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Crazy price spikes in Lexington, other upscale towns

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis April 29, 2013 10:43 AM

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Check out Lexington - the median price doubled in March, soaring past the $1.2 million mark!

That's compared to $610,000 median sale price for homes in the historic western suburb back in March 2012, according to The Warren Group, the Boston-based real estate data firm and publisher of Banker & Tradesman.

It also makes Lexington, at least temporarily, the most expensive town in Massachusetts to buy a house in, beating out perennial price king Weston by more than a hundred grand.

OK, homes across Lexington have hardly doubled in value.

But higher priced homes certainly appear to be making up a larger proportion of the market this spring.

Overall, the number of sales in Lexington shrank this spring, dropping more than a quarter to 46.

Yet before we chalk Lexington up as a bizarre aberration, the same pattern can be found in a number of other high-end suburbs and resort towns across the state, a review of Warren Group real estate records shows.

Dover's median price jumped an incredible 60 percent during the first three months of the year, hitting nearly $1.1 million, according to The Warren Group.

That's compared to $675,000 at the end of March.

Unlike Lexington, however, Dover sales rose modestly, with 13 from January through March compared to 11 the same time a year ago.

Meanwhile, Newton saw its median price rise by more than a third in March, to $810,000, even as sales dropped 12 percent, for a total of 27 during the month, The Warren Group reports.

Around Greater Boston and down on the Cape as well, other upscale towns have also seen prices spike this spring.

Again, behind the dramatic increases appear to be a sign that more high-end homes are getting sold, rather than $600,000 houses selling for $1.2 million, as a superficial reading of the Lexington numbers would suggest.

The median price in Cohasset soared 70 percent, to $800,000, while Orleans saw a 63 percent jump, to $735,000.

Let's not forget tony downtown Boston neighborhoods like the Back Bay, Beacon Hill and South End.

If you want a house as opposed to a condo, you could find yourself shelling out nearly $2.3 million this spring, compared to $1.6 million last year.

Happy house hunting!

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

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

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