The recovery of the Forest Hills housing market now appears to be well under way. Month’s supply is now at 7.6 months which means we are moving closer to a balanced market. While demand is still high even with credit conditions constraining buyers, the low level of inventory is having a significant effect in the neighborhood, especially with residential homes and condos. Due to current market conditions, March, April, and May saw a significant jump in sales velocity. April & May typically see the most significant gain in inventory in any given year, meaning low levels of inventory are likely to persist throughout the year. Residential and Coop prices continued to rise in May, however, condo prices are down. Homes sales have continued to rise, but prices overall are down a modest percentage year over year and have been for six consecutive months. With affordability still at historically high levels, the market is continuing to improve, and inventory lending advantage to sellers, it could be an opportune time for a well-informed buyer or seller to enter the market.
Time it would take to sell the current inventory at the current rate of sales:
- This Month – 7.6 months
- Last Month – 8.8 months
- Last Year – 11 months
Interest rates ticked up to 4.125% this month. With yields on treasuries rising due to overall economic recovery and anticipation of the Federal Reserve cutting back on monetary easing, we could see mortgage rates slowly trend up in the future.
Forest Hills NY Home Sales
Home sales in May reached a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 54, an 46% increase from April and an 8% increase from May of 2012. This is the fastest annual sales pace the market has seen since the 2009 tax credit. May would have been the sixth consecutive month of year-over-year gains, however, super storm Sandy caused sales to dip in February. Even with these gains, the market is still being constrained by tight credit and inventory. The robust housing market recovery is occurring in spite of tight access to credit and limited inventory. Without these frictions, existing-home sales easily would be well above the current pace.
Forest Hills NY Home Prices
Median home price was $250,000 in May, no change from April but a 2.9% decrease from the same month last year. This makes May the sixth consecutive month of year-over-year price drops. This is mainly true for Coops because there are still hundreds of Studios & 1 bedroom Coops that are sitting on the market due to low demand for them. Junior 4 apts and two bedroom apts are still the most popular choice among Forest Hills home buyers so prices have increased modestly for these types of homes. Residential inventory is very scarce, so prices have actually been increasing for these types of property as well and it is very likely that residential home sellers can receive up to, if not over asking price for their homes right now.
Forest Hills NY Housing Inventory
Inventory saw a moderate decrease in May, dropping 5% from April levels to 367 existing homes for sale, that’s 25.3% lower than what we saw in May of 2012 and is still representative of a somewhat balanced market in the neighborhood. Residential Homes are in high demand among buyers, however, we are experiencing the biggest shortage with these types of properties. There is still a large supply of Coops on the market and Buyers typically have more leverage at the negotiating table when it comes to studio Coops & 1 bedroom Coops, not so much with Junior 4’s and 2-3 bedrooms due to the higher demand. In any case, there are still less Coops on the market than there were last year so if you are a Forest Hills Coop owner, now may be a good time to cash out before inventory levels increase again.
Courtesy of George & Abigail Herrera @ Keller Williams Realty Landmark II.