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Five real estate trends to be unthankful for!

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis November 26, 2012 08:57 AM

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Enough already with counting our blessings. With the Thanksgiving leftovers all but cleared out, it's time for some post-holiday, Monday-morning griping.

When it comes to the housing market, don't believe everything you read about the supposedly wondrous real estate recovery.

Here are my top five complaints. As you read through them, feel free to add your own, either on the comment board or in an email to and I will feature them in another post.

Who said complaining never got you anywhere?

Deluded sellers: These are the sellers who believe they entitled to a big gain, even if they bought at the height of the bubble. Their home is always so special, immune from what is happening with the rest of the market. They get deeply insulted by low-ball offers instead of shrugging them off. Sadly, the latest flurry of reports of rising home prices will only make some of these sellers even more unbearable.

Pitiful housing inventory: Not enough choices on the market may give a boost to some sellers, but it leaves buyers stuck bidding up homes that really aren't worth top dollar. If cities like Phoenix and Las Vegas are the capitals of perpetual over building, Greater Boston, with its fiercely NIMBY towns and neighborhoods is the national headquarter for under building. Check out these numbers - condos and homes on the market in Greater Boston plunged 9 percent in the last month and 24 percent over the past year.

Too much luxury: OK, not to contradict myself, but we are finally starting to see a mini-surge in apartment construction. The only problem you'll have to be ready to plunk down $3,000 to $4,000 a month to snag one of these new deluxe rental units, many of which appear to be taking shape in downtown Boston. Construction of new single-family homes and other middle class alternatives continue to bounce along at anemic levels.

Greedy landlords: Rents are soaring and there's no end in sight - especially given the limited choices facing apartment dwellers looking to buy a condo or house. Landlords know they have a captive audience and they are they taking advantage of it. The median rent in the Boston area is now nearly $2,000 according to Zillow after a 6.5 percent spike from October 2011 to October 2012.

Boring brokers: Another Black Friday came and went with real estate brokers across Greater Boston and the country kicking back and taking it easy over the long weekend. Meanwhile, retailers were raking in the cash and moving product through yet another epic post-Thanksgiving sale. Bill Wendel of the Real Estate Cafe did a search of Boston area listings citing Black Friday and found only one - back in 2008. What gives?

This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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About boston real estate now
Scott Van Voorhis is a freelance writer who specializes in real estate and business issues.

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