real estate trends

2021 Lakefront Real Estate Review

Trends and Outlook for the Finger Lakes Market

Since the pandemic, the desire to own a piece of shoreline in the Finger Lakes continues to drive demand and prices. As soon as Real Estate Sales reopened from the national shutdown in 2020, the floodgates opened and most lake homes sold immediately. Leaving little inventory by the end of the year making the 2021 market slow to recover. Continuing with the high buyer demand but lack of listings, last year’s sales were abnormally competitive.

An Unconventional Year for Real Estate Sales

While sales across the lakes were virtually the same year-over-year, there was a 17% decrease in the number of listings and a 21% increase in the average sale price. Demand continued to remain high for lakefront homes. Homeowners who were willing to sell received not only top dollar, but unconventional deals. We have seen extremes with an increased number of cash sales, site unseen deals, and closings without inspections or contingencies. 

On the flip side, while there was still a surplus of buyers in the market, many have grown impatient and unwilling to compete in such circumstances. However, compared to other New York State and surrounding lakefront markets, the Finger Lakes Region remains to be one of the more affordable areas to own shoreline. This combined with the increase in demand for vacation rental homes in destination markets, the demand for Finger Lakes lakefront homes is not expected to plateau for some time.

Outlook for 2022 Lakefront Market

What will 2022 bring?  While it is inevitable for the market to return to pre-pandemic conditions, it likely will not jump back immediately. We predict that in 2022 competition will remain strong, but sellers will be more apt to list their lake home while conditions are in their favor. This will result in slightly more sales across the lakes than we saw in 2021.

Buyers will need to stay current with new listings if they are serious about purchasing. But in their favor most homes are listing with delayed negotiations. No longer will the sale go to the first to submit an offer. Instead, buyers and their agents will have more time, but will compete to put their best offer on the table at first glance.

For more information about buying or selling a lakefront home in the Finger Lakes, reach out to our local Real Estate Team at

To search current lakefront listings across the Finger Lakes, click here.