Blog :: 07-2011

Your Weekend Update

There are eight new listings on the market in Arlington this week. See if there are any in your neighborhood!



SINGLE FAMILY

Address

Rooms

Beds

Bath

Style

Price

65 Newland Rd.

8

3

1/1

Colonial

$485,000

216 Oakland Ave.

8

3

2/0

Contemporary

$749,000



CONDO



Address

Rooms

Beds

Bath

Style

Price

125 Pleasant St. #6

5

2

1/0

Mid-Rise

$259,000

55-57 Fairmont St. #2

7

3

2/0

2/3 Family

$449,000

9 Purcell #1

7

3

2/1

Townhouse

$531,000



Multi-Family

Address

Rooms

Beds

Bath

Style

Price

40-42 Fordham St.

13

5

2/0

2 Family - 2 Up/Down



$499,000

62 Marathon St.

9

4

2/0

2 Family

$525,000

154-156 Mystic Valley Pkwy

11

4

2/0

2 Family

$599,000

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    Keeping it Real, With Harley and Kaira Rouda

    Bob Bowes and I were honored to have Harley Rouda, president of Real Living, LLC, and his wife Kaira Sturdivant Rouda, a nationally acclaimed author and brand expert, visit the Bowes Real Estate, Real Living offices yesterday.

    In 2009 GMAC Real Estate joined the Columbus-based realty firm, Real Living, to create one of the country's largest real-estate franchise operations. The combined company operates under the Real Living name.  

    Today, the organization has more than 10,000 agents and 500 offices. As part of the Real Living family, Bowes Real Estate, Real Living offers customers and agents an even larger global reach and referral pool, along with an expanded network of technology tools and training. Bob Bowes, President of Bowes Real Estate, Real Living, is excited about these opportunities. 


    Harley kicked off the meeting and broke the ice calling himself a S.O.B. (Son of a Broker). He grew up in the real estate industry, literally, as the son of a broker, and has built his business on the principles of hard work, personal service, and attention to detail. Harley shared with us details on the direction of the company, both where it's been and the path for growth to fuel where it's going. 
     

    Here are some of discussion highlights from the meeting:
     


    The 'Cow Bell Analogy.
    ' As a native Midwesterner, Harley described the growth of his business in farmland language. The Cow Bell Analogy describes dairy farms in the Midwest that often have a lead cow with a bell that the group follows. A quick translation to real estate - capitalize on the assets you have and replicate what works


    The Real Estate Market.
    The end of the tax credit hit the industry hard. While the first six months of 2011 have been very difficult for the real estate industry, there are signs that things are picking up in the second half. We're only three weeks in, but if it keeps trending in this direction we could start to see an uptick in activity, and we could end up better off than the second half of 2010.


    East vs. West.
    An interesting observation is that real estate tends to flow west to east. For example, real estate in California rose sharply, but also was one of the first and fastest to decline. Las Vegas, Phoenix soon followed. Because we are in a relatively stable market, we eventually felt the effects, but not to such a severe degree. 


    Why Real Living.
    The Real Living brand is coming to a town near you. As the fastest growing real estate franchise, Real Living is coming east as well, and you'll notice more of the black and red For Sale signs not only in Arlington, but across the region


    Real Living was one of the first real estate firms to capitalize on the Internet for real estate, and it also understood its market - making a concerted effort to market to women, who represent 91% of real estate-driven decisions. The company continues to build on its leading-edge approaches today.


    All in all, it was an open and candid discussion about the franchise, the company and the market, and we all walked away with a unified approach for growing the business both on the local and national levels.

    Your Weekend Update

    The summer is heating up! Here are the new listings on the market this weekend. Don't forget to check out the new construction on Stony Brook Road. These new listings are sizzling!



    SINGLE FAMILY



    Address

    Rooms

    Beds

    Bath

    Style

    Price

    725 Concord Tpk.

    6

    2

    1/1

    Colonial

    $370,000

    216 Summer St.

    8

    3

    3/0

    Colonial

    $675,000

    9 Stony Brook Rd.

    12

    4

    2/2

    Colonial

    $1,049,000


    CONDO

     


    Address

    Rooms

    Beds

    Bath

    Style

    Price

    476 Summer St. #476

    5

    2

    1/0

    Townhouse

    $275,500

    126 Mass Ave #2

    6

    3

    1/0

    2/3 Family

    $314,500

    53 Warren Street #2

    5

    2

    1/0

    2/3 Family

    $324,000

    1 Watermill Place #121

    4

    2

    2/0

    Mid-Rise

    $339,000


    MULTI-FAMILY


    Address

    Rooms

    Beds

    Bath

    Style

    Price

    31-33 Thorndike St.

    11

    4

    2/0

    2 Family - 2 up/        2 down

    $575,000



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      See Photos of Finished New Construction in Jason Heights

      The final nail has been hammered and the last coat of paint is dry.  Just on the market, #9 Stony Brook Road in Arlington, Massachusetts is an exceptional home to behold. And we're giving you an online sneak peek prior to the open house this weekend.
      Hopefully you caught the 'BEFORE' pictures which showcased the house during the construction process. These shots give you an idea of what goes into building a new home, and you can see the attention to detail and quality work that is reflected in every room.
      The result? See for yourself! VIEW PHOTOS OF THE FINISHED HOME HERE


      This is a stunning new home on a cul-de-sac in the sought-after Jason Heights section of Arlington. In close proximity to Menotomy Rocks Park, you'll find an idyllic pond, walking trails, playground, and woods, and it is also located a short distance to Arlington Center shops and restaurants. Features include multiple light exposures, crown moldings, an open concept, and a stylish kitchen worthy of any chef. Additional details include:
      ·         4 bedrooms
      ·         2 full bath / 2 half bath
      ·         Master suite with custom shower, water closet, custom cabinets, walk-in closet and a reading/office area
      ·         Upstairs laundry
      ·         Walk-up attic
      ·         Finished lower level with walkout to patio
      ·         2 car garage
      ·         Deck
      ·         Patio and yard
      This home exudes class and good taste, and it is a property worth seeing whether you're an interested buyer, or just a curious voyeur. So take a look and let us know what you think!
      Contact Steve McKenna for additional details on this property.
      Phone: 781.645.0505. Email: steve@yourhomeforsale.com.

      See a New Construction Project in Jason Heights

      Ever wonder what goes in to the construction of a new home other than a lot of nails, drywall, and wiring?  A lot, actually. There is also an attention to detail and an eye for style that transforms a dusty house under construction into a gleaming new home.

      We have captured a series of 'BEFORE' photos of this house-in-progress in the Jason Heights section of Arlington, Massachusetts. Built by Callahan Construction, this new home sits on a quiet cul-de-sac, with four bedrooms, two full baths / two half baths, and plenty of custom work.


      You can see the home mid-construction in these photos, but can you visualize what the finished product will look like?

      I bet not.

      The project is now complete and will be on the market shortly. Check back here for the 'AFTER' photos and we will show you this new home in all its glory. Additional details and information to come.

      You won't believe the transformation!

      All's Fair in Market Values and Asking Prices

      "Fair market value (FMV) is an estimate of the market value of a property, based on what a knowledgeable, willing, and unpressured buyer would probably pay to a knowledgeable, willing, and unpressured seller in the market."
      FMV is an interesting definition, and it makes me wonder how many realtors have assisted in the buying or selling of a home where neither the seller nor the buyer were under any kind of duress or pressure - and/or completely knowledgeable for that matter?
      Probably not many. And that's not to fault the buyer or seller either - it's just the nature of the business.
      I read a great article by Dian Hymer in Inman News about "When to buy real estate above list price." She points out that paying over the asking price makes sense for some people, some of the time. But certainly not for all people, all of the time.
      For example, if you are buying a house as an investment property to rent and resell in a few years, it does not make sense to over bid in this market - you run a higher risk of absorbing the costs and you're less likely to recoup the value. If you are buying a house to settle down and raise a family, then it probably does, as long as you're getting a good loan and interest rate that aligns with your long-term financial goals.
      As the article implies, it is important to remember that Fair Market Value is an estimate, and it is subjective based on location, timing, and personal preference.  
      You wouldn't buy a home simply because 'you loved it,' - you need to look at comparable homes in the area, and decide whether it is a good investment based on market conditions.
      And vice versa, you also wouldn't buy a home simply because it's a good deal for the area - you need to consider personal preferences such as schools, commute, and whether it is a fit with your financial situation.
      With good advice and a healthy understanding of what is 'fair' to you, you can make the right decision for any situation or market.  

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        Your Weekend Update

        Nothing to do today? See who is on the move in your neighborhood! Here are the new listings on the market in Arlington this weekend!


        SINGLE FAMILY



        Address

        Rooms

        Beds

        Bath

        Style

        Price

        31 Lennon Rd.

        6

        3

        1/1

        Colonial

        $429,900

        4 Shelley Rd.

        8

        3

        2/0

        Raised Ranch

        $524,900

        150 Gray St.

        7

        3

        1/1

        Colonial

        $559,900

        45 Lockeland Ave.

        9

        4

        1/1

        Colonial

        $569,000

        85 coolidge Rd.

        8

        4

        2/1

        Contemporary

        $599,900

        93 Churchill Ave.

        7

        3

        1/1

        Tudor

        $699,900

        900A Mass. Ave.

        8

        3

        3/0

        Colonial

        $709,000


        CONDO

         


        Address

        Rooms

        Beds

        Bath

        Style

        Price

        114 Pleasant St. #G1

        3

        1

        1/0

        Garden

        $207,000

        128 Pleasant St. #305

        4

        1

        1/0

        Mid-Rise

        $239,000

        18 Pine St. #18

        5

        2

        1/0

        2/3 Family

        $329,000

        143 Palmer St. #2

        6

        2

        1/0

        2/3 Family

        $395,000



        Multi-Family



        Address

        Rooms

        Beds

        Bath

        Style

        Price

        14-16 Laurel St.

        15

        6

        3/0

        3 Family

        $689,000

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          Summer 2011 Newsletter

          Time to add the YourHomeForSale Summer 2011 Newsletter to your summer reading list!
          In this issue you will find the latest Arlington housing market analysis. You'll see a comparison of market activity from the first half of 2010 to the first half of 2011 - and learn why listing your house in the summer might work for you.
          So kick back and read up!

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            The Results Are In: Where Were You Left Turning?

            The recent Facebook Poll: "What do you think about the new no left turn policy from Water Street onto Mass. Ave.?" resulted in the following breakdown of respondents:
            Total voted
            56
            In favor of the new no left turn policy
            38
             Against the new no left turn policy
            11
            Implications unclear
            5
             No opinion
            2
            If you voted in favor of the new no left turn policy you are in the majority. However, both sides presented thoughtful and valid arguments.
            Those in favor of trying out the new no left turn policy overwhelmingly believed it would increase the safety of pedestrians in the crosswalk. Eastbound traffic has poor visibility and many respondents had been witness to accidents in this area, and could attest to the risky nature of the intersection.
            Those against the policy generally believed the increase in traffic and inconvenience would negate the potential upside. Drivers not familiar with the area are more likely get lost, and some might see the library parking lot as a turnaround option - thereby creating more hazards and backups elsewhere.
            Back in January, 2011, the Transportation Advisory Committee formed a working group to collect data, analyze, and study this intersection. As a result, it has implemented the no left turn policy for a six month trial in order to determine the effectiveness of the decision. One reason for the trial is the following:
            "Arlington Police data from 1/1/2007 to 11/10/2010 shows 14 crashes with four involving pedestrians hit in the crosswalk. Averages are over 3 auto crashes and 1 pedestrian crash per year."
            We all know driver attention is not at its highest - with cell phones, texting, eating and other distractions - and a tricky intersection can add to the perils of being a pedestrian. But at what cost to drivers who frequent the area and residents who might see increased traffic on backroads?
            As always, the good people of Arlington offer their opinions with alternative suggestions. Here is a sampling of suggestions that came out of the poll:
            ·         Remove the crosswalk at the library entirely. There are two highly visible crosswalks within a block.
            ·         Raise the sidewalk. Move it east (or west) by 10 feet to give it a better view.
            ·         Make Court Street one way going the other direction - that would eliminate the need for the no left turn.
            ·         Implement a traffic light (although a counter argument states that a poorly timed traffic light could back up traffic, grid locking the intersection).
            ·         Prohibit turns from 7:00 a.m. to midnight (counter argument states the consistency of the regulation may be more important than inconvenience).
            Thank you to everyone who participated in the poll. We hope you'll follow us on Facebook as we offer other opportunities to interact and have an opinion on Arlington-related issues!

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              A Good Realtor has Nothing to Hide

              I recently read an article that resurfaced, How to Interview a Realtor With Great Questions, posted by real estate author, Bill Gassett, in 2010. I tried to leave a comment, but it might be off his radar by now.

              His concepts hold true today, and this post hits on many points that reinforce what I have seen in the industry for years.
              It is amazing how many people neglect their homework when selecting a Realtor. Selling a home is no small undertaking. People should research and evaluate a Realtor as they would a doctor or someone who looks after their child (to put it in context). They should look for someone with a mix of credibility, integrity, smarts, and people-skills who gives each client a personalized approach.
              Many people want the best Realtor, but they may be skeptical of working with a top producer for fear of being lost in the shuffle. While it is important to select a Realtor who knows how to handle the big ticket items like pricing a home correctly, marketing and negotiating, it is equally important to look at their attention to detail and personal service. This will be a true reflection of their work ethic and commitment to selling a home.
              Personally, I encourage people to shop around, check out my track record, my references, and compare my activity with others in the area. A good Realtor has nothing to hide, and you should find a Realtor that makes you feel feel confident, at ease, and assured that you have the best path to success for selling your home.
              In the meantime, go over to Massachusetts Real Estate News and read the full article for more information and additional tips.

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