Many of us in the real estate business in Northern Virginia have been talking about the lower inventory in our market this spring. My recent waterfront condo listing in Belmont Bay resulted in 3 offers in a 24 hour time-frame and a lot of maneuvering for position at the table. Talk with other agents around the area that’s not an unusual occurrence.
There isn’t much doubt that inventory is lower than a year ago. Taking a look at the stats from the Metropolitan Regional Information System aka the MLS, the numbers tell the story. In this case I looked at Woodbridge VA (22191), Springfield VA (22152) and Alexandria VA (22315), as these are popular areas for anyone looking at relocation to Fort Belvoir or NGA.
It was interesting to see the Days on Market (DOM) when the inventory was at it’s lowest in these zip codes were much higher in January than in May 2012. There is little doubt real estate in Northern Virginia is cyclical. Even though houses are for sale 12 months of the year most buyers consider the spring the best time to buy. Whether it’s the nice weather or the school calendar the majority of buyers seem to wait until April to June to buy.
Of course waiting to buy a home in Northern Virginia when everyone else does means you may also pay a bit more. The stats show that the average list to sales price went up between January from 94% of list price to 97% (rounded numbers) in May. For buyers who don’t have the restriction of timing for schools buying a home “off season” could save you money. If you are interested in getting more details for your zip code feel free to contact me and I can send you a more detailed market report.