Brokerage Studies Market Changes Since ‘The Great Recession’

John Jordan | October 2018

RYE BROOK—Houlihan Lawrence released a report on Oct. 18 that examined in depth the impacts of the Great Recession on the housing market in Westchester County, the Hudson Valley and Fairfield County, CT.

In the introduction to its overall findings, Houlihan Lawrence described how the Great Recession changed the New York City suburban real estate market. “The post-crisis ripple, coupled with changing technologies and a demographic shift entering the housing market en masse, catalyzed a unique and perhaps once-in-a- lifetime confluence of events, redefining real estate as we know it,” the report stated. “Today’s homebuyer is more informed than ever before, approaching the real estate transaction with a new perception of value.”

The industry’s reliance on social media was also covered in the report. “Social media, once optional for most industries, has become a mandatory and powerful tool for ours. Agents today rely on all forms of digital media to promote their listings and for consumers to absorb photography, videos, floor plans and additional information with just a click of a button—or tap of their finger. Factor in the ubiquity of mobile technology and access everywhere, at any time, and consumers research, shop, buy and sell 24x7x365.”

The hottest markets are those that are “coupling urban conveniences with the benefits of suburban living.” The report stated, “High demand and constrained inventory in these communities have created a dynamic that also compels buyers to consider properties outside their initially-desired location. A buyer’s search is often a journey that leads them from one community to another as they reevaluate their priorities and options.”

The following are some of the highlights from the report, “Ten Years From the Financial Crisis: A Shifting Definition of Value, A Decade of Change in North of NYC Real Estate.”

• Today’s homeowner is more informed than ever before, approaching a real estate transaction with a new perception of value and a mindset as home buyers informed by caution, analysis of data and pragmatism.

• Buyers from New York City are tolerating urban life and confined space longer and delaying marriage and kids as they find stability and firm financial footing.

• Yet the demographics of where buyers are coming from have basically stayed the same. About 60% of homebuyers are staying within their community, 25%-30% are coming from New York City and 5%-10% are coming from abroad or elsewhere. Interestingly, the numbers from Brooklyn have tripled from 2% in 2007 to 6% in the first half of 2018.

• Today’s consumers have access to an incredible amount of technology and information online, and agents today rely on all forms of social media to promote their listings.

• Many buyers are willing to forgo amenities and large acreage for a property with less maintenance requirements that allows them to lead more experiential focused lifestyles.

• In 2017, homes within half a mile of a train station sold 9% faster than those located farther than a half mile away.

• Today’s homeowners approach their home’s value much like their equity portfolio, monitoring its fluctuation monthly or yearly.

• Today’s buyers, though seemingly self-sufficient, ultimately rely on the experience of a local real estate agent to provide them the feet on the street knowledge and insights they can’t find online.

Houlihan Lawrence stated in the recently released report that it anticipates a stable market with steady growth potential as a new generation discovers the benefits of living in the suburbs north of New York City. Click Here for the Full Report

John Jordan
Editor, Real Estate In-Depth