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Strong Fourth Quarter Caps Good Year In Westchester Real Estate

A strong fourth quarter capped a good year for real estate in Westchester County.
A strong fourth quarter capped a good year for real estate in Westchester County. Photo Credit: Daily Voice File Photo

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- A near seven-percent increase in the fourth quarter in closed sales among the four counties in the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors capped a strong year in real estate for Westchester County.

Closed sales increased 6.9 percent in the fourth quarter, compared to the same time frame in 2013. For the year, Realtors participating in the Hudson Gateway Multiple Listing Service, a subsidiary of the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors, reported 14,169 closed residential transactions in 2014 in Westchester, Putnam, Rockland and Orange. That figure represented the highest number for any year since the recession in 2008-09 and 1.1 percent more than 2013.

“I think the pendulum is swinging towards the sellers,’’ said Leah Caro, President and Principal Broker of Bronxville Real Estate and the new President of the Hudson Gateway MLS. “But it’s a slow swing. That’s positive. Sellers can choose among buyers that are offering the best terms and money. But we’re not in a super heated situation where people are buying the house in the driveway.”

Putnam County had the highest percentage increase in sales, a jump of 6.3 percent compared to 2013. Rockland followed with a 3.4 percent increase, and Westchester had a 0.6 percent increase. Sales fell in Orange by 0.8 percent.

Each county posted an increase in the fourth quarter, with 3,715 closed sales over the four counties.

“The fourth quarter was unusually busy,’’ Caro said. “Usually it slows down a bit but we were busy throughout the holiday season. The spring market usually starts the Monday after the Super Bowl, and last year we had a really late spring market. But here we are in early January and we’re already quite busy.”

The median sale price of a single family home in Westchester climbed 4.1 percent in  2014, to $635,000. The median price for a single family home in Putnam climbed 0.6 percent, to $310,000. Rockland (3.2 percent) also increased while Orange County fell 1.4 percent for the year. Orange County prices did climb 2.8 percent in the fourth quarter compared to 2013.

One other encouraging statistic was the growth in co-op sales. In Westchester, sales of co-ops grew 11.3 percent in 2014 and 24.4 percent in the fourth quarter.

“It’s a good thing for everyone when the whole region rebounds,” Caro said. “Getting stability is good for all of us. Slow growth is the key.”

Caro said she was especially encouraged by the growth in Putnam, where the recession took a long toll on homeowners.

“Putnam County was overdue for getting back on its feet,’’ she said. “I’m delighted to see the numbers are up. They showed better improvement and they really needed that.”

The complete report from the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors is attached as a PDF.

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