As of this writing, we have 724 single family homes offered for sale in Greenwich. This compares to 542 in 2007 when, as you may recall, houses were actually selling. The 2007 market easily absorbed 724 houses in the year, whereas, unless we see a sudden and dramatic turn-around, we’re looking at about 4 1/2 years of inventory. And come September, the start of the traditional fall selling season, you can expect to see more houses added to the inventory as sellers who have been waiting for a better market will (some of them) lose patience.
So, faced with this reality, you might think that we’d be starting to see a number of houses come on for sale that were priced to sell. With rare exceptions, we are not. So we’ll all just sit around here, waiting for Alice’s Restaurant to come around again on the guitar …..
This irrational phenomenon can be blamed, I think, both on sellers, who can’t give up the memory of what their neighbor’s house sold for three years ago and simply refuse to admit that the market changed completely last September, and realtors who have the same rosy memories of the past. I keep hearing from my colleagues that it’s the buyers who are out of step, expecting fire sale prices when there’s been no fire.
I’m with the buyers – I look around and see nothing but charred acres. But so long as sellers and their qagents deny this, we’re in a standoff, and maybe we’ll stay in that standoff for the next decade, with a few houses selling as their owners hit financial difficulties, or divorce, or change jobs, and everyone else sitting on the sidelines, waiting for the other guy to flinch. If so, I’ll have time to resume my novel writing, which will please me.