The stock market is up. Must be time to splurge on a mansion in the Hamptons.
Buyers in the Long Island resort towns opted for more-expensive properties in the second quarter, sending the median sale price for a single-family house to a record $1.07 million, up 7.5 percent from a year earlier, according to a report Thursday by appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and brokerage Douglas Elliman Real Estate. Forty-eight homes priced at $5 million or higher changed hands in the three months through June, the most for any quarter since the end of 2015.
The Hamptons, a second-home market whose health is tied to the fortunes of New York’s financial industry, is benefiting from stocks at record highs and a Wall Street bonus pool that’s climbed for the first time in three years. Sales of single-family houses jumped 26 percent in the quarter from a year earlier to 674, Miller Samuel and Douglas Elliman said. The number of listings fell 4.1 percent as eager buyers depleted inventory — and fast. At the current pace of deals, it would take 6.1 months to sell all the homes on the market, compared with 8 months in the second quarter of 2016.
“The stars all lined up,” said Judi Desiderio, chief executive officer of brokerage Town & Country Real Estate, which earlier this month released a report on the Hamptons showing a jump in high-end sales and a 10 percent increase in the overall median price for the second quarter. “The stock market’s doing well, people feel a sense of safety, and they pulled profits out of the market.”
Buyers still demanded a deal, however. Eighty-six percent of purchases of houses and condos in the quarter were for less than what the seller sought, said Jonathan Miller, president of Miller Samuel. The average discount was 12 percent from the last asking price.
“Even when the numbers make sense, buyers will still say, ‘I don’t want to pay full ask,’” said Raymond Lord, a local broker with Douglas Elliman. “They always want to negotiate.”