It is May and I am racing to get in shape for the pending summer season, trying to squeeze months worth of sweat equity into just a few weeks, all the while praying for a miracle before Memorial Day weekend. Looking back, I probably should have taken advantage of the mild winter and gotten a jump start on getting fit for summer.
It may seem odd to be talking about the winter in May, but it was one of several factors to positively affect the health of the real estate market, especially if the market happens to be the Hamptons’ second home sector.
Though it can’t all be attributed to an aberration of the jet stream, the Hamptons’ real estate market is in the midst of a recovery, according to experts who anticipate one of the best summer seasons in years. And the warmth is not exclusive to the South Fork. The North Fork is also enjoying a healthy return in terms of buyers looking for a more bucolic second abode.
As always, improved stock market performance is a key factor for increased sales. By no means is it the economic engine of the last boom, but added stability has enabled greater financial freedom for those summering on the East End. Whether through rediscovered wealth or deciding the housing market has bottomed out price-wise, investors are returning from the sidelines and making deals before prices begin to ascend. And why not? All of the real estate indicators, such as interest rates, availability and the steady increase in consumer confidence, are pointing in the right direction in terms of investment.
The sales end of the market has gained momentum and overshadowed the rental sector, which had been the market darling during the sales slowdown. For the same reason sales have increased, so have the number of full-season rentals, which is in contrast to the shorter rentals seen over the last few years. But while home sales and prices are on the rise, experts note that rental rates have largely remained flat.
A significant reason behind the improvement in Hamptons real estate, and to some degree the residential real estate market as a whole, is the market optimism now being reported by the media. If the media is the message, it is not predicting further doom and gloom for real estate. Market experts anticipate home prices will begin rising by next year as the current inventory of housing is absorbed. The Hamptons may be the vanguard, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. If
only I could say the same for my fitness routine.