July 2001 Newsletter

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Thank you for contributing to my best real estate year ever! I'm celebrating my fifteenth year in the business and can look back on many satisfied clients as well as some good friends and connections made.

2001 has been a busy and rewarding year! SAVE THE DATE! "Celebrating the Heart and Soul of American Song", the benefit concert I co-produce for the Cambridge Housing Assistance Fund, will be held on September 28th at 8:00 PM at Sanders Theater, Harvard University. Kevin Mahogany, Downbeat Magazine's "Best Male Jazz Vocalist", and Wannetta Jackson, featuring Frank Wilkins and George W. Russell, will provide a fabulous evening of entertainment singing Gospel, Jazz, Rhythm and Blues. There will be a reception at the Harvard Faculty Club from 6:00 - 7:30 PM, with brief remarks from Mayor Galluccio and State Representatives Wolf and Barrios. This year's goal is to raise $120,000, which will help over 100 homeless and near homeless families and individuals with the startup costs of renting an apartment. The last two year's concerts were VERY successful, raising over $200,000 and helping over 200 households to obtain secure housing. Let me know if you would like to contribute or help in some way. We are looking for Business Sponsors, Program Advertisers, Donors, etc.

2001 has been a busy year in the Cambridge real estate market. In spite of the volatility of the stock market and the slowing of the rate of growth in the national economy, the Cambridge real estate market remains strong. DeWolfe's sales in June 2001 were up 20% over June 2000. Inventory remains relatively low; demand high and interest rates are low. While there has been some softening of asking prices and fewer properties selling over asking the first weekend with multiple bids, there is scant evidence of selling prices actually going down. In fact, there was appreciation last fall as well as this spring in some price ranges. The market is perhaps a little more 'normal' now, with properties being more price sensitive and taking longer to sell. While the 'high end' of $1 million plus is sluggish and perhaps the 'most affected' due to losses in buyer's stock market portfolios, there have been several strong sales in the $2-4 million range, particularly of newly renovated 'spec' homes. One historic home with a very high quality 'gut rehab' sold for $5.64 million. Meanwhile an entry-level one-bedroom condo is now $250k+, and a two-bedroom, $300k+. While the $200-500k range has been characterized by more inventory and slightly longer time on market, sales are still brisk with high first time buyer demand and low interest rates. The mid-level $500k-$1 million range, characterized by low inventory and several new construction/rehab opportunities, remains a bit sluggish with trade up buyers choosy and taking longer to sell their homes.
If you are considering a purchase, there are always good values to be found in Cambridge or Somerville. Many are new construction or new rehabs: in North Cambridge we have three new pre-construction single families in the upper $500s, in West Cambridge two condos in the $500s or two singles in the mid to upper $1 millions, and mid Cambridge townhomes in the $600s. There is also a 'sleeper' in Agassiz near Harvard Square, an eight room single with yard and parking for $849k. In Somerville, we have 12 new lofts in an Art Deco elevator building near Harvard Square selling in the $399k-$469k range and newly rehabbed condos and townhomes from $359k and up.

DeWolfe will continue its commitment to cutting edge marketing this year. DeWolfe Home Movies and Photo Galleries of our listings may be viewed at www.dewolfe.com. With over 50% of all households using the internet, DeWolfe is committed to offering innovative services to our clients and customers. DeWolfe marketing as well as the commitment of our agents has contributed to DeWolfe maintaining the top market share in Cambridge for many years running. I will continue to update my own web site at www.DavidPap.com.

With more and more buyers finding affordable housing opportunities in Somerville, DeWolfe will open a Somerville office this year. This will expand our market reach, offering more opportunities to buyers and sellers in both communities.

If you are considering buying or selling, the time is now to start planning! I am always available if you would like an update on the value of your home, or if you would like a consultation on your real estate needs. We offer Buyer and Seller representation at DeWolfe, so that if you are buying and selling, I can represent your interests in both transactions.

Most of my business is from personal referrals by satisfied clients. With fifteen years experience as a designer/builder/woodworker and fifteen years as a successful Realtor I have thirty years experience in the Cambridge housing market.  If you have a friend about to enter the challenging maze of the Cambridge real estate market I would be glad to be their guide.

I always enjoy hearing from friends and clients whether to simply ‘catch up’, or if they have a real estate need, or simply need advice on what renovations will add value to their home.

I look forward to hearing from you, and to seeing you at our September 28th benefit concert and reception for the Cambridge Housing Assistance Fund.


David Pap

617.864.8566, ext. 244