WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - While other industries were hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, north country homes sales were on the rise in 2020.
Just ask Barry Stewart of Bridgeview Real Estate Services.
“It was very busy. This is a tough business as far as the number of hours you put in. But, it was our best year ever,” Stewart said Thursday.
Data from Jefferson-Lewis Board of Realtors backs that up.
From 2019 to 2020, Jefferson County saw a 19 percent jump in residential sales, while Lewis County’s increase was 8 percent and St. Lawrence County saw a 2 percent jump.
That’s all while New York state sales slightly fell in 2020, when compared to 2019.
Board Executive Officer Lance Evans says most north country sales came in the second half of the year.
“From July to December, we saw the pent up demand. We saw people who couldn’t go on vacation in a lot of places. They came up to our area and found places to be,” Evans said Thursday.
Evans said another factor driving sales was people from other parts of the state being able to work remotely.
Stewart said low interest rates played a role too.
“The lowest I saw without buying down points was I believe 2.65, which is crazy low, crazy low,” he said.
And Stewart said 2020 was a successful year for home sales, even though there were fewer homes to sell than in years past.
“Our inventory only made it up to half of normal, homes for sale,” he said.
With high demand for homes, and short supply, Evans calls this a seller’s market.