In general Larchmont NY homes for sale have been a bright spot in the Westchester NY real estate market – at least for single-family home sales. The combination of being highly commutable as well as an extremely walkable community makes it a very desirable destination for buyers who like the New York City lifestyle of leaving the car behind. the Larchmont to Grand Central commute is just a little over 30 minutes and more accessible to midtown Manhattan than many residential areas on the west side of Manhattan.
Unfortunately this bull market did not extend to the condo and coop market – which lagged seriously behind and is no encumbered by a large inventory overhang. This is a reflection of the Westchester coop market in general – which was down significantly.
A resurgence in sales volume and pricing in Manhattan has pushed its influence northward to some of the more commutable high end areas of Westchester. During the summer season – inventories were low and it wasn’t unusual for buyers to be outbid on the home of their choice.
Median sales price of a single family home was up 23% to $1,008,000 over the previous year. Volume was up over 58% with 68 homes sold altogether. Does that mean that home values rose 23%? Not so fast! Although prices are up overall – that number reflects not only rising prices but a higher percentage of higher end homes sold. This reflects a pattern seen in other areas of lower Westchester where high-end buyers came back into a market that had been largely quiet in 2009. Although inventories were low throughout the buying season – they are edging up now. The number of contracts and pendings indicates a nearly 9 month inventory up from a 3 month inventory as reflected in closed sales. But since this market is seasonal – this is not an alarming trend.
For the first time in a long time, I am going to advise buyers that THEY need to be realistic and for those sitting on the fence – STOP. Get moving. The winter lull with record low interest rates may well be your last window of opportunity to buy into this market before increase grab a strong foothold.
As stated above, the Westchester Coop Market was extremely slow during the third quarter of 2010. This was natural after a flurry of activity in Q2 which was the result of the home buyers tax credit. Buyers who were planning to buy in the summer or early fall – stepped up to the plate early to secure their $8000. The median sales price actually rose by 22% to $210,000 – however, this was more a reflection of the type of unit sold in 2009 than any actual price increase. So few units have sold it is fair to assume that there is downward pressure on prices, but coming up with a number would be difficult with only 5 closings to work with over the entire quarter. Sales volume is down 44% over the previous year. At this time, contracts and pendings indicate a 13.4 month overhang putting this market squarely in bear market territory. This inventory is easing slightly – closed sales had the inventory of the coop market at well over two years. Whether buyers are coming back in can’t be said.
Sellers who really need to sell – need to be realistic. Overpricing will cause any unit to sit – no matter how nice.
A Note to Buyers:
In spite of all the doom and gloom, I think that the upward trend seen in single family homes can not be ignored. I urge buyers to take advantage of this market because affordability is now higher than its been since the height of the last housing recession in the mid-1990s. With interest rates so low that they are at levels not seen since Eisenhower was POTUS – (well before I was even born – and I’m not young!) I would not press my luck. At this time that the chances of things becoming less affordable outweighs the chance that affordability will increase. The media has perhaps hyped the big bad bear market a bit too much.
The number of condos sold makes evaluation difficult – however, most of what was said about the cooperative market applies to the condo market. This also reflects a general malaise in Westchester Condos generally.
In general when looking for Larchmont NY homes – buyers are buying into an area that is not only a wonderful place to call home, but a very resilient market in general.
*Note – All statistics are derived from raw data compiled by the WPMLS. When referring to Larchmont – I am including the village of Larchmont and the Larchmont P.O. which is part of the unincorporated portion of the town of Mamaroneck.
© 2010 – Ruthmarie G. Hicks – https://thewestchesterview.com – All rights reserved.
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