The Real Deal New York

Are the Hamptons having a late “surge” in sales?

The fourth quarter historically logs the highest number of sales over $5M, according to appraiser
By Erin Hudson | November 25, 2018 12:00PM

(Credit Compass Real Estate, iStock)

The Hamptons market seems poised to finish the year strong, though to what degree is up for debate.

Compass broker Matthew Breitenbach closed a $6.5 million deal just over a week ago for a new-build at 232 Main Street in Sag Harbor Village and the transaction was one of 37 properties that he claims went into contract in the Hamptons between Nov. 13 and 19, based on Compass’ internal numbers.

“This is the busiest it’s ever been this late in the season,” he said. “There’s definitely a surge going on.”

The uptick comes on the heels of a shaky third quarter where the median sales price rose 8.4 percent year over year while the number of sales fell 13.3 percent, according to Douglas Elliman’s report. Luxury inventory was at a seven-year high, said the report’s author, real estate appraiser Jonathan Miller.

When asked about whether a fourth quarter surge could be afoot, Miller’s replied, “I’ll be a combination a of a wet blanket and an inspiration.” He said it was possible, but noted that “the fourth quarter is where the big sales are clustering every year.”

A chart compiled by Miller and shared with The Real Deal shows that, for sales over $5 million, fourth quarter transactions account for at least 26 percent of annual sales since 2009. The appraiser noted that the largest share of annual sales historically occurs in the second quarter.

Breitenbach admitted the last quarter of the year is typically his best “because I close,” but maintained that 2018 was different. He said more buyers were going into contract in Q4 and trying to close by the end of the year.