Top 10 Emerging Trends Shaping Real Estate in 2016

1In spite of the melt down of the Chinese economy, crashing oil prices, and Apple’s weak performance, The Urban Land Institute and Price Waterhouse Coopers paint a rosy picture of the future in their recently published Emerging Trends in Real Estate ® 2016. In its 37th edition, this is one of the most highly regarded and widely read forecast reports in the real estate industry. It provides an outlook on real estate investment and development trends, real estate finance and capital markets, property sectors, metropolitan areas, and other real estate issues throughout the United States and Canada.

While most of the report focuses on macro trends, I found one element that struck a chord with what I have been seeing in the local markets around Boston. That is a shift in the traditional suburban migration of young families to the village center. Even families living on the rural fringes of suburban towns like Concord are moving in to the town center creating a heated market for renovations and tear downs in areas with walk-to convenience to shops, restaurants, and trains. Towns that lost their village core like Wayland with the expansion of secondary highways like Rt 20 are creating new village centers with mixed use development. In the secondary home market, these trends are playing out in places like Chatham where there has been a marked increase in renovation and new construction in the village center.

The top 10 emerging trends are:

  1. Second Tier Cities Take Center Stage (18-hour cities like Austin vs 24-hour cities like New York)
  2. Millennial Parents Move to the ‘Burbs (see above)
  3. Changing Office Landscapes (open plans and co-working)
  4. New Housing Options (rentals and micro housing)
  5. Pulling up Parking Lots (less car ownership, ride and bike share, Uber)
  6. Infrastructure Investment ($3.6 trillion need by 2020)
  7. Urban Agriculture (roof top and parking lot gardens, vertical farming)
  8. Niche Lending (nimbler small banks and community lending)
  9. Capital Flows (acquisition volume up 25%, new locations, new asset classes like labs and data centers)
  10. Old Fashioned Risk Analysis (focus on human intuition and market intelligence as much as data modeling and analytics

Here are some examples of recent LandVest sales that illustrate the new trends in the suburban and village-oriented migration:

60 Middle Street, Concord, MA
Sold Price: $1,500,000
93 Monument Street, Concord, MA
Sold Price: $1,325,000
11 Beach Street, Rockport, MA
Sold Price: $3,700,000
15 Sinclair Road,
Northeast Harbor, ME

Sold Price: $2,293,000
Ledgewood Road Estate,
Winchester, MA

Sold Price: $5,900,000
130 Eastern Promenade – Unit 2, Portland, ME
Sold Price: $1,700,000


For additional information about LandVest’s brokerage, real estate consulting, and appraisal services,
please contact:

Stewart Young | | 617-359-8930