Flashes of Sanity in Back Bay

Back Bay

If you’re like me (and most other street-walking plebeians), you tend to think real estate in the Back Bay is a touch…overvalued. And it looks like just this once, our tenuous grasp of economics isn’t the reason we think so. The current average price of a property listed in Back Bay is just a hair over one million dollars, but the average price of properties sold in the last three months is a mere $613,750.

Now, this does go apples-to-oranges a bit on size and location (I mean, really, who wants to live west of Exeter? How can you enjoy upscale luxury when your garden-level neighbor is a Berklee student jam band?), but regardless – that’s one heck of a gap. And recently, many property owners have been moving to close it.

223 Beacon St - 2 beds, 2.5 baths, $885,000. Ok, forget that garden-level crack I made earlier; the only Berklee students moving into this place will already have a record deal and a better place to rehearse. Located in quite possibly the quietest block of Back Bay, equidistant from the chaos of the common, and hurly-burly of Copley Square, this place has boasts easy access to the Charles River Esplanade, a gorgeously redesigned kitchen, and a $40,000 price cut. That makes for a bargain $607/square foot – a good enough to deal to make anyone forget they’re living in a basement.

15 Hereford St – 2 beds, 2 baths, $799,000 – Down an astounding $70,000 in only 33 days, I’m still trying to figure out what’s wrong with this place. I must have swung by a dozen times by now – no hobos nesting in the alcoves, no MIT frat houses shouldering in on the premises. Hynes T stop is practically in the back yard, and the only reliable bus connection in the city is even closer. Plus walking distance to the shops of Newbury and the bars of Boylston, all while being nested in a network of one-way streets that insulate you from both.

48 Comm Ave - 2 beds, 2.5 baths, $3,995,000 – And lest you think the Back Bay’s real estate value is sinking faster than some of its houses, I submit to you this palatial property, nested on the western edge of the Public Garden. It features J.P. Morgan-esq views of Commonwealth Ave, a full-floor penthouse, and staggering total of 2,196 square feet. And the total price reduction after 503 days on the market? Zero.