Second Homes

Buyers who can WFH keep the Hamptons sales market going strong

By Jennifer White Karp  |
July 22, 2021 - 12:30PM

A three-bedroom house at 94 Three Mile Harbor Hog Creek Rd. in East Hampton is asking $1,598,000. Sales of homes from $1 million to $5 million saw the highest market share in a decade, according to the Elliman Report.

Douglas Elliman

There’s still lots of demand for houses in the Hamptons fueled by New Yorkers who can continue to work from home.

The sales market saw new records set for prices in the second quarter, according to the latest edition of the Elliman Report, with the median sales price reaching $1,405,000, an increase of 30.1 percent over the year-ago quarter. Sales levels remain high but not at the intensity seen late last year, according to Jonathan Miller, president and CEO of Miller Samuel. Transactions were up 55.9 percent compared the second quarter of 2020.

While sales increased for all price ranges, sales for homes from $1 million to $5 million saw the highest market share in a decade, according to Miller’s report. That demand ate into listing levels: Inventory was down 43.3 percent compared to same quarter a year ago.

Instead of seeing an influx only in the summer—the Hamptons are becoming more of a year-round community, says Todd Bourgard, senior executive regional manager of sales at Douglas Elliman. “We noticed that in March and April, when it is still pretty cold out here—that the cafes were filled,” he says.

It’s evidence that the co-primary home phenomenon that took root during the pandemic is not going away. (It's much nicer to work from home when you and your family can spread out and take a swim to cool off.)

Bourgard describes the market as extremely strong, especially in the $1 million to $5 million “sweet spot,” but has downshifted a bit from last year.

During that frenzied time, Bourgard says, buyers were willing to take houses that needed work. “Now they’re coming in and taking a good look and seeing if a place has what they need,” namely space for a home office and a pool (or room for a pool). Buyers “are still continuing to work from home,” he says.

If a house checks those boxes, then they pounce and owners are getting multiple bids, Bourgard says, Bidding wars rose annually to their second-highest market share in five years of tracking and the market share of sales that closed at the asking price reached a new high, according to the Elliman Report.

On the North Fork, the median sales price has increased for four consecutive quarters. In the second quarter, it reached $790,000, a jump of 32.8 percent over the second quarter of 2020.

The number of sales has also seen four significant consecutive year-over-year increases, growing 26.8 percent in the second quarter.

Listings fell annually to it third-lowest level in 15 years of tracking, and the market share of sales that went to bidding wars was the third highest in five years of tracking

On Long Island, average ($646,582) and median ($555,000) sales prices both hit new records for the fourth consecutive quarter. Sales surged year over year for the third-straight quarter, an increase of 68.6 percent, while listings fell 30.5 percent.



Jennifer White Karp

Managing Editor

Jennifer steers Brick Underground’s editorial coverage of New York City residential real estate and writes articles on market trends and strategies for buyers, sellers, and renters. Jennifer’s 15-year career in New York City real estate journalism includes stints as a writer and editor at The Real Deal and its spinoff publication, Luxury Listings NYC.

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