What’s Going on with Hamptons Real Estate, Summer 2018

40 Association Rd, Wainscott, NY
The beach at Association Road in Wainscott.
Courtesy of Sotheby’s International Realty

Welcome to summer 2018! Here’s what we can expect from real estate over the next few months.

Whisper it, but many agents are saying it’s a buyer’s market. Things are slo-o-ow. Of course, for obvious reasons, no one wants to go on record with that sentiment. How much this has to do with the utterly miserable, cold, wet spring we’ve had is arguable. If we have a summer of good weather, this might translate into better sales this autumn. When it comes down to it, on a beautiful summer afternoon, there is no place on earth finer than the Hamptons, and people will always want to be here.

There are signs of life in some markets. According to many brokers, the Trump tax plan is turning out to be beneficial to Hamptons buyers. For example, Sag Harbor still super hot–everyone loves the charm of the village and wants to be there. Even Noyac (which is of course usually advertised as Sag Harbor) is racking up sales. The area is showing no signs of slowing down.

Also, anecdotally, we’re hearing very good things about the market west of the canal. Much less stressful traffic and lower prices are translating to sales in Quogue, Westhampton, even Remsenburg.

On the lower end of the Hamptons market, under $1 million, properties are flying off the market. There just isn’t enough inventory, so when lower-priced properties are listed, they are quickly snapped up.

Also selling quickly are new builds. Project houses–which need work–are languishing. With tension and uncertainty in the world, plus lack of time, no one wants to remodel. They just want to arrive as stress relief and have everything done for them. Even better are new-builds sold completely furnished. No effort required.

According to Town & Country’s real estate report, East Hampton Village is doing well: in the first quarter of 2018, the median home sales price was $7.625 million, a 154% leap over the $3m median home sales price year over year 1st quarter. The total home sales volume rocketed 375% from $16.772 in 2017 to $79.65 million in 2018 same period.

As for rentals, the medium level is struggling because of lack of inventory. People who would have rented old-school south-of-the-highway mansions now want new builds. The new builds are usually north of the highway, because, of course, that’s where the land is.

How many of these predictions will pan out? Which new celebrity neighbors will pop up this summer, and will there be any jaw-dropping sales? Time will tell. As always, real estate out here is a competitive sport.