Stamford, Conn. – September 1, 2021 – William Pitt – Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty reported today that residential real estate sales in August were lower in Connecticut but higher in Westchester County compared to the same time last year, a month of record sales in 2020 as significant numbers of buyers relocated from the city to the suburbs amidst the pandemic. At the same time, sales in all territories remained well above August of 2019. Inventory continued to decline compared to August in both 2020 and 2019.
In Fairfield County, Conn., unit sales decreased by 20.4% and closed volume by 14.6%, continuing a trend that began in July as sales competed with a timeframe of unprecedented growth the prior year. Limited inventory also played a role in the decline, with listings down by 33.2% compared to August 2020. Although sales in August of 2021 did not increase over the same month last year, they stood ahead of the same month in 2019, increasing by 13.2% in units and 64.9% in volume as more properties at higher price points transacted.
Westchester County, N.Y., countered the trend in Connecticut, with unit sales and dollar volume increasing in August versus the same month last year by 10.7% and 15.1%, respectively. Units also increased over August 2019 by 17.5% and volume by 42%, a 25% spread between volume and units as higher priced properties sold. As in Fairfield County, inventory remained low, decreasing 36.4% compared to August last year.
The company noted that Westchester County’s real estate market reopened following lockdowns last year later than Fairfield County did, slightly delaying the beginning of the record sales period in that region, which may explain why sales have not yet encountered a similar declining trend to Fairfield County.
Other markets served by the company witnessed the same trends as Fairfield County. The Shoreline region of Connecticut, comprising New Haven County, New London County and Middlesex County, saw declines in unit sales and volume versus last August’s record month, with volume standing well above the same month in 2019. The story was similar in Litchfield County and the Berkshires, Mass., while Hartford County saw unit sales declines alongside a mild increase in closed volume. All regions remain challenged by reduced inventory.
“The substantial uptick in our markets compared to 2019 leaves us optimistic that the high demand in our areas will remain,” said Paul Breunich, President and Chief Executive Officer of William Pitt – Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty. “While we don’t expect another quarter of enormous sales increases versus the third quarter last year, considering how significantly third quarter sales in 2020 dwarfed the same time in 2019, there are many signs that our markets will experience incredible activity for the rest of the year and beyond.”