Spring brought robust home sales in the capital region, although inventory remained a challenge in May. The number of homes on the market fell 7 percent year-over-year, which was an improvement from the 15 percent drop in April.
Housing is scarcer in some areas than in others, with Anacostia and Hillcrest seeing a 44 percent drop in the number of homes for sale. Homes in the region continue to draw more than full asking price, with desirable properties receiving multiple offers.
There was a 1.7-month supply of homes in the District in May, down from a supply of 1.8 months a year earlier. It’s generally considered a seller’s market when there’s less than a six-month supply of available homes.
Median sale prices were highest in Georgetown, at $1.045 million, up 11 percent compared to a year earlier. Inventory in that neighborhood was down 6 percent for the same period. Homes sold fastest in Capitol Hill SE, Southwest and Waterfront, with homes on the market only 16 days on average – and selling at over the full asking prices.
In a more balanced market, homes can be expected to sell in 45 to 60 days and close just under the full list price, said Larry “Boomer” Foster, president of Long & Foster Real Estate.
“Homes are not staying on the market if they’re priced correctly and you make sure they show well,” Foster said. “Properties at the entry- and mid-level price points are selling very quickly. There just isn’t enough inventory for buyers in that range.”
Mortgage interest rates are slowly increasing, as expected, but Foster said he doesn’t think that alone will dampen demand. He predicted a seller’s market at least through the end of the year, because of strong economic indicators, as long as consumer confidence remains solid. When it comes to buying or selling, consumers should rely on the advice of an experienced real estate agent to navigate a complex process.
“An experienced agent can help evaluate multiple offers and get you the most for your house,” Foster said. “There are many companies out there that say they will provide services at a discounted rate, but you generally get what you pay for.”
The Long & Foster Market Minute is an overview of market statistics based on residential real estate transactions for more than 500 local areas and neighborhoods and over 100 counties in eight states. The easy-to-read, easy-to-share reports include information about each area’s units sold, active inventory, median sale prices, list to sold price ratio, days on market and more.
Information included in this report is based on data supplied by Metropolitan Regional Information System and its member associations of Realtors, which are not responsible for its accuracy. The reports include residential real estate transactions within specific geographic regions, not just Long & Foster sales, and they do not reflect all activity in the marketplace. Information contained in this report is deemed reliable but not guaranteed, should be independently verified, and does not constitute an opinion of MRIS or Long & Foster Real Estate.