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January Home Sales in Greater Hartford Surge as Prices Soar

Home sales in greater Hartford surged ahead again in January and price levels recorded double-digit gains as the hot housing market stretching back to last spring showed little sign of cooling.

As reported by the Hartford Courant, in late 2020, greater Hartford topped a list of the hottest home sale markets in the country, driven partly by stunningly low inventory, in a month when homes nationwide sold faster than in the preceding summer season. 

Experts say the coronavirus pandemic, rather than dampening sales, has sent them surging, as people staying home to work find they need bigger or different spaces for themselves and their families. While New Yorkers fleeing from the city have historically propelled sales along the state’s Gold Coast, last year saw those buyers begin to move up the Connecticut River valley and into greater Hartford.

In January 2021, the trend continued with median sale price of a single-family house — where half the sales are above, half below — was $285,750, a 20% gain compared with $236,700 a year ago, according to the monthly report from the Greater Hartford Association of Realtors. Closed sales climbed nearly 8%, as buyers sought new living spaces in a pandemic that brought work and school into the home. Some of the changes, particularly remote working, may become more permanent even after the pandemic subsides.

“January showed the same strong housing numbers in our market that we’ve seen most of last year,” Holly Callahan, the association’s chief executive, said, in a release. “The continued demand is a good sign for those looking to sell.” The association tracks 27 towns and cities stretching from Suffield to Rocky Hill and Canton to Willington.

“The market is a feeding frenzy,” Marla Byrnes, a real estate agent at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services New England Properties in West Hartford. “Literally, we are so low on inventory that when a house comes on the market that’s properly priced, it’s typically sold in a week or less, which is remarkable.” Byrnes has been in the real estate business in the Hartford area since the 1980s, and she said the market is “as good as I can ever remember it being.”

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