Tag Archive for: Luxury Homes

Ridgefield is #1 Safest City in Connecticut, #2 in USA!

Ridgefield is a fabulous place to live…and a safe one too!!  According to SafeWise, Ridgefield ranks as Connecticut’s safest city and America’s second safest.  Read below for more details about how Ridgefield stacks up, as well as the SafeWise methodology for raking the cities.

A Closer Look At America’s Safest Cities

Nationally, violent crime is actually down over the past three years, with 70% of the safest cites in America residing in the Northeast. To find out more about the health of the nation, click here.

  • 30% of America’s 100 safest cities are in New Jersey. Connecticut claims second place with 14, and two of those are in the top three.
  • 16 of these cities made the list for the second consecutive year, and New Jersey is home to five of them.
    It’s harder to find one of the safest cities in the West or the South—those regions have only five cities each on our list.
  • The Midwest is home to 20% of the country’s safest cities.
  • The top three cities (Hopkinton, Massachusetts; Ridgefield, Connecticut; Madison, Connecticut) each reported zero violent crimes in 2017—and each has a median income of more than $100,000.⁴
  • 93% reported fewer than 10 total violent crimes, and only six cities reported any counts of murder.
  • 22 cities had fewer than 100 property crimes, and 70 had fewer than 200. Only two cities reported more than
  • 500 property crimes—Johns Creek, Georgia, and Carmel, Indiana (the two largest cities on the list).
  • 42 cities have populations under 20,000, and all are under 100,000.
  • Carmel, Indiana is the largest city on the list, with 93,098 citizens. Even with a big population, Carmel still managed to limit violent crime to just 0.18 incidents per 1,000 people.
  • 59% of the safest cities in America have a median income over $100,000.
  • Only two cities are below the national median income of $57,652—Laguna Woods, California, and Manchester Township, New Jersey.

A Closer Look At Connecticut’s Safest Cities

Overall, the Constitution State is well below national averages for both violent and property crime. Proving the point, 95% of the cities on our list saw fewer than one violent crime per 1,000 people, according to FBI data.

With such a low violent crime rate (it’s just 2.55), it’s no surprise that residents named digital security their top concern in our State of Safety study. And the numbers confirm this finding—just 6% of the people we spoke to reported a personal experience with violent crime in the past year, but 16% reported experiencing a digital security issue.

  • 85% of the safest cities are on the list for the second year.
  • 80% reported 25 or fewer total violent crime incidents.
  • Connecticut’s crime rates are better than the national averages, with 2.55 violent crime incidents per 1,000 people and 19.53 property crime incidents. Nationwide rates are 4.49 for violent crime and 27.11 for property crime.
  • 95% of the safest cities had fewer than one violent crime per 1,000 people in 2017.
  • Even though 16% of our State of Safety respondents had a personal experience with digital security in the past year, that’s eight percentage points below the national average of 24%.
  • Having someone access sensitive information is the primary digital security fear, with 73% naming it their top concern.
  • Being robbed is the top violent crime worry, and safest city reporting supports that—only three cities had zero incidents, and the reports ranged from one to 25, with a total of 146 being reported among all cities, which makes it the second-most common violent crime after aggravated assault (166).


** Data courtesy of SafeWise and first published on their site 03/14/2019

Ridgefield’s Luxury Sales Continue To Shine With ‘Ridgeview’ Welcoming New Owners

150 Oscaleta Road is nothing short of stunning and recently sold for $2,050,000. The private oasis basks in the splendor of 50+ mile views of the Hudson Valley and is the latest in a continuing trend of strong luxury sales in the Ridgefield market over the last couple of years. The property was represented by Karla Murtaugh of Neumann Real Estate.

The materials choice at Ridgeview reflects a harmony with nature, allowing it to blend seamlessly into the surroundings, while exhibiting a wow factor rarely seen. The interior and exterior of the property incorporate Connecticut fieldstone, pine timbered ceilings, hemlock beams, and more. Never-ending rolling wilderness unfolds before your eyes, kaleidoscopic sunsets await, and the seasons provide an ever-changing backdrop from the impressive two-story great room.

Meticulously updated over the years, the residence features: an exquisite new Chef’s kitchen with a sparkling glass backsplash, white cabinetry, professional stainless steel appliances and grey granite counters; a master suite with exposed beams and soaring two-story windows throughout the room; a spa-like marble master bath; private deck with a hot tub; an infinity pool, which appears to drop off the edge of the world; 4.3 beautifully landscaped acres and a spectacular, detached multi-car garage with a radiant-heated epoxy floor and room for twenty cars! And if that wasn’t enough, an indoor basketball hoop complements the outdoor hoop adjoining the regulation-size tennis court with a sport court overlay.

There are not enough words to describe the peace and tranquility of this very special property.

Ridgefield’s 2018 Year In Review

Ridgefield Market Snapshot
The Ridgefield Real Estate market for single-family homes faced an interesting year in 2018 with a tumultuous mid-term election and the challenge of attracting businesses to the state. Combined with the new tax structure – the effects of which have not yet come to pass – and a bear market, Ridgefield sales rallied remarkably well showing a drop in volume, but no appreciable drop in value. Overall, the number of homes sold was down 11 percent with 329 homes selling in 2018 as compared to 370 in 2017. The total sales volume also decreased by 13 percent resulting in a total of $236,085,651 transacting as compared to $273,224,044 in 2017. The median sales price decreased only slightly from $642,500 to $641,260 (a difference of 0.2 percent) and the average home price fell by only 2.8 percent from $738,443 in 2017 to $717,586. Homes also continued the trend of selling at 96.5 percent of their listed price as in previous years.

In Condo News
As in 2017, there was a total of 70 condominium sales in Ridgefield in 2018 ranging in price from $129,000 for a one-bedroom apartment in Fox Hill, to $865,000 for a 3,200 square foot condominium on Sunset Lane. The average sales price was $330,174, while the median sales price was $235,000. This is down slightly from last year when the average price was $384,920 and the median price was $250,000. Of note, 3 luxury condos on Main Street are also due to close in the $1.3 million range in the early part of 2019.

The Luxury Market
The luxury market in Ridgefield-defined as homes selling for $1.5 million and above-continued to show decent market activity with 9 luxury homes selling in 2018, as compared to 13 homes in 2017. Of note, we represent 4 additional properties priced over $1.5 million currently in contract to close in the first part of 2019. Overall, we have noticed buyers are taking longer to commit to luxury purchases and are instead searching for just the right home-one that includes all the features and amenities they are looking for. As a Christie’s International Real Estate Luxury Specialist, in 2018 I was proud to represent 10 out of the 18 buyers and sellers who purchased luxury homes priced between $1.525 and $2.55 million.

Fairfield County News
Overall, Fairfield County experienced slight decreases in both the number of properties sold and median sales prices in 2018. Redding, Norwalk, Wilton and Fairfield showed an increase in values over last year, which is welcome news for homeowners in Wilton and Redding where home values had plummeted almost 10 percent back in 2017. Weston was able to rally back after being down 22% in mid-year unit sales. New Canaan continues to post double­ digit decreases in sales as a result of an increase in supply compared to demand especially in the upper price points.

Looking Ahead
In 2019, the buyer’s market will continue with the biggest discussions centered on mortgage rates and available inventory. In terms of inventory, we hope to see sellers continue to list their homes, attracting solidly qualified buyers who still see this market as a good time to buy. In 2018, Ridgefield lacked entry-level inventory in the under $600,000 range as well as the $800,000 – $1.2 million range. We are hoping to see that turn around in 2019. The two largest groups of buyers and sellers will continue to influence the market with Millennials moving to the better value of the suburbs and baby-boomers downsizing, thereby freeing up more inventory. Ridgefield continues to be a desirable place to live with its top-ranked schools, great cultural attractions, world-class dining and amazing sense of community.


Karla Murtaugh of Neumann Real Estate is Ridgefield’s only Christie’s International Real Estate Luxury Specialist for five years running

Karla Murtaugh of Neumann Real Estate joined more than 250 agents at the invitation-only, Fall 2018 Christie’s International Real Estate Luxury Specialist Conference held at Christie’s flagship auction house at Rockefeller Plaza in New York. The annual conference is designed to further affiliated agents’ knowledge in the important luxury asset classes of art, jewelry and, of course, real estate, in order to better serve their valued clients.

Speakers included top producers in real estate sharing the secrets of their success, Christie’s specialists with insights into how to elevate client service through the auction house, and an economist providing a look at what 2019 might hold. At the conclusion of the conference, attendees were designated as a “Christie’s International Real Estate Luxury Specialist” by Christie’s Education. Christie’s International Real Estate is the real estate arm of Christie’s, the world’s leading art business and a global brand synonymous with luxury for over 250 years.

“This conference is invaluable as it gives both a high-level overview of the luxury industry, while providing concrete information and resources that benefit buyers and sellers at all price points,” said Karla Murtaugh. “Unparalleled market knowledge, exceptional marketing and top-notch customer service are my hallmarks; buyers and sellers expect you to have an understanding of not only the local real estate market, but of national and global influences as well, and Christie’s provides that.”

Dan Conn, CEO of Christie’s International Real Estate, said: “One of the hallmarks of the Christie’s brand is exemplary client care. This conference provides network agents the opportunity to better understand and leverage Christie’s full spectrum of expertise in art, luxury goods, and real estate. The agents who attend are proven experts in their local markets, motivated to pursue continuing education in the luxury market and well-deserving of being designated a Luxury Specialist.

About Christie’s International Real Estate

Christie’s International Real Estate has successfully marketed high-value real estate around the world for more than 30 years. Through its New York City brokerage and invitation-only Affiliate network spanning 49 countries, Christie’s International Real Estate offers incomparable services to a global clientele at the luxury end of the residential property market. The company has offices in London, New York City, Hong Kong, Moscow, Los Angeles, and Palm Beach, and its affiliated brokerages have recorded approximately US$500 billion of real estate transactions over the last five years. (Data as of June 30, 2018). For additional information, please visit www.christiesrealestate.com.


Ridgefield’s 2018 Mid Year Market Report

The Ridgefield Real Estate market continues to favor the buyer, but we have had a number of multiple bid situations on properties that are updated and priced correctly. Condition, along with location and proximity to Main Street, continue to be key drivers for sales across all price points. Buyers are becoming increasingly savvy about market conditions and trends due to the availability of data on public websites such as Zillow and Realtor.com. The threat of a mortgage rate increase does not seem to be affecting buyer decisions either as they bide their time and wait for the ‘right’ home.

The good news is that buyers are still willing to pay for properties they find desirable with properly priced homes selling at 96.5% of their listed price. As was the case last year, properties under $800,000 seem to hit the sweet spot in Ridgefield. The town continues to be a destination for families moving from areas within the metropolitan region, as well as relocating from other states due to our family-friendly environment, quality of life and access to major commerce centers. We also continue to see families move within Ridgefield, which is a testament to the ‘staying power’ of our town.

No Gain In Value
Overall, the Ridgefield real estate market continues to remain relatively flat across the board. A six-week weather delay created a sluggish spring market, resulting in lower unit sales and decreased overall volume sold. 147 homes were sold during the first six months of 2018, as opposed to 178 last year. The total sales volume registered a 21% decrease, ending the mid-year at $98,851,250. However, the median sales price remained on par with last year at $625,000 compared with $627,000 from January to June in 2017.

Where Are Buyer’s Buying?
As in previous years, during the first half of 2018 in-town properties are in demand with 42 percent of all sales occurring within a two-mile radius of Town Hall (considered Village center). The median sales price of these homes was $692,500, and the average sales price was $724,526 – both of which are above the town as a whole. Three of the four luxury condominiums valued at over $700,000 were also located in-town. These sales reflect the growing trend for more walkable properties close to restaurants, shopping and culture

Condo Report
There were 33 condominium sales in the first half of 2018 ranging in price from $135,000 for a one bedroom, one bath townhouse in Fox Hill to $865,000 for a three bedroom, two full and two half bath townhouse on Sunset Lane. The median sales price was $267,000, while the average sales price was $354,567. Compared to the first six months of 2017, the median sales price has risen by 14%, while the average sale price decreased by 12%. This discrepancy is due to a greater number of higher priced condominiums selling in the first half of 2017 compared to 2018.

The Luxury Market
Luxury market sales – defined as homes selling for $1.5 million and above – are comparable to the 2017 mid-year mark. So far we have seen one sale for $1,540,000 close, as compared to two during the same period last year. As of July 1st five luxury properties are either under deposit or in contract to close in the third quarter ranging in value from $1.745 million to $2.395 million. Historically, more luxury properties close in the third and fourth quarters. Anecdotally, interest in the upper price range remains strong with many homes experiencing a number of showings. Many luxury properties have also adjusted their pricing to attract the upper tier buyer looking for value and compelling offerings.

Activity Down In Fairfield County
After several years of growth, unit sales throughout Fairfield County slipped during the first half of 2018 with decreases noted across the board. Towns closer to Manhattan such as Greenwich, Darien and Norwalk saw modest increases in the median sales price, but still registered a decreased number of unit sales. While Fairfield County is still considered attractive for families due to the quality of life and great schools, the sense of urgency by buyers to make the move seems to have slowed. Looking ahead, market activity seems slightly higher than normal as we move into the summer months, which will hopefully equate to increased sales in the second half of the year.


Ridgefield Market Report March 2018

March 2018 continues to see many more properties taking deposits and going under contract, which is a good indicator of a strong spring and summer real estate market. We continue to see drastically low inventory levels, but that may be attributed to sellers’ hesitancy to list while we wait for the late season snow to dissipate. Overall, the number of year-to-date sales are lower than at the same time last year, however the median price of homes in Ridgefield has increased year-over-year.

To see an overview of how March looked, you can click for a snapshot of the market, or a breakdown by price.

The number of closed sales was down compared to the same time last year with only 11 properties selling in March 2018 as compared to 18 in 2017. This represents a decrease of 39%. In YTD sales we are down 25% vs 2017. The Median Sales Price however, increased by 4% over the same time last year to $631,375.

The number of properties that opened escrow drastically increased over the same time last year with 62 properties going under deposit in March as compared to 24 last year. That marks an increase of 102%. Similarly, in the year-to-date deposits, there are 102 as compared to 61 by this time last year. we hope to see this trend continue as the weather warms up.

We are still dealing with an extreme shortage of properties available for sale this month.  The months of inventory has decreased to only 4.5 months compared with 14.1 months last year. Sixty-eight new properties entered the market this month, compared with 72 in March of last year. The average days on market has decreased by 14% over March 2017 with homes spending an average of 191 days instead of 223 on the market before selling. Year to date, the average days on market time is sitting at 175 days, as compared to 209 days last year at this time.

Now is a good time prepare or list your home for sale. Feel free to contact me to discuss your needs, or for my complimentary Comparative Market Analysis to find out what your home’s worth in today’s market.

We continue to lead the market with the most comprehensive, proven marketing initiatives allowing your home to be in front of the widest audience possible on a local, regional, national and global level. We recognize your home is your biggest asset and both buyers and sellers experience an unparalleled level of customer service when working with us. Contact us today!

Snapshot of March Market Report