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Good Sales Year Predicted

By Ruth Thomas - December 8, 2016

The 2016 Hamptons real estate market started out slow and steady overall and for some realtors, picked up tremendously this summer. But with high-end sales down, prices decreasing, and inventory rising, it was a buyer’s market. Sag Harbor, Montauk, and Hampton Bays were the hottest markets. As we approach 2017, with lots of pent up demand, predictions are for a good sales year in the Hamptons.

Susan Breitenbach of The Corcoran Group says, “Hamptons real estate for 2016 started a little slow with quite a lot of inventory, but picked up tremendously this summer. Prices were good, inventory was up, and so it was a very good time to buy. I had a very good year – selling $150M in just the last ninety days, including four sales over $20M. Sag Harbor and Bridgehampton were very active as was waterfront and the $1M-$5M market. There was a tremendous amount of new construction spec homes adding to the inventory, making it more of a buyer’s market.” Susan predicts, “Now that the election is over, I think things will settle and spring 2017 will be good for Hamptons real estate.”

Judi Desiderio of Town & Country Real Estate says, “2016 started with fits and starts and ended the same way! Certain markets never slowed down, but others seemed to stall with the political process. That said, it’s time to move on and that’s exactly what buyers are doing! Town & Country had a very good year – all markets up to $5M were our strongest performers. Land, investments, and new construction seemed to soar in 2016. For buyers in the $3M-$5M range, 2017 is going to be a great year to snag incredible deals – and over $15M, it’s a buyer’s market.” Judi believes, “2017 will be a good year for investors. East End dirt is a proven winner and cash is king!”

Enzo Morabito of Douglas Elliman Real Estate says, “2016 was not like 2015 in Hamptons real estate, as 2015 was one of the best years since 2006-2007. There is quite a bit of inventory – too much for the market to absorb, with about a 10-25% pricing decrease. It has become a buyer’s market. Homes priced up to $1M are moving briskly. Within the $2M-$3M range, the market is healthy. There is a lot of inventory above $3M. Hampton Bays is the new Brooklyn of the Hamptons and the market is through the roof.” Enzo reflects, “This coming year will be like 2016, maybe a little better. An uncertain market leads people to rent and I anticipate the rental market to be quite healthy this coming summer.”

Cynthia Barrett of Compass says, “The 2016 Hamptons market was a bit of a roller coaster year. Median prices continued to decrease year over year by approximately 14% with the exception of Sag Harbor’s surging prices and Southampton’s modest increases. Sag Harbor has exploded, Montauk continues to be hot, and Southampton is having a rebirth. Bridgehampton activity has increased sharply in the fourth quarter. Properties with water views, farmfields, and horse farms have been popular. New construction under $4M has remained active.” Cynthia foresees, “Hamptons real estate in 2017 will have a blockbuster year. Interest rates have already begun to rise, although rates are still historically low. The Hamptons and NYC markets are some of the most insulated from extreme market downturns. A safe haven.”

Raphael Avigdor of Douglas Elliman Real Estate says, “The Hamptons market this year was bifurcated. The high end suffered some slowness while new construction on the lower end surged with strong demand. We had our strongest year in the Hamptons because we are niched in new construction between $2.5M and $5M. New construction always attracts buyers, as do the Villages of Southampton and Sag Harbor. ‘NORTH IS THE NEW SOUTH’ proved itself worthy this year with numerous wonderful constructions in North Water Mill and Bridgehampton North.” Raphael thinks, “Now that the elections are behind us, despite some continued market trepidation, the gates will open again to activity especially as families and investors try to lock the still very favorable interest rates.”

Geoff Gifkins of Nest Seekers International says, “Sales dropped an average of 14% in most markets, although we saw a number of high-priced properties transfer volume in most segments reduced. Westhampton and Shelter Island both had tremendous increases in sales and Sag Harbor and Montauk are still very active. Right now anything under $1.5M and between $3M-$5M is moving. With sales declining and inventory rising weekly, the shift to a buyer’s market is very apparent. New construction is selling, however buyers are looking for quality, features, and something different.” Geoff believes, “The Hamptons will always be a sought after area with global attraction. With the election behind us and as we head towards the summer of 2017, the market will slowly return.”

Rylan Jacka of Sotheby’s International Realty says, “The 2016 Hamptons real estate market was ‘slow and steady,’ without much urgency in buyer temperament. The early 2016 moratorium derailed the Sag Harbor Village market, but it’s a really good time to buy in the Village. Hot areas were Montauk ocean proximity, Amagansett all areas, and East Hampton Village. I am closing out a strong year with sales trending under $10M, especially $2M-$6M. Prices mostly remained flat. We always have room for good inventory. Even in a market that generally lacked urgency, when something came on that was a good deal, it could still sell in a week or less.” Rylan remarks, “There is lots of pent up demand, it could be a crazy first quarter in 2017!”

2016 was a bit of a roller coaster year for Hamptons real estate. While inventory increased, prices dropped, and high-end sales declined, land, investments, and new construction seemed to soar. As 2017 lies just around the corner, the market is anticipated to slowly return. The Hamptons will always be a globally sought after destination. Make this the year you invest in Hamptons real estate and realize your dream.

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