Real Real Estate – An Independent Report on Second Quarter 2011

Ted Holmes, Vice President, Prudential EllimanThis publication recently received notice of the pending release of an independent report prepared by Miller Samuel Inc., for Prudential Douglas Elliman (formerly Holmes and Kennedy Real Estate).  Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate is New York’s largest residential brokerage, with over 60 offices in New York City, Long Island, the Hamptons and Westchester/Putnam. According to the information released, Douglas Elliman has ranked in the top four of all real estate companies in the nation from 2007 through 2010. Miller Samuel Inc. accordingly is an appraisal and consulting service that provided property valuations of more than $5,000,000,000 in the last year and has authored the quarterly report series since 1994.

The report’s findings for Westchester County found that the median sales price increased  4.9% to $457,500 from $436,000 in the prior year quarter. The number of sales dropped 24.3% to 1,583 from 2,091 sales in the prior year quarter. Listing inventory also fell 43.9% to 4,261 units from 7,599 units at this time last year. Ted Holmes, the Vice President and Director of Operations/Westchester for Prudential Elliman said, “Inventory fell faster than sales did, as inventory was bloated this time last year due to the tax credit, which expired on April 30, 2010. He added that, “In regards to co-ops and condos, the lower end of the price spectrum saw a larger year-over-year decline in sales since they were more greatly stimulated by the tax credit.”

Looking at Westchester by property type found that the 1-family market reflected a median sales price of $622,750 up 2.9% from $605,400 in the prior year quarter. In the luxury market (which includes the upper 10% of all 1-family sales) the median price was $2,205,000 up 9.2% from $2,020,000 in the prior year quarter. The entry point of the top 10% of all sales this quarter was $1,655,000.

In the multiple family [2-4] housing market the median sales price was $314,000 down 15% from $369,500 in the prior year quarter. The number of sales fell 11.5% to 92 units, from 104 units in the same period last year. Co-op median sales price was $157,250 down 6.8% from $168,750 in the same period last year. The Condo market median price was $348,500 down 1.4% from the prior year quarter result of $353,625.

Jonathan Miller, President/ CEO of Miller Samuel said, “ The second quarter showed a stable market as prices increased at about the same rate as square footage did. The average size of a home sold was larger than a year ago and there was more movement in the upper end of the market.”

In talking with Ted Holmes at the Chappaqua office of Prudential Douglas Elliman he mentioned that the former six Holmes and Kennedy offices had been in Westchester for over 40 years. In January of this year they became Prudential Douglas Elliman offices.  “Prudential Douglas Elliman is the only Manhattan broker with offices in Westchester and all of Long Island. Our clients are buying and selling within this Westchester marketplace time and time again. Most buyers come from Manhattan and go to either Westchester or Long Island. They raise their families, and when the children are grown and move out, we have more and more people moving back into New York City. That is something that happens all the time, and then you have people looking for a second home in the Hamptons. This cross client market is what we do the best. Our clients are doing things in all three markets, Manhattan, Westchester and Long Island, and our agents are actively involved in what’s going on in these markets,” he said.

When asked about the Miller Samuel Real Estate report, Holmes added, “People want information and this report breaks Westchester up into 7 different areas and it gives a third party unbiased analysis of what is happening in people’s immediate area. Even if people are not selling they like to know what is going on. There is uncertainty in the market and people are still a little nervous because they don’t know what’s going to happen next. For those people who are comfortable with their jobs there is great opportunity now. It’s not all roses, but it hasn’t gotten worse,” Holmes added.

Hearing that candor was refreshing in light of all the negativity in the media. “It’s not about the Real Estate market being good or bad, it’s about an individual having the right information available to make an informed decision. Giving people knowledge and the ability to make comfortable decisions is very important,” Holmes noted.

To read the comprehensive Douglas Elliman Report series visit or for more information on market trends call Ted Homes at his office, (914) 238-3988.


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About the Author: Robert Bonvento