The Washington region’s housing market performed well in October, according to the latest data.
In the District, the median sold price in October hit $500,000 – that’s a jump of 9.9 percent over last October and the highest median home price in an October in the District ever, and it’s just $30,000 less than the high in July 2014.
DC real estate October 2014 inventory Average days on market, at 35 days, is still lengthy but is a 2.8 percent drop from last October and the fewest days on market for sold properties in an October in the past several years. This means homes are moving relatively quickly and for a good price.
One of the main factors we look at is housing inventory. That’s something we’ve been tracking very closely over the past several months. Housing inventory tells us a lot about how consumers are feeling about the market. While some people move because they have to (a job change, for example), a lot of people move when they believe the time is right – and it looks like more people think the time may be right.
Although new listings were down in October in the District of Columbia, inventory in October was virtually unchanged from September (from 1,469 active listings in September to 1,459 active listings in October).
Housing inventory had been declining from June through August before bouncing back up in September. Still, October’s housing inventory was 7.6 percent higher than the October before, and the highest it has been since October 2010.
For buyers, some advice: Make sure your financing is in order before you go home shopping, and be prepared to make a solid offer on the property you want when you see it.
What a difference just a few miles’ can make in real estate markets. When we look at year-over-year trends in real estate inventory, prices and days on market, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties tell very different stories from each other.
It appears that the market is starting to soften in Montgomery County. There, inventory in September was up 36 percent over September 2013, almost matching levels in September 2010.
The median list price in Montgomery County is up 2.9 percent over September 2013, and the median sold price is up 5.1 percent from a year ago. The median sale to original list price ratio is 97.6 percent.
Tellingly, the days on market in Montgomery County are at 34 days on average, an increase of 61.9 percent over a year ago.
Call it a tale of two counties: In Prince Georges County, inventory is up a comparatively low 12.1 percent.
Both the median list and sold prices are up over last September much more than in Montgomery County. The median list price in Prince Georges County is $265,000 – an increase of 3.9 percent over September 2013. The median sold price is $225,000, which is up 11.9 percent over last September. The median sale to original list price ratio is 99.1 percent.
And, in Prince Georges County, days on market average just 23, an increase of 21.1 percent from a year ago.
What does it all mean? While the two markets are very different in housing stock, the market in Montgomery County is decidedly softening, while the market in Prince Georges County is only showing hints of softening. Buyers can be a bit more aggressive with their offers in Montgomery County than they can be in Prince Georges County, and they should consider that among other factors when moving.