The consistent growth that has been experienced across each of our markets since Q3 of 2012 is only getting better. We are thrilled to launch our latest Market Watch reports, which reveal that the second quarter of 2013 is the best we have seen in at least five years. According to current trends, housing is improving in measurable increments, indicating that we are in the middle of a sustainable and modulated housing recovery. Indeed, we are seeing sales growth both year over year and month over month, a reduced number of days on market, increasing median sale prices and reduced levels of inventory, combined with pent-up buyer demand—all critical indicators that point to a strengthening market. We invite you to read our more detailed review of the markets where we operate, presented here for Westchester County and here for Connecticut and the Berkshires.
There are several pieces that have come together to help drive the recovery, including economic improvements, more clarity in the political landscape, interest rates that have hit rock bottom lows even as they’re anticipated to rise over the upcoming year, and 20-30% declines in sales prices versus the heights we saw back in 2005. The time is optimal for making a purchase, and buyers realize this, just as sellers have become more motivated. Properties at all price points are seeing plenty of activity, and a wider range of purchasers is participating in the market—particularly local buyers, who are exerting significant influence. Sellers are discovering that if they ensure their homes are in good condition, they are more likely to sell, and they are often even finding that they can entertain multiple bids. In Westchester, the southern county is seeing the most improvement, though in Northern Westchester County there are significant increases as well. Over in Connecticut, the greatest sales trajectory is in Fairfield County, but notable momentum also exists on the Shoreline, in the Litchfield Hills and in the neighboring Southern Berkshires.
Though we want to emphasize that the market should be described as recovering instead of recovered, buying and selling conditions have tremendously improved according to all indicators. Please have a look at the results for yourself, which we believe fully back up all of our points. We hope that you enjoy our second quarter 2013 Market Watch reports, and if we can help as you analyze your own real estate needs this year, we welcome you to contact us.