The COVID-19 pandemic has created winners and losers in the real estate market and a new report has determined that an exurb about 75 miles from New York City is the Garden State’s largest benefactor.
New York-based Property Shark has released their findings following a deep dive into total home sales in the tri-state area. The company compiled data that considered all suburban cities, towns, and townships in New York state, New Jersey, and Connecticut that had a minimum of 10 home sales during both 2019 and 2020 in their statistics.
The study notes that the number of home transactions in New York City’s five boroughs dropped by 28% between March 2020 and February 2021. Suburbs are the big gainers according to Property Shark’s research, although the report notes that some of the buyers scooping up suburban properties might consider them to be pandemic-ready second homes as opposed to complete relocations.
Nonetheless, the study concluded that Toms River saw the greatest increase in sales activity throughout the entire New York metro area during 2020. The Ocean County township saw 492 more homes sold last year compared to 2019, an increase of 24%. The median sale price of those Toms River properties came in at $330,000 last year, which represents a 12% increase from 2019.
Two other Ocean County municipalities also saw a sales bump, with Brick Township coming in at number four on the list with 1,968 total transactions during 2020. Nearby Jackson Township (#7) saw 257 more homes sold last year than during all of 2019.
The rest of the top ten is dominated by Connecticut, with towns like Fairfield, Westport, Stratford, Stamford, New Canaan, Norwalk, and Ridgefield all claiming spots on the list. Suburbs in New Jersey and Connecticut were largely ahead of those in New York, as the state’s only top ten entry was East Hampton at #8.
Looking at just the Garden State, seven of the top gainers in home sales during 2020 were situated in Ocean County. There were a few towns a bit closer to New York City with more expansive mass transit options that ranked high, with Wayne, Monmouth County’s Middletown, and Summit in Union County all nabbing spots in the top ten.
Property Shark’s study also concluded that home values in towns that made the region’s top 30 grew anywhere from 6% to 25% between 2019 and 2020, with the ten most popular suburbs averaging a 12% gain.