Harbor Towers Construction Increases Rentals

With most of the heavy lifting of a 2007-2009 systems renovation project completed, Harbor Towers has become a haven for Boston Waterfront renters.  Whether it was the cost of the special condo fee assessments, the state of the real estate market, or a mixture of both, there is no doubt that more condos are available for rent at Harbor Towers now than ever before.  According to MLS only 7 condos were rented in 2006, in 2007 that number was pushed up to 19, and in 2008 to 25.  While these numbers are imperfect -not all rentals are reported through MLS – they are indicative of a trend that has followed the most extensive HVAC renovation any Boston condo development has seen.

Currently there are 25 rental apartments on the market at Harbor Towers.  Apart from the two large penthouse units available for $10,000 and $11,000 per month – most units are 1 or 2 bedrooms and range between $1,700 and $4,500.  The units are most closely comparable to those at Emerson and Longfellow Place at the West End Apartments in that they generally offer parquet floors, galley kitchens and lots of space.  However, at Harbor Towers every unit has its own personal touches added to it by unit owners – some have granite counters or an open kitchen.  What brings most renters and buyers to Harbor Towers are the panoramic views of the harbor and the city from two of Boston’s tallest residential buildings.  The harbor side pool certainly adds to the appeal for renters, and with the additional supply of available units, the prices have become more affordable.

Boston Harbor Towers

Interesting Week for Boston Condo Pricing

In addition to 285 Columbus Lofts releasing initial price points on several units (see Prices Announced at 285 Columbus Lofts), the past week saw some interesting things happen with price reductions, and increases, mainly in high-end properties that have been on the market for some time now.

270 Clarendon Street – a two-unit ultra luxury redevelopment (called The Maisonettes) saw its unit 2 get a $200K+ price increase. The unit has been listed on the MLS for over 500 days in total. Talk about bucking the trend.

D4 Condos – the development team chopped prices on two units (5 and 13), almost $100K each, putting one just above $600 per square foot, and the other just below. Quite a surprising move, given the quality of this Philippe Stark building (interesting to note is that the one deeded parking space that came with each unit were removed from the listing, and are now being made available for $70K-$90K). Ultimately, we’re looking at a $10K-$30K price reduction). Also interesting to note, the grand penthouse is now Under Agreement – a truly one of a kind property in the South End, the entire city for that matter, originally listed for $3.2 million, reduced to $2.9 million.

134 Beacon Street – a 5-unit redevelopment (sounds familiar, see 676 Tremont Street for another high-end 5-unit rehab) in the Back Bay saw two of its units (201 and 301) splurge on $400K price increases. Again, quite surprising, especially with the units being on the MLS for 190+ days. Perhaps a conversation with the D4 team is in order?

Harbor Towers – units in this Waterfront megaplex continue to get dumped on the market. We are warning clients to, unfortunately, be very cautious as it relates to Harbor Towers for the immediate future given the situation with the HOA and large ($100K+) assessments currently being sorted out – one of your first questions regarding any unit at Harbor Towers right now should be around how the special assessment is being paid (some Sellers have agreed to pay, others will pass this onto the Buyer, your Buyer’s Agent can provide further guidance). Those who like an interesting situation may be all for Harbor Towers right now as an investment, as many units are selling at a “discount” – there are 21 units to choose from.

For more information about any of these units, or further commentary, feel free to contact us using the link at the top of this page.