The annual issue of Boston Magazines Best Places To Live 2009 has just been released and Hopkinton Massachusetts has made the list.
According to the article Hopkinton was grouped into the "The Teflon Ten" which is the ten towns that are perceived according to statistical analysis to be primed for take off once the market starts making it's way back up again. These ten towns supposedly have not dropped in value like other towns have.
The methodology to pick the towns was the following according to Boston Magazine:
"We examined median single-family home and condo prices for the years 2005 (the generally conceded peak of the Massachusetts market) to 2008, as well as average number of days on the market, number of foreclosure petitions and deeds, and, for select communities, percentage of homeowners who owe more than their house is worth.
We then vetted the stats with a panel of Realtors and other experts, taking into account factors such as the strength of the school system, community amenities, commuting times, and market supply versus projected demand."Â
I was actually interviewed by one of the writers for Boston Magazine for this story. I can attest that Hopkinton has been a destination town for home buyers over the last decade for a number of reasons including great schools, a terrific housing stock, convenience to major highways, as well as a true home town feel.
As far as having the true home town atmosphere, Hopkinton has had a long standing tradition of not having the highly commercialized establishments such as McDonalds as part of the landscape.
As a life long resident and a Realtor covering Hopkinton Real Estate, I have always enjoyed the fact that Hopkinton did not have these types of businesses.
These establishments are close enough, as many of the surrounding towns like Milford, Westboro and Ashland have them, yet you don't have to drive by them everyday.
Every April Hopkinton becomes one of the most recognized places in the country as the World famous Boston Marathon starts here.
I agree completely with Boston Magazines assessment that Hopkinton will appreciate more in value than many of the other area towns once the Real Estate market does stabilize. Hopkinton is an exceptional town.
Unfortunately however, I do not agree with Boston Magazines data which was taken from the Warren Group. According to the article Hopkinton's median home price right now is $557,750. They also report that the one year change in housing values is -4.66% and since the market peak(2005) the market in Hopkinton is down only -0.40%. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but this data is way off!
In 2005 which was the peak year in the Real Estate market there were 212 single family homes that sold in Hopkinton. The average list price of the homes sold was $641,982 and the average sale price of the homes sold was $630,015.
Sorry folks but that is a far cry from where they are right now. For the year 2008 there were 129 single family homes sold in Hopkinton. The average list price of the homes sold was $620,408. The average sales price of the homes sold was $597,100.
While these statistics were taken from the MLS data base (MLS Pin) and do not include FSBO (for sale by owner) properties the figures would not change by that much. There is clearly an error somewhere.
Given that they say the market has been down by 4.66% over the last year but only down .40% does make much sense either. This would imply that the market has actually gone up between 2006 and 2007 and that was not the case.
Generally speaking most of the towns in the area surrounding Hopkinton are down between 20-25% since the market peak. Hopkinton has not been immune to the down turn. They have fared better than many towns but not to the degree this article portrays.
This would be like saying my stock portfolio hasn't dropped either. So if anyone wants to pay me for what my home was worth in the Spring of 2005 I would be happy to listen:)
Interested in seeing how your town did according to the Warren Group?
Here is the link for a chart showing the changes over time in median single-family home and condo prices for 155 cities, towns, and neighborhoods in and around Boston.
About the author: The above information on Hopkinton makes Boston Magazine Best Places to live in 2009 was provided by Bill Gassett, a Nationally recognized leader in his field. Bill can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 508-435-5356. Bill has helped people move in and out of Hopkinton MA and other Metrowest towns for the last 23+ Years.Â
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