I have friends (hard to believe, but I really do) and past clients that have asked: Should I be in the market for downtown Boston real estate?
At the start of the pandemic, I said no. I’ve now changed my position. I think there are a lot of smart reasons to buy downtown Boston real estate, sell a Boston condo or rent one out — even with Covid-19 which is in full throttle here in Massachusetts.
OK, that’s not an optimistic thought, but it is a reason to keep doing what you were planning on doing.
At the beginning of this pandemic, when we didn’t know as much about the virus and nobody was sure how things would unfold, it was reasonable to hold off making Boston real estate home purchases or any major decisions with your life and money. But unless you want to hold off indefinitely, since this virus doesn’t seem to be likely to depart any time soon, we all need to get on with our lives.
Now, I realize that there are limits to this argument.
The National Association of Realtors came out with a report that said existing home sales just hit its highest level since December 2006. In the middle of a pandemic. And it isn’t like the economy’s doing so great right now either. But people are still selling and buying homes.
Even in downtown Boston, there’s still a healthy demand for Boston Seaport condos and Beacon Hill and Back Bay real estate. I would obviously suggest being far more cautious about buying a high rise condo in a densely populated building that has higher levels of the virus.
Would I suggest that you rush out and buy a Midtown condo in a high rise building? No, or not necessarily. I’m just saying that there are no hard and fast rules for anything governing real estate right now. And if the market is relatively strong now, don’t you think it will be stronger as we find a vaccine.
They’ll likely remain low for the time being. The Fed is expected to keep interest rates low, around 0%, until at least the end of 2023. That means you don’t have to feel like you need to buy a Boston condo now before rates go up, but it also gives property management companies the confidence that the economy will remain as stable as possible for the time being — and that gives investors a lot of time to prepare and plan.
If you’ve had your eye on a few downtown Boston real estate properties, you have time, and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t continue with your plans.
At least that’s how I see it. It’s certainly a challenge right now. But we’re always facing challenges, whether it’s a health issue or perhaps having to deal with an aging parent or struggles with our kids. Our great-grandparents were trying to keep their heads above water in the Great Depression and struggling to stay alive during World War II. The Great Recession a decade ago definitely set plenty of people back. But we move on.
There is no perfect time to start to buy your home. At some point, something is almost always going to go wrong. Your job, health, perhaps our kids. Is there ever really a perfect time to buy a Boston condo for sale?