Hamptons, North Fork home sales continue to decline

Low inventory and high mortgage rates depressing activity

(Photo Illustration by The Real Deal with Getty)
(Photo Illustration by The Real Deal with Getty)

Residential brokers on Long Island’s East End are searching for signs of life in the formerly frenzied market.

Scant inventory and high mortgage rates continued to cripple sales in the Hamptons and the North Fork last quarter, according to a report by appraisal firm Miller Samuel for Douglas Elliman.

“This is the same thing that’s happening in the entire United States, where you have this distortion created by people being wedded to their rates,” report author Jonathan Miller said, adding that fears of recession are contributing. “Inventory continues to remain a chronic challenge in the market.”

Sales dropped overall in the Hamptons from the same period a year ago, but the luxury segment — defined in the report as the highest 10 percent of all sales — was especially depressed. Luxury listings in the Hamptons remain at historic lows, prompting a record share of bidding wars.

Because of a pandemic-era sales surge, “the high end of the Hamptons market was essentially sold off,” Miller said, referring to transactions over $50 million. ”A lot of that product has been cleared from the market.”

The decline in luxury inventory is also skewing the median and average sales price lower in the Hamptons. Though the median sale price in the Hamptons fell annually for the third quarter in a row, it remains nearly double the pre-pandemic figure.

“Inventory continues to distort results, but it’s keeping pricing relatively stable if you consider the shift in the mix,” Miller said.

In the Hamptons, the number of closed sales in the second quarter dropped to 259, down 41 percent from 441 in the same quarter of 2022.

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The median sale price last quarter was $1.5 million, down 9 percent from $1.6 million a year earlier.

Listing inventory in the Hamptons increased by 6 percent year-over-year, but the 955 listings left on the market at the end of last quarter are less than half of the pre-pandemic number.

“Prior to the pandemic, we had inventory as high as 2,600 units, and now we’re below 1,000,” Miller said.

On the North Fork, the median sale price rose by 8 percent year-over-year to $980,000, the third highest on record. Last quarter, one of every four sales closed above the listing price.

“The North Fork is the same scenario [as the Hamptons], but it has more positive price growth,” Miller said. “Part of that is because the North Fork doesn’t have as extreme high-end numbers.”

Listing inventory on the North Fork remained anemic on the North Fork, rising by 1 percent to just 156 listings at the end of June.

Sales on the North Fork have declined annually for the past two years. Last quarter, the number of closed sales dropped to 101, a 36 percent decrease from the 157 recorded in the same period in 2022.

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