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Real estate market in Finger Lakes still competitive: Why are prices still rising?

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  • Staff Report 

The housing market in the Finger Lakes region is competitive and prices are rising, making it difficult for the middle class to afford a home, according to real estate experts.

Interest rates for home purchases have remained consistent over the last 25 years, but the post-pandemic era has brought new factors that have contributed to lower inventories, forcing prices to rise.

Data from Redfin shows that in the past year, the number of homes sold in Monroe County has dropped 20%, lasting only eight days on the market. One reason for this is that fewer elderly homeowners are willing to sell, due to nursing homes being unable to accept more residents. Instead, they are bringing staff into their homes to take care of them.

Investors are also buying up homes and either renting them out or using them as Airbnb properties, which keeps inventory for homebuyers low but drives up rent costs.

This trend is particularly popular with young people, who are giving up on the idea of owning a home and opting to rent instead. As a result, apartment prices are also going up. Despite these challenges, real estate agent Angie Flack Brown advises homebuyers to be flexible and consider options that may require some personal touches, as this can help them get into a home with less competition and at a lower price.

The median price for a single-family home in Monroe County is currently $197,500, with the town of Pittsford having the most expensive options listed. The suburbs are the most competitive and in-demand areas for homebuyers, with approximately 550 single-family homes sold in the region last year.