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4 Trends That Will Reshape Boston Real Estate in 2021

2020 transformed every aspect of our lives, and Boston real estate was no exception, for both buyers and sellers. The long-term effects have been complex: Despite initial uncertainty driven by the onset of Covid-19, the Boston housing market has been red hot this year, and many experts expect that excitement to continue. 

As the environment continues to evolve and we get ready to turn the page to 2021, there are a few notable trends that homebuyers should be aware of if they are planning to buy a Boston home or condo in the new year. To help you prepare to find the best deal on your dream home, we took a look at what buying a home will look like in 2021.

City to Suburb Exodus Reverses Post Vaccine

Given the health fears around Covid and increased flexibility with remote work from local companies, the Boston suburbs witnessed a surge of home sales in 2020. No longer constrained to five days per week in the office, some local residents quickly traded in Downtown Boston for their favorite towns outside of the city.

That might have been the right decision for some—but not so fast. While office workers may not see a full week in the office anytime soon, optimism about a vaccine has increased expectations that a return to at least a hybrid office life—two or three days per week in the office—might be on the horizon.

Such a shift is likely to slow or end the exodus to the suburbs, and mark the return of the vibrancy of the city. So if you fancy yourself a city person, you might want to beat the rush and buy your Back Bay condo sooner rather than later in 2021.

Competition Continues

Low mortgage rates, tight listing inventory, and vaccine optimism create the perfect backdrop for a robust and competitive real estate market to kick off 2021. 

As more Boston residents are rethinking their housing needs— such as greater work-from-home flexibility—and develop a new appreciation for their homes post-Covid, buyers are taking advantage of low rates to finally buy the condo or house they’ve always wanted. 

“As more folks pursue the purchase of a larger condo or house in the suburbs, there is greater competition for a limited number of properties for sale,” says Greg Cumings, a Licensed Associate Broker with Prevu Real Estate. “As a result, Boston homebuyers are consistently finding themselves engaged in bidding wars, and this trend is likely to continue in 2021.”

Not to mention, with stock markets at all-time highs, homebuyers have added financial confidence to bid aggressively for homes. Strong performing brokerage accounts make it easier for buyers to fund their down payments. Plus, growing 401k balances remind aspiring homeowners that their home purchase won’t necessarily derail their retirement savings goals.

Commission Rebates Go Mainstream

Every dollar counts when purchasing a home or condo in the Boston area. This is even more true when buyers are in a competitive market where homes are selling above asking price.

Luckily, Boston homebuyers are discovering the money-saving tip of commission rebates that can save them thousands on their purchase. The concept of a commission rebate is simple: A real estate broker gives the homebuyer a portion of the commission he or she receives for representing that buyer. 

Prevu, a tech-enabled brokerage in Boston, gives buyers up to 2 percent of their purchase price back. For example, if you buy a condo or home for $1,250,000, you could receive up to $25,000 cash back with Prevu’s Smart Buyer Rebate

That’s a significant sum that can replenish your savings after closing, or give you that added boost to your buying power if you find yourself in a bidding war.

Digital Home Buying Experiences Accelerate

The convenience of buying anything online is one of the silver linings that has come out of surviving a global pandemic. This is especially true for the ability to buy a home online. 

With the recent necessity of social distancing, homebuyers accelerated their adoption of digital home-buying experiences, allowing them to collaborate with their agent online as much as possible. 

For example, Prevu’s digital homebuying platform allows buyers to search properties for sale, schedule in-person or virtual tours with the click of a button, and even make offers digitally. Plus, homebuyers can conveniently message with their agent and share necessary documents from the convenience of an online portal they control.

The digital genie is out of the bottle, and buying a home online will be much more common in 2021 and beyond.

Interested in buying a home in Boston? Browse listings in your favorite neighborhood and see how much you can save with Prevu’s Smart Buyer Rebate.