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      David Paez

      Why Your Home's Value Is Rising

      The boom that Boston's real estate market is experiencing right now is escalating so much that even neighborhoods and properties that people once thought were dead in the water, are now selling above and beyond asking prices. A concrete example of this being that an open house this past weekend saw a line of eager and interested buyers outside its doors.

      "This recent real estate spree in the city is a stark indication of the strong spring homebuying season that's soon to erupt", says properties broker David Paez. "The low supply of available homes however, will affect buyers, especially first-time buyers looking for more affordable, lower-priced homes, since they are having to compete with investors and cash buyers". Nationally, 13 of the most troubled U.S. housing marketing also saw significant growth rates in the first 30 days of 2013. Particularly, downtrodden cities such as Phoenix, Sacramento, and Detroit have seen double-digit growth in local home prices 2012. Boston, though not a part of the "troubled list", is not an exception, reporting property gains that are in the top 10 ranking nationwide.

      With all of these figures, you're probably wondering what the cause is for all the home price appreciation. And in our earnest attempt to enlighten you, prospective buyers and sellers, of the real estate industry's current on goings, we've round up three factors that we - along with experts in the industry - think are contributing to the increase in  home value prices.

      EMPLOYMENT IS ENERGIZING THE MARKET.  Numerous (and even weekly) reports have indicated that the U.S. jobs market is "steadily improving" and are in fact at its lowest levels since the recession hit, suggesting that more people can now afford that home they've been dreaming of. Alongside this, extremely low interest rates coupled with various banking institution's lesser-strict policies, are paving the way for individuals to take out mortgages and home improvement loans. Moving upward together with employment and buying power are home price indices, since demand is about to skyrocket skyrocketing, especially in once hard-hit metropolitan markets.

      THE BUCKET HAS REACHED THE BOTTOM. In the past four years or so, real agents, economists, and even homebuyers and homeowners have asked when the market will hit bottom, seeing figures consistently spiral downward after the 2007 financial crisis. And as of mid-2012, the market has apparently reached that benchmark, signaling the return of buyers and sellers who were once on the sidelines waiting for the right time. Particularly, those "sharks" who have been patiently lurking for lucrative deals, are now gambling again on the real estate industry, stimulating demand and upping the ante for first-time homebuyers.

      HOME IMPROVEMENT PERFORMANCE SAYS IT ALL. When the stock market is up, it's primarily due to the contributions of "emerging industries", with special mention to technology, healthcare, and the automotive industries who lead the pack. But recently, home improvement stocks have notably made an impact to the rise of major stock markets. Revenues of home improvement retailers such as Home Depot and Lowes are up, and that means consumers are again putting money into improving their most valuable asset: their homes. These home improvement retailers are projecting growth well beyond this year, forecasting albeit humble but still growing, revenues in the next three years to come.

      All in all, these three trends paint a pretty picture of the U.S. housing market for the rest of 2013. Locally here in Boston, the market is clamoring for more properties to go on sale and developments to finish construction so sales can go through already. In fact, developments that are still in the pipeline are seeing rapid pre-selling rates, with Millennium Place declaring last week that more than half of their yet-to-be-topped-off project has been sold. And with this kind of market, the rest of the over 100 projects to come should proceed with confidence and clamor. And with the almost-everyday signing off of Boston Redevelopment Authority-certified mid- and high-rise projects, it's with any amount of luck that there'll be enough paint left over for 2014.

      Curious to find out how much your home is worth? Call, email, or tweet us now for a free assessment.

      Choosing A Great Real Estate Agent

      Buying real estate is complex, and it's important to select a competent, honest agent who will skillfully represent your best interests throughout the entire process of selecting, negotiating and closing on your property. Here are several qualities to look for when considering a real estate professional to represent you in a transaction, whether for investment or for your first-ever home:


      Do some legwork. Literally. Take a walk or drive around your neighborhood and check out the for-sale signs.  Does one company dominate the area? Are there fliers or other marketing materials available? Most importantly, do 'sold' signs go up after days, weeks, or not at all?

      Stop by open houses to view other homes on the market. This is a great way to see the agent in action, and meet them in a casual setting.  Are they friendly, informative and professional? How do they respond to other people coming to the open house?


      Real estate is a learn-by-doing process, and an experienced agent should be closing at least five to seven property transactions per year. Every transaction is complex, and each agent obtains new and relevant "training" on each deal. So ask each agent -- you should interview two at the least -- how many transactions they've closed in their years in the business. If they have not closed that many, ask who is guiding them as they learn the business and what professional training they had to prepare them to assist you.


      You also want to get references from the sales professionals' recently closed transactions. Then take the time to call those references to ask how the agents performed. You will learn a lot by listening to what their past customers have to say. Google their names, too, and check the state for licensing information and any disciplinary information.

      Time to work with you

      An agent who has too many clients may be too busy for you and may not be right for you, either. Make sure they have the time to sit with and educate you, show you lots of properties and are willing to write offers on properties that you would like to buy. If they have too many clients at once, service to you may suffer. So make your best judgment.


      Make sure they know the location, location, location in which you want to purchase property. Some agents are going to be familiar with the entire county and can talk to you about each neighborhood. Find a sales professional who is very knowledgeable about your targeted location. Even go as far as asking for recommendations around the neighborhood where you're planning to buy, chances are, they have a trustworthy agent they can refer you to.

      Help you protect yourself

      Will they help you make smart decisions? This is the largest purchase you are ever going to make, and your real estate professional should be well-versed in and advise you on how to do your "homework" when buying a property. Does buying make financial sense? Did you get a fair deal on your mortgage? A good agent can guide you in these areas and should be on your side in a transaction.

      The sales professional you use should be someone you trust and feel can do a great job helping you evaluate homes and get a property under contract. They should also help you navigate the escrow and closing process and negotiate in your best interest, whether it is the price, repair requests or other contract terms.

      BIRE and The Realmadrid Foundation join forces

      Three members of our BIRE team, David Paez, Alfonso Bigeriego and Antonio Revilla, spent last weekend in Houston joining

      David Paez, Alfonso Bigeriego, Iker Casillas and Antonio Revilla

      forces with Iker Casillas, goalkeeper of the Spanish national soccer team. They invited over 100 children from surrounding Houston neighborhoods to a "soccer clinic" kick off for Casillas' Sports and Achievement Academy. The academy, operating as a pilot after-school program for students of Houston's Eliot and Rust elementary schools, will provide underprivileged youth of disadvantaged communities neighboring the BVVA Compass stadium, a place where they can escape the challenges of their communities. The Sports and Achievement Academy, is aimed at improving students' academic performance by providing coaching in key subjects and social support. BIRE is proud to join efforts with The Realmadrid Foundation and BBVA Compass to provide the children of some of Houston's most poverty-stricken neighborhoods with a place to go for support and nurture, thus, opening doors to these children for years to come.

      The Realmadrid Foundation, a worldwide initiative with over 200 schools around the world, is partnering up with the International Studies Foundation to bring social-sporting schools to the United States. September 2nd of this year, two schools will open in Worcester, MA and Arlington, VA. Come January 2nd, Houston will house two more schools like The Sports and Achievement Academy.

      Here at BIRE, we know the importance of bridging the gap from client to friend and from less empowered to more empowered. The BIRE team excels in fostering relationships with clients in order to provide personalized service of the utmost caliber with any needs one might when moving to a new city. It is this excellence in fostering relationships that has inspired BIRE to unite with The Realmadrid Foundation.

      We are honored to have been sought out by one of the world's most recognizable brands, The Realmadrid Foundation, to assist in a project that allows us to give back to the community with the same level of commitment that we provide our clients from across the globe. Together BIRE and The Realmadrid Foundation are building social-sporting schools throughout the US where children of less-fortunate walk of life can form life-long relationships with mentors. Through their engagement in the activities provided, they will cultivate true feelings of empowerment, preparing them with the skill sets and confidence they'll need to achieve whatever their life goals may be.