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Real estate: Second-quarter sales highest since 2008

07/31/2016 2:00 PM |

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Residential real estate on the North Fork has generated the highest second-quarter sales totals since 2008, according to a recent report by Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

For the ninth consecutive quarter, the North Fork market, which includes Riverhead and Southold towns, also experienced an increase in median sales price, which rose from $693,112 during the first quarter of 2016 to $694,387 between April and June. There were 179 sales this quarter, up from 171 during the same period in 2015.

“What we’re seeing is the median sales price is up a little bit from year over year,” said Karla Dennehy, executive manager of sales at Douglas Elliman Real Estate. “It’s a good market for both buyers and sellers.”

This trend can be observed throughout Long Island, according to Douglas Elliman data. In fact, the number of residential transactions increased by more than 1,100 over the second quarter of 2015.

Across Long Island, sales of single-family homes rose by 20 percent — from 4,433 during the second quarter of 2015 to 5,352 during the same time period this year — and 14 percent from the first quarter of 2016, when 4,685 single-family homes were sold. This marks both the largest number of second-quarter sales in a decade and the 13th consecutive quarter the median sales price has risen.

“The market here has been stable for a while and continues to improve,” Ms. Dennehy said. “This didn’t happen in the sense that ‘Yesterday was terrible and today is great.’ It’s been steadily getting stronger.”

Throughout Long Island’s North Shore, home sales increased by 33 percent from the previous quarter, from 494 to 658. During the second quarter of 2015, 513 homes changed hands, according to Douglas Elliman data.

Suffolk Research Services, which produces a quarterly real estate report, has yet to release its second-quarter report for 2016.

Marie Beninati, broker and owner of Beninati Associates in Southold, said her company uses information from SRS for its quarterly reports, so she doesn’t yet have specific second-quarter numbers. She confirmed, however, that the market is improving.

“Business is very good,” she said. “It improved much over last year; there’s no question about it.”
Ms. Dennehy said a good indicator of an improving market is the absorption period, or number of months it takes to sell a house. That period dropped from 10.4 months between April and June 2015 to 9.2 months during the same period this year.

Rising sales and falling inventory have combined to create a faster-moving market, Ms. Dennehy said.

In the second quarter of 2016, the North Fork’s luxury market saw the greatest improvement, outperforming the overall market during the same time period and accounting for the highest 10 percent of all sales this quarter. The median sales price for April to June of this year was $1,797,500 — a 33.4 percent increase from the median of $1,347,750 during that time in 2015. The luxury market’s absorption period dropped by 37 percent, from 24.2 months during last year’s second quarter to 15.2 for the same time period in 2016.

Photo caption: This home on Sound Shore Road in Riverhead has been listed for $640,000. (Credit: Douglas Elliman Real Estate courtesy photo)

CORRECTION: The print edition of this story misstated in the photo caption that the house pictured had sold. The price listed was a listing price.

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