The first quarter of 2019 saw a general decline in real estate sales across Fairfield and Litchfield counties and Westchester County, N.Y., according to a report by William Pitt-Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty.
Westchester and Fairfield counties witnessed the most significant decreases in single-family home sales versus the first quarter of 2018, according to the report.
The report found that in Westchester County, most of the overall market decline occurred in the over-$2.5-million price sector, where sales account for just eight percent of the total market in dollar volume and two percent in unit sales.
Below that price point, where the vast majority of sales occur, decreases in volume and unit sales were more modest.
Likewise, in Fairfield County, sales over $2 million represent eight percent of the market in volume and two percent in units, and again, volume and home sales in this range decreased at a much higher rate than they did below $2 million.
Although diminished activity has previously been observed at the high end, the report stated that this is the first time the declines have been so sharp compared to the lower price points.
Wilton is up
For the first quarter of 2019, real estate closings in Wilton were up 17.6 percent. But demand for higher-priced homes was also on the decline.
Of the 40 homes sold so far in Wilton in 2019, 21 homes — one more than half — were in the $500,000- to $700,000- range, according to a report by Halstead Real Estate.
There were fewer sales on the higher end. Ten homes were sold in the $700,000- to $1-million-range, and nine between $1 million and $2 million. “There are fewer buyers available to buy those higher-priced homes,” according to John DiCenzo, executive director of sales for Westport and Wilton for Halstead.
He said there generally has been more activity in the bottom half of the market since the recession.
Overall, he believes the real estate market is going well in Wilton. “While it is early, I do think the results are positive so far for 2019,” DiCenzo said.
“There generally has been more activity in the bottom half of the market since the recession,” DiCenzo said.
Of the 40 homes sold so far in 2019, 21 homes — one more than half — were in the $500,000- to $700,000- range.
There were fewer sales on the higher end. Ten homes were sold in the $700,000- to $1 million- range, and nine between $1 million and $2 million. “There are fewer buyers available to buy those higher-priced homes,” DiCenzo said.
Overall, he believes the real estate market is going well in Wilton. “While it is early, I do think the results are positive so far for 2019,” DiCenzo said.
Paul Breunich, president and chief executive officer of Pitt/Sotheby’s said, “It appears the uppermost end of the market, which makes up just a small percentage of sales, is having an unusually significant impact on the numbers as a whole.”
But like DiCenzo, he was positive about the real estate market as a whole. “The key economic indicators that continually serve as our guidepost, including low unemployment, historically low interest rates, a healthy stock market and elevated consumer confidence, provide reason for optimism as we head into the second quarter,” he said.
The 2019 First Quarter Market Watch is available for download at williampitt.com/.
pgay@wiltonbulletin.com