Monthly Archives: August 2020

What Are You Waiting For?

Builders & Realtors Agree: Real Estate Is Back | MyKCM

You’ve been on the fence for weeks, months, maybe even years. Is it finally time to buy? Should you sell, take advantage of the equity you have in your home and move to that someday neighborhood?

Seriously, what are you waiting for? We know it seems to defy logic — what doesn’t these days? — but you couldn’t ask for a better time to make your move.

When shelter-in-place orders brought the economy to a screeching halt earlier this year, some believed the residential housing market would follow suit. So called “experts” and cable TV talking heads predicted buyer demand would disappear and home values would depreciate for the first time in almost a decade. That didn’t happen. In fact, it appears that the opposite is taking place.

After the real estate market slowed immediately following the shutdown, it has come roaring back – and seems to still be gaining steam. Here’s a look at recent reports – one from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and one from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) – showing this growing strength.

Builder Confidence Hits All-Time High

It was recently reported that applications for new home purchases with home builders are 39% higher than in July of 2019. That has builder confidence soaring.

Each month, NAHB releases its Housing Market Index, a survey of NAHB members who rate market conditions for the sale of new homes at the present time and over the next six months, as well as prospective buyer traffic for new homes.

This month, they reported that builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes increased to the highest reading in the 35-year history of the series.

The number of newly constructed homes being built will be almost at the same level as last year, even though the economic shutdown crushed home building earlier in the year.

The National Associates of Realtors also recently released its Existing Home Sales Report. which revealed that month-over-month sales increased by 24.7%, setting another record for the category.

Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for NAR, explained how the resale market is just as hot as the new construction market:

“The housing market is well past the recovery phase and is now booming with higher home sales compared to the pre-pandemic days. With the sizable shift in remote work, current homeowners are looking for larger homes and this will lead to a secondary level of demand even into 2021.

In addition, the Housing Market Recovery Index, which is released monthly by realtor.com, also shows the market is recovering nicely. The latest index reading was 104.8, which means the housing market is doing better than it was in January and February of this year. As a reference, the highest point in the index was a 106.5 in early March, just prior to the health crisis setting in.

The bottom line is that both the newly constructed and existing home sale markets are posting numbers greater than a year ago. Real estate is back.

With buyers showing a preference for properties with more open spaces and places to work remotely, Cape Cod is a prime landing spot.

So, if you’ve been stuck on that fence, let’s connect at 508-568-8191 or msennott@ todayrealestate.com so we can provide you with the expert counsel you need to succeed whether you’re looking to buy, sell, or both.

We look forward to working with you.

Stay healthy. Stay optimistic.

Mari and Hank

It’s Been Hot on Cape Cod

We’ve had a great summer here on Cape Cod. The weather has been hot. And as crazy as it may sound, so has the real estate market.

In the latest segment of A Moment with Mari — one of our programs that is distributed across our various social media platforms and archived on YouTube — Mari reviews the latest stats and discusses the opportunities that are available right now for buyers and sellers.

Please watch here. Then, let’s connect at 508-568-8191 or msennott@todayrealestate.com to discuss your options as a seller and/or buyer. Thanks.


We both enjoy what we do, so it’s good to hear that our efforts are appreciated. We just received this Five Star Zillow review from one of our recent clients:

“Mari and Hank are top notch and get the job done! They not only found us the perfect home, but sold our previous home in just a few days! They worked very hand on both ends to get the job done and made the process easy. Highly recommended. Thanks again!” – Peter Bracken, Sandwich, MA.

Thanks, Peter, for the kind words. We hope you’ll enjoy your new home for many years!


As we head into the waning days of summer, here’s a check list of home maintenance tasks that you should be considering in anticipation of the fall and winter months. (Courtesy of our colleagues at Residential Mortgage Services.)

  • Clean your garbage disposal.
  • Inspect your roof for soft spots or damaged shingles.
  • Schedule a service call for your furnace.
  • Trim back any trees, bushes or plants that are close to your house, deck or windows.

There are many more important tasks to get your home ready for the change in seasons. For a complete list, please click here.

Stay healthy. Stay optimistic.

Mari and Hank

How Important Are Local Schools?

As realtors, we expect families moving to a new community to ask about the quality of the school district.

But, with the on going virus crisis and remote learning a definite option in many places, how important is the quality of the local school district in deciding where a family will live?

According to a new article in HousingWire — an online real estate industry publication – more buyers with kids are seeking homes with bigger spaces, without counting the value of the school district their children may attend.

In the middle of spring, COVID-19 caused schools across the country to shut down and go virtual. In a shift that feels similar to the way many people are reconsidering how close they need to be to their physical workplace, many parents are questioning how close kids need to live to their school, if classes are going to be some version of online for the foreseeable future.

Hudson Santana, founder of Santana Properties in Cambridge, is quoted in the article as saying that his clients have been gravitating to suburbs with yards and more space, not generally thinking about the quality of schools or district zoning.

“We’ve seen lots of people move to suburbs and giving up Cambridge in order to go to a place where they have a big yard, where they have a home office and be able to compromise more with the school,” Santana said.

In Massachusetts the public schools are generally really good, he said. “But we’re definitely seeing a huge trend of buyers moving and really focusing on space, [whereas] before they were really focused on school district.”

This is line with our recent experiences with buyers, who have school age children. More often than not, we talk about the nearby location of schools as a positive point of the properties we are showing.

Just yesterday Hank did a virtual showing of one of our listings for a family in Indiana. They asked many questions, but none were about schools.


Still not convinced that buyer interest is strong?

2020 Homebuyer Preferences [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Some Highlights

  • The study shows the current health crisis isn’t slowing down today’s homebuyers.
  • Many buyers are accelerating their timelines to take advantage of low mortgage rates, and staying home has enabled some to save more money to put toward a down payment.

Maybe now is the time for you to take advantage of high buyer interest. Please visit our website to receive a free valuation of your home.

Then let’s connect at 508-568-8191 or msennott@todayrealestate.com and we can review your options. With the equity many of us have in our homes, this could be the perfect time to move to your “someday” neighborhood. Thanks…

Stay healthy. Stay optimistic.

Mari and Hank

Is the Urban Exodus Continuing?

Will We See a Surge of Homebuyers Moving to the Suburbs? | MyKCM

The Boston Globe reported last week that many businesses are now telling employees that they won’t be returning to their offices until after January 1.

As remote work continues and many weigh the risks of living in densely populated areas, will the initial trend of urban dwellers looking for more open spaces like Cape Cod continue?

The answer appears to be “yes.”

According to recent data from Zillow, there is a current surge in urban high-end listings in some larger metro areas. The month-over-month increase in these homes going on the market indicates more urban homeowners may be ready to make a move out of the city, particularly at the upper end of the market 

Why are people starting to move out of larger cities?

A July survey from HomeLight lists the top reasons why people are moving today:

  1. More interior space
  2. Desire to own
  3. Move from city to suburbs
  4. More outdoor space

More space, proximity to fewer people, and a desire to own at a more affordable price point describes Cape Cod.

This may be a prime time for you to realize a solid return on your investment in your home. If you’d like to discuss your options, please connect with us at 508-568-8191 or msennott@todayrealestate.com. We can meet at a safe distance or via technology.

With businesses discovering new and innovative ways to function remotely, as well as cut operating expenses, this shift has the potential to stick. The smart investor won’t miss out on the opportunity.

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Mari’s Facebook group, Cape Cod Dining at Home (and anywhere else), has caught the attention of industry consultant Beth Incorvarti. In a recent newsletter she wrote:

Mari Sennott started the Cape Cod Dining at Home Facebook group and now has almost 2600 members! There’s real engagement, real value, and a real sense of community here. Give the people what they want – and they want FOOD! Mari is building a huge following and this is certain to be reflected in her business. Bravo!”

With members from across the country, participants share pictures of their culinary creations and recipes. A weekly contest determines the cover photo for the group page. There are also frequent competitions sponsored and judged by Cape Cod restaurants for specific types of cooking — BBQ, Italian, summertime drink, etc.

Winners receive a gift certificate to the establishment that’s sponsoring that week and the possibility that their recipe will be featured on the menu. (Out of state winners receive a gift card to be used at the restaurant of their choice.)

We’re also planning on producing a cookbook to be available in time for the holidays. Proceeds will benefit local non-profits.

Please consider joining. It’s fun and a great way to learn about new culinary creations. Thanks.

Stay healthy. Stay optimistic.

Mari and Hank