Gay Realty Watch: Boston, Massachusetts

Gay Boston Real Estate

We continue our look into local real estate markets with large gay and lesbian communities. Today, Boston – where gay marriage is legal, Provincetown is across the bay, and the republican wave in yesterday’s election ebbed just a bit:

Smaller spaces, sized right - An updated two-bedroom, two-bathroom, second-floor condo with more than 1,100 square feet of living space on a tree-lined Back Bay street is tough to come by. Throw in a parking space and some might call it a dream property. Since June, Bill and Mary Kelly have called it home. At 56, the Kellys, who have three grown daughters living on their own, are among the latest to trade a home in the suburbs for a city condo. For them, the decision to leave Medfield after 25 years and return to the city where they lived as young adults was easy, but finding the right spot took nearly three years.

On schedule toward recovery in the Boston market; When will equilibrium return? – In January of each year, CB Richard Ellis (CBRE) holds an internal “kick off” meeting on the year(s) ahead. In January 2009, CBRE’s global chief economist, Raymond Torto, predicted that all jobs lost since the start of the “Great Recession” in December 2007 would be gained back by Q2, 2013. We are on track in the Boston market toward this date. The purpose of this article is to attach meaning to what has happened; in particular in Boston’s largest market – office space.

Towering presence: Boston Properties keys on the city’s Back Bay – Boston Properties Inc. is wielding a hot hand in what many consider one of the hottest commercial real estate markets in the United States: Boston’s Back Bay. The real estate titan’s recent agreement to pay $930 million for the storied John Hancock tower was as symbolic as it was shrewd, as Boston Properties will soon own the three most prominent towers along the city’s skyline — the Hancock, The Prudential Tower and 111 Huntington Avenue, aka the “onion building.”

Condo Contrasts – The median price of a downtown Boston condominium hit a 10-year high in the third quarter while the number of sales dropped to a new low for the decade. That’s the conclusion of a housing report set to be released today by the Boston company Listing Information Network that shows the median selling price of downtown condominiums increased 9.2 percent to $475,000 during the third quarter of 2010 compared with the same period last year. Sales volume, meantime, sank by 24.5 percent in the third quarter compared with the same period last year. Only 677 properties sold, marking the smallest number changing hands during the third quarter over the last 10 years, according to a decadelong survey provided by the Listing Information Network.

Real estate in Greater Boston’s manufacturing sector is showing signs of strength – For all the concerns raised about the steady erosion of Massachusetts manufacturing jobs, there’s at least one promising sign that the sector is holding its own in Greater Boston: Manufacturing space is actually getting harder to find here. It may seem hard to believe, but just take a look at the findings from the latest report by Richards Barry Joyce & Partners. The area’s manufacturing rate has dropped to 15.7 percent at the end of the third quarter, from 17.1 percent at the end of the second quarter. A key factor in the surprising decrease: Rand Whitney Container’s occupancy of 198,000 square feet in Westborough.

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