What to Expect from the Connecticut Real Estate Market in 2021

277 North Avenue Westport What To Expect In Connecticut Real Estate This Year

Historic charm and chic details abound in this circa-1740 home listed with Leslie Clarke of Leslie Clarke Homes. Photograph by Alan Barry Photography.

Americans are on the go, with nearly half of us looking to move in 2021, according to a Lendingtree survey. That’s the national picture. For a local perspective, here’s what Connecticut real estate experts forecast for the new year.

1. Suburban sales will increase “…at an unprecedented pace into next year as buyers from the city seek to relocate to the suburbs,” says Paul Breunich, president and chief executive officer of William Pitt/Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty.

2. There are fewer homes for buyers to consider. “We are experiencing the lowest inventory levels I have seen since my career started 12 years ago,” says Leslie Clarke of Leslie Clarke Homes, affiliated with William Raveis in Westport. “The upside is that older inventory is clearing out. The downside is, as new properties come on the market, they are scooped up in a matter of days.”

Oak Hill Road What To Expect In Connecticut Real Estate This Year

A Connecticut Colonial on 1.10 acres just hit the market with Leslie Clarke of Leslie Clarke Homes. Photograph by Oliver Bencosme.

3. Competition is fierce—and cash is king. “I have been involved in more bidding wars in 2020 than I have seen in my nearly 20 years in real estate,” says Robin Kencel of Compass in Greenwich, who adds that “there is an increase in buyers who do not put a financing contingency on their offer in order to present as strong a front as possible.”

4. High-end homes are grabbing the headlines. Most notably the quick action on fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger’s Greenwich manse, which listed in September for $47.5 million and went into contract before Thanksgiving. “Single-family, new signed contract activity saw the highest gains above the $2 million threshold,” according to a Douglas Elliman report.

5. New construction “starts” are booming, too. “Developers are vying for available land to undertake new projects,” Kencel says, citing a Greenwich house being built on land that was once part of a Rockefeller estate. The 9,000-square-foot manse is already listed for $6,895,000 (with B.K. Bates of Houlihan Lawrence in Greenwich).