Sales up for land and multifamily housing, down for single-family and condos

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When comparing the second quarter of 2018 to the same period last year, land sales are up while condo sales are down in New London and Windham counties, according to recently released statistics from the Eastern Connecticut Association of Realtors.

The units of land sold increased 20.59 percent, from 65 to 77. The median land price increased 44 percent while the mean went up 106 percent, a gap that indicates an expensive sale skewing the data.

ECAR CEO Susy Hurlbert said there was a $675,000 land sale in Stonington, whereas the median land sale price across New London and Windham counties was $72,000.

Hurlbert cautioned that the data in the second-quarter statistics is based only on what goes into the multiple listing service for Connecticut, SmartMLS, in which many commercial sales aren't included.

Along with land sales, also up from last year are mobile and multifamily sales. Mobile sales increased from 34 to 41, while multifamily sales increased from 73 to 88.

To Hurlbert, this shows that there are still affordability issues in the area, as indicated in the housing needs assessment that the Southeastern Connecticut Housing Alliance released in March.

"The combined mobile and multifamily going up, that stuck out to me because those are weighed against rental units," Hurlbert said, "so they're alternatives to get into the housing market."

Multifamily homes spent 64 fewer days on the market over last year, a 45 percent decrease.

In conversations with a few Realtors, Hurlbert heard that home sales were strong in March, April and May but hit a lull in June, and that they have only recently started to pick up again.

The number of single-family home sales in New London and Windham counties decreased from 1,326 to 1,305, while the median price increased from $216,400 to $225,000.

Condo sales dropped from 168 to 165, with the median sale price decreasing from $154,700 to $139,000.

Hurlbert described commercial sales as being "in a slump" because of changing needs for retail space. While both the number of commercial units sold and the median sale price increased for the second quarter, commercial units spent 84 percent longer on the market — the largest increase of any variety of sale.

e.moser@theday.com

Editor's Note: Editor's note: This version corrects the name of the multiple listing service for the state.

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