CLARK: Home sales increase for fourth straight month

Pending-homes sales across the nation are increasing for the fourth straight month. Home-sales contracts increased to the highest level since May of 2006 (Source: National Association of Realtors). In the Northeast sales contracts increased slightly over 10% in April month-over-month and now are 9.4% above last year levels. In the Midwest, sales contracts increased 5% in April and are 13.3% above last year levels. In the South, contracts on home signings increased 2.3% month-over-month and are almost 15% above a year ago. In the West, home contracts ticked up 0.1% in April and are 16.4% above last year levels.

The pending home sales index increased 3.4% in April month-over-month and up 14% above April 2014 levels. Since September of 2012, this was the largest annual increase. Buyer demand is strong and inventory levels remain low in many real estate markets. Inventory is key to the strength of the real estate market.

The condominium and co-op market is active in Greenwich. When comparing activity between January and April of last year to this year, the following findings are revealed: The median sales price for these homes is up 20%. The most inventory available is priced between $700k and $800k. The price points that have the most units under contract from January to April of this year as compared to the same time period last year were the $800k-$900k (+ 250%) and the $1,400,000 – $1,999,999 (+ 250%) market segments.

The market segments having the most increase in sales for this period were the $800k-$900K units (+100%), the $1,400,000-$1,999,999 market (+400%) and the $3 million and over market (+200K).

Single-family sales are active in certain areas in Greenwich. The median price for single-family homes dipped (-14%) to $1,825,000 (January – April of 2015) from the same time period last year. Sales volume has also decreased 31% because of a shortage of inventory in sought-after neighborhoods.

The price point that sought the most significant decrease in inventory is the under $1 million market segment (- 40%). The largest increase in inventory is the $15 million and over market segment (+ 83%). Single-family homes under contract in Greenwich are down slightly (- 1%) for the period of January to April of this year as compared to last year.

The price points having the most contracts during the first four months this year include $2m – $2,999,999 (+ 50%) and $5m – $5,999,999 (+ 50%) as compared to this time period last year.

During the first four months, single-family home sales were the highest in the month of February when compared to the same time period last year. Greenwich, like other areas of the country, needs inventory or active listings in several price points and neighborhoods as there is pent up demand. Multiple bids are still being seen by Realtors, but buyers are cautiously bidding.

Mary Ann Clark is a Realtor with Coldwell Banker at 177 West Putnam Avenue in Greenwich. Questions or comments may be emailed to [email protected] 

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