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"Downsizing:" Why Buyers are Opting for Luxury Rentals


While it appears to be just a short time ago that the American 1% were opting for 10,000 square foot homes, one-upping their friends, and seeking as much acreage as possible, the tides are visibly changing.  In a recent report by Bloomberg Business, it accounts the rapidly declining demand for large properties in Greenwich, with buyers substituting their interests for luxury rental complexes and developments.  With the term "downsizing," becoming mainstream, homeowners state that this doesn't necessarily mean that one has to downsize the square footage of the home, but rather the square footage of the entire property.  With continual maintenance for large pools and lawns, as well as heating and electric bills adding up, owning these colossal homes is a full time job, let alone much more expensive to own than the original purchase price states.


Developments such as the Harbor at Greenwich and Milbank Court offer the same opulent lifestyle of a Greenwich estate, yet provide little-to-no maintenance, as well as amenities one can't find in a single-family home. With services such as doormen, concierge, gyms, room service, car service, and dry cleaning, this form of "downsizing," is actually emerging as "upsizing." At the Harbor at Greenwich and Milbank, prices for these condos start around $1.8 million, however, in other cities, the prices are even higher.


Listed in CASTLES® Magazine, condos in Boston are going for up to $15 million. Residences in the Back Bay such as those on 776 and 300 Boylston St and 180 Beacon St are competitively priced, as well as 500 Atlantic Ave on the Boston waterfront. With homeowners taking advantage of the desirable locations rental complexes offer, as well as their modern, recently renovated interiors, the inventory for large suburban homes might continue to remain stagnant. 


With the 252 luxury homes on the market in Greenwich, Bloomberg expects the last of these homes to not sell for another 5 years, and they believe that it will only take 10 months for the 102 condos on the market to sell.  As supply for these suburban luxury homes doubled in the last year, one can only imagine that homeowners will be putting more houses on the market soon.