By Mark Pruner
Douglas Elliman – Greenwich
email@example.com – 203-969-7900
First Half 2016 Trends – By far the biggest trend in 2016 has been a huge increase in single family homes on the market. As of July 1st we had 697 single family homes on the market or 105 more listings than at the same time last year. We actually peaked at 711 listings in the third week in June and then had an amazing 25 listings expire on June 30th to get us back under 700 listings (net of new listings coming on).
Sales are also down by 31 houses in the first half of 2016 compared to the first half of 2015. We had 296 sales last year and so far this year we’ve had 265. On the good news side contracts are up 16 units from last year. Uncertainty delays closings. This year it was Brexit in previous years it was a U.S. Government shut down. When you add contracts and sales together we are down only 15 house transaction. We went from 404 transactions in 2015 to 389 transactions in 2016.
Sales slowing at the high-end are not just a Greenwich problem. Slower high-end sales are problems throughout Connecticut, the NYC region and nationwide. At the same time record low interest rates are keeping the market humming along as monthly payments continue to drop. With flight capital pouring into US government bonds and pushing their interest rates down this trend may continue for a while.
Greenwich Inventory, Sales, Contracts and Months of Supply
|As of 7/1/16||Inventory||Contracts||Last Mo. Solds||Tot. Solds+ Contracts||YTD Solds||YTD+ Contracts||Mos Supply||Mos w/ Contracts||Last Mo. Annlzd|
The Good News for Sellers – For years we have been supply constrained under $1,000,000. All the inventory coming on the market has made sales from $600,000 to $1,000,000 a bright spot for sellers with year-to-date sales up 12 sales to 45 sales so far. We have 56 houses in inventory for people to choose from. The brightest area is from $800K to $1M where our inventory is being absorbed faster than last year. Months of supply in this price range is down 2 months to a good 7 months of supply, but what is really impressive is if you take the 10 sales in June and annualize them we only have 2.8 months of supply.
Contracts are up this year over last year with most of the increase focused in the price range from $1.5 – $4M. We are up 18 contracts in those price ranges. This is excellent since the contracts for the total market are up only 16 contracts as we are down in contracts between $4 and $5M.
Another bright spot is the ultra-high end where we are down 10 listings over $10M or a total of only 45 listings. We have 3 sales on the GMLS over $10M this year; the same as last year. The result of the lower inventory and the same sales is a big drop in months of supply, however, we still have a lot of good houses in this price range to choose from.
The Good News for Buyers – Buyers have choices at just about every price range and in every part of town. I was just working with a developer who was looking for houses for gut renovations that are in good school districts and under $1M. We had 17 choices and we wouldn’t have had that last year. Between $1 and $1.5 million we have 40 more listings this year than last year.
Our months of supply for the overall market is up to 15.8 months compared to 12.0 months last year. Buyers are seeing more of a buyer’s market across a broad price range from $2M all the way up to $10M.
|June 2016 vs. June 2015||Inventory||Contracts||Mo. Solds||Tot. Solds+ Contracts||YTD Solds||YTD+ Contracts||Mos Supply||Mos w/ Contracts||Mo. Annlzd|
Summary – While you run across the occasional chicken little this is not 2009. Sales are happening at all price levels. Of our 295 sales this year, 66, or almost a quarter of sales, went to contract in less than a month.
We also had 56 house go for list price or over list. These list-price-plus sales often happened right after the listing came on the market, but a bunch of the 56 listings had been on for as long as 56 days. What this usually means is that weeks after a listing two or more buyers found the property at the same time and bid the price up. So even if your price range has lots of inventory dawdling is rarely a good buying strategy as other buyers are out there.