Allele South Boston Sales Velocity

After opening to residents in 2008, the Allele condo development in South Boston, which fuses standard housing features with those of typical lofts, has been somewhat slow to sell, perhaps a function of maintaining strong price per square foot values, competition from other condo developments in the immediate area that offer different living styles, and even the ups and downs that the financial markets have had on Buyers’ pocket books.

The current sales statistics for the building (below) evidence that the Allele sales team is remaining steadfast in positioning the value and price of the new development, and while the building is less than 20% sold, current residents have not been severely impacted by price reductions to the point where they find themselves stuck with negative equity in their units – a similar protective stance on behalf of early adopters is taking place at FP3 as well.

  • Number of Listings Sold: 9 of 48 (19%)
  • Average Sales Price: $627,889
  • Median Sales Price: $519,000
  • Average Price per Square Foot: $446

Two additional units (107 and 406) are currently Under Agreement, which would bring the percentage of building sold to 23%.  Parking spots in the onsite garage are being marketed as available for sale (and separate from the sale of a condo), and price points for remaining units are being maintained at levels of the previously sold units.

The Allele is not entirely alone in seeing slow sales velocity in the downtown market, however, there are other condo developments in the city (285 Columbus Lofts for instance) that have performed quite well in the volatile financial markets of the past 1.5 years.

Allele Boston Condos

While the new condo developments (Allele, Macallen, Lofts at 36 A) near the Broadway Red Line T-Stop are different on many accounts, HOA fees, and the amenities and services that those fees support, have been something that is talked about at each development, and a side-by-side comparison is warranted in order to ferret out if there are any real differences.

By putting together the below table, we have taken a look at units that are currently on the market at the three developments, and calculated the HOA fees on a price per square foot basis to help facilitate comparison.

Development

HOA Fee / Square Foot

What’s Included

Allele

$0.34

Heat, Hot Water, Gas, Water, Sewer, Master Insurance, Elevator, Landscaping, Snow / Refuse Removal

Macallen

$0.40

Heat, Hot Water, Gas, Water, Sewer, Master Insurance, 24-Hour Concierge, Swimming Pool, Elevator, Exterior Maintenance, Landscaping, Snow / Refuse Removal, Recreational Facilities, Exercise Room, Garden Area, Screening Room & Kitchen

Lofts at 36 A

$0.22

Water, Sewer, Master Insurance, Elevator, Exterior Maintenance, Snow / Refuse Removal

While breaking the numbers down in such a way makes it easy to see that the Lofts at 36 A have the lowest HOA fees on a price per square foot basis, and the Macallen Building the highest among the three, one needs to read between the lines in order to gain a truly fair comparison.  Simply put, the difference in fees is a function of what’s included or covered by that fee, however, it’s a nonlinear comparison.  The Lofts at 36 A truly have low HOA fees, and the construction of the building aids in keeping prices of certain amenities (heat for instance) in check, while on the higher end of the fee structure, the line is somewhat blurred between Allele and the Macallen Building, yet the Macallen Building has, by far, the most comprehensive amenity list in the area.  The energy efficient nature of the Macallen Building obviously helps keep fees low, but the economies of scale, given that the Macallen Building is almost three times the size of Allele, also plays a major role.

Allele South Boston

After much anticipation, the  Franklin  Cafe opened on the ground floor of the Allele, yet, that too has gotten off to a shaky start.  In early January 2009, reports were released that portions of the internal ceiling in the restaurant collapsed.  The incident caused approximately 8  people  to  be transported to the  hospital, none with life  threatening injuries. Boston Fire Spokesman Steve MacDonald stated the Franklin Cafe roof collapse occurred at the 152 Dorchester Avenue location just after 10 pm on January 3, 2009.  MacDonald stated that decorative panels attached to the ceiling may have caused the collapse, though a full investigation is underway.

Comments

  1. Hi,

    Your Blog is great! Do you have any updated figures, I was told by the realtor this past weekend that Allele is now 55-60% sold out. I find that hard to believe given that it has been a month since your post and the market is relatively slow. Can you please confirm? Also do you know who the developer is? Thanks for your insight!

  2. Boston Condo Guy says:

    Current registry and MLS records show that 12 units have sold in the building, while other units (approximately 6) do show that they are Under Agreement, but not yet sold. The development team is James and Bernard McFarland, who run various firms, both McFarland JAS O Inc and Boston Built, LLC.

  3. Thank you!!! I appreciate your info!!