When it Comes to Real Estate, Think Locally not Nationally - Chelmsford Real Estate is Doing Fine

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Prestige

When it comes to Real Estate, it is important to look at Local Trends, not National Trends. I'm sure you've heard the saying "the most important thing in real estate is Location, Location, Location." I couldn't have said it better myself.

Real Estate can be broken down into two major categories: Commercial & Residential. But these markets can be broken down even further.  Residential markets can be broken down to: detached single family, attached single family, 1-4 unit, and condominiums.  These markets too, can be broken down further into additional sub-markets. I could go on for quite some time, so I will stop there. But I've seen it broken down to the point of a home on one side of the street would sell for 10% more than a model match home on the opposite side of the street.

Here is an example of why you need to look locally, not nationally(or even regionally).  I keep hearing on the radio, on TV, and even from other real estate professionals that things are "slow."  Well, I took a look at some sales data in my home town of Chelmsford, MA and this is what I found:

Chelmsford Single Family Sales (May thru July)  
  2005 2006 2007 2008
# of Sales 104 71 94 89
Avg Price $398,652 $427,577 $381,105 $360,846
Median Price $376,000 $410,500 $360,000 $322,500
High $710,000 $785,000 $775,000 $1,200,000
Low $269,900 $220,000 $210,000 $152,500
Chelmsford Condominium Sales (May thru July)  
  2005 2006 2007 2008
# of Sales 69 50 58 40
Avg Price $252,488 $264,426 $278,527 $239,110
Median Price $260,000 $262,250 $262,500 $224,000
High $435,000 $450,000 $479,900 $442,000
Low $108,000 $69,000 $108,000 $99,000
  Source:MLS Property Information Network  

It is generally agreed on that the peak of the Chelmsford Residential Real Estate Market occurred in 2005.  While values are down since the peak, the chart above shows the number of sales in the typically busy months of May, June, and July have remained relatively stable over the past four years.

While the number of sales per year and per month have dropped since the peak in 2005, Chelmsford remains a desirable town. This is reflected in the high number of people who have and continue to buy homes in Chelmsford.

Chelmsford Single Family Sales (Jan thru Dec)
Year # of Sales
2005 300
2006 222
2007 251
YTD 2008 149
Chelmsford Condominium Sales (Jan thru Dec)
Year # of Sales
2005 241
2006 158
2007 153
YTD 2008 75

While the number of condominium sales in town has dropped this year (the numbers above are year to date as of August 13, 2008), with 4-1/2 months remaining in 2008 the number of single family home sales is on pace to fall within the range of the numbers seen in 2006 and 2007.

If you are thinking about buying your first home or selling your current home, things may not be as bad as the media is making it out to be. Do me a favor, check with a local real estate professional and find out what's going on in your neighborhood.

Remember to think locally,

John LaBelle - Real Estate Consultant





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Bill Gassett
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Hopkinton, MA
Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate

John the # of sales may not be down significantly but look at the drop in prices. Both the average and median have come down quite a bit. All indications are that we have not seen the bottom yet either.

Aug 14, 2008 09:30 AM #1
John LaBelle
RE/MAX Prestige - Chelmsford, MA


I agree that values are down, but demand in the area has remained fairly constant. My point was aimed more to the point that if you want or need to sell your home, there are many buyers out there who are looking in the Chelmsford area.

Thanks for your comment.

Aug 15, 2008 01:34 AM #2
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