William Pitt and Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty Releases Second Quarter Market Report

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Report finds unit and dollar volume sales on track with the same time last year

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A report detailing market results for the second quarter of 2014 in Fairfield and Litchfield Counties and the Shoreline in Connecticut, the Berkshires in Massachusetts, and Westchester County, New York, has just been released by William Pitt and Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty, the company announced today.

The report stated that closed sales declined in the second quarter compared to quarter two of 2013, but both unit and dollar sales for the first half of 2014 are at parity with the same time last year. The leveling off in market activity follows a two-year period of consistent growth, when quarter-to-quarter sales increases often reached double digits. The company said that this leveling was not unexpected, citing the prediction in its 2013 year-end report that double-digit sales increases are not sustainable in the long term and that a more moderated housing market was projected for 2014.

According to the report, the cold weather in the winter and early spring delayed the traditional selling season and was largely responsible for sales declines in the second quarter. The significant uptick in pending sales in June, combined with positive macro-economic factors such as high consumer confidence, stable prices, an improved employment picture, and historically low interest rates, indicates that the market should continue to strengthen throughout 2014, the report suggested.

The report made several additional key findings. Despite the decline in closed sales compared to the second quarter of 2013, the market overall is operating at its strongest since 2007; closed dollar volume is five to ten percentage points above closed units; median selling prices are stable; inventory levels have rebounded; and days on market have declined, reflecting a faster-moving market.

“Despite the slower pace of gains, which is expected as we move into a more normalized market, we are now at a point where total unit sales volume for the vast majority of towns is at or near pre-recessional levels,” said Paul E. Breunich, President and Chief Executive Officer of William Pitt and Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty. “We believe that the current period of more moderated yet sustainable growth is a healthy one, and we are optimistic that our housing markets will remain vibrant throughout the rest of the year.”

The 2014 Second Quarter Market Watch is available for download on the firm’s websites: williampitt.com and juliabfee.com.

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