Long Island Home Sales Flirting with Record Highs in 2017

The books closed, reluctantly, on the first quarter of 2017. The numbers are in and Long Island home sales continue full steam ahead. Real estate investors itching for their next big project should look no further than the villages and towns of Long Island. Median sales price and number of sales both finished several percent higher than this time last year.

So strong in fact that, according to a recent report by Douglas Elliman Real Estate, this past quarter was the 16th in a row showing positive median sales prices. Moreover, 2017’s first quarter sold more homes than the previous 14 years.

About the Island

Long Island consists of the four counties Kings (Brooklyn), Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk. Nearly 8 million of the most ethnically diverse class of residents pack the 1,400-square-mile landscape, making it the most populated island in the country and one of the most populated in the world. What’s more, the tiny landmass is home to two of the world’s busiest airports — LaGuardia and JFK International Airports.

It’s also home to the Long Island Rail Road (busiest in the country) a branch of the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA). The MTA boasts an average daily ridership of more than 7 million passengers, and an annual ridership of over 2 billion. With such a robust infrastructure, Long Island houses 40 percent of the state’s entire population.

As mentioned earlier, the island enjoys the most diverse arena of ethnicities than any other place on the globe. Close to 50 percent of the residents in the 200-square-mile area of Queens alone arrived from foreign countries. Nationalities seen on the island include Asian (close to 25 percent), Polish, Italian, Irish, German, Russian, Greek, Hispanic, Pakistani, and Filipino.

Long Island residents speak over 130 languages, thanks to the influx of foreign nationals.

A Closer Look at 2017 Long Island Home Sales

With so many people in such a dense area, economists expect Long Island home sales to continue to climb, especially multi-tenant buildings. The median sales price closed at $384,890, down 1.2 percent from the fourth quarter of last year but up 4 percent year over year. The number of sales also increased five percent YOY, closing at 5,754 homes sold — the most in the first quarter in over a dozen years.

Home supplies dwindled over the last several months across the nation. It’s no different in the Long Island housing landscape. Housing inventory fell two percent quarter to quarter and more than 21 percent YOY. There remained 10,796 listings at the end of quarter one this year, a drop of nearly 3,000 homes YOY. This marks the “lowest quarterly inventory recorded in more than 15 years,” according to Elliman Real Estate.

With such short supply, dozens of new, high-rises are underway with thousands of tenant units. Plus, investors continue snatching up blighted and outdated buildings to convert and update into better housing. This commercial real estate trend shows promise to provide lucrative returns, considering the median sales price increase across the area (and country), coupled with record-low supplies.

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