Changing demographics

A question from a reader about the “typical Greenwich buyer” made me realize that we no longer have lawyers or doctors in the buying pool. In the early – mid ’80s when I dabbled in residential real estate as part of my law practice I represented a fair number of those professionals buying their first house. Since 2003, I don’t think I’ve had even one.

14 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

14 responses to “Changing demographics

  1. The 2 major surges we had are now combined….double up on homes divorce surge, then 911 NYC abandonment, too bad we can’t go back to when we were a sensible tax haven……

  2. anon

    I remember the day when the president of the local bank was the big cheese in town and had the biggest house. How times change. As for no doctors and lawyers, your looking pool may have a law or medical degree but use them in their other pursuits – entrepreneurial or in finance. Funds that specialize in the health care world often look for doctors who have an MBA. Lawyers with an MBA as important. One degree today is worthless.

  3. Anonymous

    Chris do you see many foreign nationals buying here in Greenwich? I have property in NYC and sit on the board of one of the buildings. Probably 90% of purchases in the past year or so have been all cash Chinese buyers, most of them foreign nationals working thru trusts or llc’s. It’s an interesting dynamic, let’s put it that way.

    Would be interesting if that trend migrated out here to the burbs.

    • I work with a lot of “foreign” buyers but they aren’t investors the way the Russians and Chinese in NYC seem to be – these are people who, although perhaps born in another country, are here to raise their families and maybe stay decades or even forever. Different mind set and buying perimeters, I think.

  4. Fred2

    I’ve had several Greenwich friends, mostly long time residents, remark on how much “new-comer” Greenwich demographics have changed. Not in a negative manner, mind you, but in amazement how there’s a source of people who can afford what used to be nice middle to upper – middle class homes, and are now the province of people with very large bonuses.

    Also remarked was how few of their children could afford to purchase in Greenwich even though the kids had careers at least a nice as that of their parents.

  5. Brown Eyed Girl

    At least in our little corner of mid-country, I see the same thing. Aside from the professional athletes who pass through, virtually all of the newcomers seem to be families with a husband who works in finance, a wife who no longer works outside the home, and pre-school children. So where ARE the doctors and lawyers settling these days?

  6. Anonymous

    Given your legal training and real estate expertise you should consider setting up some kind of REIT and buying a bunch of homes and sell it to the rich foreigners buying Manhattan apartments way way above 2003 prices. Although Greenwich is never going to compete with Manhattan per se, it appears that rental yields are higher here and rents are probably going up.

  7. Anonymous

    Makes sense to me… I am a lawyer that makes decent money and there is no way I’ll ever be able to buy a house in Greenwich on my income alone.

    Why is that? The differences in student loan debt that lawyers have now versus the early 80’s. I graduated in 2004 and still have at least 10 years to go before my loans are paid off, and that is with paying them ultra aggressively every month.

    I rent in town now and like living there.

  8. AJ

    It used to be that all you had to do was make Dean’s list and tuition was free. I would guess that no longer exists.

  9. Walt

    Dude –
    Typical Greenwich buyer? TYPICAL GREENWICH BUYER!!! Aren’t we all “special”? Isn’t that why we are here? The land of silver spoons up our asses and perpetually farting roses? That is what I always thought. Is that not true?

    But you just love to stereotype, don’t you, you little bigot. And as usual, you need help, so I will give you some. OK?

    Here we go. Someone posted earlier on the Chinks. Yes, I think they are more active. Foreigners in general are. All the rich Europeans are looking to flee – the Frogs, the Spics (Spain and Portugal), the Grease Balls (that covers Italy and Greece) are all looking to exit. Did I leave anyone out? If so, SORRY!!

    So what happens to bankrupt countries when the rich, successful taxpayers leave because they are facing higher taxes to bail their governments out? They become Nigeria!!

    But they should rent here, versus buy, because we are adopting the European System, which is a proven failure, and we are only a few years away. So renting makes sense.

    And I was just informed to expect my health care premiums to rise between 12- 15% next year, due largely to Obamacare. Didn’t he say it would lower costs?

    Anyhows, I hope this helps!!

    Your Pal,
    Walt

  10. D

    I remember an article in 2005 which commented on how shipping companies largely occupied all of Greenwich’s office space, but since 2000 hedge funds moved in and pushed rents to similar and higher levels than midtown manhattan… that’s where are all your non-finance people went – they left with their jobs.

  11. Doots

    Maybe I’m not typical… but I’m a lawyer in my late 30’s with a young family who purchased a house in Greenwich in the last two years. I also personally know of four families where one of the wage earners is a lawyer who have purchased here during that time. All are just starting their families or have young children, none are bankers and one is a doctor/lawyer couple. While our homes may not be fancy by Greenwich standards, we are all in “non-fringe” areas of midcountry and OG. I also have a doctor friend whose family just relocated here and is currently renting in Cos Cob while looking for a home.

    So I certainly don’t feel like Greenwich lacks for doctors/lawyers….that said, you are absolutely correct that none of us are buying our first home.
    We are moving to Greenwich in our late 30’s/early 40’s – all of us owned starter homes in the form of apartments, townhouses, etc. prior to getting married/ or moving here. We saved and built up equity so we could afford to buy here…. those yesteryear single earner/stay at home wife lawyers/doctors in their 20’s…well they are all living in the Manhattan, Brooklyn or Jersey – in our starter homes…..or are looking in Darien.