- The number of home sales across the Hamptons plunged by 21.1 percent in the first quarter. The number of sales dropped from 384 to 303 in just a year’s time.
- Westhampton and East Hampton tied with 27 percent of Hamptons sales by market area.
- The single town with the most sales, by far, was East Hampton at 66 – a drop from 70 in the first quarter of 2015.
- While transactions may have slowed, the real estate firm says the recent price trends are positive for the upcoming buying season.
Temperatures are rising, and so are Hamptons home prices — just in time for the summer destination to open for business. The average overall home price rose 9.8 percent during the first quarter of 2016 to reach $2.073 million from $1.888 million last year, according to a Brown Harris Stevens Hamptons report.
Correspondingly, the median price rose 4.4 percent to reach $999,000 from a previous $957,000 in the first quarter of 2015.
While prices undoubtedly grew, the number of sales across the popular summer destination plunged by 21.1 percent in the first quarter. The number of sales dropped from 384 to 303 in just a year’s time.
Peter M. Turino, president of Brown Harris Stevens Hamptons, said the first quarter of 2016 showed an overall reduction in the number of sales on the South Fork by 21 percent year-to-year, while the number of transactions on the North Fork rose by 13.4 percent
“But the average price on each Fork rose to a higher level in comparison to a year ago,” he said.
The average home price on the North Fork grew 3.4 percent, on average, from $493,692 to $510,613. Median price grew more significantly at 16.3 percent, from $382,500 to $445,000.
What’s more, North Fork average sales spiked from 112 to 127, helping the area strengthen notably, especially as activity seemingly slowed in the pricier side of town.
Where are Hamptons sales taking place?
In the first quarter, Westhampton and East Hampton tied with 27 percent of Hamptons sales by market area. Westhampton encompasses East Quogue, Hampton Bays, Quogue Village, Remsenburg, Speonk, Westhampton, Westhampton Beach, Westhampton Beach Village and Westhampton Dunes. East Hampton includes East Hampton and East Hampton Village.
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At 18 percent of the area’s sales, Southampton (North Sea, Southampton, Southampton Village, Water Mill), came in second. Sag Harbor and the towns of North Haven, Noyac and Sag Harbor Village had 11 percent of sales.
Amagansett and Montauk held 10 percent of sales in the Hamptons last quarter, followed by Bridgehampton (also including Sagaponack and Wainscott) with 7 percent of all sales.
Top towns on the South Fork
The single town with the most sales, by far, was East Hampton at 66 – a drop from 70 in the first quarter of 2015. But the average price in East Hampton in the first quarter was $1.193 million, up from $1.111 million last year. The median price also rose from $870,000 to $900,000 over the course of the year.
In a distant second was Southampton at 32 sales, down from 44 last year. However, the average price rose significantly in Southampton, from $1.051 million to $1.815 million year-to-year. The median price also bumped up, from $665,000 to $732,500.
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Hampton Bays was third with 28 transactions. At a much more reasonable cost, the average price in Hampton Bays was $462,921 as of the first quarter, down from $502,131 in the first quarter of 2015. The median price also dipped from $414,000 to $396,889.
North Fork’s most popular
On the North Fork, the most sales took place in Southold, with 22 transactions in the first quarter. The median price grew from $420,000 to $500,000 year-over-year, while the average price bumped from $480,238 to $580,000.
Mattituck was second in sales with 13 — down from 18 last year — and the average price grew slightly, from $670,611 to $686,902 year-to-year. The median price also rose from $472,500 to $560,000 in the same period.
Cutchogue tied for second with 13 sales, up from 10 in 2015. The average price, however, dropped significantly from $800,637 to $599,657. Meanwhile, the median price grew from $507,500 to $562,040.
Hamptons buyers gravitating toward top dollar?
The Hamptons buyer is difficult to pinpoint as the neighborhoods vary significantly depending on geographic placement.
Buyers west of the Shinnecock Canal seemed to prefer homes under $500,000 (42 percent of sales) in the first quarter or homes between $500,000 and $1 million (29 percent of sales). Fewer opted for the $1 million to $2 million properties (16 percent of sales).
East of the Shinnecock Canal, house hunters seem to have a bit more to spend: Just 11 percent of sales took place in the under-$500,000 range, while most sales fell into the $500,000 to $1 million range, at 32 percent. A hefty 30 percent of sales were between $1 million and $2 million, and 9 percent of sales were between $2 million and $3 million. Almost the same number of transactions (10 percent) fell into the $3 million to $5 million range as the under-$500,000 range.
While transactions may have slowed, the recent price trends are positive for the upcoming buying season, Turino said, and because the Hamptons are largely considered a seasonal spot, it’s an opportune time for agents to show the top properties in resort-like towns.
“The first quarter may not be indicative of the overall year’s performance and it is very likely, with asking price reductions, that activity will be robust throughout the summer and fall season of 2016,” he said.