Real Estate Confidential: There are good values to be found


Real Estate Confidential is a biweekly chit-chat about new listings, sales, or other insider information on the Martha’s Vineyard Real Estate market, presented by Fred Roven, owner/broker of Martha’s Vineyard Buyer Agents. It appears every other Friday in The Minute.

For much of last year because of limited inventory, I found it difficult to come up with a topic that had more than a handful of examples. We’ve looked at homes with fireplaces, homes with screened-in porches, homes with swimming pools, and many others. When I looked at the current inventory, I was pleased to see at least a blip upward in the number of homes coming to market. Not so pleasing was a drop in the number of sales year-over-year from 469 in 2021 to 309 in 2022. Not surprisingly, because of lack of inventory and financing costs, the Days on Market (DOM) went from 65 days for sales of single-family homes to 218 for current offerings. Comparing inventory averages to past sales averages can be a bit misleading because higher-priced homes have fewer potential buyers and sell at a slower rate.

And yet, those ever increasing average prices continue their climb, albeit at a slower rate. Those fewer sales had a median value of $1,575,000 in 2022 compared to $1,311,175 in 2021. If only I had that crystal ball when most needed. What are prices going to do in the short term as well as long term? My guess is, with at least a few more homes for sale, in the near term we will see more negotiation on price, but long term, the median value continues its relentless increase. I can only assume homes that have been on the market for over 100 days will have more negotiation room than others. It is also important to keep watch for newly listed homes to be at a lower than expected price in order to catch buyers’ attention.

Looking at days on market for homes less than an arbitrary number of $3.0M (the current median price for available single-family homes) might give an indication of homes that are prime for offers from interested buyers. This group contains homes that are either newer than average or have had more recent renovations than others, so they can allow for the least amount of extra dollars needed for repairs. They also have been on the market for more than the average days on market. Always remember, though, the importance of a home inspection to aid in determining what future expenses will work for you.

The New England-styled, Greek Revival residence at 12 Lily Farm Road in West Tisbury is a tastefully crafted Island home anchored by the charm of classical, comfortable living on three floors. The main living area has exposed beams, hand-crafted stair details, and finely painted trims. The distinctive handcrafted kitchen with quality appliances and handmade French doors lead you to an outdoor seating area. The home features solid wood doors with glass door knobs and brass hardware throughout the house. The location provides easy access to the State Forest and the Greenlands Conservation areas with their miles of trails and bike paths, as well as resident access to Lambert’s Cove Beach, and associate membership to a local association pool and tennis.

The spacious Colonial in Vineyard Hills at 3 Poplar Lane features 5 bedrooms and 3.5 baths. The backyard has tiered landscaping, an in-ground pool, deck, pergola with trumpet vines, and a large shed suitable for a pool house. The partially finished, walk-out lower level has a kitchenette, the 5th bedroom, and an additional living room that opens to a private deck. This house is waiting for you to make it your Vineyard home. Vineyard Hills has deeded beach rights to a quiet beach on the Lagoon and access to the expanse of hiking trails in the Southern Woodlands.

The newly constructed home at 84 California Avenue is just getting its finishing touches and is ready for you to make it your own. This thoughtfully-designed and well-constructed home has a wrap-around covered porch, a kitchen with stainless Bosch appliances, an abundance of cabinets, and granite countertops. There is also a spacious loft that utilizes another full bath. Enjoy the open feeling that the high ceilings and windows create throughout the second floor. The home has central air conditioning enhanced with spray foam insulation. There is room for a garage or, possibly, a pool.

The home at 16 Rock Pond Road in West Tisbury is perfect for year-round living and especially suited to a large Island family. This 4-bedroom “green” home was designed and built by South Mountain and is a rare opportunity to live in a community oasis surrounded by 25 acres of woodland and equally beautiful and well-executed homes. The many special accents throughout the house highlight the craftsmanship and quality of this building, including the Shaker-style kitchen design. The community clubhouse has a large recreation area and full kitchen, additional bedrooms for extra guests, organic vegetable garden, pond for swimming and ice skating, basketball court, sauna, lots of open space, and a convenient area for trash/recycling.

Click here for a list of other opportunities waiting for offers.

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