Anyone who has been around the real estate business for 20 or more years has experienced the cycles that are part of real estate growth.  But one thing that we have all come to realize is that over the long haul, real estate increases in value and will almost always be a good investment.

In 2005/2006, our local values hit a peak, and began a descent or correction over the next several years.  Before 2005, we had experienced many years of single to double digit annual appreciation and then the “bubble burst”.  Over the next few years we experienced mostly downs with an occasional hiccup including the influence of the government sponsored “first time buyer credit”.  Interest rates remained low and went even lower and this provided some stimulus once the economic climate improved.  Watching the trends, we learn that we can never predict the bottom until we have turned around and begun heading back up.  As a buyer, I would not be as concerned with “nailing” the bottom, but would want to buy on either side of it.

The recent increase in sales, multiple offers and over asking offers all suggest that we have turned the corner.  The market has changed in favor of the most sellers and as a result it has become a difficult place to be a buyer.  But because we have not returned to the peak values of 2005, there are some homeowners who bought near or at the peak and would not benefit from selling at this time.

With my engineering background, statistics and trends are a favorite tool for me.  I can get a sense of where the market is going by looking at the indicators.  I’ve created trend charts reporting an annual statistic – average sale price for the 12 months of that year.  For the final data point as the current year progresses, I look at the last 12 months.

Although I have created charts for many individual towns, my favorite chart, which is included with this blog, is of the local 128/93 towns compared to each other.  These include Reading, Burlington, Wakefield, Stoneham, Melrose, Wilmington and Woburn. (click on the chart to enlarge)

chart2

Here is a table for the local towns that captures the trend data:

Town

Average   Sale Price

Last   12 Months

%   Change

Last   12 Months

%   Change

from   2005 High

Reading

$463,027

+7.89%

-3.64%

Burlington

$421,152

+10.20%

-4.57%

Wakefield

$417,540

+4.59%

-7.26%

Stoneham

$415,716

+13.27%

-8.24%

Melrose

$414,268

+0.54%

-8.63%

Wilmington

$378,862

+6.44%

-16.51%

Woburn

$359,952

+6.99%

-12.66%

 

In spite of the recent upswing and gains in average sale price, you can see that we have not come back to the highs of 2005.   However, let’s hope we continue in that direction.

About the author: Roland Spadafora is one of the broker owners of RE/MAX Legacy and is known around the office as the expert in market trends and stats. You can learn more about him on his website www.spadaforateam.com


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