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2017: Setting the Stage for a Full Market Recovery

61 Woods Rd., Palisades, New York

61 Woods Rd. Palisades, New York

If 2016 is any indication, a bright future is in store for the lower Hudson Valley’s real estate market, particularly in Rockland and Orange Counties, where some see the beginnings of a full market recovery.

“2016 was another recent record-breaking year for unit sales, the financial market hit new highs and unemployment levels continue to recede,” said Richard Ellis, owner of Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty in Nyack, New York.  “We may finally be turning a corner, with a recovery market ahead of us.  And with that we may see home values start to appreciate.”

Ellis notes that real market appreciation has not been seen since 2008, and that various economic variables present in a fully recovered market are on the horizon now, including a strong dollar, low inventory of homes for sale, low interest rates, pent up buyer demand and growing financial markets.

“Like life itself, real estate goes in cycles,” he said.  “While these factors are part of our everyday life, buyer mindset is also important and may influence consumer confidence to purchase a home. Political division and international tensions may dampen enthusiasm to purchase. So there are no guarantees. However, last year we predicted 2016 would be much busier than 2015, and we were right. This year we predict much the same for Orange and Rockland Counties.”

122 Circuit Road, Tuxedo Park, New York

122 Circuit Road Tuxedo Park, New York

Ellis cautions that what happens in one local market doesn’t always happen in another.  He is observing that activity on the west bank of the Hudson River in Rockland and Orange Counties is stronger than on the east bank in Westchester and Putnam.

“Sellers and buyers need the professional advice of realtors who know the marketplace well, those that have the ability to market properties successfully and have the backing of a respectable and strong brand,” he explained. “It is good news for sellers that the financial market has responded favorably to the new political environment, regardless of which side of the fence you may be on. Buyers will still have opportunities and should consider purchasing now because of low inventory and possible price appreciation.”

Ellis explained that Lower Hudson Valley real estate sales are following a national trend, with more dollar volume sold in the United States in 2016 since 2006, in Rockland and Westchester since 2005 and in Orange since 2007.

The completion of the new Tappan Zee Bridge in 2018 is expected to drive more sales activity to the west bank of the Hudson River and stimulate new construction as well, particularly in Orange County. “More buyers will come searching for homes in Rockland who began their search in Westchester, particularly in the luxury segment of the market” said Ellis. “The new bridge will stimulate Rockland and Westchester rivertowns, as residents move more freely between counties. Quicker transportation options to New York City make the Hudson’s west side more appealing.”


Key Points for Today’s Sellers

When selling a property, a Realtor should work with the owner to consider the following key points to get the most accurate picture of where a property stands in today’s market, which will help determine market value.  Before hiring a Realtor, sellers should take the time to review the value of different real estate companies and brands.  “All real estate agents and brands are not alike” Ellis said. “Consider the follow checklist before putting your home on the market.”

  • Is the market increasing for units and dollar volume in the property’s location and for the county?
  • Ask if inventory and units for sale are increasing. Low inventory levels can put the spotlight on the smaller inventory for sale and sometimes drive prices up, resulting in bidding wars
  • What price points sell quicker? Are homes appreciating?
  • What is the expected days on market?  Ask for examples.
  • What time of year generally sells the fastest?
  • Who is your target market? Would international buyers be interested?
  • What happens if no one is looking at my home once it goes on the market?

For more, download our full market update here.


Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty Welcomes Top Rockland Agent Amy (Musinger) Samett

Amy SamettEllis Sotheby’s International Realty today announced that top Rockland County agent Amy (Musinger) Samett has joined the firm as a licensed real estate salesperson.

A 40-year Rockland County resident, Samett was in the top 3 percent of the county’s real estate agents last year.

“Amy’s success as a real estate agent is grounded in her knowledge of the Rockland County market, her stellar negotiating skills and her reputation as a highly trusted partner,” said Richard Ellis, owner of Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty. “She understands her clients’ needs and works hard to exceed their expectations. Her many years as a property manager has enhanced her expertise in the local market.”

Samett grew up in Blauvelt, raised her family in New City and now resides in Nyack. She earned her bachelor’s degree in accounting at The State University of New York at Binghamton and her Master of Business Administration degree from New York University with a dual major in finance and taxation.

“I have combined my business experience, analytical skills and love of beautiful homes to help my clients achieve their goals, whether they are buying or selling,” she said. “I am proud to join forces with Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty and the renowned Sotheby’s International Realty brand to bring my clients a broad global reach.”



Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty Welcomes Naomi Vargas

Naomi Vargas

Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty today announced that Naomi Vargas has joined the firm as a licensed real estate salesperson.

Vargas previously served as a licensed real estate salesperson since 2006 in Piermont, New York. A 20-year Rockland County resident, she is fluent in Spanish and worked in health-care management for two decades earlier in her career.

“Naomi has strong connections in the Piermont market and strives to exceed her customers’ expectations at every step of the process,” said Richard Ellis, owner of Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty. “She is an active member of the community and takes the time to understand her clients’ needs and customize her service for them.”

Vargas said her focus on lifestyle differentiates her from other agents and makes her an ideal match for Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty. “I don’t simply sell real estate; I tailor my service for each individual client and ultimately sell an extraordinary lifestyle,” she said. “I look forward to being able to offer my clients all the advantages my association with Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty brings.”


Winter Fun in the Hudson Valley

The Hudson Valley is known for its breath-taking beauty- and not just in the Spring and Summer when the flowers are in bloom. When Winter arrives it brings its own unique and picturesque magnificence. Here are our suggestions for family fun activities that make the most of the Hudson Valley’s outdoors in the Winter months:



Whether you have always wanted to learn to ski or you are a seasoned pro, there are many slopes to choose from in the Hudson Valley. From Hunter Mountain to the Catamount Ski Area and Windham Mountain, there is no shortage of options in the Hudson Valley. For more, check out Hudson Valley Magazine’s suggestions here.




Ice Skating

Bear Mountain

Bear Mountain’s Ice Rink

Like the picture-perfect scene of an ice-skating rink filled skaters? Then look no further than Bear Mountain’s Ice Rink, which hosts public sessions and parties.

Harriman State Park also offers ice skating on Lake Tiorati and Lake Silvermine. Located in Rockland and Orange counties, it is the second-largest park in the parks system, with 31 lakes and reservoirs. Click here for more information on their ice skating.




Winter Sightseeing Cruises

WinterThemePageFeatureLike seeing the beauty of Winter but not being cold? Then a sightseeing cruise is for you. Click here for Classic Harbor Line’s available cruises and enjoy the NYC skyline on a luxury yacht!





Swimming in the Hudson River

hudson river

For those brave souls that don’t mind the cold, swimming in the Hudson River might be for you! According to the Hudson River Park website, swimming in the Hudson River within the park is “only permitted within sanctioned, organized events. Hudson River Park is proud to host several swims and races organized by NYC Swim each year. At least one of these swims uses Pier 96 in Clinton Cove as its start or end point.” Check out the above website for more information.


Whichever Winter experience you choose to have, there is no better way to end the day than with a cup of hot chocolate. And for the best cocoa in the Hudson Valley, check out Hudson Valley Magazine’s list of suggestions.