Peconic Bay Region Transfer Tax Generated $141.35M in 2023

Peconic Bay Region real estate transfer tax, 2023
The water view from John Steinbeck’s property at 2 Bluff Point Road in Sag Harbor, which was preserved, partially using CPF funds, in 2023.
Gavin Zeigler for Sotheby’s International Realty

The Peconic Bay Region real estate transfer tax brought in $141.35 million last year, according to new figures released from Assembyman Fred W. Thiele Jr.’s office.

The 2023 total revenue for all five East End Towns is more than $30 million less than the previous year, as expected due to a slowdown in sales following the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, the total amount generated is higher than before the pandemic began four years ago — and there were some big changes to the program this year.

In four of the towns — East Hampton, Shelter Island, Southampton and Southold — voters approved the new Community Housing Fund Tax, which meant increasing the real estate transfer tax from 2% to 2.5%. This became effective on April 1, 2023, with all contracts before that being exempt from the additional tax. Each town will have to take 20% percent of the total revenue and dedicate it to housing, while the remaining 80% will be put toward acquisitions under the longstanding Community Preservation Fund program to preserve open space.

Taking this change into account, Thiele said, in a statement, that “a fully accurate ‘apples to apples’ comparison with prior years is difficult.”

Southampton, Meadow Lane, Hamptons, top sale 2023
The home at 700 Meadow Lane in Southampton sold for $112.5 million, making it the priciest sale of 2023. It also contributed in a big way to the total revenue for the Peconic Bay Region transfer taxes in 2023.Bespoke Real Estate

The statement read, “Cumulative revenue in 2022 was $172.63 million. However, accounting for all the changes in the law, it is estimated the gross value of real estate transfers for 2023 is the lowest since the advent of the pandemic in 2020. Revenues peaked in 2021 and have declined each year since. However, the gross value of real estate transactions is still above real estate years preceding 2020, because while the number of transactions has declined, values generally have not.”

Southampton Town took in the most amount of money, as usual, with $74.62 million. The Town of East Hampton followed with transactions generating $44.94 million.

On the North Fork, Southold Town brought in $12.14 million, while Riverhead took in $7.13 million.

The Town of Shelter Island, which sees the least amount of trades, received $2.52 million.

Thiele’s office estimates that about $10 million was collected among the four towns for the new housing initiative. An exact figure was not immediately available as the county sends one lump sum check to each town each month based on what is acquired during real estate transactions.

Since its inception in 1999, the CPF program brought in $2.123 billion in revenue. It reached the milestone $2 billion mark in 2023.

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