Home sales surged this summer in Genesee County, reflecting an overall regional trend.
In Genesee County, closed deals for the four months ended Sept. 30, increased by nearly 26 percent to 186, up from 148 last year, according to data provided by the Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors.
The median sale price rose by 5 percent, to $105,500. The average sale price rose by 1.8 percent, to $114,427.
“This was probably one of the busier summers in the last five or 10 years,” said Robert Gerace, a broker for Realty USA in Batavia. “Once September hit, things quieted down again.”
Total closed sales from June through September in the Buffalo-Niagara region rose 9.2 percent to 4,728, up from 4,329 last year, according to the BNAR.
For the year-to-date, closed sales rose 7.7 percent to 8,187, up from 7,604 in 2014.
“We’ve had a record year,” said Joe Rivellino, the BNAR president and owner of Rivellino Realty in Warsaw.
The BNAR credits an improved job market, falling unemployment and rising earnings for driving home sales.
“We’ve had a strong market for quite some time,” Rivellino said. “We also still have very aggressive interest rates.”
Rivellino reminded that “real estate is local.”
“The Erie County market is stronger, and that’s where you tend to (see) more multiple offerings and sales above list price,” Rivellino said.
Beyond Erie, the situation varies by county and municipality.
“Wyoming County might have a few pockets where there are slower numbers,” he said. “Property taxes being higher here than they are in some other areas is somewhat of a deterrent.”
Indeed, closed sales from June through September in Wyoming county fell 12 percent from last year, from 128 to 113, the BNAR said.
Both the median and average sale prices were up in Wyoming, however. The median sale price rose 4.3 percent, to $98,500, while the average price rose 3.8 percent, to $114,837.
Homes in both counties were however spending more days on the market before sale — 80 days on average, compared to 74 days in 2014.
Still, summer saw a seller’s market overall.
Gerace recalled taking one couple on visits to 30 listings this summer.
“There were multiple offers,” he said. “Everything was full price — and more.”
Which prompts an observation: To the quickest go the spoils.
“If you want it, you’d better jump on it,” Gerace said.
Rivellino, who has owned his agency for 12 years, is optimistic the trend will continue for at least a little while.
“I believe the interest rate is going to stay aggressive for a little bit longer,” Rivellino said. “There’s no doubt they’re going to go up, but I just don’t know how quickly.”