Ok chicken little, the sky didn’t fall which is a good thing for us in real estate. The moratorium has come and gone – the freeze was lifted – and foreclosures continue to happen. Reports indicate that foreclosures were up 65% the third quarter of this year in year over year reporting. As much as foreclosures are a part of the market now and will be for some time, they are just trickling onto the market here locally. Currently, they account for only 494 of the 7,979 houses for sale in Northern Virginia. As these distressed properties are such a low percentage, they are having little to no impact on housing values in our area. As a matter of fact, Fannie Mae is spending thousands of dollars renovating homes to maximize their values to get a better return than they received previously when they foreclosed on houses.
We have heard of people waiting for prices to drop or they are anticipating a wave of foreclosures to crash onto our market. Up to this point we have not seen any indication of either of these phenomenons. Historically speaking, foreclosure trends show that the foreclosure rate slows down this time of year until just after the New Year. There has also been a slight uptick in rates which may continue into this week with the elections, unemployment numbers being reported and the Fed meets to discuss the economy. If they continue their trend, it means waiting to buy can cost you money. Inventory levels have stabilized, prices have stabilized and rates are fantastic and we see no reason why now isn’t the ideal time to buy a home in Northern Virginia. We have the fundamentals in place that transcend markets – the government, cultural activities, diversity, great schools, low unemployment, access to the mountains and the ocean plus so much more. If you are looking for long term stability in the housing sector, look no further than Northern Virginia. Get it? Got it? Good!
Now, go buy something!