Community Support May 27, 2020

Are NYC residents moving to the suburbs?

Are people really leaving NYC for the suburbs?

Are NYC residents moving to the suburbs? Statistics show how Covid-19 has devastated New York City. The number of people with COVID-19 and the number of deaths is staggering. Social distancing is difficult. There is no doubt that crowded streets, elevators, and often apartments are not conducive to sheltering-in-place. So, are people really leaving NYC for the suburbs? 

According to both local and national news sources, the answer is a resounding “YES!”  The headlines tell the story.


National Media

USA Today‘s headline screams, Get me out of here! Americans flee crowded cities amid Covid-19, consider permanent moves.”  According to that article, nearly one-third of Americans are considering moving to less densely populated areas because of Covid-19. On May 8 the New York Times described this phenomenon in “Coronavirus Escape: To the Suburbs.” Then, on May 16 they published “Where New Yorkers Moved to Escape Coronavirus.According to CNBC, Wealthy New Yorkers flee Manhattan for suburbs and beyond.

Local Media

Locally, radio station 101.5 WPDH posted two blogs on this subject. The first, “NYC Residents Expected to Move to Hudson Valley in Droves.” AndSellers market driving Hudson Valley Home Prices Way Up.”  Additionally, Straus News just published the following story in all its local papers for Orange County NY, and Sussex County NJ: “Pandemic-driven house frenzy hits local towns.”

Green Team Realty Sales Associates: Are they seeing NYC residents moving to the suburbs?

Current real estate market conditions and economic trends were major points of discussion during Green Team Realty’s monthly Housing Market Update. We asked several sales associates if they are seeing NYC residents moving to the suburbs as a result of COVID-19.

Green Team New York Realty – Warwick and Orange County, New York

Angela Murphy, Real Estate Salesperson, and Business Development Associate,

I have seen a rise of new buyers coming from all 5 boroughs of the city. Most of my clients want municipals verses septic, well or oil tanks, which has opened up many areas to view in Orange County. The pandemic has definitely pushed them to head north quicker than they might have, otherwise.

Nancy Sardo, Associate Real Estate Broker

I am seeing an influx of highly qualified tenants as well as an above-average amount of new buyers ready to move quicker than before.  We are seeing many more cash buyers, many more full-price offers with less negotiation from a smart buyer. Experienced buyers to the area are more willing to do some elbow grease in order not to hiccup on the deal. Otherwise, they risk the seller moving onto the backup offer. Buyers and people, in general, are serious about the betterment of their surroundings. And, with what we are currently going through, they are now more apt to pay for it.  We are in a seller’s market and here in Warwick NY and Orange County on a whole, there is an exaggerated upswing of interest in our beautiful Hudson Valley.

Jennifer DiCostanzo, Associate Broker

Interest is trending with buyers looking for a home that meets their needs both for lifestyle and working from home. They like the idea of self-sufficient living. Being just 60 miles from NYC makes the lower Hudson Valley, with its pricepoint, very attractive for primary and secondary homes.  Everyone is coming to a realization that home has to meet both work and leisure needs. Also desired are adaptable living spaces. Living through this pandemic has redefined the concept of home for many people. Outdoor space has become a luxury, particularly for City dwellers. However, it’s not just City dwellers who are redefining what “home” means. There are local buyers who are also looking for that change in lifestyle, space and function.

Green Team New Jersey Realty – Vernon and Sussex County, New Jersey

Kristi Anderson, Realtor

I think that many buyers are coming to the Sussex area because we have had much fewer cases of COVID-19 up here. Most of my clients are buying second homes.

Keren GonenReal Estate Salesperson

I am seeing a LOT of NYC buyers. They are CASH mostly and looking to run away. Some are buying a second home, but plenty are moving in this direction to get away from the City completely and realizing the advantages of living in “The Country.” Those buyers have a much larger budget than our “usual” buyers and are looking for updated houses mostly.  They are ready, willing, able and QUALIFIED buyers.  They are all mesmerized by our charm here in Sussex county.
What makes Orange County and Sussex County so desirable to NYC residents?

After months of sheltering in place, many people are reexamining their concept of the ideal home. This pandemic has shown us that we can’t take for granted life as usual. New York City has undergone a drastic transformation. That ideal City life is on pause. Broadway shows, restaurants, boutiques, department stores, museums, vibrant nightlife, closed,   Families living in cramped apartments, worried about catching the virus, long for privacy, more room, areas to work, and space for the kids. Furthermore, they’re looking for outdoor living space. And approximately 60 miles away is the beautiful countryside of Orange and Sussex Counties.

NYC residents are looking for homes that provide lots of room for their family’s needs, including work from home space. Covid-19 has shown us the possibilities that exist in telecommuting. People and businesses are realizing that it may not be necessary for people to go to the office every day.  As noted above, there are also people looking for second homes, so that they have someplace to “escape” to, should another shelter-in-place be required. Even in a seller’s market, they know they can get more house for their money here. Finally, there are unique hamlets, villages, and towns that offer lifestyles and qualities that people have decided are just what they need in this day and age.