The Impact of Seasonality on North Shore Real Estate: When to Buy or Sell

Many factors influence the best time to buy or sell a home on the North Shore of Massachusetts. Prices, availability, and interest rates are some of the first ones to come to mind – but what about the seasons? In this blog we will explore the impact of seasonality on North Shore real estate and when you should buy or sell your home. 


The fall season brings gorgeous colors and landscapes to the North Shore of Massachusetts every year. This beautiful fall foliage can enhance the appearance of certain properties and make them more appealing to buyers. The season also coincides with the start of the school year, having a major impact on the real estate market. Buyers with families will likely want to be settled before the school year begins to avoid disrupting their child’s education, leading to fewer looking to buy in the fall season. While there may be fewer buyers, a motivated seller can benefit from less competition in the fall market.


With the summer season comes gardens in full bloom and inviting outdoor spaces. Sellers can showcase porches, patios, pools, and yards in a market full of buyers. The pleasant weather and longer daylight hours typically lead to increased buyer activity. Additionally, as previously mentioned, families looking to relocate are likely to do so in the summer months to avoid educational interruptions. A summer move allows children to help with the move and even participate in summer recreational activities to meet others in their new community. 

In the summer, sellers can often command higher prices but it is important to note the competition among buyers can become intense. 


Winters in New England are cold and the North Shore is no stranger to these low temperatures and heavy snowfall. The gloomy natural environment typically leads to fewer listings available as sellers wait for spring. It is important for sellers to properly stage their property and upkeep maintenance if they are looking to sell in the winter season as properties tend to look less appealing in the cold and in snow. If you are a serious buyer during the winter, you may experience less competition and potentially better deals. Talk to your realtor to seek out your best options!


The North Shore real estate market sees a resurgence in the spring as sellers want to capitalize on improved weather after the winter months and buyers are ready to shop. Inventory increases, but so does buyer competition. It can get fierce, potentially leading to bidding wars, so buyers should be prepared to act quickly. Sellers can benefit from this fierce market with great presentation and proper pricing. 

The spring market also begins to heat up with families looking to buy and get settled in homes before kids go back to school. With a spring buy, a family can plan to move in the summer months after the school year has ended and be well settled before school starts back up again in the fall. This also gives both the kids and parents a chance to participate in any summer recreational activities where they can meet people and build relationships in their new community. 

Whatever the season may be, I am here to assist you in your real estate journey. Contact me today to begin the process of buying or selling your next home on the North Shore.

A Guide to Buying Your First Home on the North Shore
A Guide to Buying Your First Home on the North Shore

A Guide to Buying Your First Home on the North Shore

Buying your first home on the North Shore of Massachusetts is such an exciting journey! As you dive into the local real estate market it is essential to have proper knowledge and preparation to make the most informed decisions possible when searching for your dream home. This guide to buying your first North Shore home will provide a few tips to get you started.

Know your communities and neighborhoods

The North Shore has a lot to offer with its many different communities and neighborhoods, each having their own unique charm and character. From urban to coastal communities, the region offers something for everyone’s lifestyle preference. Take the time to research and explore different towns, cities, and neighborhoods, considering factors such as schools, amenities, transportation, recreation, and community services. 

When considering the North Shore, take a look at the amazing beaches, highly-rated schools, and modes of transportation. Understanding the detailed features of each neighborhood will help you find the perfect place to call home. 

Get a pre-approval 

Before beginning your home search process, it’s crucial to obtain a pre-approval from a reputable mortgage lender. This will give you a clear understanding of your budget, enabling you to focus on properties within your financial reach and avoiding unrealistic expectations. It also improves your credibility with sellers, increasing your chances and expediting the process of closing on your dream home. Consult with a professional to gather the necessary documents and choose a reputable lender before the property search truly begins.

Keep taxes in mind

When buying a home, it is important to take taxes into consideration, as they vary by region and town. On the North Shore in particular, taxes can be on the higher end but can differ greatly by city. Do thorough research and understand each town’s tax rates to help properly factor property taxes into your budget calculations. To make a financially healthy decision, consider the long-term implications of taxes and how they will fit into your overall homeownership plans.

Get an inspection

A professional home inspection is a vital step in the home buying process, regardless of location. Homes on the North Shore are older, making it even more important to identify any problems ahead of purchase. A qualified home inspector will thoroughly assess the condition of the property and identify any potential issues or necessary repairs. The information gained from inspection can be used to negotiate repairs and/or price adjustments during the buying process. Additionally, accompanying the inspector during the inspection will give you a deeper understanding of the home’s systems and any maintenance requirements.

In the current real estate market many buyers are choosing to waive the home inspection in hopes of getting ahead of the competition, but the inspection is essential for buyers who want to purchase a home with complete confidence. I would always recommend a home inspection if you are interested in a house, as it can keep your investment safe and put an end to your anxieties before they may even arise. 

Know the benefits of each town

The North Shore is home to many wonderful towns with many benefits for residents. Dive into details, visit, and experience each place firsthand to help make your decision. Check out some of these benefits:

For more details, check out my local guides!

If you’re looking to buy or sell a home on the North Shore, contact me today!

Tom Beauregard 5 Homebuying Consderations to Consider
Tom Beauregard 5 Homebuying Consderations to Consider

5 Home Buying Considerations You May Not Think Of

When it comes to buying a home, it’s easy to get caught up in the basics like location, price, size, and style. However, there are several other important factors which can make a big difference in the long run. In this article, we’ll discuss five home buying considerations you may not have thought of before.

Proximity to Amenities

The location of your potential new home is crucial, and it’s important to consider more than just the distance to work and schools. If you have a dog, for instance, you may want to look for a home near a dog park or a neighborhood with plenty of walking paths. Similarly, a walkable neighborhood that has easy access to shops and restaurants could be a significant bonus. Depending on how much you travel, you may want to consider your new home’s proximity to an airport. Similarly, having nearby access to a hospital and veterinarian can be crucial! 


A noisy home is not something anyone wants. Though some causes of noise may be obvious, like a train station, others may not be apparent when you tour a house. When evaluating potential properties, it’s important to think about any upcoming construction in the area. An up-and-coming neighborhood can mean increased property value in the long run, but it could also lead to plenty of construction noise in the meantime. You may also want to consider your potential home’s proximity to a flight path, nearby barking dogs, or busy intersections. 

Visual Aspects

Though many visual aspects of a home can be improved, you will also need to look at those which you cannot change. When you imagine yourself in the space, are you comfortable with the amount of natural light? Are you happy enough with the views out your window, or will they potentially bother you over time? If you are not happy looking outside and seeing electric wires, you may rather live in a neighborhood with their wires buried.


When buying a home, you’re also purchasing the surrounding neighborhood. Though you can probably get a strong sense of the neighborhood simply from driving through, consider going for a walk around the nearby streets. It’s important to consider factors like parking, noise levels, and the potential for flooding. Additionally, think about the neighbors and whether they’ll be a good fit for you and your family! If the neighborhood is near a college town or loud bars, it may not be the best fit for a family with a small child who needs their sleep! 

Your Future

Finally, when considering purchasing a home, it’s important to think about your future. If you have children, or are planning on having them, you may want to ensure you’re in a good school district and have enough room in the house for your little ones. Conversely, if your children are going to be moving out soon, you might want to consider downsizing to a smaller home. If you are planning to stay in your house for many years to come, you will have to consider if it will be the right longterm fit! 

Purchasing a home is a significant decision that requires careful consideration of several factors beyond the obvious ones. By taking these five home buying considerations into account, you can ensure you find the perfect home for you and your family. If you are looking to buy or sell a home on the North Shore of Massachusetts, contact me today

Things to Watch Out For in A Home Inspection Part 2- The Basement

When you’re buying a new home, a thorough inspection of the property is essential to ensure there are no underlying issues which could affect the safety and livability of the house. One of the most important areas to inspect is the basement, as it is often a hub for many critical home systems such as electrical, plumbing, and heating and cooling systems or HVAC components. Here are some things to look out for during a home inspection, specifically related to problems the inspector may find in the basement. A licensed home inspector will go through each of these items and discuss them with the buyer.

Water Damage

Water damage is one of the most common problems found in basements, especially if the home is older. During a home inspection, the inspector will look for stains or any signs of water damage, such as mold, mildew, or damp spots, flaking or no efflorescence. These issues can be caused by a variety of factors, such as a leaky foundation, poor drainage, or inadequate waterproofing. If water damage is detected, it’s important to address the issue promptly to prevent further damage and potential health hazards.


Basements often house many of a home’s i mechanicals including electrical panels, hot water heaters, furnaces and boilers, HVAC systems,  washing machines and clothes dryers During the inspection, the inspector will check that these appliances are in good working condition and meet safety standards. They will also examine the ventilation and exhaust systems to ensure they are functioning properly and not posing any risks to the home’s occupants.

 Foundation and Structural Integrity 

Cracks in the basement walls or floor can indicate a serious problem with the foundation. The inspector will look for cracks and assess their severity. Small, hairline cracks may not be a major concern, but larger cracks or cracks wider at the top than the bottom could be a sign of a serious issue. The inspector may recommend you have a structural engineer evaluate the problem. The inspector will look for visible structural wood-no sagging, damage, no decay, no stains, no damage from insects, sills attached to foundation with anchor bolts, insulation and integrity of floor joists. Also, inspection of water supply, waste and vent pipes.    

Air Quality

Poor air quality in the basement can be a health hazard. The inspector may check the ventilation system and look for signs of mold or other pollutants in the air. A basement that is poorly ventilated or has high levels of radon or other pollutants  can cause respiratory problems or other health issues.

In conclusion, the basement is an important area of the home to consider during a home inspection. Water damage, malfunctioning appliances, cracks in the foundation, and poor air quality can all be serious issues that need to be addressed. By having a professional inspector evaluate the basement and identify any problems, you can make an informed decision about whether to move forward with the purchase of the home, negotiate repairs with the seller, or walk away from the deal.

If you’re looking to buy or sell your home, I would love to speak with you. Call me today, (781) 690-3837!

Interior wall of a home under construction, unfinished walls with ladders and construction supplies
Interior wall of a home under construction, unfinished walls with ladders and construction supplies

Asbestos Risks in Your Home

This is the first in our series of home inspection issues to look out for during an inspection. First up, Asbestos! If you live in an older residence or are considering buying one, it is crucial to be educated about the dangers of asbestos. When making changes to an old building, no matter how minor, you may disturb the asbestos used in building materials and release its fibers into the air. Though asbestos-related diseases are relatively rare, doing research and knowing the risks can prevent harm to you and your family!

What is Asbestos?

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral made up of flexible fibers that are resistant to heat, electricity, and corrosion. Its most common uses are in building materials, particularly insulation of homes, wiring, and pipes and if disturbed can become airborne and dangerous if inhaled. We now know being exposed to asbestos can lead to mesothelioma and other types of cancer such as lung, ovarian and laryngeal cancer. Though the use of asbestos has been largely banned in the United States, your home may still contain some asbestos if it was built before the 1980s. 

Where is Asbestos Found in the Home?

Asbestos is most commonly found in exterior asbestos siding, floor tile, popcorn/textured ceilings, or insulation. It is also found in brake components of cars due to its heat-resistant properties. Generally, you will not be able to tell which materials contain asbestos unless they are explicitly labeled or tested. If you are not planning to disturb any of these materials in your house, you and your family should be safe from the dangers of asbestos. If you are planning on any sort of DIY renovation, installing new insulation, repairing or removing asbestos siding, or replacing a pipe, you should take the appropriate measures to mitigate your risk of exposure. 

How Do I Prevent Exposure?

If you plan to make any DIY renovations to your home, be sure to do so in a way that will not disturb any potential asbestos. For instance, using a scraper to remove old vinyl flooring can release dangerous asbestos fibers. If you can install new tile on top of the old, you will not run the risk of releasing the fibers into the air. This advice cannot be used in all instances, such as the removal of batt insulation or the replacement of an old insulated pipe. If your existing building materials are damaged, or you plan on damaging them in a DIY project, you should get them tested. 

A trained asbestos professional can visit your home and determine if materials contain asbestos. Homeowners can also collect samples of materials and send them to a lab to determine their contents, but this process may expose the homeowner in the process. Trained professionals can also properly repair or remove the materials, which can be dangerous to do on your own. 

What Should I Do if I Have Been Exposed?

There is no test to determine if you have been exposed to asbestos, but there are ways to determine if you have contracted an asbestos-related disease. Most of the health problems caused by asbestos are diagnosed at least 15 years after exposure. Generally, these health issues are caused by long-term repeated exposure to asbestos, but you can never be too careful. Short-term intense exposure has also been linked to disease. Contact your primary care physician if you are concerned about your risk of developing mesothelioma.

My Experience With Asbestos

In 1996, my wife and I purchased a home with old vinyl tiling in the basement which contained asbestos. When we decided to remove it, it was quite a process. Asbestos can be difficult to remove, leaving a sticky residue from the tile cement and being difficult to handle. We hired professionals who were able to tent off our basement and remove it completely without contaminating the air we breathe. 

If asbestos comes up on a home inspection, it doesn’t have to be a dealbreaker. It’s an important thing to discuss the financial and health implications associated.

In general, try to avoid damaging materials that may contain asbestos in your home. For the safety of everyone in the home, conduct extensive research and contact a professional before beginning DIY renovations, regardless of how minor they may seem.

For more information, please visit these trusted resources:

Why Do I Need A Home Inspection?

Since the pandemic, we have been seeing a very competitive housing market. With the bidding wars and over-asking offers of 2021, many buyers also chose to waive the home inspection in hopes of getting ahead of the competition. As we enter the fall of 2022, I’ve noticed an uptick in home inspections in Massachusetts, which is great for buyers who want to purchase a home with complete confidence. I would always recommend a home inspection if you are interested in a house, as it can keep your investment safe and put an end to your anxieties before they may even arise. 

Save Money and Unwanted Surpises

If you choose to waive the home inspection contingency, you could be setting yourself up for potential problems down the line. Home inspectors detect things such as water leaks, roof damages, foundation issues, or unseen safety hazards that could be extremely costly for the new buyer. Knowing what potential problems lie ahead allows you to plan for repairs or even ask the sellers to chip in for or make repairs prior to your purchase agreement. In this way- home inspections can pay for themselves! First-time homebuyers should be especially cautious, as they may not understand the potential problems of home upkeep that a seasoned homeowner can identify. If your real estate contract has a home inspection contingency, you can back out of the deal or make negotiations depending on the findings of the inspection. 

Find Flaws You Can’t Identify Yourself

Looking online for home inspection tips or asking your contractor friend for help is not the same as hiring a licensed home inspector. Massachusetts is consistently ranked as one of the top 5 states for home inspection regulations, according to the American Society of Home Inspectors. In order to be licensed, home inspectors must meet the strong qualifications of the licensing board and have lots of experience. In addition to searching for structural issues in the home, an inspector is also trained to identify issues with plumbing, heating/air-conditioning, and electrical systems. This wide range of skills makes home inspectors incredibly qualified to identify potential problems with your real estate purchase. Not only will they guide you through any issues, they will categorize them to help you understand the severity of the problem (i.e does it have to be replaced now or will it maybe become an issue down the line). Regardless of your understanding of a home, a licensed inspector can give you a complete breakdown of the health and longevity of a structure and its many components. 

Purchase a Home with Full Confidence

There is nothing quite like reassurance when making a large life-changing purchase. Knowing the intricate details of your potential home is priceless when it comes to buying power. This is, most likely, the largest purchase of your life, so details definitely matter. Review the report with the home inspector, in detail, and ask any questions you have for clarification. It is important to understand the report in its entirety so you can make sound decisions on the next steps in your potential purchase. When it comes to buying a home, it is vital that you understand the full scope of your purchase, even if that includes some not-so-great but needed repairs. Knowing details from the structural makeup to the appliances’ current standings helps you make an informed decision on your purchase. Working alongside the home inspector and seller will help lead you to a collaborative decision on closing. If you are interested in buying a home and want more advice on home inspections don’t hesitate to contact me for assistance.

Should I Buy Now or Wait?

The housing market has experienced some drastic changes since the start of the pandemic. In particular, the high interest rates and low inventory we are now experiencing have greatly influenced many people’s decisions on whether or not to invest in real estate. Let’s examine some of the top reasons the timing may or may not be right for buying a home. 

Why Buy Now?

There are plenty of reasons that potential homebuyers have decided that now is the right time for them to buy. The more obvious of these reasons include an immediate need to change their living situation, for instance, they have to move for work, or are expecting an addition to their family. Maybe now is the right time to buy if you have already found the perfect house for your specific location and needs! 

Otherwise, the decision to buy in this seller’s market may be based on more subtle factors. Choosing to buy a house will almost always be a good investment, as home prices go up over time. For first-time homebuyers, purchasing a house without delay means that you can begin to build equity immediately, as opposed to staying in a rental for an indefinite amount of time. 

The most important factor in your decision to buy a home is your financial means. If you have saved enough money for a down payment, with enough left over for the many other costs of buying a home, the cash will be better spent on a home than sitting around in your bank account! If you have a high credit score, you will also be in a better position to buy a home now than those who do not. Despite the current rising interest rates, a good credit score will help you secure the best mortgage rate possible. 

Why Wait?

If you are not perfectly confident in your finances, you may find that now is not the time to purchase a home. Especially if this will be your first real estate purchase, the process may cause far too much financial pressure to be worth your time. Similarly, in this current housing market, your chances of securing the property you are interested in are lessened by strong competition and offers over asking price. This may be the time to live below your means and strengthen your savings and credit score, which will help you avoid exorbitant interest rates. 

If you are comfortable in your current living situation, regardless of your financials, you may be better off waiting for a change in the housing market while you secure the means for your ideal home. Though it is impossible to predict how or when the market will shift in the buyer’s favor, it cannot remain the same forever. Keep your focus on the housing market in the specific area where you are looking to buy, as it may be different from the overall market trends across the state or country. 

In the spring of 2022, Bankrate examined some of the major barriers to homeownership:

“The primary reasons are not enough income (43 percent), out-of-reach home prices (39 percent) and being unable to afford a down payment and closing costs (36 percent). Other reasons cited were poor credit (22 percent), simply not being ready (22 percent), mortgage rates that are too high (17 percent), lack of inventory of homes for sale (13 percent), and having too much debt (13 percent).” 


Many people who are interested in home ownership have said that they are willing to take other steps toward finding more affordable living in the current housing market. The top concessions they are willing to make include moving out of state, buying a fixer-upper, and moving farther from family, friends, and work. Finding a house in 2022 may require some sacrifices to your original plans or vision of a dream home. 

Trying to predict the housing market is a Sisyphean task. The decision to buy a house is an entirely personal one, based on your current needs and means. A local real estate agent will be able to help you assess the local market as it relates to your housing goals to help you decide if the timing is right. If you are interested in purchasing a home in NorthShore Massachusetts or have further questions, please contact me today.

5 Tips For First-Time Homebuyers In

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the current market, you are not alone. The power is in the seller’s hands which can leave many feeling discouraged during the buying process. There is a house out there waiting for you, I promise. It may take a bit of flexibility and patience, but together we can get it done! Here are some tips to help prepare first-time homebuyers for the experience. 

Understand the Current Market (make sure you are ready to buy!)

You might already be past this point in the homebuying process, but it is worth it to take a good look at the current housing market and not be too hasty with any decisions. Buying your first house is a very personal decision, and only you can decide if the time is right! Although you cannot predict or try to perfectly time the purchase in any market, be sure to have a basic understanding of what the real estate market looks like in your specific area. Start attending open houses and comparing home amenities to prices to gain some knowledge of what to expect. This will help keep your expectations reasonable, giving you an advantage over other buyers.

Know What You Can Afford

First and foremost, get preapproved by a local mortgage lender or a mortgage broker to see what you can qualify for. There are also plenty of resources out there to help you understand what type of home you can afford, but be sure to have a very solid sense of this before beginning your search. The Washington Post describes the four key components of affordability as:

  • How much you have saved for a down payment
  • How much your household earns
  • What debt you carry
  • Your credit score

Though the market is beginning to shift-interests are on the rise. Inventory levels are also starting to increase, but the market remains brisk and in certain markets, offers are still coming in fast and over asking.

To find success in this market, I recommend finding a property that is below your budget and submitting an offer over the asking price. An offer above asking will immediately help you stand out against other competitive buyers and show the sellers you are committed and genuinely interested in their home.

Other Expenses to Remember

Knowing how much you can afford in terms of a house is a great start, but you have to remember the many other expenses that come with the purchase. When investing in a house, a home inspection can be an invaluable tool that may save you a lot of money and stress down the line. Whether you choose not to have an inspection done or not, you should have money saved for potential future repairs to your home. They may need to be done sooner than you think! Be sure to familiarize yourself with average closing costs so that you are not surprised by extra fees once you have found your perfect house. Similarly, you should have extra money set aside for moving costs, which can really add up if you are moving long distance.

Solidify your Wants and Needs

If you have a long list of must-haves it might be time to zero in on what is most important to you. In most markets, it can be tricky to find a home that checks every single box on your list. However, there are still homes that are just what you need. Narrow your list down to two or three must-haves that are the most important to you. Things like size, layout, number of bedrooms, and bathrooms should be at the top of your list, while smaller items that can be altered later like granite countertops and special appliances should be near the bottom.  

Find the Right Realtor

The process of home buying can be stressful- but it can also be fantastic and exciting to look for your new home! Be sure to work with a Realtor who shares your enthusiasm for the process, they can make all the difference in getting you into the home of your dreams. Not all agents are created equal- especially in a competitive seller’s market. Working with a professional with years of experience can help ease your mind. In particular, you should be looking for someone with many positive reviews, a proven track record, and plenty of knowledge about the area. 

If you’re looking to buy in the Northshore of Massachusetts, I would be happy to work together to find you a home that works for you. Contact me today to get started!

What You Can Expect for the North Shore Summer Housing Market

We’ve made it through another Massachusetts winter and have finally begun to see the blooming flowers and sunshine we deserve. With this returning sense of normalcy, what should we expect from the North Shore housing market?

Home prices skyrocketed in 2021, increasing by nearly 20% on average in the United States. Though the high demand and low inventory remain in play as we enter the summer, the market is not expected to be as intense as last year’s. 

“While sellers remain in an advantageous position, price stability and the continuation of competitive interest rates may provide some much-needed relief to buyers this year.”

For Sellers:

Though sellers are still receiving multiple offers, inventory is finally starting to become more available, slowly but surely. In March, homebuyer competition fell for the first time in six months. As the supply starts to become more in line with the demand, bidding wars are becoming less frequent and intense. For sellers, this means fewer options and a need to be less selective between offers.

For Buyers:

For buyers, this perhaps signifies less competition and slightly more freedom of choice when it comes to purchasing a home this summer. Though these trends are pointing towards “business as usual,” the market is still heavily in favor of the seller, and high interest rates severely restrict first-time buyers. 

How will interest rates affect the Massachusetts housing market in 2022?

Though there is a feeling that things are calming down as we enter the summer, the cost of borrowing money through mortgages has continued to increase. 

“Most experts predicted that mortgage rates would climb this year, but they did so more quickly than expected, averaging more than 4% for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages in mid-February. Around mid-April, it surged to 5.28 percent, the highest level since April 2010, and the uptick continues.”

Many potential buyers are seeing these interest rates continue to rise and are provided with a sense of urgency to make offers before these rates get even higher. This mindset makes sense when you look at graphs such as the one below, which show the average 30-year fixed mortgage rates in the United States from early 2020 to the present day.  Many buyers that are in the middle price range held off on making a purchase because there hasn’t been inventory, and some decided to move now. Others who held off used their equity to make home improvements, such as adding a home office or an addition. 

There is a general feeling that the housing market tends to calm down during the summertime. However, that was not the case last summer- and likely won’t be true this year either. Interest rates around this time last year averaged 3% and are currently just above 5%. Though it is true that interest rates will likely continue to rise before they taper off and fall, research indicates that there is no need to panic, as housing prices, interest rates, and housing availability are likely to slowly return to normal levels over the course of the next year. 

Image via Freddy Mac

It is impossible to predict the state of the market with 100% accuracy,  so you must always make decisions based on your own financial state and needs rather than trying to time the market perfectly. Regardless of if you are looking to buy, sell, or have questions about the state of the North Shore housing market as we approach the summer, it is always a good idea to consult a professional. 

Get in touch with me today for a FREE consultation.