1 Avery Street #30D

Prepared for the Kelner family


Dear Kelners!

I was quite surprised and pleased to get Bob's call. I do appreciate the opportunity to speak with you about potentially marketing and selling your property.

Property valuation and appraisal is a mixture of analysis and intuition. We sift through the numbers and apply as much objectivity as possible, leavened with experience and intuition. 

The analysis part was learned when I was doing bank appraisals some years ago. Basically, it consists of comparing roughly similar properties (or as close as we can get) that have sold relatively recently, and making adjustments in order to come out with a number that reflects the possible value of your property. 

Before we start, here are some helpful links:


Luckily, we have two good comparable properties to start out with:

  1. 1 Avery Street #29D

Listed on 6/16/2021 at $2.7m. Went under agreement on 7/26/ 2021 and sold for $2.525.

This property was also vacant and pristine. 


  • Carpets in the bedrooms replaced with hardwood.
  • Upgraded vanities and mirror walls in the bathrooms.
  • Created a third bedroom in part of the living area, which would create value for many folks (although some would like the big open living room).

Take a look at the walkthrough tour hereYou can either walk through by clicking your way through, or by just pressing play in the bottom left corner. You can see all the photos and specs by going to this web page.

This property had a couple of advantages over yours. I do think that the third bedroom, the hardwoods in the master, and the bathroom upgrades made a difference. Prior to going under agreement, it was on the market for 40 days, not terribly long for a property like this. The only reason I think your property could potentially get more is that we are in an unusually active spring market. And, for what it's worth, one floor higher. I think the 1 floor difference makes little difference to individual buyers. A developer who is marketing a new building would assign values, but market-wise...not so much.

  1. 1 Avery Street #31D

Listed on 2/1/2022 at $2.950m. On-market for 69 days.


  • Completely renovated kitchen
  • Carpets in the bedrooms replaced with hardwood.
  • Completely renovated master bath
  • Custom built-in cabinetry in living room and master bedroom.

There is no walkthough tour or video for this property,  which is totally mysifying to me. You can see all the photos and specs by going to this web page.

This property is very nicely upgraded. The kitchen and master bath renovations were not just cosmetic, but were very substantial. And the built-ins were obviously custom work. I can inderstand why they priced it this way. They took a look at what 29D sold for and did the calculations from there. It shows beautifully, and yet...69 days later, it's still there.

I think the marketing is partly to blame, but you still have to ask yourself why? What price change would make a difference? Maybe $100k? Maybe $200k?

[4/5/23 note: This was reduced to $2.895m and sold for $2.8. There *is* value in reduction. This property had reno'd its' kitchen prior to its 2018 sale. It goes beyond the cost of the renovation. People would rather not have to do the work, so the market value of the reno is more than the cost.]

There are the only two compqarable properties at 1 Avery that have been on the market in the last year.


Values at 1 Avery run lower than other buildings in the area.

At 1 Avery you have the opportunity to get the above unit, 2,000+- SF for $2.9m-ish (low, at first glance), with a condo fee of $3,331/month ($1.63/SF!). At Millennium Place at 1 Franklin, for example, you get unit 3701, also a 2 bed/2 bath  for $2.9m+-. Yes, it's 410 square feet smaller, but the condo fee is $1,000 less per month and it's new and more contemporary. Plus, the lobby is bigger and what a lot of folks would consider more luxurious. Which makes a difference to a lot of buyers. 

Here are all the 2+ bedroom properties currently on the market in the area between $2m and $3m.


My feeling is that we put this unit on at $2,699,000. Or at least try that. That having been said, I think you would get better results and attract more buyers at $2,599,000, given what 29D sold for. Like I said, that was a more attractive unit, but this is a more active market. At least marginally more active in this particular price range. [Note 4/5/2023: The market is no longer more active. I think $2.65m is more realistic now]

It's difficult to find this square footage at this price in this sort of building, but there are the offsets I mentioned: Exceptionally high condo fee, a bit dated, not the newest and most luxurious seeming building.

Getting the best and highest price depends upon atteracting the most buyers. The question is, what is the best price to list at in order to get to that highest price?

My M.O. in listing prices has been to list reasonably based on already sold comparable properties (rather than hanging it out at an overly high price and hoping someone will make an offer...sometime in the not too distant future). 

This gives you the best possible selling price and the most highly motivated buyer. The greatest number of highly motivated buyers are out there earlier in the listing period that your property is on the market. After that, motivation diminishes as more people who are in the market have seen your property in MLS and associated websites. Time is not your friend in this case. 

How We're Going to Sell Chez Kelner

List and sell a Boston condo or home

"Joe Wolvek went above and beyond to help us renovate, show and sell our condo in the South End. He helped us decide which renovations would make sense and which were not necessary. He worked with our contractors to get the work done in a very timely fashion. Once the condo was ready, he immediately got us two great offers. Finally, he made the negotiation of the P&S and the closing go smoothly...he is a master at his craft!"
Joan W., South End

Selling your Boston home

Is my number one business priority. This is what I do and what I love. I am the opposite of an absentee broker and I will be available and responsive to you. I have over 30 years and hundreds of transactions of experience and success marketing and selling condos and homes in Boston. My strength is in maximizing demand for your property, as well as in negotiation and transaction management. The great majority of my listings in the last five years have gone under agreement in under a week, at or above asking price.

Here's what I do.


     Pre-marketing activities

  • I will co-ordinate all repairs. I have done this many times and if you need great contractors, I have them.

  • I will gather all relevent information with regard to the specific property and the condo association. This is in order to represent the property correctly on showings, MLS, and advertising, as well as to avoid problems down the road.

  • I will professionally photograph exterior and interior for use in ads, promotions, all online venues, and multiple listing services. I use only quality high-resolution photos from trusted vendors. I'm going to virtually stage your property

  • I will photograph fo3-D Matterport tour and video. Due to COVID, buyers now expect these materials in order to vet properties prior to visiting. 

  • I will have floorplans made to aid in marketing. Click here and here. I may actually steal the floorplans of 29D as well, so folks can see what a third bedroom might look like.

  • I will prepare showsheets and digital brochures to be given to other brokers and potential buyers. 

  • I will create a website for your property. Click here and here for examples.

  • I will create "Coming Soon" postings in: MLS-PIN, TAN (Top Agent Network), All-Agent Connect, as well as Social Media postings in FB, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, blog. 

  • Plan “white glove” advertising program for appropriate properties.

  • I will mail "Just Listed" cards to neighbors and other potential buyers.

  • [Note: One of the things I was also mystified about in the 31D listing is that it did not push it a a 3 bed opportunity! With young parents and folks looking for additional office space, that's a major point.]

Entry to market

  • Ideally post the listing to MLS-PIN, LINK (secondary MLS) and all other venues on a Tuesday for showings to begin on Wednesday. I want to get as many showings as possible, and make it as easy for buyers to view as is practicable.

  • Mass emailing from Gibson Sotheby's to over 10,000 brokers and potential buyers, with photos, info, notice of open houses, and links to website.

  • Mass emailing to my own network of clients and contacts.

  • Social media postings and ads: Your property listing is promoted through a targeted Facebook and Instagram campaign, as well as LinkedIn. By leveraging social media, we are able to position your home in front of a diverse and savvy audience online, creating optimal exposure. 

  • MLS "reverse prospecting". Property listing sent to brokers with matching buyer-clients.

  • I (and Gibson Sotheby's International Realty) will post the property to more than 40 top lead generating local, national, and international websites including Boston.com, Realtor.com, (and of course) Trulia and Zillow, NewYorkTimes.com (and the International edition), WashingtonPost.com, WSJ.com (WallStreetJournal), and FT.com (Financial Times), Hong Kong Tatler, South China Morning Post,  Juwai.com (accessible inside China), Sothebysrealty.com, GibsonSothebysRealty.com and many, many more, along with photos and virtual tours. We do more exclusive marketing to buyers, both locally and internationally than anyone else. See here and here and here for more info (It will also filter out to all the other brokerage and agent websites).

  • My preference is to show by appointment all week, with broker open house 12-1:30 on Thursday, "commuter open house" Friday 5:30-6:30, Saturday and Sunday open houses 11-3 for new listings. For ongoing listings, 1.5 hours for most weekends with additional appointments available. I also post the 3-D virtual tour in MLS as a virtual open house. 

  • I bring my 30+ years of experience of Boston real estate to bear by providing quality professional showings to prospective buyers. What comes out of one's mouth during a showing can have consequences down the road. I perform all showings. I do not hand off keys or use lockboxes.

  • Appointments to be made with prior-day notice unless otherwise arranged. 

  • COVID-19: For all open houses and showings, one party at a time. Gel at door. All masked up. 

  • Spread the word in my own extensive network.