image of nyc record price cuts

The number of for-sale homes is up, and so are price cuts, which means it’s a good time to be a buyer in NYC. (Kolderal/Getty Images)

A wave of new for-sale listings is deepening a slowdown in the New York City housing market and forcing a record number of sellers to slash prices.

As New Yorkers returned from their summer vacations in September, sellers hoping to catch their attention created a surge in new listings, which only added to the glut of for-sale inventory resulting from an earlier listing spike this spring. As we predicted in July, the wave of new listings seems likely to push inventory to highs not seen since the 2008 financial crisis, giving buyers an upper hand in negotiations and forcing many sellers make even deeper cuts to asking prices.

Price Cuts Break Record Set During the Financial Crisis

Already, more sellers cut asking prices during the week after Labor Day than over any other week in StreetEasy history — more even than during the depths of the financial crisis. Asking prices fell on 774 homes, exceeding the previous record of 713 set the week of March 22, 2009. The Sept. 9 figure represents 4.9 percent of all homes listed for sale that week, a level just slightly below the weekly peak of 5.1 percent set in February 2009.

Fall Brings a Flood of New Listings

The wave of price cuts coincides with two of the biggest weeks for new listings in StreetEasy history. In Manhattan, 662 listings were added, a level only slightly below the record levels set in April and May of this year. Similarly, the 411 Brooklyn listings added the week ending Sept. 9 was the largest number for the borough in one week since 2010. The number of listings added in the second week of the month (ending Sept. 16) fell slightly, as is typical for the season, but remains well above the historical pattern. Queens listings have traditionally followed a slightly different seasonal pattern, though inventory in the borough is also near record highs.

Tips for Buyers Navigating the Market Right Now

In this climate, with high inventory and price cuts, the tips for buyers we offered over the summer remain as relevant as ever: Be picky, be patient, and be prepared to negotiate.

While the metrics highlighted here draw comparisons to the financial crisis, the current market is backed up by a much healthier regional and national economic backdrop. Homes — particularly those at relatively affordable prices — remain in high demand in many areas of the city. Without a sharper, more broadly based economic downturn, the current buyer’s market represents a healthy adjustment of asking prices to more realistic levels — and an excellent opportunity for shoppers to negotiate for the right home at the right price.

Hey, why not like StreetEasy on Facebook and follow @streeteasy on Instagram?