A mild increase in the number of homes sold was seen in parts of the Richmond area in March, according to the Long & Foster Real Estate Market Minute report. Henrico County saw the highest jump with a 3% increase. Median sale prices rose in throughout the entire region, including an increase of 16% in Goochland County. Active inventory fell across the region, with the most notable decrease in Chesterfield County, which saw a 19% decline.
“When looking at March’s numbers, it was not a good month,” said Gary Scott, Long & Foster Real Estate president, “however everybody’s in the same place. January was bad, February was good and March was bad for sales.”
While the current numbers do not indicate a positive market Scott remains confident, saying “I believe April will be off the grid.” He remarked that the spring market is historically not set on a certain date and its start is dependent on a myriad of factors, including weather, inventory and interest rates. Though the first three months of the year were not great, Scott predicts that April will yield positive results.
Based on the market’s current economic conditions, such as the low interest rate and high home affordability index, Scott said, “I believe the spring market is just lagging, and that in April it will become fully activated.”
For sellers looking to get their home on the market, Scott addressed some items that will be important for them to note. Firstly, “Buyers are looking to envision themselves in a home, so sellers need to go to market in the best way they can. They had better declutter, stage and prepare their homes,” he said.
Sellers also need to be aware of the market conditions of where they’re selling and where they’re looking to buy. Scott recommended that sellers “engage with a real estate professional as they’ll know the market best.” Pricing and inventory is incredibly price-point and geographically specific so having a professional will help sellers understand the market better.
Lastly, sellers need to be aware of potential delays in their selling and moving process. Scott said, “There’s no guarantee that the house you want is going to be ready when the house you sell is ready.” Sellers need to have a good sense of where they’re going and be prepared to have an interim move.