Berkshire Market Watch Report

For all of the details and get town by town information, please view the full 1st Quarter 2017 Market Watch (pdf) for details!  Here is a summary:

Strongest Residential Markets YTD

Adams, Lanesboro, Pittsfield, Richmond, Lenox, Lee, Great Barrington, Otis, Sheffield, and West Stockbridge

First quarter sales reflect positive market momentum.  The dollar volume of real estate sales is up 3% and the number of transactions sold up over 9%. The number of residential homes, land parcels, condos and commercial properties sold in the first quarter rose compared to sales last year.  The multi-family market was stable with the same number of sales as last year.  The first quarter of 2016 was very robust, so the growth in 2017 continues a strong upward trend.

 Overall 2016 2017
1st Quarter $ Sold # Sold $ Sold # Sold
North $8,291,242 59 $7,746,840 59
Central $23,033,810 121 $25,039,547 139
South $34,020,297 104 $34,567,512 113
Grand Total $65,345,349 284 $67,353,899 311

The number of residential sales rose in all regions.

  • Northern Berkshire had 42 home sales, 5 up from 41.
  • Central Berkshire had 103 home sales, 5 up from 93
  • Southern Berkshire had 87 homes sales, 5 up from 81.

The dollar volume transacted also showed positive gain, with sales topping $67 million in the first quarter. In the residential market, there were 232 sales of $55 million, the highest number of homes sold in the 1st quarter for the past 20 years tracked. The dollar volume of single family home sales fell 6% from the previous quarter even though sales hit record highs and were up 2% over last year.  Condo and commercial sales have the largest increases in dollar volume sold.

1st Quarter 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Residential $46,885,727 $46,306,987 $47,673,452 $65,199,400 $39,896,417 $55,714,339 $54,694,605
Multi-Family $1,746,030 $2,111,300 $2,088,000 $2,654,450 $2,357,700 $2,621,610 $2,689,294
Lots/Land $2,584,000 $1,929,000 $1,843,000 $2,314,300 $1,854,275 $1,921,650 $1,541,300
Condominium $1,718,000 $2,780,075 $5,598,500 $4,799,000 $2,068,400 $2,368,500 $3,715,300
Commercial $2,245,000 $1,735,900 $3,019,000 $450,000 $1,255,000 $2,719,250 $4,713,400
Grand Total $55,178,757 $54,863,262 $60,221,952 $75,417,150 $47,431,792 $65,345,349 $67,353,899

Download the full 1st Quarter 2017 Market Watch (pdf) for details!

Past Editions:2016 Year End Market Watch Report | 2015 Year End Market Watch2014 Year End Market Watch | 2013 Year in Review Report | 2012 Year in Review Report| 2011 Year in Review Report 


Homeownership: We were made for this

NAR’s newest ad campaign entitled, “Homeownership: We were made for this” has a funny way to deliver the messages of both home-ownership and using a REALTOR in very short, videos. Check them out.  The videos will be available for sharing on the 26th. You can sign up for notification here:

Broadband Update for Windsor and Mount Washington

Two Berkshire towns have received state grants to design and build their own municipal broadband networks, according to the Western MA Economic Development Council. Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration last week released $4.6 million in total, with Mount Washington receiving $222,000 for an estimated $1.25 million network and Windsor receiving $830,000 for an estimated $2.19 million

Berkshire Women Realtor Builders Giving Back

Kudos to the Realtors who volunteered for the Habitat for Humanity Women’s Build. Despite cold, wet weather, our intrepid our REALTOR ReACT [Real Estate Agent’s Charitable Task-Force] Volunteers got down and dirty, helping to build a home for a family of 7 with 5 children.   You make us proud! Mary Jane Dunlop (REACT Chair), Rose Schnopp

The Official Market Watch is Here!

The full 1st Quarter 2017 Market Watch (pdf) is here.  Use the link to get the full report that shows how all regions of the Berkshires are doing, as well as a full market overview.  For a quick peek, the strongest markets YTD compared to the first quarter last year are:  Adams, Lanesboro, Pittsfield, Richmond,

22 Towns Now Right to Farm

Hinsdale has been added to the list of communities that have adopted right to farm bylaws.  Please be aware that Hinsdale, like Pittsfield, does not require a singed copy of the Right To Farm Notification to be filed.  All other communities have such a requirement.  Please update your listings accordingly! Adams Alford Becket Cheshire Egremont

Berkshire 2016 Market Watch Report

The 2016 Market Watch Report has been released in full format.  Sales continue to rise since 2010, with the total number of real estate transactions in 2016 topping 1686 transfers.  This is the high since 2005.  Similarly, the dollar volume of the sales also continued to grow, topping at 407 million dollars transacted in 2016. 

2017 Berkshire MA Property Tax Rates

Staff has updated the 2017 property tax rates for cities and towns in Berkshire County.  A quick reference copy can be found on our website, as well as PDF downloads of 2017 rates (as well as historical years).  Clarksburg is the only town that does not have their rate approved yet. 2017 Berkshire Property Tax

Disclose Right of First to Brokers, Not Marketing Venues

In case you missed it, we reported in June that here was a policy change to the way you can report your Right of First Refusals on a property (home sale contingency or otherwise).  The MLS Board acknowledged that the syndication sites immediately marked those listings as PENDING, without any care for the status difference. 

New Smoke Detector Fact Sheet and Clarification

Last week we shared that on December 1, 2016 in Massachusetts, when homes built before 1975 are sold, the house must be equipped with smoke detectors with a 10-year life span (and if expired, replaced before permit will be issues)… and if battery powered, be equipped with sealed lithium batteries.   The MA Fire Chief issued a letter that clarified that smoke alarms installed prior to December 1, 2016 that met requirements of existing regulations upon installation will continue to meet regulatory requirements of 527 CMR 1.00 and requirements for sale/transfer in accordance with M.G.L. c. 148, s. 26F until the devices are 10 years old or have exceeded the manufacturer’s recommended life.  Fire Chief Letter. He also submitted a new consumer fact sheet for your use. Finally, attend the upcoming SOS member meetings to ask questions of our local fire inspectors!

MA Apartment Fee Rental Disclosure

Apartment Rentals: What fees to Disclose

Until now, regulations governing apartment rentals were ambiguous as to whether a tenant fee disclosure form was required for all rentals, or only those where a tenant would be required to pay a fee. Due to MAR’s efforts, the regulations were updated to clarify that the disclosure form is only required in instances where a
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