Cape Cod Real Estate News: High-End Market Watch, First Three Quarters, 2000-2015

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  • High-end $2,000,000+ sales in the first three quarters of 2015 continued to perform at near record levels with 59 sales compared to a record of 68 sales at this time in 2014.
  • Inventories are high, nearly record levels, especially at the higher end of the price range.
  • Pent-up demand and a strong stock market are fueling the market, but excess inventory means sellers must compete for buyers.
  • Barnstable (led by Osterville) is the sales leader for the first three quarters of 2015. Last year Chatham was hot, but this year has dropped back by 30% to average levels of sales.


Active Listings and Sales, $2,000,000+, Q1-Q3, 2000-2015

On Cape Cod, Massachusetts, at the end of September 2015 there were a record 283 high-end listings. At the same time last year there were 249 listings. Typically the listing inventory grows through the first half of the year and then declines in the fourth quarter as sales are closed and properties are taken off the market. Sixty percent of high-end listings are in the $2-3,000,000 range, 20% are $3-5,000,000, and the remaining 20% are at or above $5,000,000. About 5% of these listings are at or above $10,000,000.

The high-end market on Cape Cod continues to perform at near record levels with 59 sales in the first three quarters of 2015 compared to a record 68 sales at the same time last year. The previous record for the first three quarters was set in 2006 with 60 sales. Post-bubble sales dipped to 30 in 2009 and have been steadily improving.

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Highest And Median Sale, $2,000,000+, Q1-Q3, 2000-2015

According to MLS, the top sale in the first three quarters was 96 Tilipi Run in Chatham, for $8,200,000. The 2008, 9,315 sq.ft., residence is sited on 1.9ac among exclusive estate properties with Atlantic water views and an association beach. This sale illustrates the adage: “Good things come to he who waits.” Listed for 2,604 days with a starting price of $8,495,000, then raised to $8,695,000. The owner of this unique property was able to wait for the unique buyer and staging the property likely revealed possibilities unrealized by vast unfurnished spaces.

The median value for high-end sales in the first three quarters was $2,800,000. The high-end market on Cape Cod is predominately in the $2-$3,000,000 range. Of the 59 sales thus far, 30 were in the $2-$3,000,000 range, 15 were $3-$4,000,000, 8 were $4-5,000,000, and 5 sales in the $5-$6,000,000 range.

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Days On Market, Sales, $2,000,000+, Q1-Q3, 2000-2015

Days on market for high-end properties sold during the first three quarters of 2015 increased to 387 days compared to 299 days in 2014 and 419 days in 2013. Recently turnover has quickened compared to 2011 when the average sale took 559 days. For perspective, in the early 2000s high-end properties sold in less than 200 days. Despite the high inventory, properties that are selling are selling quicker. Demand is strong, but selective.

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Sales by Town, $2,000,000+, Q1-Q3, 2000-2015

Starting around 2002 the high-end market on Cape Cod broadened as the perennial top markets were perceived as being too expensive and as buyers bid up the prices of special properties in other towns. For the first three quarters of 2015, there were high-end sales in 14 of the 15 Cape Cod towns. This compares favorably with only 10 towns at the bottom of the market in 2009. Towns with high-end sales in the first three quarters of 2015 include: Barnstable (17, 8 in Osterville), Bourne (1), Brewster (1), Chatham (13), Dennis (1), Falmouth (7), Harwich Port (3), Mashpee (3), Orleans (5), Provincetown (2), Sandwich (1), Truro (2), Wellfleet (2), and Yarmouth (1).CC_Table_HR

Cape Cod is internationally famous as a summer resort area and is increasingly popular for retirement living. It features miles of beaches, natural attractions, historic sites, art galleries, and four star restaurants and hotels. Outdoor activities include world class yachting, coastal and deep-sea fishing, numerous public and private golf courses, and a wide variety of other informal summer sports. The Cape is just 75 miles from international air service at Logan Airport in Boston, Massachusetts and T.F. Green Airport in Providence, Rhode Island. Executive jet services are available at the Hyannis airport and there are several other smaller airports.

Cape Cod is divided into four regions: Upper Cape, Mid Cape, Lower Cape, and Outer Cape, each including several towns and villages and each with their own unique charms. Upper Cape towns include Bourne, Sandwich, Falmouth, and Mashpee. Mid Cape towns include Barnstable, Dennis, and Yarmouth. Lower Cape towns include Harwich, Brewster, Chatham, and Orleans. Outer Cape towns include Eastham, Wellfleet, Truro, and Provincetown.  (For additional information on Cape Cod, check out: )

The LandVest High-End Market Watch is a periodic review of select high-end markets in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and the Adirondacks. Market data are collected from Multiple Listing Services and do not include private listings. LandVest makes no representation as to the accuracy of the data and therefore is not responsible for any actions taken as a result of use of or reliance on this information.

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