Tag Archives: spec to rental

State of the spec house

So far this year, a third of the way through, twelve houses priced at $4.5 million and up were sold, eight of which were spec houses. That compares to forty-six in that range sold in 2007, twenty-one of which were spec.  As of today, we have sixty-one spec houses actively listed at $4.5 million or above. If no more come on (dubious, if you look around town and see all the houses nearing completion), we have only 2 1/2 years inventory.  Of course, not all those houses have to be sold – a number of the more solvent builders are renting their projects out, hoping for better times to come, when (they hope) a used house will be worth more than it is today. Maybe.

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Slow markets

26 Taconic Road

26 Taconic Road

Nothing much of interest showing up on our MLS today. This spec house failed to sell at $7.495 in 2006 and buyers continued to shun it even as its price fell this past June to $5.980. So now the builder is putting it up for rent at $20,000. The decision to rent a spec house must be a painful one, I would think, because once a house has been lived in it loses whatever premium might otherwise have attached to it as new. On the other hand, being new, at this price, obviously wasn’t drawing anyone, so some cash flow is no doubt better than none.

32 Cliff Avenue in Byram is a proposed new condo development (if two three units can be considered a development) asking $1.095 million each. The out-of-town agent says that it’s “on the New York – Greenwich border” a phrase reserved by agents who know the Greenwich market only for properties actually situated across that border (“on the Stamford/Greenwich line”, for instance, means that the property is in Stamford), and offers “easy access to I-95” which is true, as long as you have a ladder handy to climb up on the overpass above you. After asking the community of real estate agents to sell these location-challenged units for her the listing agent offers a 2% commission instead of the more customary 2.5%. That ought to get all of us out there hustling.

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Filed under Buying/Selling Greenwich Real Estate, spec houses