I don't disagree that there are owners here who have their head in the sand, and that's frustrating for us too, but if they can afford to wait until the market catches up with them, they will, and that is their prerogative. You know that already. However, current sold data here shows that for roughly every two closings (residential, land, commercial and partial interest sales), there is another property going into pre-foreclosure (Lis Pendens). It's inevitable therefore that many buyers will not be dealing directly with an owner, but with a bank, which is not the same game. You can easily get that data for yourself, only the newly under contract data might not be so accessible without help from someone locally.
I can't speak for the South Fork Hamptons, because I don't track it as closely as the North Fork, and I don't know where you are getting your data from, but I can assure you that prices here have dropped significantly and dramatically on mostproperties. Some are now about half price from 2 years ago, and I am including REO ( bank owned) homes in that group. One home I know in Aquebogue, the bank has indicated they would be willing to take about 50% of the unpaid principal and interest - a drop of +/- $300K on a $650K home. The neighbors are shocked!
If you're interested in more detailed information about the volume increase of homes going under contract and don't have access to it, feel free to contact me offlist with your requirements. If memory serves, you're interested in buying on the South Fork only, not the North Fork? If so, then you'd probably be better off asking someone there to do it, but I could certainly run whatever numbers if you're also considering the North Fork. By the way, I am not saying prices have reached bottom, I don't know that they have, but with volume increasing, that's a positive indicator that the downward movement may be slowing, stopped, or about to reverse direction, but I am not seeing anything clearly enough to know that yet and I don't think anyone else is either.