Real Estate Report: Slump Continues, Town & Country Reports

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East End real estate in the third quarter “was like a carnival game with ping-pong balls landing and leaping in every direction,” Judi Desiderio recently said in a report, pointing to 60% fewer home sales in the $5 million to $9.99 million range, and 43% less home sales in the bracket above, from $10 million to $19.99 million.

But one big sale over $20 million — on the corner of Lily Pond and Hedges Lanes in East Hampton Village for $20.6 million — has the CEO of Town & Country Real Estate feeling optimistic, despite a yearlong trend of soft overall numbers.

In Montauk, despite three less year-over-year sales, total home sales volume saw a 45% increase, and the 77% boost in median home sales price set high water marks for the 12 individual markets monitored by the agency.

While Amagansett didn’t come close to its 2018 record of $5.25 million for third quarter median home sales price, East Hampton Village did record the highest at $3 million — though certainly not a record for the village or the East End at large.

The East Hampton area, which includes Wainscott, closed the most number of home Sales in both 2019 and 2018 for the quarter — 63 — while Bridgehampton, including Water Mill and Sagaponack, took the summer off. They saw 38% fewer closings and 46% less total home sales volume.

“Southampton Village was a bit out of sorts for July, August, and September 2019, closing 25% fewer homes and a decline in total home sales volume,” Desiderio said. “A closer look and we see zero sales in the price categories $3.5 million and above for the quarter 2019, versus two in 2018. Southampton Area, which includes North Sea, had three less sales, all of which were under $2 million. But, the total home sales volume rose 27% and the median home sales price picked up 19%.”

Shelter Island enjoyed a strong tail wind with the number of home sales leaping 57% year over year and total home sales volume jumping 44%. Conversely, the median home sales price sank 39%. Sag Harbor area, including Noyac and North Haven, saw an improvement particularly in the $2 million to $3.49 million price category, which rose 150%.

Areas west of the Shinnecock Canal experienced a pullback. Hampton Bays closed 40% less deals, which resulted in 62% less total home sales volume and none over $2 million — juxtaposed against the four in 2018. Westhampton, which includes Remsenburg, Westhampton Beach, East Quogue, Quogue and Quiogue, had 12% less homes sales and 21% lower total home sales volume.

Over on the North Fork, a busy summer closed 90 home sales, an 11% increase from the same period last year. “Looking at all North Fork markets combined, we see a very deliberate shift, as we predicted, to higher priced home sales,” Desiderio said. “The $1 million to $1.99 million price category increased year over year by 120%. All three criteria monitored by Town & Country were in the black! The secret is out: the beauty of the North Fork has been discovered.”

Mattituck, which includes Laurel and Cutchogue, seemed to lag a bit from its eastern and western counterpart markets, but realized the greatest statistical increase — 13.2% — to $665,000 for the highest median home sales price on the North Fork for the third quarter.

Jamesport, which includes Aquebogue, Baiting Hollow and South Jamesport, closed 43% more deals and saw an increase of 9.45% in total home sales volume. Orient, which includes East Marion and Greenport, remained relatively flat numerically.

“Southold, which includes New Suffolk and Peconic, was the showstopper with a 45% explosion in the number of home sales and a 33% leap in total home sales volume, largely due to a 300% increase in the $1 million to $1.99 million price range,” Desiderio said. “This area included the highest North Fork sale for the quarter, of the Butz residence on Hyatt Road for $2.45 million.”