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December Sales, Prices, Actives Reflect the Expected Seasonal Ebb, New Under-Contracts Up 15 percent for Decisive Buyers, Reports the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors®
Fairfax – With mortgage rates in 2016 at all-time lows, between 3-4 percent, the housing market garnered a steady pace of transactions, with the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® region posting a preliminary Year-To-Date total of 21,703 sales, which is 4.58 percent higher than the YTD 2015 of 20,752 homes sold. That overall increase was not enhanced by the December number of homes sold in the NVAR footprint, since this past December, home sales dipped to 1,558. This was a 4 percent decline compared to the 1,623 homes sold in December, 2015. NVAR services Fairfax and Arlington Counties, the cities of Alexandria, Falls Church and Fairfax.
“2016 had another strong showing with increased dollar volume, average and median sold prices,” said Ann Yanagihara, principal broker of Hana Associates in Alexandria and a 2017 NVAR Board member. “It just goes to show that in Northern Virginia, we are fortunate to live in one of the most dynamic and exciting real estate markets.
“Traditionally, December is one of the slowest months of the year and this year was no exception. Many prospective buyers are chomping at the bit to get their rates locked in before they climb any higher”
“Traditionally, December is one of the slowest months of the year and this year was no exception. Many prospective buyers are chomping at the bit to get their rates locked in before they climb any higher,” she said. Yanagihara predicts an early spring of solid market activity and, therefore, urges sellers to consider listing homes sooner to position their listing at the right time when buyer demand peeks.
“The good news is that contracts signed in December increased by more than 15 percent compared to December 2015, as buyers were likely rushing to commit to a home before rates rise further,” said 2017 NVAR Chairman of the Board Bob Adamson, a Realtor® with McEnearney Associates in Arlington. “Buyers who closed in December took advantage of low interest rates during our slow season. With 1,558 homes sold in December, we were down 4 percent compared to the 1,623 homes sold during the same time in 2015.”
According to NVAR CEO Ryan Conrad, our region’s level average and median December sales price still portend a bright future for our local real estate market. “Our industry experts expect that the 30 year fixed-rate will increase to 4.4 percent in 2017 and 4.8 percent in 2018, which is great for prospective buyers,” said Conrad. “The best news is that home prices nationally are expected to rise 3.9 this year and 3.2 percent next year. With home values rising and the promise of solid economic growth, we have a possible multiplier effect for our region’s economy.”
December 2016 Regional Home Sales Compared to December 2015: Northern Virginia
"Our industry experts expect that the 30 year fixed-rate will increase to 4.4 percent in 2017 and 4.8 percent in 2018, which is great for prospective buyers”
The Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® reports on December 2016 home sales activity for Fairfax and Arlington counties, the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax and Falls Church and the towns of Vienna, Herndon and Clifton.
A total of 1,558 homes were sold in December 2016, a decrease of 4 percent compared to December 2015 home sales of 1,623.
Active listings decreased 17 percent this month compared to 2015. This past month posted 2,873 active listings compared to 3,474 homes available in December 2015. The average days on market (DOM) for homes in December 2016 was 64 days, a decrease of 3 percent compared to the 66 DOM in December 2015.
The average home sale price increased compared with last December, to $570,789. This is 3.51 percent above the December 2015 average price of $551,451.
The median sold price of homes this December was $485,000, which was 1 percent above December 2015’s median of $479,900.
The 1,207 new pending home sales in Northern Virginia in December marks a decrease of 1.55 percent compared with 1,226 pending contracts last year in December. Total pending sales in December were down by about 2 percent, to 1,678, compared with 1,716 pending contracts in December 2015.
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