Fourth quarter reports make it clear: Sales and prices are at record highs, while inventory is near a record low, Rand Realty reported. By the end of 2020, the market overcame its previous setbacks due to COVID-19 and beat 2019 records.
In the words of Rand Realty, “the market has been a wild ride all year.”
Across the Hudson Valley, sales have been skyrocketing compared to 2019’s Q4 reports. Orange and Rockland Counties saw increases of 50% in home sales; Ulster County pulled in a 40% lead.
In the region, 5,941 homes were sold in Q4 compared to 3,839 in 2019. The average price of homes dramatically increased from $519,952 to $638,084.
The consistency of closings is still tied to remote workplaces and learning settings, according to Elizabeth Nunan, president and CEO of Houlihan Lawrence, who explains, “Many buyers anticipate continuing the ‘work from home’ model and have ventured further North.”
This “buyer migration” is not an infinite cycle and could have a paralleled departure with the evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a Rand Realty report.
Northern Westchester has seen a 40% increase in home sales compared to 2019, while inventory dropped 40%; the remainder of the county has remained strong. Putnam and Dutchess counties have seen a huge boom in sales, breaking triple digits in pending sales.
The biggest increase for the housing market in Dutchess, Putnam, and Westchester in Q4 — and 2020 in total — was in luxury purchases. Putnam and Dutchess had a 300% boom in luxury homes over $1 million. Though Westchester didn’t see a break into double digits for ultra-luxury purchases, its luxury sales increased by 50% this quarter.
The wild ride may continue: Rand Realty believes 2021’s upcoming quarters could be the last chance for migratory buyers to dictate the market.