Eight Reasons Why You Need a Good Realtor

Some consumers think that they can save money by either buying or selling property by themselves. It might save money, but it also could cost you a lot of headaches and money in the long run.

Park Place Expensive Real Estate Monopoly

Park Place Expensive Real Estate Monopoly (Photo credit: Philip Taylor PT)

Many services recently are designed to help homebuyers and sellers complete their own real estate transactions. Thus may give many a feeling of a real estate agent  a thing of the past. While handling all the detailed work yourself can save you on commissions that many real estate agents command, for many, flying solo may not be the way to go, and could end up being more costly than just a commission in the long run.

Buying or selling a condo or townhome  is a major financial and emotional undertaking. You should not discard the notion of hiring a Boston Luxe Real Estate to handle these important transactions.
Consider what Boston Luxe can provide you:

  1. Better Access/More Convenience. A real estate agent’s full time job is to act as a liason between sellers and buyers. They have access to all the properties listed by other agents what is needed to put the deal together and close. Example: if you are searching for a home, the agent will track down the homes that meet your requirements, get in touch with the sellers’ agent and make the necessary arrangements for you to look at the home. If you are on your own, you will have to play the telephone tag game yourself, and this could be even more difficult if you are shopping for homes that are for sale by owner. If you are trying to sell your home on your own, you will have to be available to take calls from interested people, answer questions, make call backs and appointments. Potential buyers will tend to move on to another property  if you do not call them back or do not respond right away. You may make appointments, rush home to show the house and no one shows up.
  2. Negotiating is Tricky Business. There are many people that do not like the idea of doing a real estate deal using an agent and think that direct negotiation between sellers and buyers is more open and transparent and allows the parties to look after their own interests much better. This may be true if you assume that both the buyer and seller are reasonable people who are able to get along. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the way it goes.
  3. Lets say that you, as a buyer, likes a home but doesn’t particularly like the wood paneled walls, shag carpet and the orange kitchen. If you are using an agent, you can express your dislikes of the sellers decorating skills and rant about how much it will cost you to upgrade the home without insulting the owner. For all you know, the sellers late mother may have lovingly chosed the decor herself. Your real estate agent can convey your concerns to the sellers agent. Acting as a messenger, the agent may be in a better position to negotiate a discount without ruffling the homeowner’s feathers. A real estate agent can also play the bad guy in a transaction, preventing any bad blood between a buyer and seller that might kill a deal. Keep in mind that a seller can reject a potential offer for any reason, including just because they dont like the buyer. An agent can help by speaking for you in tough transactions and smoothing things over to keep them from getting too personal. This puts you in a better position to get the house you want. The same is true for the seller, who can benefit from a hard nosed real estate agent who will represent his or her interests without turning off potential buyers who want to niggle about the price.
  4. Contracts Can Be Hard to Handle. If you decide to sell or buy a home, the offer to purchase contract is there to protect you and ensure that you are able to back out of any deal if certain conditions are not met. For example, if you plan to buy a home with a mortgage loan but you fail to make financing one of the conditions of the sale, and you aren’t approved for the loan, then you can lose your deposit on the home and could even be sued by the seller for failing to fulfill your end of the contract.
  5. An experienced real estate agent deals with the same contracts and conditions on a regular basis and is familiar with which conditions should be used, when they can be removed safely and how to use the contract to protect you, whether you are selling or buying the home.
  6. Real Estate Agent Never Lie.Well, okay, I guess they can and do, however because they are licensed professionals there are many more repercussions if they do than for an independant buyer or seller. If you are workig with a licensed real estate agent under an agency agreement, such as a conventional full service commission agreement, in which the agent agrees to represent you, your agent will be bound by law to a fiduciary relationship. In other words, the agent is bound by law to act in his clients’ best interest, not his own. Also, most real estate agents depend on referrals and repeat business to build the kind of client base they need to survive in business. This means that doing what is best for their clients should be as important to them as any individual sale.
  7. Any time a buyer and seller work together directly, they can, and should, seek legal counsel, but because each is expected to act in his or her best interest, there isn’t much you can do if you find out later that you have been duped about multiple offers, or the home’s condition. And having a lawyer on retainer any time you want to talk about potentially buying and selling a house could cos far more than an agent’s commissions by the time the deal is completed.
  8. Not Everyone Can Save Money. Many people eschew using a real estate agent  in order to save money, but remember that it is unlikely that both the seller and buyer will reap the benefits of not having to pay commissions. For example, if you are selling your home on your own, you will price it based on the sale prices of other comparable properties in your area. Many of these properties will be sold with the help of real estate agents. This means that the seller gets to keep the percentage of the home’s sale price that might otherwise be paid to the real estate agent.
  9. Buyers who are looking to purchase a home sold by the owners, may also believe they can save some money on the home by not having an agent involved. They might even expect it and make an offer accordingly on the home. However, unless the buyer and seller agree to split the savings, they both can’t save commission. While there are certainly people who are more than qualified to sell their own homes, taking a quick look at the long list of frequently asked questions that appear on most “for sale by owner” websites suggests the process isn’t as simple as many people assume. And, when you get into a difficult situation, it can really pay to have a professional, like a real estate agent and his/her broker, on your side.


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Flowers Grace The City of Boston

Nothing is more satisfying, after hard winter as we have had, to enjoy the beauty of colorful flowers. We should be planning our spring and early summer landscape. Besides our personal enjoyment, this is what makes our homes have beautiful curb appeal. And if you plan to put your Boston home on the real estate market, this is a must.

Tulips in Boston Common

Tulips in Boston Commonflowers2

Relax and Enjoy the Beauty

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Where are Some Pet Friendly Boston Apartments?

dogs1` I need to find a nice Boston apartment that is dog friendly. Are there many of these in Boston? We did some reach and found some dog friendly apartments. You will find there are many that have size and breed restrictions. Plus many charge a monthly security fee.

Below is just a partial lists of Pet friendly complexes: For assistance in your search contact Maxwell Burke Broker/Owner at Boston Luxe at his email: maxwell@bostonluxe.com  or call his Cell: (617) 543 – 7754  or call his office: (617) 267-4600

  • The Back Bay Neighborhood

    • The Colonnade Residences-One dog per unit with no weight limit, but there are Breed Restrictions and there is no pet Fee.
    • One Back Bay-1 dog per unit, There is a 50 pound weight limit along with breed restrictions.
    • Garrison Square Apartments-75 lb. weight limit, limit of 2 dogs per unit with combined limit of 75 lb. Pet Fees: Dogs 50 lb. $100 per month, 50-75 lb $150 per month, breed restrictions.
    • Seven Fifty-Five Boylston- Dogs on a case by case basis
    • The Greenhouse Apartments-25 pound weight limit, no breed restrictions.
    • The Lofts at Atlantic Wharf-There is no weight limit, but there are breed restrictions and a security deposit.
    • Christopher Columbus Plaza Apartments-Smaller dogs weight limit, breed restrictions, inquire about the mandatory fee.
  • Boston’s Seaport/Innovation District and South Boston

    • Factory 63-There are no breed restrictions, but do call for details.
    • ..Park Lane Seaport-You may have 2 pets per unit, with a combined weight of 75 pound with breed restrictions. Small dogs $75 month/ larger dogs $100 per month.
    • 50 West Broadway There is no weight limit. But there are breed restrictions.
  • South End

    • The Marais- Call for Details on Pets
    • Lofts at East Berkeley-Call for Details
    • 601 Albany Apartments- Call for Details
    • James Court Apartments-One Dog is allowed per unit with a 55 Pound Weight Limit along with breed restrictions.
  • Charlestown

    • Harborview Navy Yard-There a 2 dog limit with no weight limit with breed restrictions and fees.
    • Mezzo Design Lofts- 80 lb weight limit, there is a fenced dog park across  the street.
  • Cambridge

    • Archstone Kendall Square-1 Dog per unit with a 65 lb. weight limit. A few courtyard apartment allow larger breeds. Monthly pet fee of $75 and there are breed restrictions.
    • Archstone Northpoint
      2 dog max per unit with no weight restrictions, but there are breed Restrictions. Fees are  $100 per month per dog.
    • Third Square Apartments-Dog and Cat Friendly. There are no weight restrictions, but there are breed restrictions. You are allowed 2 dogs per unit with a $85 per month fee per dog plus a security security deposit.
    • Watermark Cambridge-There is a pet fee of $50 for cats, and $100 for dogs. There is a maximum of two pets per home, up to 65 pounds each. And there are breed restrictions.
    • Loft 23-Two dogs are allowed per apartment with a 50lb limit. There are breed restrictions. Monthly pet fee are $20 per cat and $75 per dog.
    • 1330 Boylston Apartments-Larger Dogs Accepted Check on Breed Restrictions.
  • Fenway
    • Fenway Triangle Trilogy Apartments- dogs are allowed on select floors. Check on details.
    • The Parkside & Fenway-2 dogs per unit are allowed with breed restrictions and a  45 lb Weight Limit, pet fees apply
  • Longwood Medical Center area
    • City View at Longwood- Both Dog & Cat Friendly with Breed Restrictions and weight limits.
    • The Longwood-Dog & Cat Friendly, Breed Restrictions, Weight Limit?
  • Brookline

    • Barclay on Beacon- allows 2 dogs per unit, both dog & cat Friendly, with Breed Restrictions, and a 45 lb Weight Limit, pet fees.
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It is a go for Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen’s New Mansion

According to Laura Raposa at The Herald, Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen are still going through the red tape and permissions to build a 7,465-square-foot main house; a 1,675-square-foot cottage for the help; and a 1,342-square-foot yoga studio in Brookline’s slice of Chestnut Hill. It seems they still need a waiver on the Yoga studio as their is a 150-square-foot limit on so-called accessory buildings.

Architect’s rendering of the Proposed Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen’s
new Chestnut Hill castle in Brookline MA. brady11-thumb








It seems all that stands in their way now are the neighbors and of course the
zoning commission. If all is approved,  it will all be a go, with of course some modifications.


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What is the Difference Between a House Inspector and an Appraiser.

boston-inspectionAn inspector is usually a building contractor or specialist. They should be hired by the purchaser to “inspect” the structure, plumbing, electrical and roofing to insure that the house being purchased is in good working and safe condition. Any defects must be disclosed and or repaired.

An appraiser is licensed under the state real estate commission and inspects appraiserand evaluates the house and property that is to be purchased for the Lender. This is done by measuring the square footage, while taking into consideration special features of the home and then using comparable sales of the same type of house or condo in a similar neighborhood to come up with the true value.  This is the final word on the true value of the property and will determine the loan amount of the mortgage.

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Good News for Boston Real Estate

We heard some great news from Wells Fargo last week. It seems that they have lowered their standards on the public’s FICO scores. It will now be possible to qualify for a mortgage loan with a FICO score of 600. Of course that is if all your other financials are in order. image

Tom Goyda, a bank spokesman said, “The goal is to increase access to credit, especially for low- and moderate- income borrowers and first-time home buyers.” He continued, “These are fully underwritten, fully documented loans, consistent with FHA program guidelines and responsible lending principles.”

There is no doubt that other lending institutions will follow suit, easing up the mortgage loan business a little. We know one thing this will give another small boost to the Boston Real Estate Market.

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Superbowl Fun at Boston Venues

Well we all know that Sunday is the day of the Super Bowl. If you are tired of watching the game on your couch and eating nachos, check out some of the venues offered in our town. This is but a sampling of what is available in Boston. Who knows maybe we will see you there. Come up and say Hi.


1. Clery’s is hosting their Third Annual Super Bowl party.

  • Compete for prize packs and trophies in the bar’s wing eating contest.
  • choice of any two beers, an appetizer sampler platter during the first half of the game, and a pizza buffet at half time. Tickets are $20 per person..
    113 Dartmouth St., Boston. 617-262-9874

2. Cask ’n Flagon

  • Chef Donley Liburd has created special tailgate platters, featuring baby back ribs, barbecue chicken, barbecue pork, and beef brisket (choose two for $18, three for $26). Favorites like wings, burgers, and pizza will also be available.
  • this local sports bar will be offering a wide selection of cocktails and beers.
    62 Brookline Ave., Boston. 617-536-4840.

3. Ducali Pizzeria &Bar

  • Day-long brunch on Super Bowl Sunday that will run from 11 a.m. until closing.
    Menu will feature items like egg-topped pizza, Italian-style chicken wings, and lobster-stuffed arancini.
  • Selection of Seattle and Denver beers available.
    289 Causeway St., North End. 617-742-4144.

4. East End Grille

  • 50 cent wings
  • Free buffet during half time on game day.
    118 Broadway, Somerville. 617-628-6000.

5. Poe’s Kitchen at The Rattlesnake

  • Private rooms available for  intimate viewing experience
  • Access to an indoor tailgate featuring a south of the border spread
  • Selection of beers on hand.
    384 Boylston St., Boston. 617-859-8555.

6. Row 34

  • Freshly tapped cask of Domaine Dupont French cider from beer
  • Number of game day treats. Snacks created by chef Francisco Millan include lobster roe popcorn ($6), crispy glazed fish collars ($12), fried chicken wings (small is $8, large is $14), and more.
    383 Congress St., Fort Point. 617-553-5900.

7.Shake Shack

  • Buy one get one free promotion on all frozen custard. In addition to the free custard, customers will also receive a free mini foam football.
    92 Winthrop St., Cambridge. 617-758-8495
    49 Boylston St., Chestnut Hill. 617-651-3406.

8.The Sinclair

  • Roasted peanuts with keffir lime and chilis ($3), Narragansett corndogs (2 for $6) with coleslaw and mustard, Thai-Style chicken wings ($7), and plenty of brews on tap.
    52 Church St., Cambridge. 617-451-7700.

9. Strega’s waterfront location will offer a selection of

  • Specialty cocktails on Super Bowl Sunday, including Italian apple-tinis and spezie cosmos.
  • $5 appetizers starting at 4 p.m. on game day.
    56 Northern Ave., Boston. 671-345-3992.

10. Tryst restaurant in Arlington

  • Super Bowl specials created by executive chef Paul Turano.
  • Smoky cheese popcorn, spicy buffalo wings
  • Some healither options, like tuna tacos with avocado, red onion, and aji crema.
  • Guests can also enjoy options from Tryst’s traditional menu.
    689 Massachusetts Ave., Arlington. 781-641-2227.

11. The Seventy @ 3rd lounge at the Westin Waltham Boston

  • Truffle-infused tater tots,
  • Sliced steak sliders
  • Buffalo chicken flatbread.
  • The eatery will also be offering a special chicken wing platter – a dozen wings tossed with buffalo, honey, or sweet chili sauce, and served with garlic-parmesan blue cheese dip and olive aioli.
    70 Third Ave., Waltham. 781-290-5600.

12. Zebra’s Bistro & Wine Bar

  • Special charcuterie party board for game day. Chef Brendan Pelley’s assortment of snacks ($75/board) will include a variety of cured meats, house baked crackers, artisan cheeses and more.
  • Special three course prix fixe menu available on Super Bowl Sunday.
  • Additionally, Zebra’s will offer a three course pre fix menu option for nonsports fan looking for a quiet place to eat on game day.
    21 North St., Medfield. 508-359-4100.
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2014 Officers & Directors Installed for The Greater Boston Association of REALTORS®

At the meeting of the The Greater Boston Association of REALTORS® (GBAR) at the Boston University School of Management, the seventeen member board were installedgbar for the year 2014.

GBAR is the largest local REALTOR® association both in Massachusetts and New England with a membership over 6,700 residential real estate professionals in over 800 offices throughout metropolitan Boston. This is the local chapter of the Massachusetts and National Associations of REALTORS®.

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Boston is Named Coziest City To Live

Honeywell Infrared Heaters, in partnership with the environmental consulting company Environmental Health & Engineering did a study to find out just what cozycities are  the coziest in the Nation.
Dr. Ted Myatt, ScD, Environmental Health & Engineering said they believe coziness is defined by a city’s overall comfort, ambiance and accessibility.

The criteria ranged from

  • Fireplace and portable heaters usage
  • Access to parks
  • Overall walk-ability to restaurants and coffee shops per capita,
  • Stressful lifestyle scores and
  • Historical ambiance.

Based on this profile, below is a list of the top ten coziest U.S. cities:

 1.    Boston/Cambridge, Mass.
2.    San Francisco, Calif.
3.    Santa Fe, N.M.
4.    Washington, D.C.
5.    Portland, Ore.
6.    Seattle, Wash.
7.    Baltimore, Md.
8.    Providence, R.I.
9.    New Orleans, La.
10. Savannah, Ga.

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