I’ve lived in Northern VA for almost my entire life. And I’m a third generation real estate agent. I know both our area and real estate well! One thing I know for sure is that the real estate market is not a straight, static line and it never will be. It is always moving.
I believe we are going to see our next shift in the next 12 months or so. Local bankers and experts are giving it 12-24 months in the Northern VA – Washington DC area market before it hits. I’m calling it sooner, and yet who knows? This means I believe we will move into neutrality, then back into a Buyer’s Market. We are likely at the peak of this Seller’s cycle between now and Spring. In fact, some parts of our market have already shifted notably over the past 3 months.
I recently returned from masterminding with Gary Keller, the Chairman of the Board of Keller Williams Realty (the world’s largest real estate company with over 140,000 Realtors), and with our Top 100 agents. Approximately half of the metropolitan areas in the USA are already undergoing this shift. I am tracking it closely. We may or may not have one more spring as crazy and frenetic as this past one was, with multiple offers in the entry price ranges and buyers beating down seller’s doors. As one of the area’s top teams, The Belt Team has been privileged to help 71 families buy and sell homes so far this year, and we expect to help many more in the coming months. We have an excellent handle on the market and especially the micro markets throughout Northern VA and Washington DC. Sometimes those micromarkets are geographical and sometimes they are price driven.
What does this mean for you? Well our market has two primary seasons, although we are lucky that we don’t have extreme seasonality here. The majority of our residential real estate sales come in the spring. Our secondary market is fall: September/October. If you have been thinking about selling your home in the next few years, I highly urge you to email or call me (703-242-3975) so we can begin the conversation about home prep, pricing, and timing. You may not decide to sell now, and yet I highly recommend having the conversation now. I think selling in the next 60 days is outstanding timing.
Call, or email any time. We are happy to talk and meet with you, advise you on preparations & timing, and to give you a property and pricing analysis of your home with no obligation. Feel free to browse our website. I look forward to a continued conversation.
CEO, The Belt Team
If you’re thinking of buying a home in 2015, you may want to do it sooner rather than later. Why is that? Well, according to Gary Keller, Chairman of the Board of the world’s largest real estate company, “Home buyers are on borrowed time.” Keller made this comment back in February at Keller Williams Realty’s annual gathering of top associates from around the world as part of his economic update.
In case you’re thinking the comment made by Keller may have been self-serving just to encourage urgency among potential homebuyers, you might be interested to know that the Federal Reserve’s moves last week seem to corroborate Keller’s statement. From The Washington Post on March 19th: “The Federal Reserve cleared the way Wednesday for raising interest rates for the first time since the financial crisis.” The Fed was clear that a rate hike is not immediate or even imminent, but they definitely opened the door for that to happen this year. And as we see the economy improve, we also believe this will happen.
Terry Belt, CEO of The Belt Team says he is “advising our serious buyers that NOW is the time to buy. Rising interest rates, combined with rising home values mean that buying later will equal lower affordability and much less house. It is for this reason that we are also advising Sellers to sell sooner rather than later. If and when interest rates rise, some home buyers will be priced out of the market. And while home values are projected to rise in 2015, the projected rise is very moderate – about 3%, as compared to the 11% rise we saw in some areas over the past few years.”
Today, we spoke with Christine Todd, CEO of the Northern VA Association of Realtors (the 11th largest association in the U.S.). She told us that housing inventory in Northern VA is at a five year low and that throughout Northern VA, inventory is at 2 months. Two months of inventory translates to a Seller’s Market. That puts Sellers in the driver’s seat – making now a fabulous time to sell. It also means that Buyers have less options and it make take more time to find your dream home. And unlike the Rolling Stones song “Time Is On My Side”, it may only be a matter of time before rates rise. Another reason why waiting may not be to your benefit.
Whether you’re buying or selling, there are challenges on both ends. Buyers seek guidance on getting through credit hurdles, loan approvals and financing options. They need advocates who can advise on how to best compete, what their options are and how to find homes not already on the market. They want the RIGHT home. And while it sounds good to be a Seller during a Seller’s market (and it is!) – you still want to make sure you don’t leave money on the table and that once you are under contract, your sale actually goes to closing. THIS is where a top notch Realtor makes a difference and why the number of people selling by owner has gone down year after year.
The Belt Team has navigated the Northern Virginia real estate market since 1973. We have serious, long-term, committed Realtors on our team who are here to educate, navigate and advocate for you. When you read our online reviews, we think you’ll soon see why it’s in your best interests to work with what we think is the best real estate team in Northern VA. Our mission statement is “Changing Lives For The Better”. If it’s time to change yours, give Terry Belt & The Belt Team a call at (703) 242-3975. It would be a pleasure for our family to help your family make the right move. And that right move just might be NOW!
There is less than two months of housing inventory in the Vienna and Oakton real estate markets. And that’s no April Fool’s joke! It’s a SELLER”S MARKET! (Scroll down for market update.)
The Belt Team has a list of approved Buyers ready to move (not just ready to move, but anxious to move, urgent to move!) So if you are even pondering selling or know someone who is, call (703) 242-3975. It could be a win-win for you AND our buyers!
Here is what our Buyers are looking for:
- Buyer looking in Vienna between $700,000 – $900,000
- Buyer looking in Vienna North of Beulah Road for up to $1,200,000
- Renter looking to buy a townhouse in Vienna or Oakton
- Buyer looking in Oakton between $600,000 – $800,000
- Buyer looking for Madison High School district
- Buyer looking for Waverly, Eudora area in Vienna
- Renter looking to buy in Mosby’s Landing in Vienna
- Renter looking to buy a condo near Metro up to $400,000
- Investor looking to buy a rental property around $300,000
Last week in Vienna Real Estate (22180,22181, 22182):
Search Homes For Sale in Vienna
- Number of Contracts: 30 (way up from 13 the week before)
- Average Days on Market for Active Listings: 102 days
- Average Days on Market for Listings That Went Under Contract: 45 days
- Inventory: 109 homes on the market (way down from 124 the week before)
- Number of Months Supply of Homes (Based on past 90 day contract rate): 1.6 months (lowest in 2013!)
- Number of Months Supply of Homes (Based on past 30 day contract rate): 1.2 (lowest in 2013!)
What Is My Vienna Home Worth?
Last week in Oakton Real Estate (22124):
Search Homes For Sale in Oakton
- Number of Contracts: 10 (down from 13 the week before)
- Average Days on Market for Active Listings: 90 days
- Average Days on Market for Listings That Went Under Contract: 29 days
- Inventory: 57 homes on the market (same as the week before)
- Number of Months Supply of Homes (Based on past 90 day contract rate): 1.8 months (same as the week before)
- Number of Months Supply of Homes (Based on past 30 day contract rate): 1.3 months (up from 1.3 the week before)
What Is My Oakton Home Worth?
No matter why you’re moving, we can help you make the BEST move. If you’re thinking of buying or selling a home, Contact The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975. We think you deserve the BEST Realtors in Northern Virginia!
Our mission is “Changing Lives For The Better – One Family At A Time!”