Capital Region Report Shows Real Estate Rebound Amid Pandemic in 2020

February 18, 2021

Long & Foster’s year-end report details real estate as a bright star in Capital Region

In a year unlike any other, the initial shock and the lockdowns in the early days of the pandemic led to a slowdown in the real estate market, only to give way to a robust spring that continued for the remainder of the year, according to the Long & Foster | Christie’s International Real Estate 2020 Year-End Capital Region Market Report.

The number of home sales in 2020 increased 4% over 2019, to 65,001. Housing inventory in the region remained tight during the past year, falling 29% lower than it was in December 2019.  Luxury home sales outpaced the market, with a 25% increase while the high-end market saw a 17% reduction in homes available to buyers.   

“Real estate shined as a bright star in the economy last year, and it set the foundation for a strong rebound this year,” said Jeffrey S. Detwiler, president and CEO of The Long & Foster Companies. “While the beginning of the pandemic saw the real estate market shudder, the strength of our business, combined with historic low interest rates and pent-up demand, shifted the direction upward – where we have remained ever since.”

Within Washington, D.C., sales of homes priced $1 million and up increased 15.7% compared to the prior year, while median sale prices increased 3.7%. Months of supply remained unchanged at 2.5 months compared to year-end 2019. Typically, a market with less than a 6-month supply of homes for sale is considered one that favors sellers. Homes sold quickly with days on market dipping by 3.1% in 2020.

Luxury real estate sales increased in Northern Virginia in 2020, with 34.5% more units sold. The number of high-end homes for sale dropped by 23.4% from the same period of 2019, with 3.2 months of supply. Median sale prices increased by 2%. The average time properties spent on the market declined by 14.8% compared to 2019.

In Montgomery County, Maryland, the number of luxury properties sold in 2020 increased by 16.7%. Average monthly inventory of luxury homes for sale declined by 38.6%, while the median sale price increased by 1.9%. The average marketing time last year was 48 days compared to 58 days in 2019, resulting in a 17.2% decrease in the time a home remained on the market.

In addition to highlighting major trends in the D.C. region, the Long & Foster | Christie’s Capital Region Market Report spotlights individual neighborhoods. It also summarizes the local luxury market by home type – for example, single family, townhomes and condos – sold in individual neighborhoods, providing an in-depth analysis of the residential market. View the report in its entirety here.