
Patch: What attracted you to the line of work you're in, and how did you get started?
McKenna: I am originally from Allston. I bought my first place in my early twenties and sold it for a profit only two years later. That's when I saw the value, literally and figuratively, in real estate. More importantly, I realized how much I like helping people. I have lived and worked in Arlington for almost 30 years now, which gives me a deep understanding of home values, building and zoning codes, neighborhood dynamics, schools and all the critical factors that come into play when making important real estate decisions.
Patch: If you had to sum up your business mission to a stranger in five words, what would those words be?
McKenna: Never (ever) stop reinventing yourself.
Patch: What's the biggest challenge or most difficult moment you've faced in your job?
McKenna: Right now, inventory is a big struggle. There are so many buyers who want to live in Arlington, but there are a limited number of homes available on the market. This isn't unique to our town. In general, housing availability in Greater Boston is relatively low. So if you live in Arlington and are thinking of selling, this is a great time. Buyers, on the other hand, need to be savvy about the real estate process so they are prepared when something does become available that suits their needs, and they're ready to act.
Patch: What's the most satisfying part of your job?
McKenna: Well, you wouldn't do this job if you didn't like helping people. When someone is moving, chances are they are experiencing a major life event. Whether it is a marriage, a divorce, downsizing, a death in the family or a child on the way, these are big events and emotional times, and when you add the process of moving to the mix it can be incredibly stressful. We have helped thousands of buyers and sellers in all of these situations, so I think we bring an empathy, understanding and knowledge of how best to guide people through the process to make it seamless and less stressful them. There is great satisfaction in that.
Patch: How would you say your business or organization distinguishes itself from the others?
McKenna: I think The Home Advantage Team is like no other. We have in-depth local knowledge for buyers, sellers and developers. We have dedicated support for transaction coordination, marketing, property coordination, and content and social media development. We are a well-oiled team that has evolved to list and sell more homes than any other team in Arlington – and we have fun doing it.
We take the aggravation, stress, thousands of tasks and to-do's that go along with buying or selling a home and we handle it all. We're always surprised when people don't realize that whether you're listing or just looking, you get the whole team - and all of the support staff - as part of the deal. All of that expertise, knowledge, and know-how, at no extra cost. That's pretty unique.
Patch: What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given when it comes to success?
McKenna: I have been given a lot of great advice over the years. Some you take with a grain of salt, and some you take to heart. But I think more often than not, you have to trust your own instincts.
Patch: Are there any new projects or endeavors you're working on that you're extra excited about?
McKenna: We are always working on something behind the scenes! We have a number of new construction projects in the works, which is exciting. Inventory, much less new construction, in Arlington can be hard to come by. But we have 15 new construction projects in the works right now and many more listings including, single-family homes, condominiums, and multi-family homes coming on the market this year. Anyone who would like more info can visit our siteor contact us directly.
We are also in the process of updating our website to reflect the needs of today's buyers and sellers. Expect a clean, easy to navigate and visually engaging site – coming soon!
Patch: Do you have any events coming up in your community?
McKenna: As a matter of fact, we do! On Sunday, April 22 we will be hosting the second annual Arlington Home Show. The Arlington Home Show is for anyone owning a home, selling a home, buying a home, or renovating a home. It is designed to help educate people on how best to achieve their real estate goals, and it's a great way to "shop local" as they say, and support some fantastic local businesses. We have a number of local vendors who will have gifts, giveaways, as well as discounts and incentives on many of their services. We will also offer free shredding services by Shred King. It's a great event and we hope people will come check it out.
Patch: How can Patch readers learn more about your work and business?
McKenna: The quickest and easiest way to contact us is by phone at 781-645-0505 or email. And of course you can find us on the web and social media. Check out our website or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
Come to the Arlington Home Show to have your real estate questions answered (and stay for the great gifts and giveaways)!
Everyone wants to know that their contractor or designer is vetted, trusted and can accomplish the task at hand. We've done the work for you, and we have an amazing array of talented contractors, landscape designers, professional stagers and organizers, lenders, movers and more lined up for the Arlington Home Show -- ready to answer your questions, give you suggestions and address your real estate needs - for FREE!
Here are a few of the vendors we having lined up with more on the way....
If you're tired of trying to find a home in Arlington, we'll open your eyes to 20+ new homes coming soon at The Arlington Home Stroll on Sunday, 1/28 from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at Common Ground Arlington.
What exactly is The Arlington Home Stroll, you ask? Good question.
The Home Stroll is like a virtual walk through more than 20+ homes, townhomes and new construction that we have coming on the market. It is an exclusive opportunity to get the inside scoop on these new opportunities.
There are no physical open houses; rather we will have renderings, photos, floorplans, descriptions and in-depth info regarding the specific neighborhood for each of the homes. We'll have all of this information conveniently at one location (Common Ground, 319 Broadway, Arlington). So no need to bring an extra pair of walking shoes, just bring your real estate questions.
We will be addressing common questions home buyers face today, such as,
How do a sell and buy a home at the same time?
Can I find new construction in Arlington?
What mortgage options are right for me?
You’ve been waiting long enough. Now is the time to get the ball rolling, and kick off 2018 with a plan to find the home you’ve been looking for.
As a condominium owner in Arlington, you might be interested to know that, in 2017, condominium values in Arlington increased more than 8% over the previous year. As of January 12, 2018 there were ONLY TWO condominiums available for sale in the entire town! This lack of inventory is unprecedented and has contributed to the increase in condominium values.
What does this mean for you?
The very limited supply combined with high demand means, if you are thinking of selling, your timing is perfect. Let us help you get moving! Now is the time to capitalize on the current market condition, no one really knows how long this lack of inventory will last.
Contact us for a comprehensive market analysis to understand the value of your condominium and the current market conditions. There is no cost, no obligation, and all information is confidential.
Will you do anything special or have any special promotions on Small Biz Saturday? As a real estate team (and a small business ourselves), we support our local Arlington businesses and organizations in a number of ways. We are a proud sponsor of the Regent Theater, and for Small Business Saturday we will be hosting a Facebook promotion. Anyone who likes our page on SMB will get 2 tickets to The Boston Children's Theater production of "A Charlie Brown Christmas" at the Regent on December 9 at 1 p.m. We have a limited supply, so will be on a first come first serve basis.
When did the business open? Steve has been associated with Bowes Real Estate, Real Living for nearly 30 years and Bowes Real Estate has been a part of the community for over 70 years
What made you decide to go into this type of business? And why here? Steve is originally from Allston and believes that being sincere and honest are the key to success in any industry. But real estate in particular is a business where a positive attitude and strong work ethic goes far. Steve lives and works in Arlington, has a deep understanding of home values, neighborhood dynamics, schools and all the critical factors that come into play when making important real estate decisions.
What do you like best about it? Arlington is a town unlike any other, and its mix of social and cultural capital have made it one of the most sought-after suburbs in Greater Boston. As a densely populated town that enjoys many benefits of being close to Boston and public transportation, it also has a thriving business community of its own that makes it vibrant place to live and work. Young working professionals move here from the city because it's more affordable yet still has that urban feel. Families move here because of the good schools and kid-friendly amenities. Downsizers move here because of the vibrant arts scene. As we like to say, come for the city-like vibe, stay for the family-like atmosphere.
Biggest struggle? Right now inventory a big struggle. There are so many buyers who want to live in Arlington, but there are a limited number of homes available on the market. This isn't unique to Arlington, in general, housing availability in Greater Boston is relatively low. So if you live in Arlington and are thinking of selling, this is a great time. Buyers on the other hand need to be savvy about the real estate process so they are prepared when something does become available that suits their needs.
What do you see for the future? I think Arlington will continue to grow and evolve, but its identity which has diversity and culture at its core will always be there. We have so many smart, talented people in town with great ideas and a vision to make the community a strong one – both now and in the future.
Politics and business - how does it affect yours? It doesn't, really. Buying or selling a home is such a personal endeavor. It does not really cross the realm into politics – unless you're talking interest rates. But even so, it generally stays under the political radar.