Tight supply means rents soaring in city

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Average of $1,881 is up 7% in a year

By Dan Adams | The Boston Globe | August 14, 2012

Rents for apartments in Boston­ are soaring, and a dearth of construction of less expensive apartments is making it increasingly difficult for tenants to find affordable places to live.

The average monthly rent jumped more than 7 percent to $1,881 in the past year, according toRental Beast, a brokerage that follows the rental market in Boston neighborhoods. A two-bedroom apartment in the Back Bay now rents for $2,857 a month; in Jamaica Plain, for $1,536.

Things are not much cheaper regionwide, as monthly rents in Greater Boston out to Interstate 495 average $1,796, according­ to Reis Inc., a New York data firm that ranks the Boston area as the fifth-most-expensive rental market in the country, after New York City and San Francisco. Read More

July 2012 ‘Five Questions With…Podcast’: Northeastern University Economist Dr. Barry Bluestone

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The MAR Report | August 10, 2012

Click here to listen.

In this late July(…early August?) edition of our “Five Questions With…Podcast”, we speak to Northeastern University Economist Dr. Barry Bluestone about the Massachusetts real estate market, the economy and more.

Dr. Barry Bluestone Bio:
Barry Bluestone is the Stearns Trustee Professor of Political Economy, the founding director of the Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy (CURP), and the founding Dean of the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs at Northeastern University. The Center is a “think and do tank” devoted to research and policy in the areas of housing, workforce development, local economic development, manufacturing, and transportation. The new public policy school has been designed to more closely link Northeastern with the broader community, focusing on many of the critical challenges facing the city, the region, and the nation. Through its World Class Cities Partnership, the School is working with cities and universities throughout the world to better understand and meet the challenges faced by urban regions operating in a global economy. Read More

‘Magic’ gone from Charlestown project

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By Greg Turner | The Boston Herald | August 6, 2012

Former basketball star Earvin “Magic” Johnson’s investment in a Charlestown housing project turned out to be no slam dunk.

The Los Angeles Lakers legend’s development team dumped Mezzo Design Lofts, a 146-unit complex built adjacent to Interstate 93 five years ago, for $45.7 million last week — well below its $54 million project cost.

Canyon-Johnson Urban Funds, a joint venture between Johnson and L.A.-based Canyon Capital Realty Advisors, sold the 30 Caldwell St. site to John Hancock Life Insurance Co.

The sale price surprised real estate experts, who say there’s strong demand from investors for multifamily complexes at a time of limited apartment supplies and skyrocketing rents. Read More

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