Home Sale Statistics in Our Area

Welcome to our monthly post of home sale statistics for our region and some hyper local markets!  Below you will find the numbers for November 2019.

Not to sound like a broken record but…inventory continues to fall so NOW is still a great time to sell!  If you are thinking of selling or buying, contact us at (703-242-3975) to make sure you are working with an agent that will provide you with the data you need to make good decisions. The reality is that Buyers & Sellers who are successful in today’s market look at the data and act accordingly. All of this data about the variances in different price ranges is a perfect example of why.  If you’re looking to buy, and you “make an offer” below list price – you might be successful in the upper ranges where there is a more abundant supply of homes. Taking that same action in the lower price range will likely mean you don’t get the house of your dreams. Someone else will.

Mid-Atlantic Region November 2019 home sales:

21,038 homes went under contract in the region. This is up (19%) from the same time period in 2018.

31% of the homes that went to settlement in November 2019, sold in 10 days or less from when they hit the market. 

• Average sold price was $353,865 (up 6.3% from the same time period in 2018).

22,293 homes came on the market. That’s down 1.9% from November 2018.

• Homes that sold (closed) averaged 46 days on market, 5 days faster than in November of 2018.

• There is currently a 2.6 month supply of homes (remember, in a balanced market – the demand from buyers equals the supply from sellers – there is a 5-6 months supply) in the Mid Atlantic Region – and 59,542 homes for sale (townhouse, condo and single family).

OVERALL: The Mid-Atlantic Region remains in a Seller’s Market.  The overall market conditions in the region did not change significantly from October to November but note that the number of homes that went under contract and the number of homes to hit the market (this number is also down slightly from this time last year) decreased.

As you dig deeper into the numbers of some of our local market areas, you will find that the market has slowed and inventory has dropped significantly in some segments.  We also continue to see that the upper-end price points in some areas are experiencing more of a Balanced (even Buyers in some cases) market where prices are not appreciating and properties are sitting on the market longer.  Whereas the lower price points are seeing appreciation, there is less inventory and homes are selling much faster.  

To see what the conditions are like in your community, click on the link to your desired city below! 

*Data compiled from SmartCharts, MarketStats by ShowingTime, whose data comes directly from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

What is the Best Investment for Americans?

What is the Best Investment for Americans? | MyKCM

Some are reporting that there is trepidation regarding the real estate market in the United States. Apparently, the American people are quite comfortable.

Porch.com, a major network helping homeowners with their renovation projects, recently conducted a survey which asked Americans:

“What do you believe is the safest investment over the next 10 years?”

U.S. housing came in at number one, beating out other investments such as gold, stocks, bonds, and savings.

Here is a graph showing the top five investments Americans selected:

What is the Best Investment for Americans? | MyKCM

The findings of the Porch.com survey also coincide with two previous surveys done earlier this year:

  1. The Federal Reserve Bank’s 2019 Consumer Expectations Housing Survey reported that 65% of Americans believe homeownership is a good financial investment, and that the percentage has increased in each of the last four years.
  2. The Gallup survey showed that Americans have picked real estate as the “best” investment for six straight years.

Bottom Line

Based on all three surveys done this year, we can see that Americans still believe in homeownership as a great investment, and that feeling continues to grow.

Contact The Belt Team if you are thinking of purchasing real estate…we have over 50 years of experience and would love to help! 703-242-3975 | info@thebeltteam.com

10 Tips To Keep Your Home Safe During The Holidays

Holiday Meal

Have you figured out what you’re making (or what you’re bringing) for Thanksgiving dinner yet? I bet you have! But don’t forget to think about how to keep your home safe if you’re traveling during the holidays.

Here are 10 Tips To Keep Your Home Safe

(1) Be careful with your status updates on Insta, Facebook, etc. Don’t be too specific. For example: “Can’t wait to see Grandma & Grandpa” might be better than “Leaving for Ohio in 2 hours. Back on Sunday.

(2) Take advantage of the “nosy neighbors” you have (assuming you trust them!). Ask them to keep an eye out while you are away. Make sure they know how to reach you in case of an emergency.

(3) If you still have a newspaper delivered instead of reading online, make sure you suspend delivery. (And ask a neighbor to keep your driveway clear of the various “throwaway publications” that appear.)

(4) Think twice about setting up an auto-responder or voice mail message that says you’re out of town – especially if you work from a home office. A better idea might be to just say you are not checking messages until a certain date (as if you’re taking a “Stay-Cation”.)

(5) Set up timers on certain lights in your house. Install motion detector lights outdoors.

A Sheriff we know gave us some extra advice about this particular item. He said,  “My two cents on timers. If you use them, stagger the times they go on and off, create the illusion of movement in the house. Most people have them go on and off at the same time. Instead, have downstairs timers go on during normal dinner & TV time, and then go off. Then have upstairs timers go on like you’re going to bed. Works great and gives the bad guys doubts if you’re home or not.” GREAT ADVICE!

(6) Don’t forget to lock the interior garage door. Exterior doors are relatively easy to compromise. And lock ALL of your windows.

(7) Stop your mail. Or have a neighbor collect it daily.

(8) Don’t publish your physical address or personal information on your social media profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. It’s amazing how many people advertise their birthdate, home address and more – just because the site asked you to fill it in when you set up your account. It’s not just children who do this, but many adults who are new to the world of social media are guilty of this as well. Even if your site is “friend-protected”, you’d be surprised at what web-savvy folks can find out. Be discreet!

(9) If your home is in an area of the country where it’s cold (as in freezing), don’t turn your heat off. You don’t want your pipes to freeze!

(10) You can always employ the tactics of Kevin McAllister in “Home Alone”!

SELLERS: Make sure you read our blog post about whether or not it’s a good idea to sell during the holidays. In general, low inventory & low housing supply mean good things for you. But there are lots of things to consider.

BUYERS: Inventory is low and even as we approach the holidays, homes are selling quickly. If you would like to buy now & celebrate the New Year in your new home, make you use our state-of-the-art home search site. Listings are updated on our system faster than other sites so you won’t miss out on your Dream Home!

If you’re thinking of buying or selling a home, Contact The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975 for a more in-depth discussion & analysis – because it’s only the neighborhood YOU live in (or you WANT to live in) that matters. We’ll be happy to schedule a consultation and get very detailed about “YOUR Market” so that you can make the decision that is best for YOU!

Home Sale Statistics in Our Area – October 2019

Welcome to our monthly post of home sale statistics for our region and some hyper local markets!  Below you will find the numbers for October 2019.

With inventory remaining low…it’s still a great time to sell!  If you are thinking of selling or buying, contact us NOW (703-242-3975) to make sure you are working with an agent that will provide you with the data you need to make good decisions. The reality is that Buyers & Sellers who are successful in today’s market look at the data and act accordingly. All of this data about the variances in different price ranges is a perfect example of why.  If you’re looking to buy, and you “make an offer” below list price – you might be successful in the upper ranges where there is a more abundant supply of homes. Taking that same action in the lower price range will likely mean you don’t get the house of your dreams. Someone else will.

BUYERS: Did you know that Belt Team Buyers are eligible for our FREE Priority Notification List for new listings not yet in the MLS?! Call 703-242-3975 for details.

SELLERS: Call The Belt Team at 703-242-3975 for our FREE Report “42 Questions To Ask Your Realtor BEFORE You Sell”. And find out how our listings sell FASTER and for MORE MONEY than the average agent’s listings.

25,068 homes went under contract in the region. This is up (17%) from the same time period in 2018.

32% of the homes that went to settlement in October 2019, sold in 10 days or less from when they hit the market. 

• Average sold price was $348,312 (up 5.6% from the same time period in 2018).

31,329 homes came on the market. That’s up 1.4% from October 2018.

• Homes that sold (closed) averaged 45 days on market, 3 days faster than in October of 2018.

• There is currently a 2.8 month supply of homes (remember, in a balanced market – the demand from buyers equals the supply from sellers – there is a 5-6 months supply) in the Mid Atlantic Region – and 65,914 homes for sale (townhouse, condo and single family).

OVERALL: The Mid-Atlantic Region remains in a Seller’s Market.  The overall market conditions in the region basically did not change significantly from September to October.

However, as you dig deeper into the numbers of our local market areas, you will find segments that are still experiencing somewhat different market conditions.  The upper-end price points in some areas are experiencing more of a Balanced (even Buyers in some cases) market where prices are not appreciating and properties are sitting on the market longer.  Whereas the lower price points are seeing appreciation, there is less inventory and homes are selling much faster.  

To see what the conditions are like in your community, click on the link to your desired city below! 

*Data compiled from SmartCharts, MarketStats by ShowingTime, whose data comes directly from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

Reasons to Buy a Home This Fall

4 Reasons to Buy a Home This Fall | MyKCM

Last week we blogged about selling your home during the holidays so this week we want to share some information about buying a home this time of year.

Here are four great reasons from our friends at Keeping Current Matters to consider buying a home today, instead of waiting.

1. Prices Will Continue to Rise

CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Insights Report shows that home prices have appreciated by 3.6% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts prices will continue to increase at a rate of 5.8% over the next year.

The bottom in home prices has come and gone. Home values will continue to appreciate for years. Waiting no longer makes sense.

2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to Increase Next Year

The Primary Mortgage Market Survey from Freddie Mac indicates that interest rates for a 30-year mortgage have recently hovered just above 3.5%. This is great news for buyers in the market right now, because low interest rates increase your purchasing power – but don’t wait! Most experts predict rates will rise over the next 12 months. The Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the National Association of Realtors are in unison, projecting that rates will increase by this time next year.

An increase in rates will impact your monthly mortgage payment. A year from now, your housing expense will increase if a mortgage is needed to buy your next home.

3. Either Way, You Are Paying a Mortgage 

There are some renters who haven’t purchased a home yet because they’re uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. Everyone should realize that, unless you’re living rent-free with your parents, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or that of your landlord.

As an owner, your mortgage payment is a form of ‘forced savings’ that allows you to have equity in your home you can tap into later in life. As a renter, you guarantee your landlord is the person with that equity.

Are you ready to put your housing costs to work for you?

4. It’s Time to Move on With Your Life

The ‘cost’ of a home is determined by two major components: the price of the home and the current mortgage rate. It appears both are on the rise.

But what if they weren’t? Would you wait?

Look at the actual reason you’re buying and decide if it is worth waiting. Whether you want to have a great place for your children to grow up, you want your family to be safer, or you just want to have control over custom renovations, maybe now is the time to buy.

Bottom Line

Buying a home sooner rather than later could lead to substantial savings. Call or email The Belt Team to help you determine if homeownership is the right choice for you and your family this fall. 703-242-3975 | info@thebeltteam.com.

Can’t wait to hear from you and help with make your real estate dreams come true!

Selling Your Home During The Holidays – Good Idea or Bad?

As Thanksgiving approaches, we often get the question, “Should I wait to go on the market until after the holidays?” or “My home is on the market now, should I take it off during the holidays?”. Well, the answer is “It depends“! Here are some things you might want to consider if you’re thinking of selling your home during the holidays (and you can start here with a FREE online estimate of what your home is worth.)

  • If your home is already on the market, it may be a good idea to stay on the market. Buyers who are looking at homes during the holidays are usually “Real Buyers” and not just “lookie-loos”. Beth Dadisman, Buyer Specialist for The Belt Team, says “I have multiple buyers who are VERY motivated to buy during this timeframe.” And Gail Belt, Founding Partner of The Belt Team says, “My experience is that Buyers who are out looking at property during the holidays tend to be serious buyers. There may not be as many people looking at your house, but the ones who come NEED to buy or they wouldn’’t be out looking at this time of year.” Beth added, “My husband and I have moved 3 times in January. So we were some of those serious buyers looking in December!”
  • During the holidays, many Sellers take their homes off the market. This means we often see inventory drop and therefore if you’re on the market, you may have less competition.  However, it depends on your situation.  We advise many of our sellers to stay on the market. We can work with you to restrict showings on special days like Thanksgiving. But selling now before Spring competition picks up might be in your best interests.  Terry Belt, CEO of The Belt Team adds, “If you do go off the market now, consider coming back on immediately in the new year. In many areas, homes sell for more money in January-February than they do in the typical “Spring Market”  of March-April.”
  • What is your true motivation? Do you truly want/need to sell? If you’re just “testing the market” (IE – if you are not realistically pricing your home to what TODAY’S Buyers are willing to pay), then now is NOT the time to go on the market. Your home will likely not sell, and then when Spring arrives – your home will be “stale on the market”.  Prospective Buyers may wonder what’s wrong with your home and why has it been on the market so long.  (This is true at any time of year. Overpricing stigmatizes your home and hurts your eventual bottom line significantly.)
  • Set your expectations properly.”  Plan accordingly and prepare yourself & your family to be ready to juggle preparation & showings with other seasonal activities. (And if you have little ones, maybe Santa’s upcoming visit will encourage them to keep their rooms clean!)
  • Some Sellers really should wait until Spring. While most homes look better in the Spring when the trees fill out & flowers are in bloom, this is not usually a reason to wait for Spring. (That’s what everyone does and that just means more competition.) However, some homes are an exception to this rule. For example, Terry Belt shares, “We had a listing that backed to a cemetery. And while some people like that idea (quiet neighbors!), most people don’t like the reminder when they look out the window of their home. This is an item that can severely impact salability and price. In this case, we advised our Sellers to wait a few extra months and put their home on the market when trees were fully blossomed and the cemetery was not visible. You cannot get rid of extraneous factors like a cemetery, but you can mitigate their impact.”
  • If you do go on the market, don’t forget that Buyers looking at your home are trying to picture themselves & their families in your home. This is hard to do if your home is over-decorated with holiday knick knacks. You may want to be a little more restrained than you normally would be when putting up your decorations.  Too many decorations can also make your rooms look smaller than they really are. In addition, Winter is a dark time of year, so make sure you keep your home as light-filled as possible. Open the drapes, raise the blinds and turn on all your lights. The few extra pennies will be worth it!

If you need help working through what is the best time to put your home on the market, contact The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975. Every situation is different and we would be happy to help you figure out what is best for YOU!

FREE online estimate of what your home is worth.

Home Sale Statistics in Our Area – September 2019

Welcome to our monthly post of home sale statistics for our region and some hyper local markets!  Below you will find the numbers for September 2019.

With inventory remaining low…it’s still a great time to sell!  If you are thinking of making a move, contact The Belt Team NOW (703-242-3975) to make sure you are working with an agent that is on top of the market and can provide you with all the information you need.

24,430 homes went under contract in the region. This is up (22%) from the same time period in 2018.

31% of the homes that went to settlement in September 2019, sold in 10 days or less from when they hit the market. 

• Average sold price was $344,333 (up 5.4% from the same time period in 2018).

32,291 homes came on the market. That’s up 6.6% from September 2018.

• Homes that sold (closed) averaged 45 days on market, 12 days faster than in September of 2018.

• There is currently a 2.9 month supply of homes (remember, in a balanced market – the demand from buyers equals the supply from sellers – there is a 5-6 months supply) in the Mid Atlantic Region – and 67,882 homes for sale (townhouse, condo and single family).

OVERALL: The Mid-Atlantic Region remains in a Seller’s Market.  The overall market conditions in the region did not change significantly in September but some things to note… compared to the same time period last year, there was a 22% increase in the number of homes that went under contract and the average days on market is down 23%.  Now, let’s take a look at some of our local markets and see what their numbers look like.

To see what the conditions are like in your community, click on the link to your desired city below! 

*Data compiled from SmartCharts, MarketStats by ShowingTime, whose data comes directly from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

What Is the Probability That Home Values Sink?

What Is the Probability That Home Values Sink?| MyKCM

Some interesting market info from Keeping Current Matters…

With the current uncertainty about the economy triggered by a potential trade war, some people are waiting to purchase their first home or move-up to their dream house because they think or hope home prices will drop over the next few years. However, the experts disagree with this perspective.

Here is a table showing the predicted levels of appreciation from six major housing sources:

What Is the Probability That Home Values Sink?| MyKCM

As we can see, every source believes home prices will continue to appreciate (albeit at lower levels than we have seen over the last several years). But, not one source is calling for residential real estate values to depreciate.

Additionally, ARCH Mortgage Insurance Company in their current Housing and Mortgage Market Review revealed their latest ARCH Risk Index, which estimates the probability of home prices being lower in two years. There was not one state that even had a moderate probability of home prices lowering. In fact, 34 of the 50 states had a minimal probability.

What Is the Probability That Home Values Sink?| MyKCM

Bottom Line

Those waiting for prices to fall before purchasing a home should realize that the probability of that happening anytime soon is very low. With mortgage rates already at near historic lows, now may be the time to act.

So call The Belt Team now at 703-242-3975 if you are thinking about buying a home for the first time or moving up to your dream home. We would love to put our experience and expertise to work for you!

The information contained, and the opinions expressed, in this article are not intended to be construed as investment advice. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. does not guarantee or warrant the accuracy or completeness of the information or opinions contained herein. Nothing herein should be construed as investment advice. You should always conduct your own research and due diligence and obtain professional advice before making any investment decision. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. will not be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on the information or opinions contained herein.

Home Sale Statistics in Our Area – August 2019

Welcome to our monthly post of home sale statistics for our region and some hyper local markets! Below you will find the numbers for August 2019.

With inventory remaining low…it’s still a great time to sell!  If you are thinking of making a move, contact The Belt Team NOW (703-242-3975) to make sure you are working with an agent that is on top of the market and can provide you with all the information you need.

26,051 homes went under contract in the region. This is up (16%) from the same time period in 2018.

30% of the homes that went to settlement in August 2019, sold in 10 days or less from when they hit the market. 

• Average sold price was $360,467 (up 4% from the same time period in 2018).

31,687 homes came on the market. That’s down just under 3% from August 2018.

• Homes that sold (closed) averaged 55 days on market, 1 day longer than in August of 2018.

• There is currently a 2.9 month supply of homes (remember, in a balanced market – the demand from buyers equals the supply from sellers – there is a 5-6 months supply) in the Mid Atlantic Region – and 65,258 homes for sale (townhouse, condo and single family).

OVERALL: The Mid-Atlantic Region remains in a Seller’s Market.  The overall market conditions in the region did not change significantly in August but let’s take a look at some of our local markets and see what their numbers look like.

To see what the conditions are like in your community, click on the link to your desired city below! 

*Data compiled from SmartCharts, MarketStats by ShowingTime, whose data comes directly from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

11338 Westbrook Mill Ln #304, Fairfax, VA 22030- Just Listed by The Belt Team

11338 Westbrook Mill Ln #304 was Just Listed by The Belt Team!

This spacious 2 level condo is full of natural light & has a perfect layout for living & entertaining!  Unit features 2 main level bedrooms, both with attached full baths & walk-in closets, and an upper level loft and half bath (makes a wonderful extra living space or 3rd bedroom!).  The kitchen has lovely granite countertops, a breakfast bar and gas cooking.  There is a separate dining room and large living room with soaring ceilings and a cozy fireplace.  This condo also includes an in-unit washer/dryer, additional storage closet, ceiling fans and a private balcony off the living room.  Don’t miss out on this rarely available 2 level condo in a fantastic Fairfax location!

Price, lots more photos & additional info 11338 Westbrook Mill Ln #304, Fairfax VA 22030

Call Terry & The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975!

Call Beth & The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975 if you would like to buy or sell  this year. (Sellers –  you’ll be interested to know that Belt Team Sellers sell FASTER and for MORE money than average!