From the Record:
Newlyweds Joseph and Cheryl Petta just wanted to buy their first home in North Jersey.
It was a disheartening year and a half of house-hunting. Rockaway, West Milford, Midland Park, Wharton. They looked everywhere.
“We’ve looked close to 50, maybe more houses, and we made a couple offers on a couple houses, and we’ve gotten blown out of the water every time,” said Joseph Petta. “Not even considered.”
The Pettas budget is in the $400,000 range, and with uncertainty about how a recession could affect housing prices, they’re hesitant to go too far beyond that.
They may get shut out. Peruse Zillow, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a starter home listed below $500,000.
It’s the new trend: $500,000 is the new $300,000 — what was once the typical asking price for a starter home before the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This is definitely happening over the years, and obviously with Covid, back in 2020, when prices just skyrocketed,” said Andrew Gangi, a Woodcliff Lake realtor that serves the Pascack Valley region. “It just raised the prices of everything.”
Added Steven Pescatore, a Wayne realtor, “it’s a lot harder for young people to get a starter home. Even if they’re looking for a condo, there’s not really a lot available. It used to be you get a nice condo for $150,000, $200,000, now it’s $350,000, $400,000.”