Westchester, Putnam, and Dutchess County real estate markets finished 2018 with generally slower sales, higher inventory in most markets, and a decline in pending sales, according to a report released today by Houlihan Lawrence.
Home sales in Westchester County were down 4.6 percent from the prior year, while sales in Putnam County were up slightly by 3 percent. Dutchess County sales declined 6.6 percent for the year. Meanwhile, median sale prices were somewhat higher in all three counties:
Westchester — $650,000; up 1.2 percent
Putnam — $350,000; up 4 percent
Dutchess — $281,500; up 8.3 percent.
Inventory in Westchester grew by 9.5 percent with the New York City Gateway submarket (Mount Vernon, Yonkers, New Rochelle and Pelham) posting the highest increase in inventory of 35.2 percent. Putnam’s inventory remained virtually unchanged from the prior year, while inventory in Dutchess declined by 11.8 percent.
The number of pending sales in Westchester and Putnam fell 10.9 percent and 11.4 percent, respectively, while pending sales in Dutchess declined by 17.2 percent.
Highlights from the year-end report:
• Westchester communities reporting double-digit increases in total sales for the year included Peekskill (33 percent), Hastings (25 percent), Rye Neck (26 percent), Greenburgh (14 percent), Pleasantville (13 percent), and Somers (10 percent). Rivertown communities such as Peekskill and Hastings continue to attract buyers from New York City.
• In Dutchess, the sales leaders were Clinton (27 percent), Beacon (20 percent), and East Fishkill (14 percent). Dutchess is enjoying an influx of residents from Brooklyn looking for a more relaxed country lifestyle, especially in the Village of Beacon which is undergoing a downtown revival.
• In Putnam, Haldane, Mahopac, and Brewster all posted double-digit sales gain for the year of 33 percent, 11 percent and 12 percent, respectively.
While luxury markets north of New York City registered losses in 2018, the uber-luxury segment of the market demonstrated notable growth, according to the Houlihan Lawrence Luxury Market Report also released today.
Sales over $10 million peaked in Westchester County in 2018. Houlihan Lawrence represented David Rockefeller’s country estate, Hudson Pines. Listed for $22 million, Hudson Pines sold for a record-setting $33 million and was the highest recorded sale in Westchester County. In total, five sales closed over $10 million in 2018 — a monumental gain from a single sale in 2017 — and exceeded the previous high set in 2005.
David Rockefeller’s country estate, Hudson Pines
Photo Courtesy of Houlihan Lawrence
In Westchester, luxury sales ($2 million and higher) declined by double digits in 2018. Fourth quarter declines were especially deep in many markets, dragging down year-end losses and placing even more pressure on pricing.
Many indicators point to a softening market in 2019. Pended sales (expected to close within 60 to 90 days) are down across the board and could impact first quarter sales. The once red-hot market in New York City cooled down in 2018, resulting in a smaller pool of buyers heading north.
Houlihan Lawrence’s proprietary data indicates that 25 percent to 30 percent of luxury buyers originate from New York City, and a significant chunk of losses experienced in 2018 are attributable to this shift.