Paul Pierce put his Boston-area mansion up for sale almost one year ago. He's still waiting on a buyer.

The five-bedroom, five-bath home features more than 7,600 feet of finished space, but no one has been willing to pay the list price of almost $2.5 million. It's a common story in the Boston area, where athletes routinely struggle to sell their oversized mansions.

Former Red Sox outfielder Carl Crawford is a cautionary tale of buying too big. After being traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers, Crawford listed his home for $3.2 million. But he wound up selling for $2.6 million, a drop of $600,000.

According to a Boston.com report, part of these struggles has to do with the buying tendencies of athletes moving around the country. Major assets like luxury homes are tough to sell on short notice. Yet players may be traded or choose to sign with another team, forcing them to put their house on the market.

Due to the small pool of buyers, it's rare for those homes to be purchased quickly. And whereas other buyers make real estate investments hoping to buy low and sell at the peak, athletes are often buying homes as a necessity, then selling when they no longer need them.

Pierce's former teammate, Kevin Garnett, wound up taking an $800,000 hit when he sold his Boston home in 2013. There are happy endings to some of these stories -- Jon Lester made $500,000 over his purchase price when he sold his Boston-area home earlier this month -- but this can be a product of market conditions more than smart investing.

The point, of course, is that if you're moving to Boston on a massive sports contract, it might be wiser to rent. Or at least consider a more humble abode.

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