Local real estate market heats up

March 30, 2012
By

Time to slap a fresh coat of paint on the walls and tidy up if you are thinking about selling your home. The Jamaica Plain real estate market is bumping up, according to local realtors.

“The market is very active,” said Karen McCormack of McCormack and Scanlan Real Estate. “It’s felt on the edge of feverish.”

McCormack said there are several reasons for the activity, including the lowest interest rates she has seen in 20 years, Boston being a destination to live, and the beautiful weather.

“You put that all together, we have a very active market,” she said.

James Callaghan, an agent at Jamaica Hill Realty, agreed with McCormack’s positive take, saying the market is healthy bordering on the robust.

“There is a lot of optimism moving forward,” he said. “There are a lot of well-qualified buyers out there and the interest rates are low.”

McCormack noticed the market began to pick up at the beginning of the year, but there was not that much inventory. That changed in February, when potential sellers figured out that buyers were purchasing homes quickly, according to McCormack.

“The buyers are out there,” she said. “It’s much more active than a year ago. There are more properties on the market and more are coming under agreement.”

That seems to be borne out by the latest numbers. According to the Massachusetts Association of Realtors, the number of single-family homes put under agreement in the state jumped 44.2 percent compared to a year ago. The number of condos put under agreement in the state rose 35.3 percent from a year ago.

McCormack noted that some sellers in Jamaica Plain, who couldn’t offload last summer and fall, took their properties off the market. They are now coming back on the market and finding buyers at their initial offerings or even higher.

The sunny perspective on the real estate market is in contrast to last year, when the Gazette reported the local market was treading water and hoping for a bright future.

McCormack said that JP is one of the hotter markets in Boston right now. JP is so strong, in fact, that Roslindale is receiving a boost from it, according to McCormack.

Callaghan and McCormack both agree that JP is a destination neighborhood. McCormack pointed to its uniqueness, the abundance of green space, transportation to where buyers go to work, and the proximity to hospitals and colleges.

Callaghan said, “Jamaica Plain is a very desirable neighborhood. It’s a very diverse neighborhood.”

For a comparison on how diverse the neighborhood is, the most expensive home sold in JP last week was a $1.7 million single-family at 32 Woodland Road, according to McCormack. The least expensive home was a $194,500 condominium at 10 Jamaicaway.

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