The city versus suburbs: What’s hotter this real estate season? Thank you for stopping by the blog to learn my take on the differences between the local urban and suburban markets, including why smaller houses are more popular outside Boston for young people and why city real estate is always so popular.

Patti, you’ve sold real estate out in the Lincoln area for years. Recently, in the past couple of years, you moved into the city where you’re selling real estate as well. So, in regards to comparing the two markets, are they performing differently right now?

They are very different markets. And, yes, what I love about my practice now, Chris, is that I am working with sellers out in the suburbs where I have sold real estate for almost 20 years and helping many people my age find their empty nest pied-à-terre in the city. And, of course, they are selling their 5,000-square-foot-plus houses for two million dollars in the suburbs only to get maybe 1,500 square feet in the city for the same money. So it’s an interesting juxtaposition. What sells in the city is often not only space, but they want parking, they want views, and they want services. Those are the things that are selling at a premium in the city. Whereas in the suburbs, I actually think that smaller houses are becoming more popular. Even people, younger people, who have the cash on hand to buy the house, do not want expensive operating costs. They are always asking you about the heating costs, and the lawn and snow plowing costs, and things like that, so they’re very, very different markets.

Now, as we head into the fall market here, from what I’m hearing out there from across a wide group of agents is that the market in the city is a lot hotter than the suburbs. Are you finding that as well?

Yes, because what I am finding is Boston is a small city by city standards. And even with all of the construction, you have the demographics – you have young people who are choosing to stay in the city. When I was having children, as soon as you thought about having a baby you thought about moving out to the suburbs. Kids today stay until their first child has to go to school. So sometimes they have two or three children and stay in the city as long as they can in a small space and only move when they have to start making the choice or have the resources to stay in the city and buy more space and send their kids to private school. So you have that demographic who stays in the city longer. And then you have people my age who are on to their next adventure, and many of them want city living for the ease of walking everywhere and just a new and different lifestyle.

Whether you are looking in the city or in the suburbs, right now is a great time to buy. Money is so cheap.

I keep encouraging anybody who is thinking about selling and buying that they should do it now before interest rates rise. Money is almost free.

Need help deciding between city versus suburbs?

Please contact me if you are looking for a great real estate agent in the Greater Boston area. I welcome the opportunity to guide you through the home buying process, including helping with your home buying homework. Whether you are looking for homes for sale in Lincoln or condos for sale in Arlington, let’s preview some real estate in area towns and cities.

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