Real Estate Confidential — chit-chat about new listings, sales or other insider info on the Martha’s Vineyard real estate market, by Fred Roven, Martha’s Vineyard Buyer Agents, appears each Friday in The Minute.
Searching for the ideal home for you and your family can be a daunting prospect, and finding a home in your price range even more so. As we see mortgage rates rising, there had been some hope for a moderating effect on prices. With inventory at an all time low (on MV currently 283 single family homes) and average days on market close to half of some historic highs (last 12 months on MV, 160 days), prices are in nothing like a moderation or downward trend.
CoreLogic, my go-to source for home price insights, report an average expectation of 5.2% year over year increases on the Martha’s Vineyard current average sale price of $1,250,000. Freddie Mac, primarily looking at homes below the MV current median of $785,000, has an expectation of 7% increase for 2018.
If you want to move into a Martha’s Vineyard home but not break the bank, the middle range of prices is certainly the place to begin your search. Although there are always going to be “deals,” the start for your search is going to be at the median price as many homes below that price might not be in the best rental areas, are in need of significant work, or at least renovation, to suit your needs. Homes over the average are going to have characteristics more in line with luxury living. Do not lose heart; there are going to be many homes in between that are going to suit your needs perfectly and have many of the aspects of luxury living on Martha’s Vineyard.
Some of these homes are going to be well suited to vacation living and others provide year-round living in a spacious, well-built home convenient to towns and year-round activities. Some will be perfect as long term investment giving you the opportunity to “move-up” in the years to come. Others will provide strong rental income that can go a long way to helping with expenses and mortgage payments. Be sure to explain all your wants, needs, and desires to you broker, make that list as long as needed, and watch it appear almost by magic. I can guarantee that if you have just a bit of flexibility in your list, that magic can happen.
The best advice I can offer as you buy in the current market: Don’t let fear and resistance stand in your way. Ask yourself what you are being asked to let go of, what are the current other options. how real are any fears, what are the benefits of proceeding and how often have you regretted moving on a dream. This dream can be yours.
For a look at all properties priced in this range, visit Middle of the Market featuring a 4 BR summer cottage at $675,000 including beach access and boat landing on Sengekontacket, up to a new association home with pool, tennis, boat landing and beach at $1,299,000.
One of my current favorites is a 2 BR waterview cottage priced at $929,000 set on a bluff overlooking the Lagoon with harbor and Vineyard Sound views. The options are many: enjoy your morning coffee on the beach where you have left a few chairs just for the purpose; set out on a paddle from your back door for a trip around the Lagoon or around the Island; use the dining space extended to the screened porch to enjoy meals with a view for you and your family and friends, or sit beside your fireplace on a cool night watching a spectacular sunset.
For many buyers, easy access to South Beach and downtown Edgartown are prime requirements. A well maintained farmer’s porch cape in Island Grove with easy access to the new bike path to beach or town priced at $1,099,000 could be for you. With 6 bedrooms possible on the lot, adding a pool and guest house while using the existing oversized shed as a pool house would maximize the investment value and maximize rental income. First impressions say it all and driving up to specimen fruit and flowering trees plus perennial gardens and then entering the air conditioned vaulted ceiling living room certainly makes that first impression a positive one.
For other buyers, a swimming pool is that one “must have”. The newly renovated salt-box on Old Purchase Road in Edgartown priced at $1,175,000 satisfies that need and then some. The home has a newly completed finished basement with media center, hardwood floors with exposed beams, a kitchen with new stainless steel appliances and granite counters and plenty of room to expand to the permitted 6 bedrooms. Although the asking price might be a bit aggressive, homes with pools and easy access to beach and town have sold quickly and rented well.
My final selection this week is here because I just could not resist mentioning a beach house with water views in all directions. Watching a sunset from this Herring Creek home nestled in the dunes provides an experience to your senses never to be forgotten. The house has been renovated top to bottom including hickory floors and a designer kitchen with mahogany counters and new appliances. Walk out the back door (or front for that matter), go for a swim on your beach, lie in the sand and begin your new life on Martha’s Vineyard for $1,285,000.
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