Ridgefield Market Report for September 2014

September was a positive month for Ridgefield single family housing sales. The median sales price held fairly steady, while the number of units sold increased. The number of days a property spent on the market decreased by 45% over the same time last year, indicating properties are still in demand by buyers, and the number of properties that entered escrow (went under contract) increased by 144%! The number of closed sales year-to-date is still lagging behind the same time last year, but the overall median sales price is up over 2013. In my opinion, it’s a strong fall market for sellers, and as interest rates remain low, a great time to invest as a buyer.

September 2014 saw the median price of a property in Ridgefield decrease very slightly to $697,500 from $702,000 in 2013 (0.6%), while the number of properties sold increased to 33 in September 2014, compared to 27 during September of last year. Overall, on the year-to-date, the median price has increased 6.0% over 2013, rising from $642,250 to $681,000. Closed sales are lower than the same time period last year with a total of 270 properties closing since the beginning of the year compared to 314 by this time least year, a decrease of 14%.

Reflecting a good end to the quarter, the number of properties under contract in the month of September increased by 143.8% over the same time last year, with 39 entering escrow compared to 16 last year. In the year-to-date figures, 276 properties have opened escrow since the beginning of 2014, as compared to 301 over the same time period last year.

The days a listed home spends on the market continues to decrease in 2014 with properties spending an average of 127 days on the market during September 2014, as compared to 232 days last year. Overall, in year-to-date figures, the days on market has decreased by 24.6%. The months supply of inventory has also decreased to just 9.3 months, from 21.0 months during the same time last year.

The number of new properties listed in September totaled 59, which incidentally almost equaled the 58 new properties that were listed for sale in September 2013. In the year-to-date figures, 2013 outpaced 2014 for properties listed 564 to 555, a decrease of 1.6%.

For a full graphical analysis of Ridgefield’s September 2014 real estate market, download the report. You can also take advantage of my complimentary Comparative Market Analysis to find out what your home’s worth.

Ridgefield Market Report : 2014 Mid-Year Review

The Housing Recovery Continues.

At first glance it appears the momentum over the past two years has stalled. We need to remind ourselves that 2013 was a breakaway year for the local real estate market here in Ridgefield. We experienced a 37% increase in unit sales when comparing the first 6 months of sales in 2013 vs. 2012. We ended 2013 with a 45% increase in unit sales over 2012. Those are signs of significant shifts, further demonstrating the market is in recovery mode. The 15.2% decrease in 2014 sales for the first 6 months is a direct reflection of an extremely harsh winter. Q1 2014 unit sales were 27.4% below the same three-month period in 2013. Typically, by March the Spring Selling Season should be in full swing, but we did not start to see business pick-up until mid-late April. Unit Sales from April through June 2014 fell short 7.8% when compared to the same period in 2013, proving that fewer buyers were in the market this winter, and resulting in fewer Q2 closings. Most promising, however, is that the Median Sales Price for a home in Ridgefield increased by nearly 17% to $690,000 when compared to the median price of $590,000 in the first 6 months of 2013. The Unit Sales by Price Category Chart reveals that we are selling a greater number of higher priced homes than we did in 2013 indicating consumers are confident about investing in Ridgefield.

Supply and Demand.

Inventory is down slightly when compared to June 2013. Many predicted there would be a significant number of new homes hitting the market this spring, but this did not materialize. With lower than expected inventory levels in the more popular price segments, homes that were priced properly, updated and show ready sold quickly.

Going Forward.

I predict that the current trend of steady, reasonable growth will continue through the end of the year. With consumer confidence at its highest since 2007, and interest rates remaining historically low, buyers still feel the urge to buy – especially those properties which reflect good value. Ridgefield continues to attract families looking to settle in a community that offers a wonderful quality of life, award winning schools and a vibrant downtown center with many new destinations.


Ridgefield Market Report : 2013 Year In Review

The Housing Recovery

After the worst housing downturn since the Great Depression, we are back in full force. After 8 years of correction as a result of the “housing bubble”, it is safe to say all the characteristics of a normal real estate market have returned. Prices remain stable, median selling prices are improving and overall market activity is the highest it has been in 5 years. Consumer confidence has increased, which has brought more buyers into the market, and sellers are feeling more confident that they are not selling their home in a sliding market. All price segments posted positive gains, while homes valued up to $800,000 continue to dominate the market. The popular price category of $900,000 – $1,000,000 tripled in volume when compared to 2012. The market for homes priced over $1 million grew 46% – a strong indicator of buyer confidence.

Connecticut’s #1 Town.

Ridgefield unit sales were up 45%. This demonstrates confidence that Ridgefield is a destination for many new buyers, while some sellers are also trading up or down to stay here. Buyers see the outstanding value Ridgefield has to offer – quality lifestyle, cost of living, top rated education and a vibrant community. In fact, Ridgefield experienced the highest increase in annual unit sales when compared to all towns in Fairfield County.

The Road Ahead.

We saw buyers react to the uptick in interest rates this summer, though interest rates are still low by historic averages. Since values are on the incline, we expect the buyer pool to increase in a last ditch effort to catch the market before prices and interest rates rise. Sellers are feeling more confident as they prepare for the Spring Selling Season, but realize that certain fundamentals still apply. Homes in “turn-key” condition will continue to outpace the competition in terms of achieving the maximum selling price and lowest days on market. A fair number of sellers who used this strategy had multiple offers on their home – from wonderful starter homes to sophisticated properties priced in excess of $1 million. Supply and Demand will continue to drive the Real Estate market.

Download Ridgefield Market Report 2013 Year In Review

Ridgefield Market Report : 2013 Mid-Year Review

Local Market Confidence.

The movement in the Ridgefield housing market during the first half of 2013 has given us confidence that property values have stabilized, while unit volume has increased substantially, rising 37% when compared to the same period in 2012. Clearly, we are moving in the right direction. For the month of June alone, unit sales were the highest they have been since June 2005. Equally important, pending sales for May and June are 50% higher than the same period in 2012. We estimate sales will remain strong in the near term and that we should actually see a slight increase in certain price segments.

The Price Factor.

Homes priced under $800,000 continue to outpace 2012 results. The usually strong $800,000-$900,000 category is lagging behind 2012 by over 27%, mainly due to lack of inventory. A common factor across all price points however, is that buyers expect a home to be in “move-in” condition at the time of sale. I can point to numerous examples where turnkey condition homes have translated into shorter days on market and multiple offers.

Inventory Rules.

Supply and demand has become a key topic in today’s market. Inventory is light in certain price segments, therefore making it tough for qualified buyers to purchase a home. Buyers recognize that the time to act is now, and are serious about purchasing. In general, we are experiencing increased sales month after month, and seeing reduced inventories and improved median prices. This presents a good environment for both buyers and sellers.

Download Ridgefield Market Report 2013 Mid-Year Review

Ridgefield Market Report: 2012 Year In Review

The Tide Has Turned

2012 marked a significant turning point for both Ridgefield real estate and many neighboring towns in Fairfield County. Ridgefield experienced 12% overall growth,and better than expected fourth quarter sales allowed us to out-pace all towns in Fairfield County when compared to the same period in 2011. All of the data points indicate that the number of housing sales will continue to grow to “”pre-crisis””levels,while prices inch up slowly.

Positive Market Conditions.

The conditions for purchasing a home have never been more favorable. Consumer confidence is up, interest rates remain historically low,and home prices are appealing. First-time homebuyers are increasingly anxious to purchase and there is an increase in the number of serious, pre-qualified buyers coming to the table. Corporate relocation purchases have begun a resurgence as well. We also continue to see more Ridgefielder’s recognize the benefits of “trading up”” locally, while empty-nesters look to downsize.

The Price Factor.

Homes that are properly priced continue to outsell their overpriced competitors by a considerable margin when considering days on market and sales-to-list price ratio.It is critical that a home be properly priced in order to attract the largest number of buyers at the highest price.Both the location of the home and its condition play a critical role in determining its fair market value.As a turn­ key property rises to the top of almost every buyer’s wish list,consider having your home evaluated by a Home Staging professional for maximum results.

Download Ridgefield Market Report 2012 Year in Review

Ridgefield Market Report: 2012 Mid-Year Report

Moving In The Right Direction

Residential Real Estate has continued to strengthen nationally, and more importantly, locally. Ridgefield’s unit sales are up 2.4% when compared to the first 6 months of 2011. Market time has decreased 17% and inventory is up 14.2%, which can be attributed to the spring selling season. More Ridgefield residents decided to list their homes for sale this year versus 2011. When we break down the unit sales through the end of June-81% of the homes sold were priced below $1M, therefore 19% of the unit sales so far in 2012 have been above $1M. Based on pending sales, 15 additional homes priced over $1M are dueto close in the 3rd quarter. Stability in the higher priced segments will be achieved once we bridge the cap between supply and demand.

The Value Factor.

Driving the current market is value. Properly positioning the price of your home is the key in today’s competitive market. Equally important is preparing your home for scale. Buyers react favorably to move-in/turnkey condition.

Outside Factors.

Positive factors such as historically low interest rates and increased buyer activity should continue to move the market forward during the second half of 2012. It is still too early to gauge the effects of the upcoming national election and the global economic issues.

Download 2012 Ridgefield Mid-Year Market Report

Ridgefield Market Report: 2011 Year In Review

The Power of Consumer Confidence

For 2011, the Ridgefield Real Estate market can best be described as divergent. The sever winter weather resulted in a delayed start of the 2011 selling season. Once home sales finally gained some momentum in late spring and into summer, a damaging hurricane followed shortly thereafter by a record snowstorm in late October diminished any hope for a last quarter increase in sales. these extraordinary events clearly impacted consumer confidence levels and were compounded by the European debt crisis and our own political and economic concerns.

The Value Factor.

Value remains the catalyst in all real estate transactions, spanning over all price segments. Buyers have become more educated with the abundance of information available to them. Motivated sellers realize pricing is critical and in turn, have been able to take advantage of current values when they choose to up-size or down-size. While it’s still too early to predict how the local market will perform in 2012, I am cautiously optimistic. The holiday shopping season showed strong spending and many financial analysts predict the worst is behind us. With long term fundamentals remaining intact, 2012 should show signs of improvement.

Download Ridgefield Market Report 2011 Year in Review

Ridgefield Market Report: 2011 Mid-Year Review

Holding Our Own

What a difference a few degrees makes! As soon as the weather improved, so did our local market here in Ridgefield. Weather has had a big influence as well as current economic conditions. We experienced an uptick in activity thanks to the positive news coming out of Wall Street regarding jobs and bonuses, the wake of a strong stock market performance and corporations transferring employees to the area again. Comparing unit sales for the first 6 months of 2011 vs. the same period a year ago, the largest increases were in the over $1,000,000 segment and under $500,000. So far this year, 27% of the unit sales have been in the $1,000,000+ segment vs. 18% for the same period 2010. The 10% increase in unit sales for homes priced under $500,000, demonstrates first time homebuyers are taking advantage of low interest rates and are now able to enter the Ridgefeld housing market. Unlike other markets across the nation, our home values remain steady in most price categories. Pending Sales for the last 3 months are up 42% when compared to the same period last year. Much of this data points to a slow, steady recovery. Remember, Real Estate is very local.

Moving in the Right Direction

Prices are higher in Fair!eld County and Connecticut on both a median price and price per sq. ft. basis. This seems to be due to increased activity in the higher price ranges. New Canaan and Westport continue to experience double digit increases in both unit sales and median sales price.

Download Ridgefield Real Estate Market Report January – June 2011