The Day – Commercial real estate sales soar in New London and Windham counties
Sales of commercial real estate in New London and Windham counties soared in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period last year, with the number of units sold rising from 29 to 121, according to statistics from the Eastern Connecticut Association of Realtors.
The median sale price rose just over 20%, climbing to $275,000.
The association’s CEO, Susy Hurlbert, said she spoke to Norm Peck of Pequot Commercial, who listed a few factors: people are leaving their jobs for their own startups, so the rental of small spaces has increased a lot, and the Electric Boat’s expansion has added to the difficulty of finding industrial premises in the area.
“We’ve heard on the news that people aren’t happy with their current jobs and they’re branching out to achieve their dream, career-wise or something new, and so there are new hires to try and start. these new ventures,” Hurlbert said.
But she noted that Peck said office spaces are still fairly quiet and retail has remained steady over the past few years.
Hurlbert added that American Rescue Plan Act funding is pouring money into many cities, so “money is flowing, and I think there’s a sense of economic development going on.”
Judi Caracausa of Market Realty, which has been listing and selling commercial properties in Mystic and Stonington for 35 years, said she had “never seen the market so tight”. Since it’s “impossible to find retail openings” in downtown Mystic, she sees people taking Route 1 and taking Old Stonington Road.
“I would like to be able to create five more buildings in the city center, but of course that is impossible because there is no land to build on,” Caracausa said.
In terms of single-family home sales, inventory continues to be low, driving up prices: the number of homes sold in the first quarter in New London County was down 11.4% from the same period last year, while the median sale price rose nearly 13% to $305,000.
“It’s still going strong,” Greg Broadbent of RE/MAX Coast and Country in Mystic said of the single-family housing market. “Interest rates haven’t quite affected people yet; I think they probably will soon. There are still plenty of buyers to buy the homes that people are putting up for sale.”
Broadbent said Mystic’s downtown residential market is also “super hot right now,” and there are still a lot of people from out of town – like people from New York and California. – looking to enter the area and pay cash, thus crowding out local buyers.
In addition to the first quarter stats, ECAR also released March data from the SmartMLS multiple listings service, and Hurlbert was struck by the fact that new listings were down 17.8% for single-family homes but rose 29.1% for townhouses and condos.
She asked Ryan Lajoie, a Windham County real estate broker, about it, and he said that with condo values higher than they have been in many years, some people who bought expensive are trying can to recover their investment.