2016 Real Estate Review & 2017 Forecast

2016 was a whirlwind year and with no seasonal slow-down in December! In fact, a new report by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) shows existing-home sales in October zoomed to the highest annualized pace in nearly a decade. All major regions saw an increase in sales in November as well.

An improving economy and lowering rates of unemployment promise steady growth, and two major demographic shifts promise to drive sales for years to come - the entry of millennials as first-time homebuyers and the large group of people reaching retirement age. "We are now in the midst of two massive demographic waves that will power above-average demand for homes for at least the next 10 years," says Jonathan Smoke,'s chief economist.

And while home prices have gone up, existing home prices have risen a moderate 2.1% in the Northeast overall compared to last year (NAR). Placing these numbers in perspective, the increase during the same time in the US overall is 5.6%, with increases of 5.9% in the Midwest, 6.6% in the South, and 8.1% in the West!

Locally, the latest numbers from the Greater Boston Association of Realtors (GBAR) show a 3.1% increase in median sales prices for all properties in Bedford, with sellers receiving 98% of their original list price. So while the trajectory of home prices is certainly rising, it’s at a moderate, steady climb. And the key indicator to watch is the mortgage rates, which are predicted to rise slightly throughout 2017 based on Freddie Mac's projections, with this anticipated increase inspiring continued buyer activity through the winter.

So, there's a place for both buyers and sellers to succeed as we launch into 2017 and I invite you to take advantage of the skill and experience of the Suzanne & Company team to get the best possible results for you and your family to make it a truly happy new year!


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