154 Rippowam Road, $6.995 – partially built in 2010, still waiting for a buyer willing to finish it Started at $13 million,long ago
Realtors see little negative affect on the market when GE departs.
Of course, they don’t really believe that, but what else can they say? In fact, they could say plenty: it’s going to be a huge opportunity for buyers who, previously blocked by high prices, will soon find more affordable housing. On the other hand, a cold bucket of reality dashed in the face always seems to upset home sellers, so perhaps the agents are waiting for their owners to adjust to the idea that they’re screwed.
Even with a worst-case scenario that could see 800 high-priced houses hitting the market in a short time span, local real estate experts say they are holding true to a basic principle — don’t panic.
Mary Beth Grasso, a Realtor in Trumbull who is a member of the CT Realtors executive committee, said the region has learned to adapt to crises.
“If you think of what we’ve been through, back in 2008, ’09 and ’10, we’ve been through a lot worse,” she said in reference to the housing market collapse. “We get smarter every time we make it through a challenging event.”
GE said it is moving 200 corporate employees from Fairfield to a new headquarters to be built in Boston, but what will happen to the other 600 or so people based in Fairfield is the great unknown. The company has said some will be retained in office space it leases in Norwalk.
John Frey, a real estate agent in Ridgefield who is also a state representative, said there are probably well under 100 GE employees living in the community, although at least two employees called him in November to check on the market conditions in the event that they had to sell their home.
Frey said the Ridgefield market could likely absorb the additional inventory that may result from GE’s departure from the state, unless many of the homes are priced in the million-dollar range.
“That segment of the market has been pretty slow, so it could potentially have an impact on the higher end of home sales,” he said.
“Pretty slow” isn’t the term for the million-plus homes market in the Ridgefield area: “dead, deceased, pushing up daisies” is. This won’t help.
I don’t see it hitting Greenwich so much; we’re too far away, I think, for many employees to make that reverse commute, but the towns down east a ways, already languishing, aren’t going to like it.