The Renaissance of the Massachusetts Condo Market

Long thought of as an alternative to single-family homes, condos in Massachusetts are fast becoming the property of choice — and they have the prices to prove it.

The price gap across the state has been steadily narrowing, and as of May 2014 it stood at $20,000 — the average cost of a condo is now $320,000 and the average cost of a single family home is $340,000. And condo prices in Boston have soared far out of the reach of middle-class families, reaching an average price per square foot of $728. Luxury condos have risen to $1,188 per square foot.

So what’s happening? The spike in prices is caused by consumer demand, so why are so many homebuyers choosing condos? It boils down to two words — convenience and amenities.

It used to be that a family would look at a prospective house as a project, something that would allow them to roll up their sleeves, throw in some elbow grease, and make it truly theirs. Big back yards and swimming pools used to be selling points. But not any more.

Families now are looking for concierge services and someone else to tend to the grass in the summer, the leaves in the fall, and the snow in the winter. They want tennis courts, gyms, common rooms for parties, and move-in-ready condition, and they’re willing to pay for it.

The housing market always has plenty of twists and turns, so it’s hard to say if this trend will last. But for now, at least, condos are it.

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