Continuing to examine and hold a lively discussion of the Northern Virginia Real Estate market.
Please post your local house search updates, MLS finds, on-topic ideas, and links here.
i was looking at aldie, south riding and stone ridge area in VA from couple weeks to buy a town home. since the roads are narror in the area and not much access to DC etc...i am not sure what is the prospective for this area as for as improvements etc....can some one put some light one this area....is this a good area to buy...
Manju-I am familiar with these areas (and the Builders selling in them)I would not buy in S. Riding, as I hate Toll brother contruction.I'd opt for Stone Ridge IMO
From Calculated Risk: (and NAR)Pending Home Sales Index for NovemberJust the facts:"The Pending Home Sales Index,* a forward-looking indicator based on contracts signed in November, fell 4.0 percent to 82.3 from a downwardly revised reading of 85.7 in October, and is 5.3 percent below November 2007 when it was 86.9. The current index is the lowest since the series began in 2001.The PHSI in the Northeast dropped 7.2 percent to 63.2 in November and is 14.6 percent below a year ago. In the Midwest the index fell 6.7 percent to 74.2 and is 10.1 percent below November 2007. The index in the South declined 2.2 percent to 85.3 in November and is 12.7 percent below a year ago. In the West, the index was down 2.4 percent to 101.2 but remains 19.3 percent higher than November 2007."So it looks like the December numbers will be down MoM from November, if NoVa traces "the South". I suspect that NoVa, while a member of the South in this data should actually lie between "the South" and "the Northeast" in market terms, so December/Januasry sales could be down as much as 6% MoM from November. (It's a 45 day leading indicator of sales, so not quite mappable).
spunky, thanks. how about the commute in this area not a much options other than RT50. so i am not sure what is the future for these areas....so let me know
Early whisper numbers are out for Arlington Alexandria & Fairfax. Again, as always, these numbers can be off a bit, but are generally accurate vs our MRIS report on the 10th.Arlington164 sales5.0 MOI (approx)-7% average price (no median avail)164 contracts & contingentsAlexandria138 sales5.5 MOI (approx)-9% average price (no median avail)152 contracts & contingentsFairfax1087 sales6.0 MOI (approx)-22% avg price (no median avail)1573 contracts & contingentsWe dont know the high end/low end distribution of sales yet, but it looks like sales (and MOI) have rebounded nicely since the disaster we saw last month (especially in Alexandria as this would nearly double last months 78 sales). Also, given the contracts & contingents numbers, it appears that buyers are still out there. If most of those contracts & contingents become sales, all 3 areas will easily beat the Jan 07 sales mark (which if you recall was when things first cratered and we thought Arl & Alex might join the outer counties with huge price declines). As such, while its still too early to say, if these whisper numbers are accurate, it suggests last months disaster was more of a blip than a new (and much worse) trend. Note, I see nothing here to suggest a recovery, it just looks like the inner countines will continue with the moderate price declines we have seen for most of the last 36 months.
CRT,Thanks for posting the whisper numbers again. Those average price declines are YoY, right? Those look "healthier" than my prediction based on the NAR Nov pending home sales, but given that was regional not local data, my prediction was likely to be a shot in the dark.
Also, montgomery county numbers are out. Median prices look to be down 12-13% It also looks like inventory is down 4-5%, and sales are up 11-13% YOY.http://gcaarrocks.com/toolkit_ektid2030.aspxCara, I think the DC area (or at least NOVA) will still show sales being up YOY even though naitonally sales are down. The reason being, we were one of the bubble markets, we were suffering much greater shocks to the system (relatively speaking) last winter while the rest of the non bubble areas of the country were still selling at a moderate pace. As such I suspect much of NOVA (especially PWC, LOU & FFX), and possibly MD (here I am less sure) will continue to show increased sales YOY, for the next few months, but its only because things were so bad last year, its hard for them to get any worse.
Cara, yes, those are YOY average price declines.
Manju-I don't commute into DC from Aldie, so I have no clue about that. I live & work in Loudoun CO.I understand that 50 is a killer in the mornings driving into Fairfax...I think most people go North on Loudoun Co. Pkwy to the Toll Rd & into DC from there....
CRT,As long as the price declines continue, greater sales just means faster price discovery. (as I once again choose to see the data as I want to see it...)I've been looking at the neighborhood by neighborhood sales for Kingstowne, and it's just amazing watching the bubble be repeated in such small samples. I now know that much of what I thought of as Kingstowne is actually not, so these are less useful than I'd hoped, but it's truly amazing seeing the exponential rise from 2001 to 2005 in some complexes. There are only a few sales that have happened back at the 2003/2004 prices yet, but there are an awful lot of buyers who bought between 05 and 08 who haven't re-sold. (and you can tell since it's about individual addresses). As nearby neighborhoods fall in price it will be interesting to see when capitulation happens in Kingstowne. Also interesting were how many people sold in 2002 as soon as they had finally seen any appreciation at all after the long flat (or falling) period in the nineties. Those neighborhoods with lots of 2002 buyers will probably be mostly okay.
Crt,For the counties you posted, do you know the average (I know median is not available yet) price drops from the peak to the end of December 2008 ?Thanks.
Manju-When I was shooting real estate photography I shot a TH in S. Riding that was owned by a guy commuting from there to Georgetown everyday......anyway the biggest reason he was trying to dump the place was because of the commute.He cashed out at the height of the bubble so he was OK. But, I would NOT recommend trying to commute into DC proper from S. Riding.Also, as far as roads.....don't expect much in the near term....the state is broke and any federal money will take 18-24 months to trickle down before any dirt is moved on any project already in the hopper.....even longer for projects still on the drawing board/wish list.
Help cheer me up.Our landlord responded to our offer today. Said no. No counter. We offered a shade under the appraised value, that cost $350 to learn, and he said it "wasn't even close" to what they wanted.I am bummed. I admit it.
Tabitha, I am sorry. But it may be for the best for you in the long run. I think your landlord wants more than the market will bear and is unwilling to face the reality that the market may decline further. The assessment backs this up. You are in the driver's seat in that you will find another great house that is just right for your family, and you will likely get it for an even better price.
I'd echo what Ace said, Tabitha.It's hard to see something that you've been thinking about and planning for fall apart but I think it might be a blessing in disguise. It's a buyer's market and I think you'll look back on this time in a few years and be glad you didn't pay the price he was looking for.
Tabitha -- Sorry to hear that, but it will really be his loss in the end. I actually think it is a good thing that he isn't even close as any movement on his part might end up with you overpaying. In the end, with all of the strife in the housing market I know that you will find a home you are happy with and at a cheaper price than your landlord would accept.
Tabitha,(echoing Ace and Jeff B)Think about the $350 you'll be saving every month or two in lower mortgage payments when you do buy a house from someone who's actually interested in selling a house. That $350? given that the government is paying for you to move again, that $350 will be paid back in no time by not buying this house and being in a good bargaining position.And just think, how much your landlord will regret this decision when he finds that after you he needs to reduce his rent by $200/month to find new tenants.(I know, schadenfreude is not a good replacement for emotional attachment to a house).
zmonet,good point, bargaining with him would have been even worse than this answer.
Cara - yeah, the "up sales" should be heartening to you as a prospecive buyer in that we think we have a handle on how this plays out in the DC area. Last month, it could have been the beginning of a new trend which adds alot of uncertainty to any prospecive buyer.Ted K - unfortunately, no, nothing for the year is out yet. If I recall correctly, MRIS does an annual YOY median & average report around mid february. I am sure we will post it here when its available.Tabitha - sorry to hear that. In the end there are some deals that simply cant be made, and this looks to be one of them (seller isnt serious, and even if you wanted to meet his price to save the hassle of moving, the bank would not approve it based on the apprasial). A good way to think of the spent $350 is it bought you certainty. Many times, I would rather take bad news over unknown news, and to think this could have gone on up til the date you had to move. Plus, you have a good yardstick to measure how well you personally know the market. Out of curiosity, was your mental estimate of value close to the appraisal amount?
Tabitha-Let it go! It is a BLESSING!Six Months from now your Landlord will be kicking himself for not taking your offer!And yes, Cara is correct. If he wants to get it rented again - he'll have to lower his rental price as well.Serves him right for being greedy!Ok rant off
Tabitha - I share your pain. I recently made a verbal offer on a property that wasn't listed for sale but for which I knew the owner was interested in selling (long, complicated story I won't go into). The verbal offer was rejected.Later, I get a call back from the owner asking me if I'm still interested in the property. "Yes," I respond. I again verbally offer the same amount. The owner replies, "Well, if you're serious then go ahead and give me a written offer and a deposit ASAP."I took that to mean that the owner was willing to sell the property to me at the price I offered. Due to some complicating factors related to the sale (again, long story) I head to my real estate lawyers office and spend $500 on consultations related to the "complicating factors" and in writing up addendum terms to a contract.I proceed to present the offer to the owner who, after sitting on it for a week, tells me my offer is "nowhere near high enough" (no counter).I cannot figure out why the owner wasted my time and money in asking for an offer (and a deposit) that wouldn't be accepted. It was a waste of my time, hopes, and money.But as a I look back on it, I should have known better because I knew the owner wasn't sufficently motivated. And the best deals come from motivated sellers. Oh well, lesson re-learned!!
Once again Kids, the 4-D's of Real estate deals !!D - "Desperate" - they HAVE to move D - "Divorcing" - can be the best situation for a lowball, especially if they've been trying to unload their love nest for 6 or more MonthsD- "Dirty" - the fixer-upperD - "Dead" - Dad and/or Mom's old place that the kids are trying to unload to get their inheritance out of
thanks, all. i actually do feel better now.crt, i am proud to say the formal appraisal was $2,000 less than i projected, so i'd say i did pretty well for an amateur.we've tried to tell each other all along that our house is far from perfect. you can see a 7-11 from the upstairs window. it's on a regular street. it's humble. but actually confronting the fact that we need to move, that we'll have lived here for less than a year? UGH. YUCK. HAVE MERCY.now i feel free to pursue a flippin' mansion.
spunky,In the current market, I'll add "Distressed". Foreclosures are the market for some of these areas. I keep going back to my in-laws, but that's because it's an interesting story.Their foreclosure purchase was already ~35% under 'appraised' price. Since then a house three down on one side has gone from 'for sale' to off the market, back to 'for sale' and is now either sold (for about another 20% off initial 'appraised' price, for a total of about 55%) or is home to a very peculiar lot of squatters. I honestly can't tell. Another house, two down on the other side is just up for (short) sale for again about 55% off initial appraised value. In the same time I know that each of the immediate neighbors are moving. One just passed away and his widow mailed the keys to the bank. Said bank is still mulling what they're going to do with the property. The other neighbor is going to be putting his house on the market later this month.In a row, that's:Short Sale offered at 55% off peakComing on the market soon.Foreclosed and sold at 35% off peak a year and a half ago.Vacant, and foreclosed.Non-distressed property.On-and-off for sale, no transaction recorded as of yet, strange motions in the house on occasion.What a cul-de-sac!
Xpovos-Yikes - yes, that's another "D" fer sure.I would advise the in-laws to cut their losses & get out (sell!) now.It isn't going to get any better in their 'hood, just worse. Sounds like they are becoming a "Foreclousure Hood"Is this Manassas?
cold-calling from RE agents!i got some lady calling my cell and said 'i spoke with you a while back on a listing on Lee Hwy...' and i was like what the h*ck that was almost four years ago and i had no idea who she was. and when she realized i didn't have any property to sell she asked if i was looking to buy anything. turned out she's an agent cold calling her old contacts.now i regret putting my cell # on the listing. i hope this is won't become a trend.
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