Party Ideas for the Fourth of July

by c21commonweath_ldowling 1. July 2019 16:09

It’s almost the Fourth of July, which means it’s time to take out the barbecue, consume delicious food and drinks, and watch fireworks with friends and family atop picnic blankets and lawn chairs. Independence Day is also a time to reflect on our country’s unique history and our mission to protect life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Here are a couple of decorating ideas you can use to show your appreciation for our founding fathers and the friends and family who make Boston a wonderful place to live.

Hang a Wreath

A wreath on your front door is one of the first decorative items guests will see before entering your home. Welcome them inside with some festive flair by hanging some DIY patriotic décor.

Starburst Wreath

This wreath is easy to make, cheap, and just festive enough. To make a starburst wreath, cut several sheets of red and white paper into long strips, and make sure they vary in length. Next, loop all the strips by pasting each end together. Place the looped strips in a starburst pattern, and put a white button with blue fabric touches in the middle to hold your patriotic wreath together.

Bandana Flag Wreath

Wrap red, white, and blue bandanas around a round base, knotting their ends to make the remaining fabric extend from the center of the wreath outwards. Make sure to alternate the red, white, and blue bandanas around the base to mimic the American flag!

Hanging Flower Wreath

Place white and blue hydrangeas into a vase or another container and hook it to your door. Tie a red ribbon around the hydrangeas for a feminine, festive look.

Decorate Your Backyard

As the weather warms up this time of year, more and more Bostonians will take their parties outdoors. Fun decorative items from colorful cushions and place settings to balloons and cornhole boards will make your Fourth of July party stand out from the rest. Buy or build these items for an especially patriotic celebration.

Bandana Seat Cushions

Place a red bandana over one side of a small-to-medium cushion and a blue one over the other. Tie the corners together with a rubber band and some ribbon.

Patriotic Cutlery

Purchase little polka dot bags from Amazon (and tie red and blue twine around the bags) to neatly tuck your silverware inside a patriotic napkin holder. You can also place more blue and white hydrangeas in the center of your table to add to your red, white, and blue color scheme.

Confetti Poppers

A Fourth of July party’s not complete without some good, old-fashioned party poppers. DIY confetti poppers are easy enough to make yourself: All you need are some balloons, empty toilet paper tubes, packing tape, patterned paper, and confetti! Find more information here.

Balloon Flag

Here’s an easy way to make a patriotic statement! Simply blow up some red, white, and blue balloons and tie them onto your shed or garage to stand in for the American flag.

Fly a Flag the Right Way

Perhaps the best way to decorate for the Fourth is to fly the American flag—just make sure you abide by proper flag-flying etiquette.

  • Don’t hang your flag backward or upside down to ensure that it stays in its vertical, upright position. The flag should never dip to a person or another object
  • Don’t let it touch the ground, floor, or water
  • Only fly your flag at half-staff when the nation is in mourning
  • Only fly the flag at night if it is illuminated
  • Don’t fly the flag in the rain
  • Fly the American flag above other flags
  • Make sure your flag is in good condition
  • Learn how to dispose of your flag properly by contacting your local American Legion
  • Fold your flag before putting it away
  • Don’t use the flag on clothing, costumes, uniforms, bedding, cushions, or other fabrics and décor

Have a Blast

We’re thankful to be with family and friends as we celebrate our country’s independence. After you’re through setting up your decorations, make sure you schedule time to kick back with those you love most and enjoy good food, music, games, and company this Fourth of July.


The Do's and Don'ts of Writing an Offer Letter

by c21commonweath_ldowling 26. June 2019 16:12

It can be hard to craft an offer letter that sellers will love. You want to be personal without sharing too much information. You want to express what you love about the house and shy away from what you don’t. There’s an art to writing an offer letter that sellers can’t refuse—we’re here to show you.

Don’t Say This

For starters, let’s explore what you shouldn’t do, because saying the wrong thing in an offer letter can hurt your chances of moving into your dream home. Here’s what you should never include in your offer letter to a seller.

Unnecessary Personal Information

Under the Federal Fair Housing Act, it is illegal for a seller to discriminate based on religion, race, sex, disability, or family status, but that won’t always stop them from letting their personal biases influence their decision. Don’t tell a seller more about yourself than you need to, and be extra cautious—even an innocent comment like “We’re excited to celebrate around the Christmas tree next winter” can clue someone in to your religious beliefs, or talking about pets may sour a seller who isn’t a fan of animals.

Your Distaste for Their Décor

It’s never a good idea to talk about all the changes and renovations you plan to make when you move in—the seller may take it as an insult to their taste. Play it safe and be kind: Find ways to compliment all the hard work they put into making this house their home over the years.


Looking desperate weakens your negotiating power. Communicating that you need to close the deal quickly because your lease is up soon, for example, may encourage sellers to stick you with a higher asking price while you’re in a tight spot. Your quick timeline may also conflict with their desire for a longer closing period, too.

Avoid highlighting any aspects of the deal where you come up short. Instead, allow your real estate agent to communicate with the listing agent to find ways of tailoring your letter to the seller’s preferences.

Make Sure to Do This

So, how do you make sellers fall in love with your offer letter? Pay attention to your tone and keep things positive.

Personalize Your Letter the Right Way

Make sure your letter is heartfelt and friendly to communicate your true desire to move into this home. Address the seller by name, or if you don't know it, open with a thoughtful greeting (something like “Dear owners of the charming blue house on Maple Lane” will work). You should also write your letter with a pen for good measure. It will stand out from typed letters, which may appear cold compared to your handwritten offer.

State What You Love About the House

Explain what you love most about the seller’s home. If you’re passionate about cooking, for instance, talk about how the kitchen is the perfect size for you and your family, or that you love the backsplash tile and unique decorations. You should also look for ways to connect with the seller on a personal level. If you see a feature in their home that reminds you of your own upbringing or lifestyle, tell them.

Say Thank You

You started with a warm message—end with one, too. Thank the seller for considering your purchase of their beautiful home, and express your desire to hear back from them soon.


Summer Home Improvement Projects

by c21commonweath_ldowling 24. June 2019 13:02

With long, warm, and sunny days, you have more time to investigate your property for things that need fixing. We recommend prioritizing the following home improvement projects to ensure that your home is in peak condition all year long.


You don’t want water seeping into your attic or walls through a crack in your roof. Take a good look at your roof from the ground level to see if any shingles or other roofing material have blown off in a storm. You should also investigate your roof’s beams for damage—they travel a long way across the top of your home and may be the source of your mysterious leaks.


Check the windowpanes throughout your house for any cracks that may have resulted from strong winds and freezing winter temperatures. It’s inexpensive to replace broken windows, and new panes without any cracks or leaks will be more energy efficient. If you don’t have to replace any of your windows, you can still give them a thorough wash and clean or replace old, dingy trim to instantly improve your home’s appearance.


Siding is the material attached to the exterior walls of your house. Repair or replace damaged siding so your home isn’t exposed to the elements. Installing sturdy, energy-efficient siding also ensures that your home stays well-insulated and easy to clean.


If your gutters are damaged or clogged with leaves, they’ll do a poor job of directing water away from your property. Do a thorough cleaning and install gutter guards to direct the flow of water away from your foundation, making sure your house stays dry in the wettest seasons.

Temperature Control

As Boston heats up, prioritize these ways of staying cool.


Install fiberglass insulation in your attic to keep both warm and cool air inside your house. By maintaining a constant room temperature, you’ll stay comfy and cool in especially hot weather.

Install Cooler Lighting and Appliances

Replace incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient ones. LEDs and CFLs transmit less heat and help reduce your energy bill by using 80 percent less energy than their incandescent counterparts. Energy-efficient refrigerators, dishwashers, and dryers also emit less heat, making them a smart alternative to outdated appliances. Lastly, you can always install inexpensive indoor and outdoor ceiling fans to help keep you cool anywhere you lounge around the house. As scattered storms begin to break and hot, humid days become the norm, you’ll want the proper infrastructure in place to stay comfortable this summer.

Take Advantage of the Warm Weather

Outdoor home improvement projects are best done when the weather’s nice. Take time this summer to inspect your property for any damage done during the previous winter and make sure everything is in tip-top shape. The right home improvement projects will improve your home’s value and protect everyone inside from the worst of the summer heat.


Things to Do in Boston on a Rainy Day

by c21commonweath_ldowling 19. June 2019 16:50

If it’s rainy in Boston, there are still plenty of fun things to do inside with family or friends. Whether you want to grab a round of locally brewed beers or explore the city’s many museums (or both), Boston’s variety of engaging indoor activities will hold your attention all day long.

Explore Our Museums

Boston is full of history and home to some of the country’s most prestigious academic institutions, so it’s no surprise that many museums are sprinkled throughout Beantown. When you need to ride out the weather, we recommend visiting a museum large enough to entertain your party for a significant portion of the day. It’s also a good idea to take location into consideration: Museums close to the “T” (the subway) make transportation a bit easier and save you from getting caught in a torrential downpour.

If you’re traveling with kids, we recommend checking out the Boston Children’s Museum, New England Aquarium, or Museum of Science. Teens and adults may enjoy the Museums of Fine Arts and the Boston Public Library. There are two types of Boston discount cards that offer great deals on admission: The Boston CityPASS and Go Boston Cards.

Go to a Show

Going to the movies is probably one of the best rainy-day activities. AMC Loews Boston Common 19 is a beloved downtown movie theater located near the Park Street T station and Chinatown. It has easy access to the tube and is close to many delicious Asian restaurants. If indie and foreign films are more your thing, check out the Brattle Theatre in Cambridge off of the Harvard Square T station.

Live performances and comedy shows are another great rainy-day option. Boston’s Theatre District offers a variety of venues to choose from and showcases both local and national talent.

Say Cheers

A rainy day is a good excuse to go barhopping with your friends. Check out the city’s many breweries to get a taste of Boston’s famous beer. Samuel Adams Boston Brewery attracts visitors from near and far who want to tour the taproom and kick back with a delicious craft beer in hand. Other popular breweries in the Boston area include Democracy Brewing, Trillium Brewing Company, Harpoon Brewery, and so much more. City Winery and Abigail’s Tea Room are two solid alternatives if you’re not a beer aficionado.

Embrace the Rain

If we’re not talking about sleet or snow, you might enjoy a rainy walk in Boston’s historic downtown area. Boston Discovery Guide recommends that you start your adventure in Boston Common, walk toward Tremont Street, and follow the Freedom Trail to get a glimpse of famous historic sites and grab a bite at a local coffee shop along the way.

Boston always has something fun to offer, rain or shine. We hope we’ve encouraged you not to stay cooped up in your house or hotel—gallivant around town in the rain with your friends and family this week.


Explaining the Escrow Process

by c21commonweath_ldowling 17. June 2019 11:42

Escrow can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Read on for more information about its many moving parts, involved parties, and tips for making your next escrow smooth and easy.

What Is Escrow?

The escrow period begins when you sign a housing contract and ends when you close. Escrow safeguards both parties from risk, protecting buyers’ and sellers’ assets before closing on a property. After making an offer on your home-to-be, your earnest money will be placed in the hands of a third party until both you and the seller finish negotiations and close the deal.  

Here are several reasons why you’ll want an impartial third party to hold onto your money before closing:

  • To prevent your earnings from being held hostage by the seller in case they try to renegotiate with your money in their hands.
  • The seller won’t close before you’ve paid your dues, but you won’t give them your money until all negotiations are through and contracts have been signed. With escrow, both parties can follow through with their own end of the bargain at the same time.
  • You may have entered into a “rent-back” agreement (requiring the seller to pay you a specified rate for staying in the home longer than anticipated). An escrow agent can hold back a portion of your escrow fees until the seller moves out of your new home and you can make sure it’s in good condition.
  • Funds can also be held in escrow if the seller hasn’t completed home improvement projects within the agreed-upon time frame or if you’re purchasing a newly constructed home that hasn’t been completed on time.

What About Lenders?

Your mortgage lender also uses funds to pay for your homeowners insurance and property taxes, collecting these fees along with your monthly payments. Funds used for paying tax and insurance are called escrow or impound accounts and reserves—these terms mean the same thing and are used interchangeably. The term “prepaid” also describes money that lenders collect in advance to pay for homeowners insurance and property taxes.


The closing of escrow happens after all the necessary documents have been signed and recorded, all the agreed upon conditions have been met, and the money has been properly allocated to all parties. An escrow officer oversees all final steps, including the exchange of funds and recording of deeds.

Buyer and Seller Escrow Tips

To make escrow more straightforward, we recommend buyers and sellers follow these suggestions:

  • Buyers should document all their finances and organize financial paperwork before going into escrow to speed up the process.
  • Buyers and sellers should be easily reachable by phone to answer questions from agents and lenders or be informed of any missing documents or papers that need to be sent in promptly.
  • Sellers should protect themselves from last-minute surprises by requesting a title report before putting their house on the market.

Ask Questions

Escrow gets more complicated if you forget to sign any documents or retrieve the necessary paperwork. Reach out to your bank, escrow company, or agent to make sure you have everything in order. Going into escrow confidently will speed up the process so you can move into your new home by the agreed-upon date.


Hosting the Ultimate Father's Day Barbecue

by c21commonweath_ldowling 12. June 2019 11:35

Be the Grill Master

If you like to barbecue, why not let Dad take a break from the usual grilling? Impress him with your own cooking skills and treat him to a meal you made yourself. Grill an assortment of your dad’s favorite meats, which you can serve with hearty potato salad, cookies, and his other favorite treats. Today is his day to indulge, so don’t be afraid to veer away from greens and lean foods (unless those are his favorite things, of course)!

Now, to the meat. If you’re wondering what to slap on the grill this weekend, or you want to try something new, check out these tasty options:

Grilled Espresso Tri-Tip Roast

Add a kick of flavor to your tri-tip with ground coffee beans, sugar, garlic powder, black pepper, and chili powder.

Spicy Orange and Jalapeno Grilled Shrimp

Maybe Dad’s a seafood lover. Mix jalapeno peppers, sweet orange marmalade, lime juice, balsamic vinegar, cilantro, and garlic with shrimp to serve him his new favorite seafood dish.

Beer Can Chicken

After applying a simple spice rub, set the chicken over Dad’s favorite beer. The beer’s aroma seeps into the bird as it cooks—yummy and fun!

Grilled Shrimp Tacos

This Mexican-style dinner is sure to please your papa. Use garlicky aioli, cotija cheese, and lime wedges to complement fresh shrimp and corn tortillas.

Grilled Italian Sausage Po’Boy

Treat Dad to a Louisiana-style po’boy sandwich—surround a tasty Italian sausage with sliced tomatoes, red onions, and shredded lettuce on a bun.

Of course, if Dad wants to do the grilling himself, make sure he has everything he needs to be the grill master. A gift of a customized chef hat or apron will make for many smiles and heartwarming photos.

Snacks and Drinks

Your dad probably has a favorite beer or two. Pick out his favorite drinks and place them in a large bucket of ice so the grown-ups can easily grab them at their leisure. Fill a separate bucket with Dad’s Root Beer for the kiddos.

Complement your drinks with a selection of tasty snacks. Mixing specialty ketchup with horseradish makes an excellent dipping sauce for shrimp. You can also include an assortment of nuts, chips, and crackers in separate bowls for guests to snack on as they wait for their barbecue.

Decorate for Dad

Set a festive, casual mood with thoughtful decorations. Find a simple canvas drop-cloth (you can find one at your local hardware store) to place over your table. Put greenery on the table to enhance the summer vibe, and bring lanterns out at night to keep your barbecue going after the sun sets. Include handwritten notes and drawings near Dad’s seat so he can open them for all to see.

Celebrate with Friends and Family

Great company makes a party even more fun. Invite Dad’s closest family and friends to let him know he’s loved by so many. With delicious food, thoughtful décor, and wonderful guests, your Father’s Day barbecue bash is sure to be a hit.


Reasons to Downsize Your Home

by c21commonweath_ldowling 10. June 2019 11:41

Downsizing allows you to move to a more manageable home: It will likely have less square footage, fewer rooms, and less surrounding land. It’s common for empty nesters and recently retired individuals to downsize their homes as they enter their next phase of life. Here are some reasons why downsizing may be right for you.

You’ll Save Money

When you downsize, your monthly mortgage payments should decrease, which means you can put more money away for retirement. If you’ve already paid off your current home, you can purchase a smaller one with cash from the sale, and you won’t have to make any more mortgage payments. You can also pay off debt or help fund your children’s education with the extra money from downsizing.

You Can Lighten Your Load

Downsizing forces you to go through your things. If you can’t fit all of your belongings in your new space, you’ll have to decide what furniture, clothing, and miscellaneous items are worth keeping. Measure your new home or look up the floor plan online to get an idea of what you can bring. If you're initiating a purge, we suggest starting early so you have plenty of time to go through your items before packing up the moving van.

Once you narrow down your belongings and move into your new place, you’ll find you don’t have as many chores or things to take care of. You’ll no longer have to worry about mowing a huge lawn, for example, or cleaning second-story floors. A smaller home affords you a simpler life, which is appealing to many homeowners who’ve spent years maintaining larger properties.

You’ll Change Your Lifestyle

When you finally decide to put your home on the market, your life will be open to new possibilities. If you want to move closer to your children or parents, now you can. Some individuals want to be close to communities or landscapes that offer fun recreational activities. If you’re concerned about mobility, moving to a cozy one-story home is a great option. Whatever lifestyle change you want to make, downsizing can pave the way.

Enjoy Your Next Chapter

Now that you’ve downsized, you may feel freer. You’re no longer attached to a bunch of belongings or committed to an unrealistic amount of housework. If you’re in the process of deciding whether you should downsize, consider these tips to make a thoughtful decision about where you’ll move to next.


This Is How to Stage a Bathroom Before a Sale

by c21commonweath_ldowling 5. June 2019 17:29

When staging your bathroom for listing photos or an open house, you may wonder how to freshen up the space. Unlike other rooms in the house, the bathroom doesn’t call for an excessive amount of furniture and isn’t a place people spend most of their time. That being said, prospective buyers will at least peek their heads into your bathroom—here are some ways to make sure it shines when they do. 

First, Clean

It may seem obvious, but your bathroom should be spotless before anyone walks in to inspect it. On top of the normal bathroom chores, these deep-cleaning strategies will make a big difference: 

  • Disinfect tile in the shower with all-purpose cleaner, and use a grout brush with bleach to clean less-than-attractive grout stains.
  • Place a bag filled with vinegar and sealed with a rubber band around the head of the shower. This will remove buildup from the shower head and improve water pressure.
  • Remove calcium residue from shower doors with Lime-A-Way.
  • Get rid of mold with a solution made of white vinegar or 1 cup of Borax mixed with 1 gallon of water. 

Know What Repairs to Make  

Address any minor problem spots that may prevent buyers from making an offer, like old, crumbling paint or a leaky faucet. While repainting your bathroom, use high-quality semi-gloss paints—they’re easy to clean and resist moisture damage. In bathrooms that don’t see much use and aren’t exposed to heavy moisture, use eggshell paint or a satin sheen. Blue and periwinkle bathrooms sell for $2,786 more than expected, so you may want to consider one of these colors. 

Check your tub for stains or rust, too. If replacing the whole tub isn’t an option, re-glaze it for significantly less money. Lastly, replace noisy fans to get rid of constant rattle, and fix leaking faucets to save water. 

It’s Time to Decorate

Now that you’re through with the cleaning and fixing, you can get to the decorating. While the bathroom doesn’t have much room for furniture, you can add a stool, bench, or cabinet to provide an attractive seating area or extra storage. We also recommend using stylish wicker or wire baskets to store toilet paper and cleaning supplies and installing 100-watt soft-white bulbs or smart bulbs to provide enough light without being overbearing. 

In addition to storage and lighting, you can create a calming atmosphere for your bathroom with spa-like décor. Remove all personal items from sight and add folded white towels, candles, fresh flowers, and wrapped soaps for added appeal. You should also replace old shower curtains with new ones. With these decorations in place, buyers will feel more comfortable in a clean and tranquil space. 

A Beautiful Bathroom

Now that you’ve cleaned, made repairs, and decorated, you can rest assured knowing your bathroom is ready for its big debut. Prospective buyers will appreciate your work, and you may even sell your home more quickly.  


How to Find the Perfect Real Estate Agent

by c21commonweath_ldowling 3. June 2019 16:16

It takes work to buy or sell a home—oftentimes, more work than you anticipated. Real estate agents in the Boston area speed up the home-buying or selling process with knowledge of local markets and trends. Do the appropriate research ahead of time to find an agent who can help sell or buy your home quickly and for the best price.

Know What to Look For

Know what qualities to look for in an agent before beginning your search—you’ll save yourself time and money when you select an agent who understands your unique needs and preferences. Alongside finding a best-fit match, we recommend working with an agent who is responsive, knowledgeable, and highly qualified.

Responsive Agents

Responsive agents are more likely to answer their phones or respond to emails when you need them. This is especially important in hot markets like Boston where homes sell quickly. You’ll want to be kept in the loop by a responsive agent so you can place a bid before your competition does.  

The same goes for sellers: You need to know of impressive bids as they arrive so you can seal the deal before a buyer potentially changes their mind. Agents should maintain excellent communication with sellers and prospective buyers to ensure fast, effective sales and purchases. Make sure your agent doesn’t take responsiveness for granted.

Knowledgeable Agents

Look for an agent with knowledge of your local real estate market. They likely have more experience buying and selling homes in your area than you do, which helps take the guesswork out of things. Agents help buyers avoid spam listings and properties they won’t like. They also determine market conditions and pricing to help buyers and sellers with their financial decisions.

Real estate agents in Boston and have extensive knowledge of the city’s many communities and surrounding neighborhoods. They’re prepared to help you buy your dream home or sell your house quickly because they’re well connected to the area: They likely have buyers lined up to see your home, and they probably know of a few properties you’d love to move to.

Agents with Credentials

You have a right to size up your agent’s record as a buyer or seller—and you should if you want to save time and money on a sale or purchase. Use the following tactics to investigate your agent’s qualifications (if they don’t flat out tell you) and know you’re working with an industry professional.

  • Check for Licensing: Find out whether your agent is licensed or has received complaints through your state’s regulatory body.
  • Ask about credentials: Agents may be CRS (Certified Residential Specialist), ABR (Accredited Buyer’s Representative), or SRES-certified (Seniors Real Estate Specialist), meaning they’ve completed additional training to become experts in their respective fields. An agent who is a Realtor has pledged to support the code of ethics outlined by the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
  • Look at Current Listings: Their current listings indicate the kind of properties they help clients buy or sell. Check to see if they match your own property or dream house.

Ask the Right Questions

After completing a bit of research, you probably have a handful of agents in mind you’d like to work with or at least interview. Zillow recommends asking the following questions while meeting a prospective agent for the first time.

  • What’s included in your services?
  • Is your fee negotiable?
  • What’s your experience in the neighborhood?
  • What are your hours?
  • How do you plan to market the home?
  • Do you have references?
  • Does this contract include a cancellation clause?

Go Forth with Confidence

With a bit of preparation and investigating, you’ll find an agent prepared to help you buy or sell your home. Browse our list of qualified agents in the Boston area to confidently move forward in the right direction.


How to Buy a House Before You Sell

by c21commonweath_ldowling 29. May 2019 15:22

Locals and transplants agree: Boston is a great place to call home. More people are moving to this beautiful East Coast city to take advantage of its attractive job market, higher learning institutions, and superior healthcare providers (and let’s not forget about Boston’s beloved sports teams, famous baked beans, and fresh seafood).

It’s safe to say Boston is a seller’s market, with a large buyer population and fewer available homes. If you’re looking to snap up a house in the Boston area before you can sell your current home, consider these strategies for making the process more manageable—our friends at Zillow offer excellent advice.

Some Handy Tips 

Sale and Settlement Contingency

Make an offer on a new house with a sale and settlement contingency to communicate that you’ll only buy it after you’ve successfully sold your current property. The seller can still sell to someone else if another offer comes through first, but you’ll have the option to either close the deal early or decline if your home still hasn’t sold. 

Extended Closing

Ask to extend your new home’s closing date past the traditional 30- to 45-day time period if you’re sure you only need a little extra time to sell your property. This can be tricky in a seller’s market where other buyers might make more appealing offers without conditions, but it’s a tactic worth trying. 

Use Your Savings

Use your savings for a down payment on a new home if you’re able to do so. Waiting for cash flow from your own sale to make a purchase will limit your opportunities. 

Find Tenants for Your Old Home

If you’ve already moved into your new house, rent out the old one to continue making mortgage payments before it sells.  This allows you to delay selling if you don’t need the money from your old home for a down payment. 

Pros of Buying Before You Sell

There are several benefits to buying a new house before selling yours: You have a place to move without delay, you’ll save money by not having to pay for temporary housing or storage units, and you’re less pressured to make a buying decision when you have the option to stay in your current residence. 

Boston’s population has grown every year since 2004, with a current population of around 700,000. As more and more people move to the city, it’s likely you’ll be able to sell your own Boston property quickly—buying another one may be a different story. Use some of these strategies to get a leg up on finding a property in the area you love before vacating your current one.