Trulia Community - Advice from neighbors and local experts

Find Your Community
We couldn't find that location. Please try again.
Get Expert Advice

Home Buying in Cambridge : Real Estate Advice

  • All155
  • Local Info7
  • Home Buying42
  • Home Selling9
  • Market Conditions6

Activity 53
Thu Feb 25, 2010
Territory Real Estate answered:
Hi Richard,

There are actually 3 balconies for this unit: One off the main living area, one off the master suite and the third off the second master suite. If you haven't yet seen this unit in person or have any other questions, feel free to email me at

Search every MLS listing at
... more
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Sat Jul 31, 2010
Richard Lecinski answered:
You must run your numbers to see if you will run a positive cash flow and certainly allow for a period when the unit may not be rented.
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Wed Jun 16, 2010
Rona Fischman answered:
I bet you hate answers that include, "that depends," but I have to give you that caveat. If you are looking for space, but close to the city, that's one thing: Medford, Melrose, Wakefield would work. If you want space, but you are willing to travel, Acton, Maynard, and Dedham come to mind. There is a lot of missing information, like where you are working, where you commute to, what you like to do.

So, it some research about towns on the link I put below.
... more
0 votes 8 answers Share Flag
Fri Jan 7, 2011
Voices Member answered:

There are 13 neighborhoods that make up Cambridge, MA. The best reference I can provide is to go to this website:

It provides a neighborhood index map and shows which neighborhoods border what other towns.

... more
0 votes 3 answers Share Flag
Thu Feb 25, 2010
Voices Member answered:

Have you tried looking it up on your Cambridge property search site?

Here are the property search sites ect.. available in your county.

For your state...

This is a fairly decent search tool for public records..

Good luck, Dunes
... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Fri Jun 19, 2009
Deb McCourt answered:
Hi Bruce,

While I see over and over again, many ads discussing "assessed value", most Realtors do not incorporate the assessed value in determining market value.. Assessed translates to property taxes. I know many consider affordability of property taxes in a town when considering buying a home. However, cities and towns are all over the place in setting property taxes and assessments. It is best to go by what has recently sold (BUYERS determine value) and to contact a good buyer's agent to help you. ... more
0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Sun Jun 30, 2013
Rona Fischman answered:
If you are buying it now, it should be at a pretty deep discount. Basement units sell poorly in recessions. If you don't mind a basement, you may get a good deal on it. The people who get burned on basement units, one bedrooms units, or other less desirable choices for condos are those who buy them at peak, when the price differential is not as steep.

I can't give you a figure for how much less, because it varies from condo to condo.

Also, are you sure that the place is water tight? Does it have good light and ventilation and fire egress!
... more
0 votes 7 answers Share Flag
Fri Jun 19, 2009
Danielle Sharp answered:

Depending on how the contract is worded, yes. Short sales do take a bit of time to receive a response from the bank unless you're lucky enough to find something with a bank approved price.

If you've already been working with a Realtor, make sure to have them go over all of the contracts with you and explain things clearly. You may also want to contact a local real estate attorney if you're still not feeling comfortable with things.

If I can be of any help don't hesitate to contact me. Hope you've had a great weekend!

Danielle Sharp
Broker Assoc
Vadala Realty

Direct 239.471.2102
Cell 248.207.4445
... more
0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Thu May 7, 2009
Anne H. Cain answered:
Occasionally you can get a very good deal on a short sale. You will usually be paying less than what the current owner of the house paid when they bought it. That does not mean you are paying less than what it is currently worth, however. The market determines the value of the home, and we have seen many market values decline recently.

When a homowner realizes they are going to lose all the equity in their home and their good credit as well they may get mad at themselves and take it out on the home. I have seen people take fixtures out of a home, thus hurting the home's value. Be careful to get an agent to help you so you know what can be expected.

Short sales may take a little longer to buy because in addition to the owner of the property, you must get agreement from the lender who is coming up "short" on the deal. The process is somewhat the same as the normal buying process. Be prepared for delays where paperwork is concerned, because the banks are swamped with requests, and they must figure out if it is necessary to take less than they are owed. Lenders must balance their books, or be able to explain why not.
... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Wed Mar 25, 2009
Rona Fischman answered:
In the towns you are looking in, I haven’t seen a good buyer’s market take hold, yet. You may even need to wait until next year. The link below is a blog entry on demand that I am seeing lately.
The spring market is motivated by those who want to move in time to start the school year in a new place. Thus more demand, and sellers respond with more supply. In spring, you have the most choice, but you also have the most competition.
Then, around late July, buyers and sellers get bored with real estate. They want to go on vacation without thinking about houses; thus we have the summer doldrums. Prices goes down a bit, but you’ll be looking at spring leftovers.
The autumn market is sort of like a mini-spring market. Buyers generally want to move sometime other than the winter. People are thinking about buying and selling before the winter sets in.
Sometime between Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving, it will probably slow down again. That is the time of lowest supply and lowest demand. That is the time when sellers will be most motivated, and you have the most room to negotiate a better price. Very best prices tend to happen after Thanksgiving and before Super Bowl Sunday.
If you are looking for something fairly ordinary, I would say start in the summer and see what you see. You may end up waiting for the winter market. If you are looking for your “forever home” and it needs to be special, you may need to jump into one of the higher supply times and face competition in the towns you are looking in. Demand there is still pretty high.
... more
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Thu Nov 26, 2009
Robert Byrne answered:
Check the documentation you signed when you hired the inspector there may be a clause limiting the damages to the amount you paid for the service. There may be limits on what he/she was checking and the water softener might have been excluded. You may have a have recourse if this was a known defect and it was not disclosed. Whatever course you take get the water softener repaired, and sort out the legal issues later. Best Robert ... more
0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Mon Jan 26, 2009
Scott Godzyk answered:
There is no set amount ofr percentage to offer on a property. it is easier to see what other properties have sold for so you can bas eyour offer on what is today value. When purchasing a home you really should have a buyer broker to assist you through each step of the buying process and can get the comparable sales listings for you so you know what to offer. In most cases you negotiate a buyer broker contract so that it doesnt cost you anything out of pocket as the listing broker pays the buyer agent through the commission offered in MLS. This way you have someone looking out for you. If you need a referral of someone in this area pleaselet me know. Good luck with your purchase. ... more
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Fri Sep 26, 2008
The Moores' answered:
Dear Debra,

Where are you looking for this property? My husband and I have several properties in the Greater Gardner area. Thats a "bit" west of Cambridge.

Do feel free to contact us anytime at our Templeton Office. See contact info below.

-Karissa Moore, Realtor
Hogan Real Estate, Inc.
978 - 410-5248
... more
0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Mon Aug 25, 2008
Mike Hughes Team answered:
Greetings Goblyn,
Contact or ... you should be able to find what you are looking for, or speak with someone who can help.
Good luck,
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Thu May 22, 2008
Debt Free Dave answered:
Have you done a google search. You can find everything on Google.
0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Thu May 8, 2008
Dragana Miljkovic answered:
I should note that the property was remodeled 2 years ago, so looking for signs of water damage might not tell me everything I need to know...
0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Fri May 9, 2008
Mary answered:
Just to clarify.... I wanted to put in a bid that's 10% less than asking....
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Wed Feb 20, 2013
Jon Ernest answered:
Not if you have your eyes set on that particular project. The longer you wait, the fewer "choice"units will be available to you. And while it really slows down around here in the winter months, these big projects tend not to be very flexible in price. They know that it's going to take years to sell the entire building. They have their overhead budgeted for it, and would rather wait than drop their price.

If you're talking about buying something AROUND the project, there's no point in waiting either... if you already know about it, so do countless others, and the speculation has already began.

The only advantage to waiting, would be to take advantage of less buyer competition.... but fear not.. there's not TOO much of that running around now anyway...

As far as bottoming out... my rarely reliable prediction says not yet.... but in the span of owning a condo... close enough.....
... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Sat May 10, 2008
Ryan Wanger answered:
Because it sounds like you're concerned about the "investment" aspect of your purchase...

Local market conditions aside, I would spend some time working the numbers for a place that you'll only live in for 3 years. Figure out what your payment will be, consider taxes, insurance, condo fees, water/sewer, etc. Use an amortization schedule to find out how much equity you'll have after 3 years. In the first few years, very little of your payment is actually going towards equity. Also, factor in 5% commission for you to sell.

See how much this is going to cost assuming no appreciation. Then figure what it will cost to rent an equivalent apartment.

When the market was going up 10% a year, people said buy if you're going to be there at least 2 years, now they're saying 5...

Also, if you own and live there, you get to write off your mortgage interest on your taxes. However, since you'll be a student, that aspect might not be as helpful to you...
... more
0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Mon Nov 21, 2011
Barbara Madaras answered:
My comment is that it is always difficult to serve two masters! Having done "double ending" deals and done them with grace and ethics, I can tell you they are the absolute hardest transactions. So, in general, it is best to let the seller's agent represent the seller and you have your own representation.

Having said that, you need to temper that advice with the traditions in your part of the country. Here in NM, there is no cost to a buyer to have their own representation. The Seller pays the commission which is then split between the two agents. The buyer bears no cost. If that is not the case in your area, then cost might influence your decision.

HOWEVER, just because you can identify the property does NOT mean you know the property, the area, the comparables, the appropriate price. It does not mean you have the ability to protect yourself with the appropriate contractual paperwork, inspection procedures, negotiation "fine points".

That is where a Realtor shines and, in my opinion, provide much more in guiding and protecting than we could ever earn! And my clients all agree with me!

... more
0 votes 81 answers Share Flag
1 2 3
Search Advice