FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. — William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty has released its Year-End Market Watch, an annual report of the state of real estate in Fairfield County.
“2012 was a watershed year” for real estate, the report said, “as the vast majority of our local housing markets experienced double-digit unit sales increases in each of the four quarters.”
The report further said: “These gains are particularly impressive given the headwinds of a hotly contested national election, Hurricane Sandy and the uncertainty of the fiscal cliff.”
Vin Socci, William Pitt’s director of marketing, said of the report: “Buyers are considering the total cost of ownership, which includes purchase price, plus the cost of renovation (time and money) and maintenance.”
He added: “It is all about ‘right-sizing’ our lives.”
Prospective home buyers are looking at homes as long-term investments, Socci added. As a result, 30-year fixed-rate mortgages have regained popularity, he said. Additionally home purchases are viewed “first and foremost as a place for the family, so that the ‘flip’ mentality is gone,” Socci said.
In limiting their home purchases to what they can truly afford, buyers are no longer setting their sights on properties beyond their means, he said.
“Nothing in recent history was as bad as 2008,” said Rick Higgins, owner and broker of The Higgins Group brokerage house. But this year, the outlook for Fairfield County’s real estate market is decidedly more promising, Higgins said.
Also, 2013 presents another reason to buy a home: Mortgage rates are historically low, he said. That could mean 2013 is another watershed year for Fairfield County real estate.