Listen Closely To The Housing Narrative

We all have the ability to filter out distractions…

…in many ways [Warning – NSFW]

But I digress…

Greenwich and Fairfield County Buck The NYC Trend And See Less Sales Impact

I’ve been writing this expanding Elliman Report Series for 25 years. This is one of the first times in recent years that Connecticut showed a stronger performance than New York City. Elliman published our research this week and here is some of it.

First, it is important to note that I remain very shallow because I need to mention the coverage of our Greenwich research featured in a Bloomberg story was the #1 most emailed for the day by the 350K± Bloomberg Terminal Subscribers, beating out a story about China’s economy and stocks snapping a two-day rally.

And a chart!

And here is a chart I whipped on the growing importance of Greenwich pools during a pandemic.


Elliman Report: Q2-2020 Greenwich Sales

“Despite the regional slowdown in sales due to COVID-19 outbreak, outbound migration from New York City drove more activity “

– Single-family sales moved higher, in contrast to regional trends, benefiting from New York City’s outbound migration
– Single-family median sales price rose annually for the third straight quarter
– Condo price trend indicators and sales declined year over year
– Luxury listing inventory fell annually for the fifth consecutive quarter
– Luxury price trend indicators pressed higher from the year-ago quarter


Elliman Report: Q2-2020 Fairfield County Sales

“Despite the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, sales in the county did not see nearly the degree of decline observed in New York City.”

– The overall county price trend indicators rose annually for the second straight quarter
– The number of sales declined year over year but not nearly as much as the region
– Listing inventory fell annually by the largest rate in more than fourteen years of tracking
– The fastest single-family market pace recorded in more than fourteen years of tracking
– The most significant annual decline in condo listing inventory in nearly five years
– Luxury listing inventory dropped sharply year over year for the fifth straight quarter
– Luxury average square footage jumped sharply year over year to the highest level in three years

Downtown Boston Saw Sharp Sales Decline During Covid-19 Shutdown

This urban market performed much like other cities were have tracked. Not much movement on price but distinct declines in sales during the market shutdown. No real surprises there.


Elliman Report: Q2-2020 Downtown Boston Sales

“The quarter represented a market that was largely shut down by COVID-19.”

– Median sales price declined at the same rate as average sales size suggesting price stability
– Sales declined year over year at the highest rate in nineteen years, reflecting the near market shutdown
– Listing inventory moved higher for the first time in three quarters as compared to the year-ago quarter

– All price trend indicators declined year over year, bracketing the drop in average sales size
– The year over year decline in sales was at the highest rate tracked in nineteen years
– Listing inventory rose annually at the highest rate in more than four years

30-Year Fixed Falls Below 3% And That’s Not A Good Thing

There was a great Wall Street Journal story on record low rates: 30-Year Mortgage Rate Reaches Lowest Level Ever: 2.98%: Coronavirus has upended markets around the world. Its effect on the 30-year mortgage is especially significant.

Initially, rates plummeted because the Fed was managing the economic damage caused by the trade war with China even though the economy seemed to be booming. Now the narrative has pivoted to managing the economic damage of being in a recession and the global pandemic. Even with the plunge in rates, mortgage applications are down in three of the last four weeks.

Fareed: Coronavirus Won’t Be The Death Of Big Cities

Loved the perspective presented here.


(For earlier appraisal industry commentary, visit my old clunky REIC site.)

A July 16 Update To The Sham Election Process Over At The Appraisal Institute

I have received many tips and thanks from current and former members who continue to be outraged about the corruption of the officer election process over at the Appraisal Institute. Even when corrections are sent to me because of limited transparency, I am at the same time being thanked for bringing more transparency to the AI and the sham election process, something AI leadership has shown they want to keep hidden from their members. Why?

It is important to remember that the nominating committee vetted the current remaining candidates “Steinley and Tankersley” and did not select Tankersley. Yet despite this vetting process, Tankersley is still a candidate. Why? The AI/Sherman “fogging” letter did not address this. Why?

What a shame. If Tankersley is magically selected over Steinley (who has already been publicly announced), I recommend that the nominating committee be dismantled because it serves no purpose. I also expect to see a much lower caliber of candidates apply in the coming years that will agree to be subservient to the operational leadership of Jim Amorin, enabling him to remain in power indefinitely and retain all the trappings he presumably enjoys that AI membership is not privy to know about because it is not disclosed. Why?

‘The Con’ is on!

To View Episode 1, Mark your calendar 8/5 if you want to learn about THE CON and root out corruption. More details on how to view this are coming soon.

I am very excited because the documentary crew came to #Appraiserfest in San Antonio in the fall of 2018 to interview many of the appraiser attendees to get their side of the story. Until now, the appraisal industry has received an unfair amount of blame, largely for self-serving reasons by the AMC and mortgage broker industry.

Here is the trailer [or click on the image]…

OFT (One Final Thought)

Hazmat suits will become the new Haute Couture until all of us practice social distancing and wear masks until the crisis passes.

Brilliant Idea #1

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– They’ll suit up;
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Brilliant Idea #2

You’re obviously full of insights and ideas as a reader of Housing Notes. I appreciate every email I receive and it helps me craft the next week’s Housing Note.

See you next week.

Jonathan J. Miller, CRP, CRE, Member of RAC
Miller Samuel Inc.
Real Estate Appraisers & Consultants
Matrix Blog

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