The Dutchess County housing market finished the year strong, with the first clear signs of meaningful price appreciation in years.
Sales. Dutchess sales rose slightly in the fourth quarter, up just about 1%. For the year, sales were down over 4%, which reflects low levels of inventory more than a lack of demand. Dutchess definitely needs more listings, some “fuel for the fire” to accommodate strong buyer demand.
Prices. Home prices continued to show the effects of declining inventory coupled with strong demand, with pricing up almost 3% on average, almost 8% at the median, and almost 3% in the price‑per‑square foot. For the calendar year, Dutchess experienced meaningful price appreciation, with the average up almost 3%, the median rising 4%, and the price‑per‑square‑foot up over 3%. Average prices in Dutchess have now gone up for two straight years, following four straight years of declines, where prices were bouncing around the bottom.
Negotiability. Dutchess homes are continuing to sell more quickly and for closer to the asking price, reflecting the negotiating leverage that sellers are getting in this market.
Condos. The condo market was mostly down for the quarter and flat for the year. In the fourth quarter, sales were down over 7%, and prices were down over 6% on average and almost 5% at the median. For the year, sales and prices were mostly flat, but the negotiability indicators signaled that Dutchess condos were moving into a seller’s market.
Going forward, we believe that the Dutchess market will experience a robust 2018. With tightening inventory, a stable economy, near‑historically‑low interest rates, and homes still priced at appealing 2003‑04 levels, Dutchess is likely to see meaningful price appreciation throughout the year.