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Surge in signed contracts may indicate return of Manhattan buyers

The number of Manhattan sales contracts signed for the third week of July more than doubled from the previous week, from 68 to 155.

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Buyers returned to the Manhattan sales market last week to levels last seen in March before the pandemic struck. The number of contracts signed for the third week of July more than doubled from the previous week, from 68 to 155.

It’s encouraging news for sellers, the latest weekly Manhattan sales market report from UrbanDigs notes, however, compared to the same week in 2019, the number of signed contracts is down 15 percent.

Signed contracts are a lagging indicator, meaning it can take some time before buyers get to a signed deal, says John Walkup, COO of UrbanDigs and author of the report.

“But this jump in activity likely represents the first wave of the pent-up demand, suggesting that overall market activity is resuming,” Walkup says.

Reports from UrbanDigs, a Manhattan real estate analytics platform, look at the impact on new listings on the Manhattan market, new contracts signed, and listings taken off the market each week.

Manhattan listings continue to increase, the report notes, with 554 new listings added for July 13th-19th. It’s the third week to see an increase of 500 or more properties and an increase of 109 percent compared to the same week in 2019.

“While this is typical of a busy active season, the lack of typical season contract activity means overall inventory is quickly growing. With market dynamics favoring buyers, sellers coming to market may opt for more competitive pricing, while sellers already on the market may begin repricing to attract buyers,” Walkup notes.