By Boofie O’Gorman of Long & Foster Realtors, Reston
So my friend’s house received three contracts in two days and my neighbor’s house has been on the market for a month. What’s happening??
Our Northern Virginia area has seen a resurgence of strong activity since the beginning of the year. Multiple contracts, bidding wars, low inventory are the watchwords being discussed. In the midst of all of this, we see some properties not selling. What’s really going on?
Since the beginning of the year, we have indeed seen a significant increase in contracts. Buyer activity has
been motivated by deferred demand and sustained by historically low interest rates. It’s a great time to buy! This increased activity has led to a shortage in sitting inventory-that is available homes on the market at any given time. Despite the cries from buyers that there is no inventory, we have actually sold MORE homes this year than during the same period last year. We’ve just sold them faster, so it doesn’t seem as if there’s as much on the market on any given day.
The number of homes sold is up across Northern Virginia, from 5.5 percent in Arlington County to 20.16 percent in Loudoun County and 20.30 percent in Fairfax County. The number of days on the market for these areas ranges from a decrease of 8.51 percent in Loudoun to 30.33 percent in Arlington and 30.77 percent in Fairfax. So we’re selling more—that’s a good thing—we’re just selling them faster. That means we have more buyers, not fewer properties.
All of this is leading to an increase in prices over the same period last year. Average sold prices are up 5.16 percent in Arlington, 8.62 percent in Loudoun, and 9.18 percent in Fairfax. That’s a very healthy increase, especially if you take into account that our market has maintained positive growth while many parts of the country were stagnant.
Back to the original question-in the midst of strong markets overall, we see great fluctuations. Much of our area is very active in early spring and slows during busy summer months. Sometimes sellers anticipate price growth and price too high. We have an educated buying public determined to buy wisely. They don’t want to get caught by the next market turndown. A price that seems too high might discourage a sale. Despite these instances of relative quiet, the market as a whole remains vigorous.
Your investment in Northern Virginia real estate is doing well. Be sure that you take care of it. DryHome can help you do that!