Key Highlights

  • Median home prices in New York State increased +7.4% in December 2019
  • State-wide inventory dropped -8.4% from one year ago, mirroring the national inventory drop of -8.5% in December 2019
  • Luxury home prices in Manhattan dropped to lowest level since 2013, according to StreetEasy Market Reports

The New York State Association of REALTORS (NYSAR) indicated in its latest report that median home prices in New York State increased +7.4% as the number of sales dropped by -1.1% in 2019. Thie statewide median home price of $290,000 compared negatively to the national median home price of $271,800 in December 2019, according to the National Association of REALTORS®.

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Inventory, or rather the lack of inventory, was the big story as far as the NYSAR was concerned. “A strong economy sent buyers in search of their dream home in 2019, yet many were constrained by the low inventory levels all year,” reflected the NYSAR report. Inventory dropped in the Empire State by           -8.4% compared to last year and the slippage of sales volume to -1.1% in December reflected such a dearth of New York’s for-sale housing. For comparison purposes, inventory of for-sale homes nationwide dropped -8.5% from one year ago.

(Despite new home starts being up to its highest level since 2006 nationally, new home sales were “disappointing.” With a median sales price of $331,000 and an average sale price of $384,500 according to the US Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the volume of new home sales dropped -0.5%.)

Luxury home prices in Manhattan fell to its lowest level since 2013, according to the Q4 2019 StreetEasy Market Report. Top threshold prices fell -6.1% to $3,816,835 while lux inventory expanded +12.2% over 2018.

According to Nancy Wu, StreetEasy’s economist, “With so much new construction saturating the Manhattan real estate market, we were bound to see prices start to sink at a record pace. This is happening across all price points and boroughs, as prospective buyers wait out the market from the comfort of their rentals. Market dynamics in 2020 will continue to favor the buyer across all price tiers and many sellers will have to face the fact that if they want to sell, it may very well be for less than their initial asking price.”

Brooklyn rents continued rising at a record pace with the StreetEasy Rent Index showing a +5.2% annual increase in Q4 2019, the largest leap in rental prices in six years. Queens continued to be a good option for buyers looking for relative affordability. The median sale price in Queens remained $509,202, the same median price as 2018.

Thanks to Yahoo.com, StreetEasy and HousingWire’s Kathleen Howley for source data.

Also read: Cities with Biggest Share of Million Dollar Homes, Buying Is More Affordable Than Renting in 53% of the Housing Market, Inman’s Guide to 2020, 2025, 2030 and Beyond – Part I