Visualizing Manhattan's Pending Sales Volume Reflation
A: The last week or so has seen a minor tick up in the pace of new deals being signed in the Manhattan marketplace, but nothing we can call a new trend yet. Its just too soon and 7 days is not a trend make when it comes to measuring housing market performance. The 30-day pace of new deals signed is still below 600, but that is on par with September of 2010; which came in at 583 new deals signed. Since Manhattan is seasonal, we should always look at monthly data on a year over year basis when coming to conclusions on under/over performance. Generally, I find that post labor day first the inventory ticks up and then the pace of demand follows usually in October. This seems to be the case right now.
First, here is a quick check of the Real-time Manhattan market ticker that parses the RLS broker sharing system to push forward only notable daily listing status changes - its as real time as we can get on what is happening in the field of Manhattan real estate today:
Focus on the middle CONTRACTS SIGNED row where I boxed out the 7-day (blue) and the 30-day (red) trend. The tick up is showing itself in the 7-day totals of 173 new deals signed, as the 30-day total remains below 600. Its nice to see we had a chunk of 36 new deals put into contract Yesterday.
Now, lets take a bigger picture look at how far this marketplace came back since January 2009, when we saw only 317 deals put into contract.
The chart below is comparing Manhattan Pending Sales <$1M market (green line) versus the >$5M+ market (red line) - two sides of the spectrum (low end + high end) and how they reflated from early 2009:
Its clear that the low end was the first segment of the Manhattan market to reflate after our markets ceased up in early 2009. The high end took far longer to get going, and started to really get hot in early 2011 - we are still awaiting for all those deals from May/June to close and get publicly recorded to be counted in the quarterly reports. This is one reason why Im on record for thinking that the upcoming Q3 report may show some strength - as lagging high end deals closed after the Q2 report cutoff date of June 30th.
Both the high and low end have ticked down noticeably over the last 2+ months.
This is where we are now and where we came from so that you can put the moves into perspective. We are still waiting to see if recent equity market volatility/Euro concerns will impact future demand for Manhattan property. Last October we saw 749 new deals signed, so lets use that as a barometer for the upcoming month in our markets. Again, right now the 30-day pace is at 576 new deals signed, so we are a good few hundred deals away from remaining on par with October of 2010's production. Time will tell. If that 30-day stays below 600 or worse, if it falls below 550, we will know that buyers are either staying on the sidelines to wait out the recent uncertainty or, that bids are not aggressive enough to get sellers to accept. Either way, its all about the buyers and their bids!