Navigating the Evolving Real Estate Landscape: What Buyers Should Know in 2024

Navigating the Evolving Real Estate Landscape: What Buyers Should Know in 2024

As a real estate agent with over 20 years of experience serving clients in both the city and suburbs, I’ve witnessed firsthand how quickly the market can shift and evolve. 2024 is already proving to be a year of significant change, bringing both opportunities and challenges for prospective buyers. Whether you’ve got your eye on a chic downtown condo or a sprawling suburban estate, understanding these industry trends can help you make informed decisions and secure your dream home. Here’s what you need to know about the current market. 

1. Rising interest rates are a double-edged sword

One of the most impactful changes we've seen in the real estate market in 2024 is the continued rise of interest rates. After years of historically low rates, the Federal Reserve has adjusted its policies, leading to higher borrowing costs. While this may initially seem like a deterrent, it has also acted as a cooling effect on the market. With fewer buyers able to qualify for mortgages, competition may decrease, providing an advantage for those who are financially prepared.

2. A shift toward suburban living

The pandemic has permanently altered our work habits, making remote and hybrid work models more the norm. This shift continues to drive demand for suburban homes, as buyers seek more space and a better quality of life outside the bustling city. Towns like Newton, Wellesley, and Lexington are becoming increasingly desirable, offering excellent schools, green spaces, and a strong sense of community. However, this trend also means that suburban markets are becoming more competitive, so timely decision-making is crucial.

3. The luxury condo market: A buyer's paradise?

Boston’s luxury condo market is experiencing a unique transformation. High-rise developments in areas like the Seaport District, Back Bay, and downtown are incorporating state-of-the-art amenities, from rooftops, to pools, and private fitness centers, offering a blend of luxury and convenience. However, with increased inventory and competition among developers, buyers may find more negotiating power and potentially better deals in this sector.

4. Navigating the inventory crunch

Despite the cooling effect of higher interest rates, inventory remains tight, especially for single-family homes in desirable neighborhoods. As a buyer, it’s essential to be prepared and proactive. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage, being ready to make a swift and competitive offer, and working with an experienced real estate agent can give you an undeniable edge. Keep an open mind about the types of properties and neighborhoods you consider, and be prepared to act quickly when you find the right home.

5. Technology and virtual buying

Advancements in technology are making the home buying process more efficient and accessible. Virtual tours, 3D walkthroughs, and digital closings have become standard practice, allowing buyers to explore properties from the comfort of their current home before visiting a property. These tools are even more useful for out-of-town buyers who may consider a property without seeing it in person or would need to travel a distance via airplane to see it. Embracing these technological advancements can save you time and provide significant information to help the decision process. 

6. Market expertise remains key

In a market characterized by rapid changes and varying dynamics between city and suburban properties, having a knowledgeable real estate agent on your side is more important than ever. An experienced agent can provide insights into market trends, negotiate effectively on your behalf, and guide you through the complexities of the buying process. Strong expertise can make the difference between securing your ideal home and missing out.

7. Recent changes in buyer agency representation agreements 

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently updated its buyer representation agreement to address several key aspects of the relationship between buyers and their real estate agents. While the specific details of the changes might vary slightly from market to market, the main updates are as follows: 

  • Agency relationships: Clarifies the agent's role (buyer’s agent, dual agent, etc.) and the agent's duties and loyalties to the buyer to prevent misunderstandings.
  • Scope of services: Outlines specific services the agent will provide (property searches, negotiations, reviewing inspection results, etc.), managing expectations.
  • Compensation: Details how the buyer's agent will be paid, including commission structures and retainer fees.
  • Duration and termination: Specifies the length of the agreement and conditions for termination.
  • Confidentiality and disclosure: Emphasizes protecting buyer’s sensitive information and the agent’s duty to disclose material facts.
  • Legal and ethical compliance: Reinforces adherence to laws, regulations, and ethical standards.
  • Conflict resolution: Includes methods for resolving disputes, such as mediation or arbitration. 

These updates aim to enhance transparency, trust, and professionalism in the buyer-agent relationship. I would be happy to discuss the buyer agency agreements and in an upcoming blog, I will be discussing the value of buyer representation, why it matters, and how we can work together to achieve your goals. 


The real estate market in 2024 presents a unique set of challenges and opportunities for buyers in Boston and its suburbs. By staying informed about industry changes, being financially prepared, and leveraging the expertise of a seasoned real estate agent, you can navigate this evolving landscape with confidence. Whether you’re searching for a luxury condo in the heart of the city or a serene family home in the suburbs, there’s a perfect property out there waiting for you and it would be my pleasure to help you find it. 

For guidance with buying or selling in any market, connect with me via email [email protected] or on social media.

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