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Real Estate Pulse in the Monadnock Region

Visitors to our cohousing neighborhood are occasionally curious about real estate in general in our region. I’ve gathered together facts and impressions as we begin 2013.

Where’s the interest?
As has been widely reported, real estate sales nationally are on the increase. In New Hampshire, unit sales were up 22% at the end of 2012 according to the NHAR. We have certainly seen an uptick in inquiries here at the neighborhood. For instance, we sold a two-bedroom quad near the river this month, and we have at least five individual inquiries to attend our Open House on Feb 3, with most interest in the remaining two-bedroom Quad overlooking the farm.

What’s on the market?
According to Realtor.com, there are 26 listings in Peterborough as of late January. The average home price is $262,814. Almost half of those listings are carried by two brokers, with the remaining listings carried by 15 other realtors and owners.

Curious to get impressions from a local realtor, I contacted Susan Robinson, Broker/Realtor©. She reported that real estate activity has been brisk since 2011 and that inventory (the number of homes on the market) is starting to come down. Sales of homes in the $200k to $450k range have been steady. Although New Hampshire has one of the lowest unemployment rates in New England—with primarily health care related, high tech, and education jobs—employment and affordable housing sometimes present a challenge in desirable areas like southwest NH. “People come to our region for reasons other than employment: they come for lifestyle, a sense of community, a way of life that they feel is more continuous, steady, dependable than many,” says Susan. We certainly strive to experience that here at Nubi.

The Nubi Farm Cart

Farmland Preservation
Homes aren’t the only properties that change hands. There is also a strong conservation ethic in our region, with growing attention to saving farmland for local food. Of course, preserving farmland was a major goal of the Nubanusit Neighborhood Cohousing project. We are lucky to have other local farm operations in the region, like Sunnyfield Farm. Only about 4% of the land in the Monadnock Region is categorized as having prime agricultural soil. Unfortunately, farmland is easy to develop as homes are a scarce commodity. Conservation organizations are seeing an uptick in interest in farmland conservation and they are taking steps to prioritize that work. The Monadnock Conservancy reports that from 2009-2011, an average of 33% of their land conservation projects were specifically farm-related. However in 2012, 81% were farm related.

We are thankful that others are seeing the importance of preserving farmland.

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