North Fork: "Ask Zen." An Insider's Look at the NF Real Estate Market
Hummingbird sat down with Barry Novick, sometimes known as Zen Realtor, to ask the questions about the residential real estate market that are on our minds. This interview is the first in a series.
HB: How would you describe the pace of growth in the real estate market on the North Fork in 2017?
ZEN: Since the market stabilized in 2013, we have seen a continuation of slow incremental growth.
HB: What percent price increase have you seen in 2017 over 2016, and what do you project for 2018?
ZEN: I would say that the increase in price since market stabilization has been an estimated 3-5% per year, with increases currently approximately 5%.
While I cannot predict the future, I would say that the market is still in an upward cycle and I would project similar for 2018.
HB: What price range is selling best?
ZEN: The most active segment of the market is the $450,000 - $650,000 range or the low to middle range. This is the price range that is driving the market.
Realistically priced waterfront properties, i.e. in the $900,000 - $1,300,000 range, are also moving well.
Waterfront properties are always in demand. This pertains also to the high end of the market which on the North Fork is $2,000,000 and up, and we have seen recent sales in off the water properties in the $1,200,000 - $1,500,000 price point. Location, size of property, and condition of home are key to these sales.
HB: Who is buying?
ZEN: A high percentage of buyers are looking for a second home, as much as more than half of the market.
HB: Where are they coming from?
ZEN: The five Boroughs, Nassau and Suffolk Counties, and to a lesser extent New Jersey and Connecticut.
HB: From the South Fork as well?
ZEN: Yes, some, but it is not trending.
HB: Are sellers realistic when pricing their homes?
ZEN: Not always. Often, expectations are based on their need, and the feeling that their property, for whatever intrinsic reason, is exceptional in the market and can therefore command a price that is higher than the data reflects.
HB: What is hot now?
ZEN: As for areas, I would say Greenport and Orient have experienced above average surges in demand, so therefore price, over the past couple of years.
HB: Is there a specific type of house that is in demand?
ZEN: Not a specific style of home, but we see that buyers are willing to overlook a lot if they perceive value – even if the style of the home is not exactly what they were looking for.
HB: What advice would you give someone wanting to enter the market to purchase on the North Fork?
ZEN: It is always good to be able to document your ability to purchase (financing) before you start your search so that you can act quickly if you so choose. When you find the property you want, be realistic in your offer, approach, and expectations so that you can secure the deal.
The above interview is the first in a series. If you have specific questions you would like to see answered in upcoming interviews, please let us know by clicking here.
Note from HB: This interview is intended to give an insider’s view of the North Fork real estate market, and is not intended to provide investment advice.