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Fairfield's Real Estate Market Woes Continue

FAIRFIELD, Conn. — Melanie Smith summed up Fairfield’s real estate market in just one word: “miserable.” The agent with Southport’s Prudential Connecticut Realty said Tuesday that though she takes on more listings every week in Fairfield, it’s becoming harder to move those homes because of the economic climate.

“People don’t want to sign. They’re worried they’re overpaying,”  Smith said. “It’s a very down atmosphere for value.”

A look at Fairfield’s property transfer records show a clear trend down in Fairfield’s home prices. Over the last four weeks available, from June 27 through July 22, there were 84 paid property sales recorded at the Town Clerk’s office. The average sales price was about $591,000. Over the same four-week stretch in 2010, the 89 homes that changed hands sold for an average of $717,000.

The difference is especially striking in the high-end market. During the four weeks spanning June 28 to July 23 of 2010, 13 properties sold for more than $1 million, the priciest being a Harbor Road home that went for $3.05 million. Over that stretch this year, seven sales passed the $1 million mark, and the most expensive was $1,487,500.

These figures show that the up-and-down nature of Fairfield’s market continues. Home prices dipped at the end of 2010 , declining 9.2 percent from the end of summer to December. The Greater Fairfield County Connecticut Multiple Listing Service's Quarterly Report for the first three months of 2011 showed a move upward, with prices improving more than 10 percent compared to the same time in 2010. But even that study saw fewer homes selling in Fairfield this year, and houses staying on the market longer—on average longer than four months.

Smith says she doesn’t see Fairfield’s market improving through the end of 2011. “I think it’s still very challenging,” she says. “People are still uncertain about their values.”

Are you trying to sell or buy a home in Fairfield? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below.

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