May Otteau MarketNEWS

From Otteau Group:

NJ Purchase Contracts Bounce Back in May

After recording a 7% decline in April, home purchase contracts in New Jersey increased by 11% compared to the same month last year. Given the 9% increase during May of 2016, home sales have increased by 21% over the past 2 years. This latest gain was the highest number of purchase contracts recorded in the month of May of the past 12 years, signaling high demand. Overall, home sales have increased in New Jersey by 6% ytd.

While the number of home sales has increased across all price ranges this year, the largest gain has occurred for homes priced between $1.0-Million – $2.5-Million, which have increased by 12%. Home sales in excess of $2.5-Million have also been increasing for the first time in more than a decade. The gains for more expensive homes is attributable to the greater number of homes for sale in these price ranges compared to the tight inventory situation for less expensive homes which is putting constraints on sales volume.

Shifting to the supply side of the equation, the supply of homes being offered for sale remains constricted, which is limiting choices for home buyers. The number of homes being offered for sale today in New Jersey has declined by nearly 7,400 (-14%) compared to one year ago. This is also about 28,100 (-38%) fewer homes on the market compared to the cyclical high in 2011. Today’s unsold inventory equates to 3.8 months of sales (non-seasonally adjusted), which is lower than one year ago when it was 4.8 months.

Currently, all of New Jersey’s 21 counties have less than 8.0 months of supply, which is a balance point for home prices. Hudson County continues to experience the strongest market conditions in the state with just 2.4 months of supply, followed by Essex, Middlesex, Union, Passaic, Monmouth, Bergen, Morris, Burlington, Mercer, Somerset and Camden Counties, which all have fewer than 4.0 months of supply. The counties with the largest amount of unsold inventory (6 months or greater) are concentrated in the southern portion of the state including Cumberland (6.0), Cape May (6.5), Salem (7.4) and Atlantic (7.4), however, these counties are also beginning to exhibit strengthening conditions.

Demand for rental apartments remains strong in NJ with statewide occupancy rates being among the highest in the US. While Central NJ continues to have the lowest vacancy rate in the state (2.3%), it increased by 10 basis points from the prior quarter. The Philadelphia/Southern NJ region now has the highest vacancy in the state (3.8%), up by 20 basis points from the prior quarter, while vacancy in Northern NJ declined by 20 basis points to 3.6%. Nationally, the average vacancy rate increased by 10 basis points from the prior quarter and now stands at 4.3%.

A driving force for the apartment market sector is that the percentage of New Jersey households with children living at home has steadily declined to 35% today, with continued declines likely in the future.This trend, which is rooted in New Jersey’s economic conditions, is anticipated to drive future housing demand increasingly toward smaller homes including multi-family housing in more urban locations. At the present time, 65% of households within the state of New Jersey have no children under the age of 18 living at home.

This entry was posted in Demographics, Economics, New Jersey Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

41 Responses to May Otteau MarketNEWS

  1. Juice Box says:


  2. Juice Box says:

    Re: “Oh yeah, my BIL, maybe 5 years ago, finished getting his master’s degree. A master’s degree in divinity. Maybe it helps him keep from cursing more while he works in the college cafeteria?”

    It hurts to laugh that hard.

  3. grim says:

    Of course he won’t – all it takes is a 5 year old getting burned by a sparkler and the Nanny state democrats would be all over him. I wouldn’t be surprised if he got sued shortly after the 4th.

  4. Bystander says:


    Did your BIL stay in Syracuse? If so, cafeteria manager not a bad job for the area. Only slightly kidding…

  5. grim says:

    Does it include free tuition? If so not a bad deal – consider a second masters.

  6. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    Fortunately I live about 10 min from the past border

  7. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    PA border

  8. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    The funny thing about poly sci degrees. I met about a dozen people in an 8 week span the summer of 2008 where I asked them what they majored in.

    Answer: “Poly-sci”

    Then I asked where they worked

    Answer: “Wall St.”

  9. Clotpoll says:

    Stander 8:43-

    Even worse: his cafeteria might be the best restaurant in Syracuse.

  10. 3b says:

    Blue lots of people on wall street with liberal arts degrees. Some than went to business school like myself but not all.

  11. leftwing says:

    My analyst class which was admittedly a generation ago had nearly zero accounting majors. A bunch of government majors (same course of study but snooty schools can’t call it poly-sci), history, art history, etc. Classic liberal arts. Grades in the area of study were excellent.

    The firm’s logic was they wanted well rounded high performers.

    With high performers the firms felt they could teach entry level hires anything and only exactly what they wanted. To a certain extent didn’t want them ‘tainted’ by what they learned in college. I still recall our first accounting class at work where our accounting teacher, a Columbia BS professor, asked the room how many people knew debits and credits (not many did and there were more than a few looks of serious concern). He then told everyone not to worry because we would never use those terms. Over nine months he never did.

    On being ‘well rounded’ and the liberal arts, the firms were grooming people for executive client management and new business development. Seems they felt the best person to develop deeper relationships with clients for finance was not the same person who had 60 credits of accounting.

  12. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    Blue lots of people on wall street with liberal arts degrees. Some than went to business school like myself but not all.

    That’s the difference. None of them did. They were all 21 fresh out of college and hired because their friends worked there. They were all out of a job in 2009, never to return.

  13. leftwing says:

    “They were all 21 fresh out of college and hired because their friends worked there. They were all out of a job in 2009, never to return.”

    With the disclaimer that the banking and sales and trading sides of the business can be very different…..

    Long time practice on Wall St, you don’t hire back in junior staff that were canned. You take the new class of undergrads/B school students for your open Analyst/Assoc positions.

    If you’re smart enough to get a job there, you should be smart enough to know that if you aren’t one of the few to remain in a firm after the housecleaning you better take refuge in B or law school to wait out the down cycle. Otherwise, you’re toast.

  14. No One says:

    Kids from wealthy families with good connections can afford to gamble on a liberal arts degree. Or super smart favored minority groups. They get helped/recruited into large firms with in-house training programs, then after 3-4 years they go back to grad school to learn what they need to learn. On the other hand, a person of average to modestly above average intelligence/charisma with minimum connections, I’d suggest four years of study that directly translates into paid work.
    This is where the “skills gap” comes from vs places like Germany with stronger vocational training tracks. In the US average kids get sent to learn English Lit, History, Philosophy (aka Marxism), or Ethnic studies, after which their only hope is to get a government job, or become a low level manager at a retailer.
    Mike Rowe is the most vocal critic of the status quo, trying to get more young people into vocational training and in-demand blue collar jobs.

  15. Fast Eddie says:

    Who’s familiar with the Hanc0ck NY area? I would like to take a ride up that way for a few days to unwind. I know it’s a scenic drive up route 17 past Monticello – haven’t done it in years. Any recommendations? Is Hanc0ck a good stop? Maybe another town or area? Chime in!

  16. 3b says:

    Accounting and finance degrees are a dime a dozen today too. Lots of accounting jobs can and have been outsourced and off shored. No one with just an accounting degree is going to be a CEO of a wall street firm. And accounting positions are non revenue producing.

  17. 3b says:

    Have worked with some smart math majors but some are just plain out there and can’t think outside of the box.

  18. 3b says:

    Parents don’t want their kids doing manual labor etc. what will the neighbors think! One of my best friends is a plumber big bucks never laid off!!

  19. Yo! says:

    Case Schiller stats out today. Change from peak:

    High tier house -8%
    Mid tier house -12%
    Low tier house -19%
    Condo +18%

    (Yes the signs are negative for houses and sign for condos is positive)

  20. jcer says:

    My plumber bills like a white shoe law firm! My roofer complains about his estimated tax payments! Business is good in the trades in NNJ.

  21. Yo! says:

    If you live in North New Jersey and you aren’t rich from condos you are loser who deserves to be broke. Come to my seminar.

  22. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    BIL & SIL live in Dover, NH. Lots of jobs up there, they’re always hiring at Target and Walmart Supercenter. Before the gig at the college caf my BIL he ended up at the Target food counter because he quit his job of about 15 years managing a Papa Gino’s before … wait for it … before his new job as a McDonalds manager was finalized. Micky D’s fell through and he already burned his bridges at Papa Gino’s on his way out the door…so…on to Target.

    What’s funny is we moved up here, indirectly, because of them. They used to live on the NH seacoast and my wife and I just liked the area so we moved there without jobs in ’97. I intended to consult out of Portsmouth but got drawn into some tech companies in Boston and we moved here within a year. They couldn’t afford to get a house on the Seacoast so they moved to Dover where they bought a $120K shack courtesy of a $60K down payment gifted to them from BIL’s mom. It’s such a hoardfest that no one except BIL, SIL and their kids have been inside for maybe 10 years now. Even my MIL (SIL’s mom) doesn’t go near the place when she visits. She stays at a hotel and they visit her there.

  23. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Don’t you know how hard it is to mow a lawn or paint house while texting? Meanwhile, there are probably a dozen apps for paying your condo maint fee.

    (Yes the signs are negative for houses and sign for condos is positive)

  24. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    BIL and SIL have been known to leave their Christmas tree up for an entire year. And guess what? It’s not artificial.

  25. Fast Eddie says:


    Are you JJ? :)

  26. Bystander says:


    Welcome back. Hah, so true..the only place up there worth a thing is Heids of Liverpool. Awesome white hot, snapper hot dogs. I think Wegmans carries them now..Hoffmans brand. Honestly the area is so greatly depressing yet grabs such loyalty from the locals, I almost admire their commitment to the misery.

  27. Walking bye says:

    Fast Eddie not sure if it’s near by but I recommend a hike to the ice caves with the kids. Look up sams point park in ny. Quick 1.5 Mike walk from the parking lot. Nice trail through the caverns. Kids will really enjoy it.

  28. Fast Eddie says:

    Walking bye,

    Thanks, I’ll do a search.

  29. Xolepa says:


    Grim, please review moderation.

  30. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    gary – We’re all JJ (except for Pumps, of course).

    I am JJ!
    I am JJ!
    I am JJ!
    I am JJ!

    Are you JJ? :)

  31. Xolepa says:


    Best thing up there is Dinosaurs Restaurant. The original one. Waiting lines are typically 2-3 hours on weekends.

  32. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    I’ve been trying to make a JJ coat of arms banner, but you really need a lot more than a stiff breeze to get crush valor to unfurl.

  33. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    And the worst thing about Syracuse is townies. I was up there visiting my best friend in the early ’80’s (Syracuse undergrad, Seton Hall Law – I’m only stating such so no one thinks for a moment that my BIL is my friend) and we ended up in a little skirmish with some townies inside a kind of townie bar, but more of a townie bar and dance club where preps lined up for occasional slaughter at the hands of townies. The heat turned so high (I was in a shoving match that was seconds from fists) that they kicked all the townies out of the bar (and they waited for us out front). The club closed down, locked up (with us still inside) and we managed to escape without losing any teeth out the back service entrance at some point. That was totally new to me. Not much of a townie presence at Rutgers.

    Best thing up there is Dinosaurs Restaurant. The original one. Waiting lines are typically 2-3 hours on weekends.

  34. Bystander says:


    I made a few local friends from several years I lived up there and they often took me to local spots rather than the Hill. Shoot, I think I even got even went to Solvay’s only bar…yeesh. I heard stories of former basketball players with full college ride, AAA baseball players failing to sign pro contract, and plenty of general college bound dropouts. The common them was Syracuse was where you returned when you failed in life and accepted fate. These were young people too. Just did not want to retry or do something different. Nope, Syracuse was home. Townies don’t like college kids due to this attitude.

  35. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Bystander – That was exactly it. These were guys about our age who just hated us from the get go. I never had a problem hanging out at any of the bars along Van Houten Ave in Clifton, which was similarly rife with lots of white guys who were not in college. I used to sometimes take a crew from FDU to Wit’s End and never had a problem. I don’t even think I knew what a townie was before that time in Syracuse. At least that experience helped me spot those situations in the future. Case in point was 1988 in Amsterdam. Myself and 2 friends were in Europe for the first time with really no plan except to land in Brussels, experience Amsterdam and then make our way up and around the British Isles. Our first night in Amsterdam I senses a similar situation as we landed in a small bar with about 6 people and my two friends started talking to the girls there when a guy kind of said to me it wasn’t really cool to be swooping in and occupying the attention of the few ladies that were there. I bought him a few Jack and Cokes and fixed the problem. Later that night we ended up at this guy’s “real” hangout, a private biker club right out of Sons of Anarchy, complete with dogs and small children running around the dance floor at 3AM.

  36. D-FENS says:


    Bert = NeverTrumpers
    Ernie = Trump supporter
    Fish = Media
    Call = Trump Tweeting via @YouTube

  37. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Anyone’s take?

    OPEC, have no fear: The U.S. oil-shale output crash is here – MarketWatch

  38. grim says:

    Two new limited release whiskies debuting this Saturday at the distillery, come on by!

  39. The Great Pumpkin says:

    3b, still doubt the power of this area? Northeast nj will always be a lucrative location for real estate.

    “The New York metropolitan area remains the top magnet for the world’s ultra rich, attracting 8,350 residents with a net worth of at least $30 million in 2016, according to a Wealth-X report released Tuesday.

    Compared with 2015, the ultra-high-net-worth individuals residing primarily in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania grew 9.6%, according to the World Ultra Wealth Report 2017 by Wealth-X, a global wealth information and insight business provider”

    This city has the most ultra-rich residents in the world – MarketWatch

  40. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Hey Dumb cuck, do you know what city had the highest per capita income in the mid 60’s? A little place called Detroit. There’s probably some 86 year old version of you living on a busy street in a crappy house like yours claiming the next boom is right around the corner. Wage inflation, baby!

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