For first time homebuyers, westward expansion could be their path to buying a new home

Uxbridge, Massachusetts

The real estate market is still strong despite COVID 19 and limited inventory. Pending home sales are up 20% from last year nationally. Mortgage applications are up 27%.

Most people in Massachusetts, especially millennials want to live in or near the city. Unfortunately, many of them cannot afford to live near the city because of surging home prices and low inventory. They are being priced out.

It was already a difficult path to homeownership for millennials who are first time homebuyers. Despite this difficult reality, more and more millennials are saving their money in the hopes of buying their first home. Unfortunately, the dream of a first home seems untrainable these days for many.

There is a solution however. Move west. Not just 495 west. I mean move past 495 if you have to!

Communities like Millis, Medway and Bellingham offer terrific value but if you are willing to go beyond 495 or 109, consider Blackstone, Uxbridge, Millville, Hopedale and Northbridge.

These communities may seem too far west for some people but they are wonderful communities that are safe and have great school systems.

These are markets that for a long time we’re considered too far west to move to. Properties were cheap to buy as a result. Well, times have changed. People are moving to these communities as a result of the suburban surge that has taken place in recent years.

Builders have also flocked to these communities, thanks to affordable land prices. More and more housing developments are starting to appear in these communities.

When you compare these communities to similar communities closer to Boston, it is a no brainer to consider moving west. Here are five comps that illustrate the price differences between the communities mentioned above and similar ones that are closer to Boston.

The comps are based on the latest median average home prices for 2020.

Hopedale: $400,000/ Norfolk: $587,500

Uxbridge: $400,500/Plainville: $458,000

Millis: $467,316/Walpole: $570,000

Medway: $475,000/Holliston: $553,250

Bellingham: $380,000/ Norwood: $550,000

Obviously there are several factors that make living the in Boston bedroom communities more expensive. Transportation being chief among them. However, with more people working from home, living further from the city is more sensible now.

Interestingly enough, communities like Mendon and Upton are outliers in the 495 belt. Property values in those communities have gone up substantially this year.

The average sale price for a home in Mendon this year is $514,000. The average sale price for a home in Upton is $540,000! In 2019, the average sale price in Upton was $487,500. That means that property values in Upton have gone up +10.8 % in the past year.

The building of housing developments and new homes have substantially added value to communities like Mendon and Upton.

Despite that, homes are still affordable in the majority of these communities along or west of 495. If you want to buy that first home and don’t feel like you can afford to live closer to the city, give these communities a look. You will be pleasantly surprised at how much home you could get for the price.

If you have any questions about these communities, call me at 774-284-0857 or email me at [email protected]. I will gladly get you more information on these communities if you are interested.