Rich snap up properties in the Hamptons while Covid-19 rages in New York

The fourth quarter of last year was a boom for the Hamptons real estate market, as deep-pocket buyers gobbled up $2.159 billion worth of property while the coronavirus decimated New York City.

According to the latest report from the Corcoran Group, a real estate brokerage in New York City, 844 homes were sold in the wealthy east end of Long Island from October to December, marking an enormous growth of 133 percent against the same period a year earlier.

Overall, in 2020, sales of properties in the region totaled $5.49 billion, breaking the last record of $4.42 billion recorded in 2014, the New York Post reports, citing a market report published by luxury brokerage Brown Harris Stevens.

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The soaring sales were attributed to the Covid-19 pandemic, as lockdowns encouraged people, who could afford to move, to flee from big cities in search of more comfortable living. Others then reportedly left New York due to security concerns after there was a rise in crime over the summer season. 

“When the pandemic hit, buyers looked to alternative spaces to high rise living and the Hamptons were the natural choice. It’s within driving distance, it’s beautiful and there was lots of inventory, although now most of the inventory has been absorbed and prices have steadily climbed,” Corcoran CEO Pam Liebman told the media.

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She added that interest rates, which are currently historically low, also “helped money go further so people could stretch and buy what would otherwise have been out of their price range.” 

According to Liebman, sales prices are at an all-time high at the moment. The most expensive beach mansion currently on the market costs $175 million. The most expensive sale during the fourth quarter of 2020 was 15 West Dune Lane in East Hampton Village, which sold for $61 million.

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