A Quick Minute of Motivation

In this motivational series, I’ll highlight how to become a Peak Performer. In today’s Peak Performer Series message I’d like to talk to you about adding value. How much value are you adding to your clients and customers? Are you giving your clients the right advice when they are buying or selling with you? Learn more about the importance of adding value in my latest motivational message video.

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

 

September Market Update

My whole career I have been asked, “So, how’s the market?” Well, this year and more specifically, in the last few months, I have been asked this even more. It is a loaded question because it depends on whether you are a buyer, a seller, or if you are looking to rent and most importantly where you are looking to do any of these types of transactions.  After we clarify what they want to know, I find it is a lot of curiosity because people love to talk about real estate. It also is of interest to them because in our discussions I hear things like, “I don’t see any for sale signs in my neighborhood”, “when houses go up for sale in my area, they sell right away”, “my friend is looking for a house and they are losing out on multiple contracts” and many other similar comments so there is a genuine interest in “How’s the market”.

Overall, in Northern Virginia, the inventory on active resale homes is down over 31% from last year and units sold are virtually the same which means it is extremely competitive to be a buyer and if you price your house correctly, you can be a very happy seller. As always it is a hyper-local market so let’s take a deeper dive into the counties.

  • Arlington County – the Amazon Effect is keeping inventory low, median days on the market extremely low but interestingly enough, prices are not as high as you would think considering the supply and demand in that area. Closed sales are down as inventory is down and prices are up just 4%. Houses sell quickly – median days on market are just 9!
Statistic Jul YoY MoM
Total Sold Dollar Volume 182,179,254 down5.9% down7.5%
Closed Sales 266 down9.5% -0.4%
Median Sold Price $616,000 up1.3% +9%
Average Sold Price $684,884 up4% -7.2%
Median Days on Market 9 days down75.7% 0%
Average Days on Market 30 days down40% -16.7%
  • Fairfax County – Prices are up Year over Year but down Month over Month which indicates sellers are starting off too high and then making adjustments to get them sold. Days on market for Median Days and average days indicate a strong market but remember, price is critical to getting houses sold today. Closed sales are up Year over Year but are down Month over Month.
Statistic Jul YoY MoM
Total Sold Dollar Volume 1,027,443,963 up7.9% down5.9%
Closed Sales 1,680 up6.5% -4.8%
Median Sold Price $539,900 up2.3% -4.4%
Average Sold Price $612,668 up1.5% -1.1%
Median Days on Market 17 days down56.4% +6.3%
Average Days on Market 33 days down31.3% +6.5%
  • Loudoun County – the market in Loudoun is slowing a little as they are experiencing what other regions are – Year over Year gains but Month over Month declines. Median Days on Market jumped MoM but prices are maintaining in the area.  There is lots of pent up demand in Loudoun – stay tuned on their progress.
Statistic Jul YoY MoM
Total Sold Dollar Volume 408,811,460 up8.4% down2.8%
Closed Sales 747 up1.8% -1.2%
Median Sold Price $512,250 up8.5% -0.5%
Average Sold Price $549,478 up6.9% -1.4%
Median Days on Market 23 days down39.5% +43.8%
Average Days on Market 38 days down34.5% +22.6%
  • Prince William County – consistent with the other counties showing price reductions but an overall strong market as sales are strong and Days on Market are low. Prince William offers the lowest prices so more value!
Statistic Jul YoY MoM
Total Sold Dollar Volume 318,271,988 up5.4% down1.5%
Closed Sales 778 down0.4% 0%
Median Sold Price $385,000 up6.9% -2.5%
Average Sold Price $409,616 up5.9% -1.8%
Median Days on Market 24 days down41.5% +14.3%
Average Days on Market 38 days down19.2% +5.6%

Remember, within the counties, there is also a deeper dive that needs to be taken into consideration in neighborhoods and price points. Hopefully, this gives you a better idea of what is happening in our real estate market in Northern Virginia.  If you have any questions or concerns or if you are looking to make a move, please feel free to call me.

A Quick Minute of Motivation

In this motivational series, I’ll highlight how to become a Peak Performer. In today’s Peak Performer Series message I’d like to talk to you about execution. Stop discussing what you are GOING TO DO, and start DOING IT! Get results, make it happen! Learn more about this action/reaction in my latest motivational message video.

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

A Quick Minute of Motivation

In this motivational series, I’ll highlight how to become a Peak Performer. In today’s Peak Performer Series message I’d like to talk to you about input and output. What you put into your mind you output in your actions. Learn more about this action/reaction in my latest motivational message video.

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

August Market Update

The word on the street is prices are going to collapse…the market is overheated…a recession is coming…we are in a housing bubble. It’s mayhem if you believe everything you read and listen to what the non-experts have to say about the real estate market and the current market we are experiencing.  Quick question. Did you know that 50% of REALTORS have a second job?  Working with a true full-time professional who is up to date on the local Northern Virginia real estate market is more important today than ever before.  You need to have the guidance, advice, and experience to be guided seamlessly through the real estate transaction, so you are protected.  Don’t rely or believe everything you read on the internet.  Call me instead because here are the facts.

Prices – barring an unforeseen event, they are stable in Northern Virginia and will remain this way. Why?  Because our prices have risen only slightly each year after the Great Recession (bar a few examples/areas). We don’t have lending practices in place any longer that allow buyers to buy without strong fundamentals in place and allowing unqualified purchasers to outbid on properties at extreme prices.

The market is overheated – this is not true in all areas of Northern Virginia. Yes, there are areas of Arlington and in certain price points where inventory is extremely low that there are multiple offers but overall, we have seen this trend slow in recent months. Remember, what you read today typically happened 2-4 months ago as stats on the market don’t immediately get released and are reflective of current trends. Every market is different, and this is why you need specific advice on your property if you are selling or if you are considering purchasing a home.

A recession is coming – yes, it is true as we have been in the longest recovery in our history.  All markets are cyclical so a recession will come. What does this mean for housing? It is typically a good thing…interest rates are lowered to stimulate the economy and barring the Great Recession, since 1995 when we have had economic slowdowns, prices have appreciated 81% of the time which is the same as when we have had economic expansion. Don’t fear the word recession and real estate values.

We are in a housing bubble – not true for our area. Prices have not skyrocketed like they have in other areas of the country, as previously mentioned, our prices have only moderately increased year over year. Our inventory of resale homes is 22% below last year’s level and 33% below inventory levels two years ago. Our unemployment rate is one of the lowest in the country. Our salaries are stable to slightly rising meaning people have good-paying jobs.

Lastly, the interest environment we are in is making housing more affordable – rates are low and are going lower. 30-year fixed rates are in the mid to high 3’s (percent) today. There are many refinances that are taking place and there will be more to come so these people will be staying in their houses for a while and will be potential, future landlords which will keep the housing inventory tight moving forward.  This too will keep our market out of a crisis in my opinion.

Again, barring an unforeseen event, we will be in a strong real estate environment for some time here in Northern Virginia.  We actually need more houses to sell as there is pent up demand. If you are considering a move of any kind, please call me today to learn more. I can be reached at scottmacdonald@remax.net or 703-652-5777.

June Market Update

The Summer Market is Upon Us!

It is hard to believe we are already through the Memorial Day holiday weekend. Time is really flying this year – at least it seems that way to me. Kids are home from college, summer jobs have started, weekend pool parties are in full swing and the real estate market is just as busy as it has been all year. Let’s start with the amazing mortgage interest rates that continue to tumble downward. They are now well into the threes for 30-year fixed rates and are expected to go down even further. This makes now a great time to buy a home! It can still be a challenge to find the right house, as inventory levels remain extremely low – 19% below last year this same week and nearly 30% below what was on the market two years ago. What is also amazing is that sales are up with inventory levels being down. Through April (latest available data point), there was one more sale this year than last year…one more is one more than before. I believe that interest rates will continue to foster sales through the summer as inventory will come on the market. Let’s talk about your plans if you are considering selling – we can position you properly to take advantage of today’s market.

All this being said, the market is not good to all sellers. The reason for this is some sellers are under the belief that their property will sell regardless of price and condition. We are seeing a lot of unrealistic prices on properties, as well as houses in disrepair or in need of substantial work to get the prices sellers are asking. We have seen average prices up over last year by 2.75% which is great, but it is not 2.75% per month like some sellers are pricing their houses at today (and “hoping” to get for them).

From a buyer’s prospective, we are still in a price conscience market. Buyer’s are concerned about paying too much and are analyzing prices closely, especially if they are using a professional REALTOR and not the internet to help them buy a house. The internet is not the way to buy a house today or anytime. The guidance and expertise of a real estate professional is more important today than ever before. If you are considering buying, we should talk sooner rather than later so give me a call.

Have a great June – enjoy the graduation parties!

June Market Update

Summer is here!

Wow, that was one of the fastest months ever, in my opinion. Memorial Day weekend came and went in a blink of an eye, so it must be the height of the Sandbridge Beachdynamic spring market! Median days on the market in Northern Virginia is just 8; the average days on the market is 42. So, houses are virtually selling immediately (often with multiple offers) or they are taking a little while longer to sell. Right now, we are seeing very demanding
buyers in the marketplace. If the house is priced a little high or isn’t updated or staged, they are getting a lot of activity in the first week, but then showings fall off tremendously after that time frame.

So, what is fueling all the activity? There are a few factors, first there is a lot of demand – in certain price points, more on this shortly. Second, interest rates are still great – right around 4% for a 30-year fixed mortgage. Some people are taking advantage of adjustable rate mortgages too. Third, we continue to experience a strong local job market with many people relocating into the area for this reason. Fourth, prices are beginning to increase slightly, so many people are wanting to buy while it is still affordable for them to do so. Lastly, people have equity in their homes and can sell today to move into a larger home or closer to the city to reduce their commute. This is all good news for both buyers and sellers!

What is the situation with pricing I mentioned earlier you ask? The under $500,000 price point for houses and townhouses is on fire, representing a great majority of the median days on market. Yet, homes priced in the $650,000 -$800,000 range outside of the beltway are slow which is causing an increase on the average days on the market number. The upper price points (above $800,000) are seeing activity and sales which is always good for our local market.

I expect to see more of this type of activity and sales at least through the 4th of July. So, if you are considering selling or buying a home, please feel free to call me to discuss your situation in more detail.

Now, go enjoy this beautiful weather!  Happy Summer!

 

 

 

 

 

January Market Update

Happy New Year!2011-new-year-resolution

It is truly hard to believe that a new year is upon us; welcome to 2017! It seems that the years fly by faster as we get older. This is an exciting time in so many respects, so it would be nice to be able to enjoy these great times longer.

Anyway, it appears as if we will have an exceptional year here in the Northern Virginia real estate market.  Consumer confidence is at a 13-year high which typically bodes well for housing. Additionally, though the mortgage interest rates have risen slightly since the election, we still have many buyers out in the market looking for and in many cases buying homes today. Online activity as well as calls from our great clients like you have picked up recently.  Also, all indications point to the continuation of high paying jobs here in Northern Virginia. Dr. Stephen Fuller of George Mason University’s Center for Regional Analysis shared with us that employment in the Professional and Business services along with Retail Trade and Health/Education will all continue to grow into 2017. He predicts that 2017 will be “the year” of the decade for housing in Northern Virginia.

There is just one caveat … we need houses to sell! Inventory levels on active resales was down to just over 4,100 homes in all of Northern Virginia this past week.  We haven’t had this few homes on the market since the first week of February in 2012, when it was barely over 3,900 houses. In speaking with other agents, we will have homes coming up for sale in February, but there is an appetite for houses today! So, it is not a bad idea to put your home on the market sooner than later if you are thinking about it and if your home is in the right condition to sell. The belief is that we will continue to have a demand for houses throughout the year, so if you are considering making a move in 2017, please let me know, we are here to help!

I hope you have a joyful and prosperous 2017!  And please remember we are always here to help you and anyone you know with their real estate needs.

 

Scott’s Real Estate Market Update for Northern Virginia

Scott MacDonald’s Market Minute Update offers a quick look into the current real estate market conditions for Northern Virginia, the here and now of what is going on in the Virginia side of the DC Metro housing market area. The real estate market is favoring Sellers as Buyers in need of homes have fewer to choose from; multiple offers have been recently noted on homes listed and priced at competitive market value. If you are looking to buy or sell, give Scott MacDonald a call 703-652-5777