The Market Has Changed

73 Sterling Road, asked (eventually) $2.750M, got $3.2M....last-minute bidding war!

73 Sterling Road, Asked (eventually): $2.750M. Got: $3.2M (last-minute bidding war!) List: Julianne Ward  Sell: James S Higgins. Note: the English buyers intend to totally renovate.

If you were to slap your hand on my shoulder* and say, “Gid, how’s the market?”, I would answer, “Fine”, because lots of properties are selling. But there’s something troubling about this market and it is this: lately there are fewer and fewer buyers who want a beautifully renovated older house.

Back in 2009, when no one was buying anything, I figured the market would eventually return, and it did. What’s going on now is different. There is a market, people are buying, but what they mostly want to do is tear down and build new.

Even almost new houses are being neglected. And before you get complacent about your brand new house, that market is starting to look over-supplied, too, as buyers look but don’t bid if it is their perception the property is over-priced.

So, if you’re on the market now, you have a choice, you can be a seller or a sitter. If you wish to sell, keep cutting that price till the fish begin to bite. You might even get a last-minute bidding-war.

But since this is Greenwich, CT and most sellers don’t really need to sell, there will continue to be a lot of sitting properties.



  • never, ever do this

8 thoughts on “The Market Has Changed

  1. I’ll take a well built home from the 60s with good bones than a spec home which isn’t built with the same care and touch. Spec homes age, too, like taking a new car off the lot.

  2. As a developer I have no idea how the economics of this particular property will work unless there is a dramatic upwards lift in Back-Country prices in the next two years. I viewed this property extensively as I do virtually every potential listing and could not get comfortable above $1.7m. You would also have to see a shift in fashion back to brick, tudor etc,. So my bet it was bought by the final owner.

    • Somes:
      Exactly right. I spoke with selling broker Jim Higgins, that’s how I knew the buyers were English. And yeah, this renovation will be a labor of love since they don’t need to flip the place anytime soon.

      • Great house, well-designed by a prominent architect back in the day. Wounded by the surrounding subdivision, alas, but appears beautifully built.

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