My 2019 Real Estate Predictions

It’s time for Scott MacDonald’s Annual Top 10 Real Estate Predictions for 2019.

What do you think? Do you agree with these predictions? Do you have any predictions of your own for 2019?

Need more real estate information? Give me a call at 703-652-5777 or email me at scottmacdonald@remax.net

November Market Update

18_300510_Fall Social Covers Fall Facebook Thankful

We are Grateful for You!

Now that another Halloween has come and gone, hopefully you weren’t spooked by the real estate market and the news that you have heard about it. The market is good – not bad – not slow – not great – just good. People need to expect that their house isn’t going to sell in a matter of hours or days, it will, in most cases, take a couple of weeks to a month or even longer to sell. As I’ve said before, it all depends upon your price point, condition and location. All around the region, we are seeing median days on market are up as are the average days on market. Again, don’t be spooked, we continue to see steady sales, low inventory and stable prices. Buyers are just taking a bit little longer to make decisions on buying. Some are still looking for the house to be in perfect condition at a “value” price. In some cases, they too, need to be realistic. Not every house is perfect and not every house is value priced so, just make an offer and see how the seller responds. If there is a house for sale, the sellers want it sold and they just want to “hear” it from the market and not the agent in a lot of cases.

So, what is on the horizon? Interest rates will continue to rise which will cause some buyers to leave the market. Some will opt for alternative forms of financing such as adjustable rate mortgages or if you have an assumable loan – assumptions. If you are interested in buying, this is a great option as well. Please give me a call to learn more whether you are selling or buying.

What else could impact our area you ask? Amazon and their HQ2 is the answer! At this time, they are in advanced negotiations with Northern Virginia on their next headquarter location, Crystal City to be more precise. What does this mean for our region? There will be some impact on housing, some impact on commercial properties (depending upon their location), a definite impact on our economy and lastly, an
impact on traffic as 50,000 jobs (or 25,000 if they split the locations) plus supporting company employment will bring more commuters. The local real estate industry is excited about this potential move, but we are not counting on anything concrete until the final decision is made. If you would like to know more, please feel free to call me as I have been following this developing news quite extensively. Also, I am happy to discuss your next move at any time.

Have a great Thanksgiving and enjoy the time with your family and friends!
-Scott

Scott’s Market Minute 4/27/18

Inventory levels are up, interest rates are up, distressed inventory is also down – May is going to be a “lucky” month for sellers! Learn more about what’s going on in the Northern Virginia area real estate market in Scott’s latest message.

If you’d like to talk more about your situation, give me a call at 703-652-5777 or email me at scottmacdonald@remax.net.   Have a great weekend!!

February Market Update

Holiday Social Shareables-ValentinesDayThe Northern Virginia real estate market continues to gain momentum despite low inventory levels. There are many buyers in the market ready to buy the right home and in many cases, it is difficult to do so leaving them and their agent frustrated. Typically, this time of year we start to see houses come on the market, but we have not seen a week-over-week increase in inventory since the fourth week of September last year! That is an amazing run, hopefully it will change soon for our buyers. If you are considering selling, let’s get together to see how to position yourself for success in this market.

All indications are pointing for 2018 to be another great year for real estate sales, despite starting off with low inventory levels and increasing interest rates. Interest rates are projected to be in the high 4’s, possibly low 5’s by the end of the year – scary, NOT! When I first got into the business in 1988, rates were in the 12’s. Yes, the rate increase will have some impact but not substantially in my opinion. What could have a greater impact is escalating prices coupled with the higher mortgage interest rates. This may force some first-time buyers to sit on the sidelines because of qualification purposes or potential sellers staying in their houses longer because they don’t find it beneficial to relocate. As always, time will tell.

The low inventory levels are resulting in multiple contract situations in many cases, but not in every situation so it is important to have the right expectation when putting your house on the market. Upper end prices are taking longer to sell as is typically the case. Houses that have not been priced properly, are in poor condition or have undesirable lot conditions will accumulate days on the market as well. In these situations, it is critical to hire a professional to give you the proper guidance to maximize your sought-after results.  We are here to help you navigate the sale in these circumstances, so please call me to discuss your situation in more detail.

 

Scott’s Market Update

new-year10

Happy New Year! The temperatures in Northern Virginia are frigid, but the real estate market is anything but that. We are seeing activity throughout our area which is great for sellers. We had showings at our listings on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve as well as New Year’s Day – it is crazy! One of our agents had an open house on New Year’s Eve and had 21 visitors…did I mention it is freezing outside?  I haven’t seen this much activity around this time of year in my career of 30+ years.

It is looking like 2018 will be a very good year in real estate – especially for sellers. We ended the year with inventory levels nearly 18% below last year which is 24% below the previous year. The lack of inventory is putting many sellers in the driver seat in the real estate market today. Buyers should not be concerned; more houses will be coming on the market as we enter the New Year and early spring market. Additionally, rates remain favorable and should stay within .5% of where they are today for 2018.

More good news – the tax reform that recently passed will not affect most of our area. The mortgage interest deduction (MID) is capped at $750,000 for new mortgages and our average sales price in Northern Virginia is $516,000 – so this won’t hinder those looking to buy from buying. Also, the deductibility of property taxes is capped at $10,000 so again, for the most part, we won’t see buyers shying away.

Lastly, the ability to avoid paying capital gains on your mortgage principal (if it was your principal residence 2 of the last 5 years) remained in place along with the limit of the gains at $250,000 for an individual and $500,000 for a married couple. This should help us with inventory levels as well! Again, all good things! If you have any questions about your current situation, please feel free to call me.

Have a great 2018 and please stay warm as we battle these icy cold temperatures.

Scott MacDonald 703-652-5777 or scottmacdonald@remax.net

Scott’s Market Minute 6/2/17

Do you plan on selling your home soon? If so, get comfortable… and watch this week’s Market Minute message for more details…

If you’d like to talk more about your specific situation, give me a call at 703-652-5777 or email me at scottmacdonald@remax.net

Have a great weekend!

Scott’s Market Minute 5/19/17

Another interesting week in the real estate market! Inventory is up, consumer confidence is up, rates are down…but there are some soft spots… Learn more in this weeks Market Minute video message.

If you’d like to talk about your specific situation, please give me a call at 703-652-5777 or scottmacdonald@remax.net

Have a great weekend!

Scott’s Market Minute 4/21/17

 

Another interesting week in the Northern Virginia housing market … Interest rates are DOWN and inventory is…. check out my latest Market Minute for more info.

Interested in learning more about selling your home or buying a new one? Feel free to give me a call at 703-652-5777 or scottmacdonald@remax.net

Happy Earth Day!

April Market Update

Crazy Weather, Crazy Market…
spring scott blog

The Northern Virginia real estate market has been a lot like our weather in March…hot and cold. We’ve had some markets that have been on fire – Reston as an example; while others have been normal which makes Realtors and sellers feel on edge or think that the market is “cold”. It is extremely important to have the right expectation when selling your house – not every house sells in a day with multiple contracts. Many houses take a couple of months to sell. The current average is 62 days on the market in Northern Virginia. This is below the national average so we still have a great market. Buyers are buying and as result, the supply of existing houses for sale is down to a 1.2 month supply of homes. So, my advice is to be realistic if you are going to be selling your house and if you get a contract quickly, make the most of it, but don’t expect the process to happen fast.

Again, the good news is that sales are up 6% over last year, sales prices are up 2.8%, mortgage interest rates are still phenomenal and the inventory levels are increasing – so we should continue to see a good spring market. Even with inventory levels increasing, we are still 19% below last year’s levels. My belief is this will continue to happen for the next few months – inventory will rise but we will still lag behind previous years because we have strong fundamentals in place for a good housing market.

If rates continue to rise as a result of “Trumpenomics”, buyers will and should consider adjustable rate mortgages. Typically, ARM products like a 7/1 ARM run about ¾ of a point less in interest rates. As an example, 30 year fixed rates are about 4.25% and a 7/1 ARM is about 3.5% – definitely something to consider when buying a house today.

We can discuss your plans in more detail to see if this is a viable option for you. Please let me know if you have any specific questions or concerns as I am here to help!

Happy Spring Break and Easter!

Would you like to learn more? Give me a call at 703-652-5777 or scottmacdonald@remax.net

 

February Market Update

So Far This Year…

Nothing can stop the real estate market here in Northern Virginia; not the rising interest rates, not the pull back of the FHA mortgage insurance premium reduction, not lack of inventory, and especially not this cold weather we are experiencing.

Sales are strong and we appear to be headed for a robust spring housing market.  In addition to the group of buyers we are currently working with, we are getting lots of online leads from additional buyers asking about houses; both new builds andrrg-logo_small resale. Typically, this group will become home buyers in three to nine months – stay tuned for more details as we get down the road with these leads.

Today’s buyers are looking in all price ranges and in all locations throughout Northern Virginia. As you would imagine, the lower price points are in very high demand, but so are higher priced properties in areas like McLean and North Arlington.  We have some soft spots (lowering of prices and accumulation of days on the market) in the Great Falls area, but typically, if houses are priced right, in good condition and have been staged, they are selling quickly!  Thus, inventory is at a four year low with just over 3,900 existing homes currently for sale. We expect properties to come on the market in February, but with the demand we are experiencing now, they too should sell quickly.

So, what are the lessons we have learned so far in 2017?  If you are a buyer, act quickly! If you find a home meets your criteria and suits your lifestyle, make an offer, don’t wait.  Many properties are receiving numerous offers; therefore they are selling quickly.

If you are a seller, get your house “right” and get it on the market sooner rather than later – there is a strong appetite for housing today.  Buyers are out there and ready to make a move.

If you would like to discuss your situation in more detail, please feel free to call me today.  I would enjoy meeting with you to determine which is the best option for you to pursue.

Stay warm!

Scott can be reached at 703-652-5777 or scottmacdonald@remax.net.