August 15, 2017 | Josh Sullivan

July continued to be a successful month for the DC Metro housing market, with closings continuing to increase YoY throughout most jurisdictions. Median sales price followed suit, reaching a decade-high level of $439,900 for the Metro. These two factors would normally indicate a strong seller’s market, but the recent uptick in inventory suggests a slight shift towards a buyer’s market.

As you can see, median sales price for the month of July has increased consistently following the recession.

Washington, DC
The District remained competitive, with the same median sales price of last July at $570,000. While the sales price remained unchanged, DC experienced almost an 11% increase in closings across all property types. The most significant growth was concentrated amongst detached single-family homes, increasing 25% YoY. Townhome and condo sales improved as well with a growth of 7.6% and 9.1%, respectively.

Arlington County, VA
The slight regression, or momentum shift, can be seen more clearly within Arlington County. Median sales price dipped, while closings increased, particularly within condos and townhomes. Arlington posted a median sales price of $567,500 for the month of July, down almost 10% from last year. The decrease in sales price could be attributed to the increase in inventory, which resulted in 297 closings for the month of July. Single-family residences decreased a mere 5% YoY, while townhomes and condos improved considerably. 25 townhomes closed for the month of July which is an astounding 47% increase over last year. Condos improved as well, up 8% YoY with 158 closings.

Fairfax County, VA
Similar to DC proper, Fairfax County’s median sales price remained largely unchanged at $500,000 for the month of July. Closings in Fairfax County reached 1,642 for the month of July, inching just 1.6% above last year’s level. Single-family homes accounted for 832 closings, while townhomes and condos posted 481 and 329, respectively. Of the three property types, condo sales grew the most with a 9.7% increase YoY.

The gradual shift from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market is evident, given the consistent rise in supply while sales continue to climb. Though inventory is rising slightly in each market, there is still roughly only two months of supply within the District, well below the national average. The next few months will be paramount in determining if there truly is a shift in the market, as opposed to these trends being the result of a market cooling down after a hot selling season.

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