Continuing to examine and hold a lively discussion of the Northern Virginia Real Estate market.
From our reader poll last week:When will DC metro house prices rebound?2008 2%2009 18%2010 33%2011 20%2012 10%2013 14%Votes: 204
An interesting property...http://www.arlingtonva.us/Departments/RealEstate/reassessments/scripts/Inquiry.asp?action=view&lrsn=18737Foreclosure sale in 7/07 - investor snatched it up for $546,239, then flipped it a few months 12/07 later for $695,000.I guess you can still do that in North Arlington...
Another N. Arlington propertyhttp://www.arlingtonva.us/Departments/RealEstate/reassessments/scripts/Inquiry.asp?action=view&lrsn=13922Sold in 2004 for 600k, then in March of this year for 885k.
And another...http://www.arlingtonva.us/Departments/RealEstate/reassessments/scripts/Inquiry.asp?action=view&lrsn=12156Sold 9/26/05 for 625k, Sold again 3/11/2008 for 807k.Yeah the market is just falling apart here in N. Arlington.
to clarify, that's "rebound" according to NAR's index, right?
...and North Arlington is representative sample of Northern Virginia...
$513 sq/ft ..hahahahahaall the homes show on zillow.com are near the price range.
Doug, what improvements did the owners make between the time they bought and the time they sold?
Keep in mind, if Arlington is anything like Fairfax, those homes could have been 'sold' in November, but closing didn't happen until March. I saw that happen to several houses I was tracking in Fairfax Keep in mind that last Fall was before the SHTF, at least in the popular media, and before the Bear Stearns implosion.
Doug, aren't you the same poster who was recently caught trying to show price gains by comparing a land sale to the sale of a newly built house?I just pulled up one of the houses you posted today, 4642 15th St, and the listing says the property was "completely renovated."Why are you doing the same thing again?
zillow.com has homes in blue.these are homes that people have as 'make me an offer to get me to sell'.a cheap way of offering your home for sale and waiting for the 'right price.'
The listing can say anything it wants. Look at those assessments, they didnt go up significantly so I think you are wrong ZeroDown. Besides I never got "caught" I have no idea how to tell if a house was renovated - I asked you to please tell me how much $$$ was put into a house and you had no response. So please respond with your information or stop complaining about me being right.
Er John Fontain is who I responded to I guess - that other guy deleted his post.
Just checked again - all of their assessments went DOWN slighty so there is no "renovation" of any significance. I guess thats how idiots try to argue - by lying and making things up.
Doug:I deleted my post because I realized that the New York Fed deleted their county-by-county stats on subprime and Alt. A loans: “On Friday, May 23, 2008, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York removed from its website spreadsheets containing data describing nonprime mortgage conditions in the United States at the county and MSA level. These data sets will no longer be available in spreadsheet form.” http://tinyurl.com/42yjtdSo, you will just have to take my word for it . . .What I saying was --I have acknowledged that North Arlington has held up much better than some other areas of Northern Virginia; however, I don't think it is accurate to suggest that large gains are still the norm. As has been demonstrated, North Arlington has had a number of recent sales in which houses have sold for less than a 2005 or 2006 sale of the same property. I don't know what the future holds for North Arlington, but the outlying areas started out with smaller losses that turned into larger losses.According to the New York Fed., North Arlington had far fewer subprime loans (600 for Arlington County) than, say, Prince William County, even though both counties have a similar number of housing units. PWC also has significantly more Alt. A. loans than Arlington County. [Although, Arlington County certainly has more Alt A. loans than it has subprime loans.] In addition, Arlington County homeowners tend to have stronger balance sheets than their PWC counterparts, and are therefore better able to weather the storm. Consequently, we have not seen anything close to the number of forced sales in Arlington County that we have witnessed in PWC. Alt A., pay-option, and regular jumbo loans could cause significant problems for Arlington County down the road. Also, if many homeowners start sliding into negative equity positions, some will start walking away. We'll just have to wait and see how things play out in Arlington – I think it will take a while before we know.
doug said "all of their assessments went DOWN slighty so there is no "renovation" of any significance. I guess thats how idiots try to argue - by lying and making things up."as i said, the mls listing for the 15th Street property describes it as "completely renovated."it's not clear why you believe the county's assessed value would be relevant to this fact. maybe you don't realize that the county doesn't come inside your home (or even drive by) each year when when doing assessments? it's all computerized based on sales of other properties and they would have no idea whether you upgraded your kitchen cabinets, redid your electrical wiring, etc., or not.you really should know the background of properties before you post them. is that really asking too much?
This is also interesting. No modifications would likely have been made to apartments in this brand new building. I find it surprising b/c condo prices along the Orange Line have definitely gone down in some buildings, but not all:http://tinyurl.com/6m7pkk
John F., You're absolutely right. I've explained this previously and anyone who doubts what we're saying is free to check the Arlington County website and then call to ask an assessor for more details on how they operate. Arlington expressly does NOT consider renovations (other than where some permits are filed and square footage is added) because of the cost of making individual assessments. AC rationalizes this by saying that "it all evens out" - prior to your renovation, you might be overpaying your taxes because AC has assessed the house as if it had average upgrades, then you might underpay after a renovation because your house actually has more value than the average house in the market.I doubt that Harriet has the inclination to do this, but she is more than welcome to check my "real identity" and verify on the Arlington website that I appealed my valuation one year and there was a Board of Equalization adjustment, though it wasn't much, for reasons I've explained previously. :-) The bottom line is that, unless we know about the condition, upgrades and renovations made to an Arlington home between sales dates, we don't know how to interpret a price increase - even a big one.
Which, of course, means that according to your view there can never be evidences of increases in value unless someone has visited the property personally. However, by the same token I will tell you that John Fontain's precious 3507 Pershing property, which I visited with an eye towards buying, was for some reason allowed by its owners to essentially fall apart, rendering the previous sale price moot.
I do, however, agree that assessments in Arlington County are generally useless as far as guessing fair market value.
No, Narl, I don't have standards that high. My position, which is quite simple and straightforward but has been twisted multiple times inexplicably, is that you need to know what improvements have been made to judge what the difference between two prices over time means. Certainly if you or someone else is trying to make the case that a house has increased in value for reasons other than the owner had sunk more $ into them, you aren't convincing when you leave out a most pertinent fact. But, the state associations of home assessors DO have the standard you articulate, and most banks require assessments by these persons, not simply a reporting of sales or county records. I doubt that most Realtors would try to identify an asking price when listing your home if they haven't personally inspected it, either. There is a reason for this.
If I can inject some actual data into this...Doug, the property on 15th St. that was sold on March 11, 2008 for $807K was a near complete rebuild; it went from the neighborhood eyesore to a gem. It's beautiful; top of the line everything. In addition, they devoted about a quarter of the property to a ginormous two-story, two car garage, with a shop on the ground floor and an entire two-bedroom, one bath apartment -- I think it even had a separate kitchen area, but I'm not sure about that-- up stairs. So this property is in effect *two* houses.We were friends with the guys who fixed it up; I felt bad for them; they had to cut their asking price significantly when work took them out of town and I can't imagine they made back all the money they put in to this.With regard to Arlington assessments, they don't reflect renovations. If you don't believe me, check out any of the assessments for any of the McMansions that have been blown out in the neighborhood and you'll see that they're all assessed as through they're still those little one bedroom cape cods that used to make up the neighborhood. As an example, check out 4631 15th St. N., which today is a minimum 3000 square foot behemoth that's assessed as a one bedroom, two -bath for $750K. The exceptions are total teardowns, which are assessed accurately; across the street from the low-assessed property is 4632 15th St. N, which is also about 3000 square feet and is listed in the tax roles as having five bedrooms and 3.5 baths. the only real difference between the properties is the tax assessor's office lists 4632 as having been built in 2002 (when it was torn down and rebuilt) and 4631 is listed as having been built in 1934 (which is technically true, although it was all but torn down and rebuilt in 2002).
Sorry, forgot to note that the 4632 teardown is currently assessed at $1.1 million, up from $790K in 2002...
narl said: "John Fontain's precious 3507 Pershing property"The attitude is unwarranted and doesn't advance the discussion. Please don't overpersonalize the debate.
narl said: "was for some reason allowed by its owners to essentially fall apart, rendering the previous sale price moot."It doesn't sound like you toured the property when it sold last time in 2005. It wasn't in good repair then either. That's why, in my opinion, the price paid at the time was so crazy. And as I said before, it looks like the value is almost entirely in the land. The land is probably worth about $500k right now, and will probably be worth about $400k by the time the bubble is done bursting
Gruntled, Arlington WILL increase the assessments for McMansions, because square footage is increased, permits were filed, etc. It's just that the time lag is significant. They assess on a July 1-June 30 fiscal year, for values announced the FOLLOWING January, and taxes paid the FOLLOWING June and October. So about a year or two after you finish building your McMansion :-), you can expect to see a big tax increase. However, many if not most reno's that don't increase square footage do not increase your taxes for reasons I explained upthread. For example, if you replace a roof, furnace, windows, patio, appliances, and hot water heater, you likely won't see any change.
As just one example of a big increase in value after space is added (in this case in 2005-6), here's a house (1606 Kirkwood) some of you may remember (it didn't sell but was rented):http://www.co.arlington.va.us/Departments/RealEstate/reassessments/scripts/Inquiry.asp?action=view&lrsn=25398The owner built another floor on it and did some reno. Notice the large square footage on the 2nd assessment page.Sometimes you will also see inactive tax records replaced with new ones (where land is subdivided for example) or the designation "new construction" in a given year with a hefty increased value.
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