January 12, 2017 | Josh Sullivan
December 2016 raised the bar for sales price, surpassing 2014 as the highest median sales price ever recorded for the month.
The DC area posted a median price of $410,000, up 3.8% from last year and 0.8% from November. Though median sales price continues to increase, we saw closings, active listings, and sales volume decrease YoY. These metrics are indicating the continuation of a market with high demand and dwindling supply.
DC experienced a 7.7% increase YoY, with the median sales price reaching $550,000 for the month of December. Following the trend of the greater DC metro, DC saw a 10% decrease in closed sales YoY due to restricted supply. Detached single-family residences along with condo/coop sales decreased 13% and 18.7% YoY respectively, while townhouse sales increased a mere 3.7%. With many new construction projects in the pipeline, it will be interesting to see how they will affect closing metrics as the year goes on and they begin to deliver.
Arlington County, VA
Arlington County posted almost identical figures for December 2016 as it did in December 2015. The median sales price rose 1% to $564,500 for December, while closings remained the same at 224. Though there were the exact same number of closings, the proportion of property types adjusted dramatically. Condos and townhomes accounted for most closings, with an increase of 8.1% and 20.8% respectively. Single-family residences decreased 15.7%, accounting for only 75 of the 224 closings.
Fairfax County, VA
Fairfax County’s median sale price rose 3.3% YoY, reaching $470,000 for December. The source of the median sales price comes from the 1,057 closings Fairfax County experienced over the month of December, decreasing 5.5% from last December. Detached single-family residence closings increased 1.8% from last December and accounted for 557 sale closings. Townhouse and condo/coop closings decreased 11.1% and 13.6% respectively YoY.
December closed out a very successful year for the DC metro real estate market. We saw 6 out of the 12 months post record high sale prices and record low days-on-market across all jurisdictions. The strict supply and low inventory has been forcing sale prices to rise, and has created one of the most competitive markets in the country. Though this is good news for sellers, buyers are becoming increasingly frustrated with the scarce supply. 2017 is poised to deliver over 35,000 new units, but it will still not be enough to satisfy the demand within the DC market.