Fourth-Quarter 2018: Real Estate Market Report – Putnam County, NY

Putnam continues to show every sign of a thriving seller’s market, with low levels of inventory stifling sales growth but driving meaningful price appreciation. For the quarter, sales were down just a tick, but prices were up over 3% on average and almost 6% at the median. And that strong quarter closed a robust 2018, with sales up 2% and prices rising 6% on average and almost 5% at the median. Indeed, the condo market was downright frothy, with sharply reduced inventory holding back sales but driving the full‑year pricing up almost 15% on average and 19% at the median. We think that this kind of price appreciation is not sustainable over the long‑term, but that low levels of inventory, coupled with high demand, will continue to drive meaningful appreciation through the winter and spring markets.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on TwitterPinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on January 22, 2019 at 9:58 am
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , ,

Fourth Quarter 2018: Real Estate Market Report – Lower Hudson Valley, NY

Sales in Westchester and the Hudson Valley housing markets were down throughout the region, even while high buyer demand, coupled with low levels of inventory, drove meaningful price appreciation in most of the regional markets.

Sales were down throughout the region. Regional transactions fell across the board in the fourth quarter, dropping almost 7% for single‑family homes and 5% for condos. We saw the same story for the full 2018 year, with sales down over 4% for single‑family homes and about 1% for condos. To put these numbers in perspective, though, we closed almost 15,000 single‑family homes and almost 3,000 condos in 2018, up from about 9,000 single‑family homes and 2,000 condos back at the bottom of the market 10 years ago. So we’ve had a pretty good run‑up of sales in the past 10 years and were due to plateau at some point.
Prices were up in most of the markets of the region, particularly in the lower‑priced market segments.

Essentially, we had a “tale of two markets” developing in the region, with pricing flat only for the highest‑priced property type in the region – Westchester single‑family homes – even while average prices were up for every other county in the region for the year: up 6% in Putnam, 5% in Rockland, 9% in Orange, and 10% in Dutchess. And full‑year pricing in the entry‑level condo and coop markets was up in every market: rising 6% for Westchester coops, with condos up 0.1% in Westchester, 15% in Putnam, 1% in Rockland, 12% in Orange, and 7% in Dutchess.

So what was holding back pricing for Westchester single‑family homes? We might be seeing the effects of the 2018 Tax Reform, which capped deductions for state and local taxes, and could be having a disproportionate impact on high‑end buyers in high‑property‑tax Westchester. Unlike buyers in the entry‑level condo and coop market, or in the lower‑priced counties, Westchester luxury buyers are more likely to itemize their taxes, so they might be feeling the bite of the cap more acutely. This could be reducing demand at the higher‑ends of the market, suppressing the price appreciation we are seeing in the rest of the region.

Going forward, we believe that the market is still poised for growth. Sales are falling mostly due to a lack of supply, not a lack of demand. Essentially, the market needs more “fuel for the fire” – more viable inventory for the buyers who are looking. And that might be happening: regional single‑family home inventory was up almost 10% from last year, rising for the second quarter in a row after 25 straight quarters of year‑on‑year declines. This makes some economic sense, of course, since we would expect that sustained price appreciation over a period of time should tempt more homeowners into the market. The question is whether buyer demand is strong enough to continue driving price appreciation, even while absorbing this increased inventory. Ultimately, we believe that the region is still growing as a seller’s market, which should allow for both increases in sales and prices in what will be a robust spring market.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on TwitterPinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on January 21, 2019 at 3:52 pm
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: Third Quarter 2018 – Putnam County, NY

The Putnam housing market absolutely soared through the third quarter of 2018, with dramatic increases in both sales and particularly in pricing. Putnam was the only county in the region to experience sales growth this quarter, with transactions rising 3% for houses and 5% for condos. The real story was price appreciation, with prices up across the board: Houses were up 11% on average, 5% at the median, and 8% in the price‑per‑square‑foot, and condos were up 13% on average and at the median, and almost 20% in the price‑per‑square-foot. For the year, the pricing gains are also very strong: up 8% on average and 7% at the median for houses, and up 10% on average and 16% at the median for condos. Going forward, we believe that Putnam is going to continue to strengthen, although we would expect that blistering price appreciation to cool a bit.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on TwitterPinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on October 10, 2018 at 10:57 am
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: Third Quarter 2018 – Westchester and Hudson Valley

Despite concerns that the 2018 tax reform law would undermine housing values, Westchester and the Hudson Valley held steady in the third quarter, with prices rising throughout the region and up dramatically in some counties.

Some analysts have expressed concerns about the effects of the 2018 Tax Reform law on our regional housing market. The tax law capped the deductibility of state and local taxes and reduced the mortgage interest deduction, which particularly impacts high‑tax areas, like Westchester and the Hudson Valley. Indeed, those analysts might see evidence for this theory in the third-quarter results, with regional single‑family home sales falling almost 2% from last year, and down in almost every individual county.
For the most part, though, sales are down because of a lack of supply, not a lack of demand. Regional inventory levels have gone down 25 straight quarters, falling from a high of around 16 months to the current six months. Quarter after quarter, inventory went down until we reached a point where we have a shortage of desirable homes for sale. That’s what’s holding back sales – a lack of “fuel for the fire.”
How do we know that falling sales aren’t the result of slackening demand from the impact of tax reform? A couple of reasons:

First, this trend of declining sales predates tax reform. We’ve been tracking falling sales for almost two years, with regional sales down, in five out of the last six quarters, well before the passage of tax reform in late 2017.

Second, sales are down in all markets, not just high‑priced markets. Tax reform would not explain why sales are down even in the lower‑priced markets, where most buyers do not itemize taxes in a way that they’d be affected by changes in deductibility. And yet, quarterly sales were down more in Rockland and Dutchess than they were in Westchester.

Third, prices are up in almost every market segment. Regional average sales prices were up almost 3% for houses and 5% for condos in the third quarter and were up (in some cases dramatically) in every individual county for almost every property type. If tax reform had sapped demand in the market, we’d be seeing flat or declining pricing, not robust appreciation.

All that said, tax reform might be having a small impact on the very high end of the market, where the loss of deductibility for mortgage interest and local taxes hits the hardest. Price appreciation was more pronounced in the lower‑priced markets, with single‑family average prices rising 11% in Putnam, 6% in Rockland, 14% in Orange, and 7% in Dutchess. Meanwhile, Westchester’s single‑family home pricing was up just a tick on average, and only fell 1% at the median. We’re talking about a marginal, not a major, impact. Prices aren’t rising at the rate they are in the lower‑priced markets, they’re basically flat, not falling.

Moreover, inventory is starting to respond to these rising prices. For the first time since 2012, inventory levels went up this quarter, which illustrates fundamental economic market theory: If demand is strong, and supply stays steady (or goes down), prices will go up. And when prices go up, new inventory will come onto the market. That’s what we’re seeing now: After years of decline, single‑family inventory was up in almost every county in the region, stabilizing near that six‑month level that usually signals a balancing market.

Going forward, we believe that the appetite in the market can handle both the impact of tax reform and this increased inventory while still driving continued price appreciation. With strong economic conditions, relatively low‑interest rates (and the specter of rate increases on the horizon), and pricing still at attractive 2004‑05 levels, we expect a robust market through the end of the year.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on October 9, 2018 at 4:55 pm
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: 2nd Quarter 2018 – Putnam County, NY

Low levels of inventory in Putnam continued to stifle sales in the second quarter, even while pushing prices up to post‑correction highs. Sales of houses were down over 4% for the quarter, and now down almost 2% for the year, reflecting the lack of available supply on the market. But high levels of demand, coupled with that low inventory, continued to drive price appreciation, with house prices now up over 4% on average and almost 5% at the median for the rolling year. The condo market was even more robust, with sales and prices up sharply. Going forward, we believe that inventory will stabilize as sellers come into the market to take advantage of rising prices, but that we will continue to see strong sales and rising prices at least through the end of the year.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on July 24, 2018 at 9:59 am
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: 2nd Quarter 2018 – Lower Hudson Valley (New York)

The regional housing market in the New York City northern suburbs surged again in the second quarter of 2018, with high demand and low supply driving prices up throughout the area.

We are clearly in a “seller’s market.” The main story in the market right now is a textbook illustration of basic economic principles: when demand is high, and supply is low, prices go up. This is essentially what a seller’s market looks like, with low levels of inventory coupled with high demand holding sales down while driving prices up. And that’s exactly what we’re seeing throughout the region:

Sales are down. Regional single‑family home sales in the quarter fell almost 3%, and condo sales fell 7%, continuing a trend we’ve been watching for the past year ‑‑ indeed, the rolling-year sales were down about 2% for all property types. To put this in perspective, rolling-year sales had gone up in 24 out of the last 25 quarters prior to the first quarter of this year. And the decline is universal, with single‑family sales down in virtually every county in the region: falling almost 5% in Westchester, 4% in Putnam, and 10% in Rockland (sales rose slightly in Orange and Dutchess).

Prices are up. But all this demand, coupled with a lack of supply, is having its expected impact on pricing. Single‑family average prices were up across the board, rising over 3% for the region and up in every county in the region: up over 2% in Westchester, almost 3% in Putnam, over 8% in Rockland, almost 11% in Orange, and over 10% in Dutchess. And for the first time in over 10 years, single‑family average prices for the rolling year were up in every county in the region.

Inventory is low, but is starting to rise. The key to this market, of course, is the amount of available supply: the number of homes for sale in the market. Inventory has been falling for several years now, holding back sales and driving prices up. But that same economics textbook teaches us that as prices go up, eventually supply starts to rise. Why? Because rising prices attract sellers into the market.

And that is exactly what we’re starting to see: stabilizing inventory. Inventory is still low, but it’s starting to settle at about the six‑month level that signals a balanced market. Indeed, the months of inventory in the region was at 6.2 months, flat compared to the second quarter of last year. And inventory was actually up in both Westchester and Rockland. It might be too early to call a shift in the market, but this was a noticeable change after several years of sharp inventory declines quarter after quarter.

Going forward, we expect the market to continue to grow through 2018. The seller’s market is really just starting to hit its stride, where high demand meets higher supply and pushes both sales and prices up over last year. Higher prices might be tempting more sellers into the market, but we believe that demand is strong enough to accommodate this supply, and drive price appreciation through the end of the year.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on July 23, 2018 at 3:56 pm
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

AXRE, Corp. Joins Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty

NANUET, NY – In what continues to be Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty’s further expansion throughout Westchester County, New York, they’re excited to announce that AXRE, Corp. of White Plains has merged with their company.

“My team and I have been working in this market for almost two years, and we’re thankful to have the opportunity to join Rand Realty, who’ve made a strong impression in Westchester,” said Nikolas Stanovic, president and principle broker of AXRE, Corp.  “Our team is passionate about this industry, and we’re thrilled to be taking this next big step in our profession.”

Stanovic has been involved with real estate since 2007, finding success in managing residential and commercial properties throughout New York and Connecticut, and he continues to do so today.  He holds a broker’s license. 

Stanovic opened AXRE, Corp. in July 2016.  Their brokerage served New York City, Westchester County, Putnam County, and from Greenwich to New Haven in Connecticut.  For the transition to Rand Realty, Stanovic brings his team of eight dedicated salespeople, who will be working out of Rand Realty’s branch in White Plains, while Nik will be working as the new manager at Rand’s branch in the Bronx.

“Nikolas and his agents have a strong ambition that makes them tailor-made for our company,” said Denise Friend, Rand Realty’s regional manager for Westchester County.  “It’s impossible for their achievements to go unnoticed, and their experience guarantees that they’ll bring us some of our highest successes to date.”

“AX Real Estate is a young, ambitious team that began with rentals and has grown into a respected boutique firm,” said Matthew Rand, CEO of Rand Realty.  “Not only are we proud to have these agents join our company, but we’re also excited to have Nikolas as our new Bronx manager.”

 

About Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty

Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty, founded in 1984, is the No. 1 real estate brokerage firm in the Greater Hudson Valley, with 28 offices serving Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam, and Dutchess Counties in New York, as well as Bergen, Passaic, and Morris Counties in New Jersey. 

Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty has more than 1,000 residential real estate sales associates, as well as a commercial real estate company (Rand Commercial) and the Hudson United Group, which provides residential mortgage lending, title services, and commercial and residential insurance. 

These companies can be found online at www.RandRealty.com, www.RandCommercial.com, and www.HudsonUnited.com.  Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty can also be found and interacted with on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on June 21, 2018 at 3:50 pm
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: In the News, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: 1st Quarter 2018 – Putnam County, NY

Putnam’s housing market exploded in the first quarter, with sales and prices sharply up. Inventory continues to fall, which will likely suppress sales in the spring market but should continue to put pressure on prices. Although the eye-popping quarterly 10% average and 9% median sales price increases are not sustainable, the yearlong appreciation of 5% on average and over 6% at the median is a welcome trend for Putnam homeowners. Indeed, the average single‑family price for the past year is now higher than at any time since the market correction in 2009. We expect restricted inventory will continue to drive prices up in a robust spring market.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on April 11, 2018 at 9:55 am
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , ,

Real Estate Market Report: 1st Quarter 2018 – Lower Hudson Valley (NY)

The housing market in the New York City northern suburbs of Westchester and the Hudson Valley has become a fully‑realized seller’s market, with declining inventory stifling sales growth while driving meaningful price appreciation throughout the region.

The regional market continues to suffer from a lack of inventory. The number of homes available for sale compared to last year fell sharply in every market in the region. At the current absorption rate, we are now down to well under five months of inventory in every county for single‑family homes, and down to under four months for the lower‑priced condo market. That’s significantly below the six‑month level that usually denotes a seller’s market.

This lack of inventory is holding back sales. Regional transactions were down over 6% from last year’s first quarter, and were down in every county except Putnam: falling 6% in Westchester, 19% in Rockland, 0.3% in Orange, and 13% in Dutchess. For the rolling year, the drop was more moderate, with sales down just 1.5% regionally. But this isn’t a demand problem—demand is strong everywhere in the region.

But with all this demand chasing fewer homes, prices are up significantly across the region. The average sales price was up for every county and property type except for Westchester single‑family homes and condos, which might be a reflection of stronger demand at more entry‑level price points. The longer‑term trend, though, indicates that prices are generally appreciating at a moderate but meaningful rate, with the rolling-year average sales price for single‑family homes up over 2% for the region, and up in each county: rising 3% in Westchester, 5% in Putnam, 4% in Rockland, 4% in Orange, and 5% in Dutchess.

Going forward, this is what a seller’s market looks like. Low levels of inventory will continue to hold sales back even while driving prices up. At some point in 2018, this price appreciation will attract more sellers into the market, which will increase supply, bring sales up, and maybe moderate price increases. But that will not happen right away, so we expect a spring market with even lower levels of inventory, which will stifle sales growth but continue to drive robust price appreciation.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Posted on April 10, 2018 at 1:55 pm
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Fourth Quarter 2017 Real Estate Market Report: Putnam County Overview

The Putnam County housing market finished 2017 with a flourish, as low levels of inventory drove prices up dramatically.

Sales. Putnam single‑family home sales were up a tick for the quarter, following three straight quarters of decline. For the calendar year, sales were down over 7%, marking the first time in over five years where the yearly sales have gone down. This is not, though, due to a lack of demand, but rather a sign of the impact of severely low levels of inventory.

Prices. This lack of inventory drove a major spike in pricing in the fourth quarter, with prices up dramatically across the board: up almost 11% on average, over 8% at the median, and over 10% in the price‑per‑square‑foot. This was by far the largest quarterly increase in over 12 years, since the height of the last seller’s market. And one good quarter saved the year, with 2017 prices finishing up just a bit for the second year in a row.

Inventory. Inventory continued to tighten, falling over 6% and now down well below the six‑month level that usually denotes a tightening seller’s market. This lack of available homes is what’s been holding back sales, since we don’t have enough “fuel for the fire” to keep the market going.

Negotiability. The negotiability indicators support the idea that a seller’s market is emerging, with the listing retention rate up just a tick and the days‑on‑market continuing to fall.

Condos. The smallish condo market surged in the fourth quarter, with sales up over 18% and prices up just a tick. For the year, though, sales were down sharply and prices gave back a little, even while inventory continued to fall.

Going forward, we believe the Putnam County market will thrive in 2018 as a robust seller’s market. Demand will stay strong, with interest rates near historic lows, prices still at attractive 2004‑05 levels, and a strengthening economy. And if inventory remains low, prices will likely continue to appreciate meaningfully through the new year.

To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty, visit their website and Facebook page, and make sure to “Like” their page. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Posted on January 17, 2018 at 3:36 pm
Vincent Abbatecola | Category: Quarter Market Report, Rand Country Blog | Tagged , , , , , ,