While the North Fork real estate market closed out 2016 on a high note, it was quite the opposite for the Hamptons real estate market. "The last 3 months of 2016 were NOT good for the Hamptons real estate markets," explained Judi A. Desiderio, Town & Country
Real Estate Chief Executive Officer, in the firm's Hamptons 4Q 2016 Home Sales Report. "11 of the 12 individual markets monitored by Town & Country experienced declines in the number of home sales - with the hardest hit being starlets East Hampton Village with a 46 percent drop and Bridgehampton (which includes Water Mill and Sagaponack) with a whopping 56 percent free fall." Bridgehampton saw a 70 percent decrease from $305 million total home sales volume in the 4th Quarter of last year to just $92 million in the 4th Quarter of 2016. East Hampton Village also had a significant 81 percent drop in home sales volume in the 4th Quarter - from $120 million to $22.7 million.
But, it wasn't all bad news at the end of the year as median home sales were on the rise in half the markets monitored by Town & Country. Montauk is still one of the area's most desirable locales, and "The End" saw a 61 percent jump in median home sales price - from $815,000 to $1.315 million.
"Looking at all Hamptons markets combined, you clearly see activity in Hamptons home sales was pretty much on hold toward the end of 2016, particularly $10 million and up, where there were 14 closings in the last three months of 2015 vs. only 5 in 2016," said Desiderio. "The good news is all eight Town & Country offices are reporting heightened activity since the election and I predict 2017 will be a much better year than 2016."
Overall, in 2016, Sag Harbor Village, Hampton Bays and Shelter Island were the only Hamptons real estate markets that saw an increase in the number of home sales, with Shelter Island showing the most growth - a 16 percent increase, from 73 in 2015 to 85 in 2016.
"The 2016 Hamptons home sales market closed out with a thud," noted Desiderio in Town & Country's Hamptons Year End 2016 Home Sales Report.
But, it was Westhampton (which includes Remsenburg, Westhampton Beach, East Quogue, Quogue and Quiogue) that had the greatest number of home sales, 318 which was only six sales shy of its 2015 mark.
Bridgehampton (which includes Water Mill and Sagaponack) saw the most significant drop, 27 percent, which resulted in 172 sales, in comparison to 237 in 2015.
"Half of the markets monitored by Town & Country realized increases in the median home sales price by as much as 25 percent in Sag Harbor Village from $1.2 million to $1.5 million, 2015 to 2016," explained Desiderio. "East Hampton Village, on the other hand, sank 37 percent from $3.8 million in 2015 to $2.4 million in 2016."
Even though 2016 was nowhere near a banner year, Desiderio believes the market is showing signs of improvement. "Looking at all Hamptons markets combined, the red is glaring - losses nearly across the boards," she added Desiderio. "In fact the $10 to $19.99 million price range dropped 32 percent year over year. The good news is 2017 is poised to be a much better year than 2016. All indicators point to increased activity."
Nicole is the Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com where she focuses on lifestyle, nightlife, and mixology. She grew up in the Hamptons and currently resides in Water Mill. www.hamptons.com