Kerri Payne, a sales associate with Residential Properties Ltd. in its Barrington office, became involved professionally in real estate after spending more than 15 years as a private investor in real estate.
A graduate of Northeastern University, she formerly worked in the health care industry. She spoke to the Providence Business News recently about why Barrington has strong pull among homebuyers.
PBN: Given the past few years of price increases, for buyers, is Barrington still a good value?
PAYNE: Although the market has seen a steady, healthy rise over the last few years, buying right now is still a great option because interest rates are still so low. A year from now, we could see rates that are higher. The market values in Barrington are typically healthy because we are insulated a bit more from market fluctuations due to our great school system.
PBN: Why are so many non-water-view homes in Barrington approaching the $1 million mark?
PAYNE: Barrington has a large variety of homes from the $200s to the multimillions. The values here can rise over $1 million even in non-water-view homes because many are well-maintained or thoughtfully renovated, in vibrant, appealing neighborhoods among other well-maintained or renovated homes.
There is also value in the high-ranking school system, proximity and ease of access to the water, and many other amenities such as the Rhode Island Country Club, the Barrington Yacht Club, the East Bay Bike Path, and Barrington Town Beach, which give buyers a lifestyle, not just a home.
Barrington also appeals to many commuters due to its proximity to both Providence and Boston.
PBN: What is your most notable sale of 2019 to date?
PAYNE: In February, I was honored to represent the sellers on the sale of a beautiful Meridian-built custom home … in the Nayatt Point neighborhood. It sold for $1.2 million.
PBN: You live in Barrington. Why did you choose to live here?
PAYNE: My husband and I moved to Barrington long before even having children, so for us, the school system was just a bonus. He had lived here as a child and we both loved the town’s beauty, as well as its natural resources, proximity to the water and easy commute to the airport. It was equidistant from both of our families and an easy ride to Boston.
The other thing about Barrington we found appealing was its just-right size. It’s small enough to easily meet people and become involved in the community but large enough to explore for many years. We have since moved two additional times but have remained within a one-block radius of our original home because we love our neighborhood so much!
PBN: What should house-hunters do if they are attracted to the schools but are having trouble finding the right house for their budget? Any strategies?
PAYNE: My best advice would be to connect with a local, knowledgeable buyers’ agent who can guide them and make sure they are aware of every potential home on the market. Some homes are not advertised in MLS and working with an agent can help a buyer stay tuned in. An agent can also send their buyer up-to-the-minute listings as soon as they hit MLS, preventing one from having to go out and scour multiple websites that may not be timely or accurate.
Also, being prepared and what we call “ready to go” is important, especially when inventory is low. Buyers should have a pre-approval letter from a solid lender in hand before they start seriously searching, so that when they do find that perfect match they can compete properly. Finally, I would suggest being a bit flexible and open to various styles of homes and different neighborhoods.
Mary MacDonald is a staff writer for the PBN. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.