Tuesday, August 13, 2013

July 2013 Trends

We continue to see additional strength in the real estate market in all towns in the area, reflecting common threads noted by real estate analysts throughout the country, such as the Case-Schiller index. The three most notable trends are the number of sales (increasing steadily to historic averages), monthly inventory (trending downwards toward historic averages), and median sales prices (increasing in all towns where in some cases that had been essentially flat in 2012). The town with the largest increase in number of closed sales year to date compared with the previous year has been Weston, with a 61.9% increase, from 63 sales through July 2012 to 102 sales during the same time period this year. Inventory has also dropped to 9.9 months, which is a 42.1% drop, but still considered above historic levels of 3-4 months. Once we get to that level, there is generally parity between the seller and buyer, or we may actually see a Seller's market, in which sellers feel that they have the upper hand, with demand for inventory higher than the number of available properties. Weston also saw the median price increase 6.6% to $772,500 for homes sold year to date. If this continues throughout the course of the year, we will be able to say with more certainty that there has been a shift in Weston. Westport has seen the median price rise modestly, up 2.7% year to date, to $1,258,000. Closed sales have been brisk, with 258 through the end of July an increase of 18.9%. July sales were up 47.2% over July 2012. Inventory is down 36.9% but still above more typical numbers to 8.9 months. We're still seeing a large amount of inventory of homes over $2,000,000, which are taking longer to sell. Still seeing some multiple offer situations-sometimes on homes that have been on the market for months. When the times comes for these homes, whether it be after a price reduction, or just the market catching up to pricing, or a lack of inventory in a particular price point, we have seen two or more offers coming to the table. Wilton inventories dropped in July to 5.2 months, a decrease from the previous July of 51.4%. Like its neighbor Weston, Wilton has also seen a median price increase of 5.2%, and increase in closed sales to 166 through July, an 23.9% boost. Fairfield and Stamford have followed similar paths in 2013. Both have seen modest increases in median sales price and solid increases in the number of closed sales, 418 in Fairfield to 404 in Stamford through July 31. These represent gains of 17% and 24% respectively. Inventory in both towns in down to near the 5 month level, from around 10 months in July 2012. July closed sales were also up in both towns. Activity has continued in the first couple of weeks in August, and will likely slow down during the second half of the month. Pent up demand still continues between $500,000-1,500,000.

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