2Q Manhattan Residential Market Reports

Prices are flat and volume through the roof…nuff said!  OK, OK, let’s share and elaborate a bit.  First here are links to all of the major reports for you to peruse (in alphabetical order and not any order of preference):

Brown Harris Stevens



Prudential Douglas Elliman

StreetEasy (remember that StreetEasy is a consumer-centric site…just sayin’)

You can see from the reports that the overall picture clearly shows that prices have dropped year over year by about 20% which makes it no surprise at all that sales volume was up about 80%. Obviously buyers were delighted to see some values return to a market place that had been out of control for the last decade.

My personal sentiment about what the market has done is very much in line with these numbers but StreetEasy’s report is most in line with what I have seen at The Heddings Property Group.  Here is a quick summary of the StreetEasy numbers

  • Closings were up 13.9% from last quarter and 65.27% from same quarter last year.
  • Inventory was up 1.6% from last quarter and DOWN 6% from same quarter last year. 
  • Signed contracts rose 21.9% from last quarter and 17.6% from same quarter last year.
  • Days on the market for condos decreased 10.2% to 136 days from last quarter and 9.8% from last year.
  • Days on market for co-ops decreased 7.7% to 125 days from last quarter and 11.4% from last year.
  • BROKEN CONTRACTS INCREASED 47.9% from last year which is indicative of just how shakey and difficult transacting business has been in recent months.

I’m pleased to report that although the big 4 firms numbers don’t match exactly that this is the first quarter in recent memory where the message seems to be the same and consistent with reality. What a refreshing thing to see as the industry strives to become more transparent!

That said, if you’re an active buyer or seller in today’s Manhattan real estate market, don’t put all the weight of your decisions into these reports.  They are merely a guide of what has already happened and not terribly significant when making decisions TODAY.  They are also statistics and we all know that statistics can skew our perception of what has really happened in the market as each micro-market in Manhattan yields very different numbers.

And lastly, where are things now and where are they heading?  Hold on a moment while I look into my crystal ball.  Oh wait, don”t need that to report what is happening now.  Mortgage markets have opened up a bit (not much) to allow more people to get financing and with rates at historical lows for the near term, people are shopping and deals are happening albeit at a slower pace than Q2.  

Going forward, it appears that rates will remain low through the end of the year barring any more insanity in the world (could happen any moment of course) and prices should remain stable.   3Q numbers will likely show a drop in sales volume, flat inventory, stable prices and more days on the market.  We’ll see in September to see if I’m correct.

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