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Luxury Market Report – August 2022

Inman News highlighted Manhattan’s luxury market this week with an attention grabbing headline:

Manhattan’s Luxury Market Sees Worst Week since August 2020

Signed luxury contracts in Manhattan hit a new low during the week ending Aug. 21, according to a report released this week from Olshan Realty Inc. Just eight contracts were signed on properties priced at $4 million or higher, down from 15 contracts that had been signed the week before. The week marked the slowest for luxury real estate activity in the city since the week of Aug. 3-9, 2020. At that time, just six contracts were signed on properties priced at $4 million or above.

Inman News

However, there’s always more to the story! A good headline is a great sound bite, however it can be misleading.

Diving deeper into the story and connecting with luxury Manhattan agents in my network, the story changes. Complex, overlaying dynamics continue to affect all market segments. Some reasons cited for the slow down in the number of new luxury contracts;

  • Travel – as COVID restrictions have eased this year, many people are enjoying long delayed vacations.
  • Market Shift – in terms of closed sales I was reminded to keep in mind that the “shift” happened 6-8 weeks ago. This is clear in the Philly area where new listing activity is strong, however no luxury closed sales for the week ending 8.29.
  • Local insights, as well as those cited in the Inman article note that this is traditionally a slower time of year for new sales.
  • Many people are waiting for new inventory to become available in the fall.
  • Slower market activity across all market segments is also reflected in the luxury market. It takes longer for properties to go under contract.

“I truly believe that high-end buyers, and most buyers, have been traveling,” Vance told Inman. “I think more travel has happened over the last couple of weeks and I think it’s because of the pent-up demand to go to Europe and to just be with your family and enjoy taking your leisure activities.”

“I feel a lot of the slowdown is because [buyers] are waiting for new inventory…I have seen more buyers wanting outdoor space, and they’re waiting for it … I just think they want to make sure they’re not missing an opportunity.”

Inman News

North American Luxury Report

In the links below you can access the August report from the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing, covering luxury trends throughout major MSA’s in the USA and Canada. Unfortunately, the greater Philadelphia area is not included. For local micro-market trends, follow me on social media, subscribe and scroll down.

LONGER TERM PLANS

One significant trend emerging is just that “the long-term”. The feeling that we will remain in an unsettled economy, real estate market prices have reached their peak, together with a change in attitude towards a property’s value being more intrinsic sees decisions and plans made for the long-term.

While statistics show the market has slowed, in terms of the number of sales, many real estate professionals believe given the uptick on real estate websites and requests for virtual tours over the last month that the affluent are taking the summer to formulate their plans.

Institute for Luxury Home Marketing

Main Line Luxury

Luxury homes on the Main Line, Philadelphia’s premier suburban communities, remain in high demand. However, the market shift felt across the US affects our area as well. Escalation of values has slowed significantly, now more in the “normal” range. Home prices are still above a 5 year average. Sellers can expect a more balanced negotiating dynamic, with fewer number of sales, reduction of competitive offers and the need to allow for some seller concessions.

For instance, Blue Bell remains in strong demand with higher values, yet fewer sales;

Main Line Luxury Sales; week ending August 29th

  • 6 New Listings, price range $1M – $5.5M,
  • New Listings Median Asking Price – $1.5M
  • 1 New Active/Contingent
  • 4 New PENDING
  • Under Contract Median Price – $2.4M;
    ⬆️ from $1.4M a month ago
  • Under Contract Avg DOM – 20
    ⬇️ from 22 a month ago
  • No Closings this week – likely reflecting the slow down in market activity with the “shift” that happened 6-8 weeks ago, as reported in the NY luxury market

    Areas of recent sales activity;
    Berwyn, Blue Bell and Gladwyne
Main Line Luxury Report WE 8.29.22

Center City Luxury

Before we get into current stats, let’s take a look at three Center City developments, each with multimillion-dollar condos, which vie for same high-end buyers – as reported in the Philadelphia Business Journal;

The 10-story, $60 million 2100 Hamilton joins the Laurel and Arthaus, the two other high-end condominium buildings recently developed in Center City that have units on the market at the same time and are competing for similar buyers.

The buyers for these condominiums, which run into the millions of dollars and some in the tens of millions, aren’t worried about rising interest rates though they won’t hesitate to take full advantage of a 10-year tax abatement on their purchase.

The last time Center City had a surge in new condominiums on the market was right before the Great Recession when 10 Rittenhouse, the Residences at Two Liberty, Residences at the Ritz-Carlton and the Murano among other projects were developed. Those four towers alone have a combined 819 units.

There are 199 condominiums among the Laurel, 2100 Hamilton and Arthaus and their sales will again test the depth of the high-end market in Center City as well the extent to which buyers are able to look past some of the quality-of-life issues Philadelphia is trying to combat.

Philadelphia Business Journal – June 2022

Center City Luxury New Listings; 5 new luxury listings week ending 8.29:

  • 250 S 18th #601, asking $3.750,000; located across from The Barclay, this historic, boutique condo building rarely has units for sale. 4 bd / 3.5 ba corner unit directly overlooking Rittenhouse Square – View Listing
  • 2138 Race Street, asking $2,195,000; 4 bd / 3.5 ba townhome with 4,341 sf in Logan Square. Built in 2006 – View Listing
  • 110-112 Naudain St #4, asking $1,290,000; 4 bd / 3 ba townhome with 2,469 sf, in Society Hill. Built in 2013 – View Listing
  • 926 S Beulah St, asking $1,100,000; 4 bd / 3.5 ba new construction townhome in Bella Vista with 5K sf – View Listing
  • 606 Fitzwater St, asking $1,100,00; 5 bd / 3+ ba with 2,620 sf in Bella Vista PENDING with 5 DOM – View Listing

Center City Luxury Sales; 4 new luxury contracts week ending 8.29:

  • 2017 W Girard Ave, listed at $1,399,000; 4 bd / 4.5 ba new construction in Francisville – View Listing
  • 220 W Rittenhouse 6ABC, listed at $1,350,00; a boutique condo building located next to Rittenhouse Hotel. This unit is a corner unit with amazing tree-top views of Rittenhouse Square. Some of my clients like to stay at the 6th floor or below, as that’s how high firefighters can access with their ladders. This unit needs some updating, however, the space and location are premier! View Listing
  • 247 Paoli Ave, listed at $1,295,000; 4 bd / 3.5 ba SFR built in 2013 located in the Roxborough neighborhood. View Listing
  • 606 Fitzwater St, asking $1,100,00; 5 bd / 3+ ba with 2,620 sf in Bella Vista PENDING with 5 DOM – View Listing

Browse luxury homes, access Monthly Market Reports and blog updates


This is a time when marketing and negotiation skills are of critical importance for luxury sellers to yield the best results in today’s volatile market. For access to an instant valuation of your home, click here.

Let’s book a time to explore the best options in today’s market for your goals.

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Susanna Kunkel

Susanna Kunkel brings her skills from a career in the executive offices of major corporations to her real estate business - treating each client like a VIP. With 18 years of experience as a real estate advisor, you can be confident in knowledgeable, personalized, confidential service. Hear what her clients say - www.AskMeAboutSusanna.com

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