Northern Virginia Market Update – August 2015

The August data just came out. The good news (again) is that we had the best August in a decade in terms of new contracts. Closed sales increased by 4.8% from August last year. Things always slow down in the summer though. That’s why closed sales are down 18.6% from the previous month.

Below I’ve pulled up various indicators over the past 3 years to see how the market has evolved.

Inventory Trends

New listings are down 16.8% from July (but still up 6.1% from August 2014). This is fairly typical to see, as activity inevitably drops in the summer months. However, the inventory is now at 2008 levels, so hopefully the market will become more balanced soon. This will be good news for buyers.

Supply is very slightly down at 3.42 months of inventory (compared to 3.53 in July). September usually sees a nice uptick in new listings though. So don’t quit your search just yet.

The good news is that the number has been trending higher over the past 3 years. Generally a 6-month supply is considered a “balanced” market, but in this area we’re usually happy with 3. The last time supply stood at 6 months was during the height of the housing crash in 2007.

Pricing Trends

The median sold price across the Northern Virginia market (including Arlington County, Alexandria City, Falls Church City, Fairfax City, and Fairfax County) decreased $9,900 from the previous month to $490,000. This represents a 2.0% drop. It looks like $509,000 (achieved in June) will be the peak for 2015.

Sellers remain in charge with homes selling at 97.8% of list price. This is slightly lower (0.5%) than July. You could say things are better than 2013 when April, May and June all saw sellers getting 100% of list price. I’m not sure buyers should break out the champagne just yet. These are still very strong selling ratios.

Days on Market

The median days on market increased to 29 from July when it stood at 20. While this nearly big increase may seem shocking, it usually takes place every year. Many buyers take a break from their search to go on vacation. And the quality of the inventory tends to be a little lower. The best listings should have sold back in June and July. So things inevitably slow down.

Next Steps

Overall, this is still a great time to be a seller. However, buyers are getting very low interest rates, which helps offset a little the tight inventory conditions and subsequent competitive offers.

Stay tuned for next month’s Northern Virginia market update. If you need more specific data, I’ll be happy to pull it up for you, just contact me below:

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