A slow recovery for Massachusetts real estate

The Bay State real estate market is slowly recovering—one month at a time. Check out these May numbers from the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® (MAR)1:

  • Single-family home sales were up 8% from April (3,441 units sold) to May (3,712).
  • Sales dropped 30.3% from May 2019. However, the median price of a home did jump 4.7% from one year ago.
  • Inventory remains an issue, as new listings were down 33.6%.
  • Said MAR President Kurt Thompson: “The spring market will now be the summer market. Most likely, we’ll continue to see inventory levels decrease in the short term but will start to see a resurgence when we reach the other side of COVID‑19 issues.”

Here at Capstone Mortgage, the goal is to provide guidance and support. Please contact me if you have questions about the recovering real estate market.

1Alessia Girardin, “Massachusetts real estate market ‘took a pause,’” Boston Agent Magazine, last updated June 24, 2020.


National average is $5‚779

A new report1 examines the financial impact geography can have on mortgage closings costs. Not surprisingly‚ the cost to close varies greatly‚ depending on the state in which the sale takes place.

  • Nationally‚ average closing costs for a single-family home in 2018 were $5‚779. Calculations included taxes as well as fees for titles‚ appraisals‚ recording‚ and surveys.
  • Here in Massachusetts‚ the average was $5‚924 – 13th highest in the country.
  • The District of Columbia topped the list ($24‚613) followed by New York ($13‚581) and Delaware ($13‚309). The most affordable states to close in? That would be Missouri ($1‚887)‚ Indiana ($2‚002)‚ and South Dakota ($2‚149).

Providing relevant market data is one of my top priorities.

1Steve Randall‚ “These states had the highest closing costs in the country in 2018‚” Mortgage Professional America‚ last updated June 18‚ 2019.


The Bay State comes out on top

The results are in – and it’s good news for the Bay State. Massachusetts recently topped WalletHub’s list of the best states to live in. Here’s more1:

  • The study ranked every state in five categories: affordability‚ economy‚ education and health‚ quality of life‚ and safety.
  • Though Massachusetts was 43rd in affordability‚ it placed second in both economy and education.
  • Third place in quality of life and fourth place in safety helped seal the top spot.

You can always count on Capstone Mortgage for practical guidance and support.

1Adam McCann‚ ”2019’s best states to live in‚” WalletHub‚ last updated June 11‚ 2019.

July, Uncategorized

Boston metro buyers pay more for this feature

There is one feature making a substantial impact on home prices – and what it is may surprise you. A Redfin study1 examined how much a garage influences prices and the differences among metro areas.

  • Boston metro buyers pay 8.5% more ($33,567) on the average property in order to secure a garage. Nationally‚ buyers spend an extra 12%.
  • 62.4% of homes sold in 2018 in the Boston area have garages.
  • The extremes: Chicago buyers shell out 38% more for a garage; meanwhile, those in Raleigh spend only 2% more.

As always‚ I enjoy staying in touch and sharing useful market data. Here’s to a great week.

1Dana Olsen‚ “A garage in Chicago is worth nearly $47‚000‚ more than any other metro‚” Redfin‚ last updated June 6‚ 2019.

July, Uncategorized

Kitchen remodels lead the way

Kitchens rank as the most expensive (and most popular) room to renovate for homeowners. This was the key finding from the 2019 Houzz & Home Study.1 Here are the numbers:

  • The median cost of a kitchen renovation jumped 27% to $14‚000. Guest (17%) and master bathroom (14%) remodels also increased.
  • Among the 50 largest metro areas‚ half saw a drop in renovation spending‚ including Boston.
  • The typical homeowner who plans to renovate this year expects to spend $10‚000 – in line with spending for the previous three years.
  • Baby Boomers and Generation Xers make up 81% of renovating homeowners.

As the #1 mortgage company in Greater Lexington for 17 consecutive years‚ Capstone is here to provide guidance and support.

1“2019 U.S. Houzz & Home Study: Renovation Trends‚” Houzz‚ last updated June 5‚ 2019.