Green Real Estate News: Google’s Project Sunroof

project sunroofWith solar panels becoming more and more recognized for their eco-friendly advantages, Google has taken it upon themselves to create a user friendly way of bringing this to the attention of homeowners.

This new tool, Project Sunroof, is an innovative way to learn how much money you can save each year on your electric bill by switching to solar panels. It starts by using Google Maps and figuring out the exact amount of sun your home actually sees throughout the day. From there it calculates the amount that you will save each year if the panels were on your specific home. With this tool, individuals interested in going green with solar panels, will then be automatically connected to a local solar panel installation company allowing an easy and efficient process.

Project Sunroof is currently starting off in three cities; Boston, San Francisco, and Fresno. However, they do plan to expand this new project all over the country. With Boston being one of the only three cities with this tool up and running, homeowners can immediately utilize Project Sunroof by typing in their address in the search bar and finding out just how much money can save each year in energy costs.

SOURCE: Boston.com, Google

Sotheby’s News: RM Sotheby’s Sets Record in Monterey Car Week Auctions

RM sothebysMonterey Car Week, which wrapped up two weeks ago in California, saw an incredible array of cars pass the auction block, setting company and global records in the process. Of the auction houses in attendance, we are proud to announce that RM Sotheby’s took home the most in sales throughout the week, with a staggering $172.7 million worth of cars being sold. This is an increase of more than 20-percent from RM Sotheby’s auction last year and a record for the highest grossing collector car auction of all-time.

Most notably, RM Sotheby’s topped the list of highest cars sold at auction with their red 964 Ferrari 250 LM, “one of 32 of its kind, for $17.6 million, a record for the model,” according to Bloomberg Business. Also drawing attention was the sale of a McLaren F1 LM Specification, which sold for $13.75 million, making it the most expensive McLaren F1 in the world.

In total, RM Sotheby’s brokered 126 cars. The median sales price of the automobiles represented by RM Sotheby’s weighed in at $420,750, second only to Gooding & Company. RM Sotheby’s is the world’s largest auction house for investment-quality automobiles and employs the largest team of automobile specialists in the world. Like our team at Sotheby’s International Realty, RM Sotheby’s is located virtually around the globe and offers services in a variety of different languages.

Source: Auto Blog

Boston Real Estate News: Near Record Levels of Activity in July

The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® (MAR) reported that ongoing buyer activity in the spring pushed single-family home sales up in July over 19 percent compared to the same time last year. This is the biggest year-over-year increase since September 2013. “Busy buyers in the spring means closed sales in the summer and it was a very busy spring in Massachusetts,” said 2015 MAR President Corinne Fitzgerald.

Looking more specifically to the Greater Boston area, sales and median prices of single-family homes and condominiums each rose steadily on an annual basis in July according to data from the Greater Boston Association of Realtors® (GBAR).

Single-Family Market

July 2015 July 2015 +/-
Closed Sales 1,739 1,895 +9.0%
Median Sales Price $505,000 $530,000 +5.0%

Condominium Market

July 2015 July 2015 +/-
Closed Sales 1,196 1,323 +10.6%
Median Sales Price $419,000 $460,000 +9.8%

July recorded the highest sales volume ever in Greater Boston with a 9 percent increase on an annual basis of detached single-family homes from 1,739 homes closed last July to 1,895 in July 2015. Activity improved an even healthier 10.6 percent in the condo market, climbing from 1,196 condominiums sold in July 2014 to 1,323 this July.

“It’s been an exceptionally busy summer in all segments of the market. We’ve seen more new listings come on the market than normal the past two months, and the potential for an increase in interest rates this fall is also helping to motivate prospective buyers ” stated GBAR President David McCarthy.

Single-Family Market

July 2015 July 2015 +/-
Inventory of Homes for Sale 4,153 3,593 -13.5%
Days on Market Until Sale 56 55 -3.5%
New Listings 1,498 1,714 +14.4%

Condominium Market

July 2015 July 2015 +/-
Inventory of Homes for Sale 1,924 1,590 -17.4%
Days on Market Until Sale 50 41 -19.5%
New Listings 1,064 1,077 +1.2%

Inventory for single-family homes and condos continued to decline from year ago levels in July, the decrease in the number of homes and condos for sale was more modest than for any other month this year. Notably new listings for both detached single-family homes and condos improved on a year-to-year basis last month, with a 14.4 percent increase in number of single-family homes listed for sale and a 1.2 percent gain in the number of condos added to the market this July compared to July 2014. As the supply levels build, that will create more opportunities in the market for buyers going forward.

“The strength of the Boston area housing market and desirability for home ownership is self-evident when you see buyer demand reaching record levels at the same time local home prices are soaring,” McCarthy observed.

The residential real estate market in Boston saw near record levels of activity last month as a strong local labor market, low mortgage rates, and rising home values gave consumers the confidence to enter the housing market.

Find more in-depth July market data for the Greater Boston area here.  

About the Greater Boston Association of Realtors: The Greater Boston Association of REALTORS® (GBAR) represents over 6,500 real estate professionals throughout the Greater Boston and Eastern Massachusetts area and is one of the local boards of the National Association of REALTORS® – the largest trade association in America. GBAR® provides professional development courses, standard forms, legal reports and updates, brokerage counseling, legislative and regulatory representation, ethics, mediation and arbitration services, as well as recognition awards.

Real Estate News: Transforming the Old into New

With the massive amount of urban growth over the last few years, Boston and surrounding areas have started to plan innovative ways to supply housing.  There simply are not enough places zoned to support the amount of growth that the city is expected to see in the next 15 years. The Mass Smart Growth Alliance and Mayor’s administration believe that by the year 2030 there needs to be over fifty thousand housing units to keep up with this growth. That being said, Boston Real Estate developers have revolutionized the way they handle this opportunity.

Currently, developers are transforming underutilized properties to create new and improved apartments, condominiums and mixed-use buildings. Whether it be old churches, office buildings, warehouses or old fire stations, these vacant buildings should not and will not go to waste!

In Belmont, a family now calls a 4,300 square feet former fire station “home”. The two truck bays were converted into a family room and garage. The brick tower, once used to hang dry fire hoses, is now three stacked rooms.

firestation

 The Holy Trinity German Catholic Church on Shawmut Avenue in the South End will be transformed  into an eight-story glass and steel apartment building. With the contemporary feel, some original structures such as the Gothic-style puddingstone structure will remain intact not completely discarding the amazing architecture built in 1877. There will be 33 condominiums with the lower units boasting Gothic-arched window openings. And yes, the church tower will be a part of this new development!

church

In Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood, the former headquarters of Boston Consolidated Gas Co. is being transformed to 128 residential housing units. The developers decided they want the building to feel old and new keeping the aesthetic balance. In the public spaces, aspects such as elevator doors and fireplace will stay put.

b&a

Lastly in Medford, a city just outside of Boston, an old Catholic elementary school will be transformed into more condominium units. The former school of St. Francis of Assisi Church will be converted into nine triplexes and nine flats. Most of these units will have roof decks that look towards Boston so residents can enjoy beautiful city views.

st francis church

For more information or to see other buildings that have been or will be transformed visit BostonGlobe.com

Waterfront Homes: A Feature of Listings by Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty

According to a recent Luxury Lifestyle Report released by Sotheby’s International Realty, waterfront properties are one of the top choices for what affluent consumers would consider purchasing next. Explore these luxurious waterfront homes listed by Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty which all boast stunning ocean views!

DCIM999GOPROG0029383.
385 Ocean Avenue, Marblehead Neck| $6,600,000 | Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty
Truly breathtaking oceanfront estate on Marblehead Neck, boasting 5,639 sq. ft. of elegant living space with 5 bedrooms and 5 full, 2 half bathrooms. The exquisite marble foyer and grand staircase lead to gracious living areas, showcasing stunning ocean views. Watch the sunrise over the water, sailboats bobbing in the harbor, or coastal wildlife play in their natural habitat. Home features a professional-grade, eat-in kitchen; dining room with fireplace and french doors to deck; three distinct fireplaces; and generous media room, sun room, and family room. The luscious, landscaped grounds are ideal for entertaining, showcasing a lagoon-style pool, basketball court, outdoor cooking area, and stone wall with deck and steps down to the private beach. Adjacent 0.833 acre lot available to purchase.

DSC_0051183 Bass Point Road, Nahant | $1,499,000 | Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty
Enjoy your very own private beach! Amazing ocean views from this breathtaking sun filled custom built home with 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 7 decks, a beautiful garden & 4 parking spaces. 1st level has a large living room with fireplace, huge picture windows proving spectacular water views and access to deck with ocean and city views. First floor also includes a spacious eat in kitchen, separate dining room, study area & 1/2 bath. 2nd level has Master suite with fabulous water views, a walk in closet, full bath and private deck, plus 2 additional bedrooms w/ guest bathroom. 3rd floor has a large bright bedroom & deck with ocean views, full bath, laundry room & spacious entertaining room with cathedral ceilings. This home has been meticulously maintained and is perfect for friends & family gatherings.

Win 37 Frances Street, Winthrop | $1,400,000 | Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty
Gorgeous Waterfront Property! 180 Degree Harbor Views! This luxurious, beautifully appointed home features a renovated granite and stainless kitchen w/ adjacent solarium! The 35′ x 20′ upper patio w/ pergola can be accessed directly from the solarium/kitchen. Additionally, the first floor boasts a formal dining room, a spacious 28′ x 12′ fireplaced living room, and a sun room. The second floor is comprised of the master suite, two guest bedrooms, and a charming sitting area with window seat! The top floor features a multi-purpose bedroom with under the eaves storage. Additional features include a wine cellar, a laundry and abundant storage. Heated two car garage w/ potting shed and finished, heated second floor studio. Beautifully landscaped! New Seawall. Riparian Rights.

Nahant_75_Bass_01575 Bass Point Road, Nahant | $1,200,000 | Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty
Tremendous opportunity to invest in TWO Oceanfront homes on one gorgeous .25 acre lot. The property features a 1336 SF home with 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, wrap-around porch and spectacular ocean views. Sited right beside is a 947 SF guest cottage featuring 2 bedrooms, 1 bath and partial ocean views – perfect for an in-law apartment! Each house has separate electric & gas meters and its own washer & dryer. Shared in common by both houses are the water/sewer/refuse bills and 7 parking spaces – a rare find in Nahant.

Do not hesitate to contact any of our agents today regarding the above  waterfront properties and make one of these extraordinary homes your own. Call 844.667.6663 or visit our website: Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty for more information.

Sotheby’s International Realty News: Boston Real Estate Firm Traveling to Hong Kong to Showcase Inventory

Hong Kong harbour

Hong Kong harbour

We are thrilled to announce that our firm, Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty, is one of fourteen Sotheby’s International Realty affiliates in the world invited to attend the Sotheby’s Autumn Sales Series this October in Hong Kong.

Larry Rideout, CEO, and Beth Heard-Laffey, Director of International Initiatives, will be in attendance alongside some of the Sotheby’s Auction House most influential clientele. Our firm’s extraordinary  listings will be exhibited at the Sotheby’s International Realty Desk during the exhibition and auction week, evoking a new level of international exposure to the local market.

“We plan to take full advantage of this amazing opportunity as we travel to Hong Kong this fall.  It will be our moment to introduce the Boston, Cambridge and Suburban markets to an audience that will include a strong influence of international investors,” stated Larry Rideout.

Boston is an international city that has proven to attract residents from all over the world.  In 2014 more than 1/3 of our international buyers were Chinese.  Attending the Sotheby’s Sale in Hong Kong will provide a forum for us to further expose our inventory, agent base and subsequently their client base.

As the number one independently owned Boston based real estate firm with agents that speak both Mandarin and Cantonese we are thrilled to showcase our portfolio overseas and expand our business directly to the Asian market place.

Contact us today to learn more information on how we can market your home overseas. Call 866.766.7356 or email relocation@gibsonsir.com

Real Estate News: Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty Classified as the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies

inc5000-lander-logo-smallGibson Sotheby’s International Realty has announced that they have been classified as one of the fastest growing private companies in the country by Inc. Magazine.

This year’s list was based on a surge in revenue growth over a three-year period, from 2011 to 2014, as well as jobs added. This year’s Inc. 500 achieved a median growth rate of 1,772 percent and have collectively created 57,822 jobs.

The elite group selected, over the years, has included companies such as Microsoft, Timberland, Vizio, Intuit, Chobani and Oracle.

When acquired Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty was operating with 70 agents and $250 million in sales per year, eight years later we are nearly 200 agents, eight offices and have just closed a subsequent year of 1 billion dollars in real estate sold and under agreement.

As Boston’s largest independent real estate firm we take pride in being part of such an elite group and are eager to see continual growth in the balance of 2015

Inc. magazine has been a premier print publication for entrepreneurs and business owners for more than 30 years. View the 2015 Inc. 5000 complete list here.

Sotheby’s International Realty News: Ultra Wealthy Buying Homes As ‘Opportunity Gateways’

A growing number of ultra high net worth (UHNW) individuals view homes as ‘opportunity gateways’, driving buying decisions that are based on potential opportunities from owning these luxury residential properties, according to the latest study by Wealth-X and the Sotheby’s International Realty® brand.

The UHNW Luxury Real Estate Report: Homes As Opportunity Gateways two trends that are fueling the rise in the number of ultra wealthy individuals who are buying luxury homes:

  • International home-buying by UHNW individuals (defined as those with at least US$30 million in assets) from emerging nations seeking a safe investment diversification.
  • Home-buying as part of a program to gain citizenship or residency status in foreign nations.

The report provides insight into the UHNW residential real estate opportunities in Sydney and Vancouver for buyers seeking safe investment diversification; and Malta, the Bahamas and Sao Paulo, which may appeal to ultra wealthy buyers who are seeking citizenship or residency through property investment.

The UHNW Residential Real Estate index, tracked by Wealth-X, rose to 115.2 in Q2 2015, an 8.3% rise year-on-year, and the sixth consecutive quarter in which the index has risen. The continued rise in the index reflects the confidence of UHNW individuals to invest in luxury residential real estate.

The index takes into account the full range of luxury residential properties that are owned by the world’s wealthiest individuals. Wealth-X data shows there are 211,275 UHNW individuals globally, who collectively hold nearly US$3 trillion in real estate assets, equal to 10% of their net worth.

Below are other key findings from the report:

  • 12% of second homes purchased by UHNW individuals in emerging countries (those who reside in BRICS nations) are located outside their country of residence.
  • Recent market fluctuations in emerging nations are leading a new generation of UHNW investors to consider investing in luxury residential real estate in Western markets.
  • Chinese UHNW individuals make up the third largest share of foreign UHNW homeowners in the United States, behind only Canada and the United Kingdom.
  • Twenty nations in Europe and the Americas now offer citizenship or residency programs to individuals willing to invest in domestic residential real estate.
  • Many residential real estate markets with such programs – including Sao Paulo, Malta, and the Bahamas – offer good long-term investment opportunities.

According to Philip White, president and chief executive officer, Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC, this joint report was designed to provide an understanding of the trends driving buying decisions of ultra-high net worth individuals around the world. “The research reveals trends that go beyond traditional motivations and help guide real estate investments that contribute to long-term wealth,” he said.  “It underscores the important role real estate plays in a larger strategy to build a valuable asset portfolio.”

Download the full report here.

WealthX

About Wealth-X
Wealth-X is the global authority on wealth intelligence, providing sales, marketing, strategy and compliance solutions to clients in the financial services, luxury, not-for-profit and education sectors. Its award-winning research and thought leadership are regularly cited by the world’s media such as CNBC, Financial Times, Thomson Reuters and BBC. Wealth-X has more than 250 staff in 10 locations, including Singapore, London and New York.

About Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC
The Sotheby’s International Realty network currently has approximately 17,000 sales associates located in approximately 800 offices in 61 countries and territories worldwide. Founded in 1976 to provide independent brokerages with a powerful marketing and referral program for luxury listings, the Sotheby’s International Realty network was designed to connect the finest independent real estate companies to the most prestigious clientele in the world. Sotheby’s International Realty listings are marketed on the sothebysrealty.com global website.  In addition to the referral opportunities and widened exposure generated from this source, the network’s brokers and clients benefit from an association with the Sotheby’s auction house and worldwide Sotheby’s International Realty marketing programs.  Each office is independently owned and operated.

Sotheby’s News: Auction House in London Relaunches “The Irish Sale”

irish saleThe Sotheby’s Auction House in London has relaunched the annual Irish Sale due to an increase in interest which signals confidence in the Irish art market.

Arabella Bishop, head of Sotheby’s Ireland, said that “the moment is right to relaunch a dedicated annual sale as new collectors – both from Ireland and internationally – are actively buying and bidding for Irish art.”

The reinstated event will take place on October 21st with the principal lot being a painting by Sir William Orpen titled Nude Girl Reading. This piece painted in Paris in 1921 has a top estimate of £500,000 ($774,300.00 USD). Orpen, born in Stillorgan, Co Dublin, was a leading portrait painter in London and one of Britain’s official first World War artists.

Another piece that will be included in the sale is The Forlorn Hope by Jack B Yeats which has a top estimate of £180,000 ($278,792.10 USD).

After Irish art prices crashed following the economic downturn 4 years ago the sale was dropped. Now  Sotheby’s has relaunched the event, moved its Irish office into bigger premises and opened a new office.  These three factors ultimately “cement its commitment to the Irish market.”

Source: Irish Times

Boston Real Estate News: The site of Anthony’s Pier 4 will be the New Home to a 100-Unit Luxury Condominium Building

anthonyspier4002There was a time when Anthony’s Pier 4 was the biggest reason people traveled to Seaport as it was one of the top-grossing restaurants in the nation. Soon, a nine-story luxury condominium building, a one-acre park and a 13-story office building will be the new reason for travel.

The luxury condominium building will rise from the site surrounding this iconic restaurant that recently closed its doors in 2013. Developer, Tishman Speyer, plans to construct the building to be curved to ensure that the views of the skyline will be maximized.

Co-chief executive, Rob Speyer, stated, “Our company wants to create a project that will bring new residents and new business to the new neighborhood. Our goal at Pier 4 is to create the brightest jewel of the Boston waterfront. This will be a project entirely worthy of one of the world’s great cities.”

Pending the city’s approval, construction will begin no later than the end of the year in hopes that the condo project will be completed in 2018. No price tags have been placed on the units at this time although it has been noted that neighboring luxury buildings priced in the millions sold out quickly.

Pier 4 Resi

At the end of the pier the one-acre park and a plaza will sit on the exact site of Anthony’s Pier 4 which will be demolished sometime next spring. This park is set to “preserve public access to the waterfront and allow the developer to command premium prices for condos with uninterrupted water views”, said Vivien Li, president of the Boston Harbor Association.

Tishman Speyer is partnering with two of China’s largest insurance companies on this project. Both of these companies are making their first investment in U.S commercial real estate and as a result is the largest Chinese investment YET in Boston real estate!

Source: Boston Globe