"The average number of days on the market for listings in our NVAR footprint was down about 27% compared to last October," Richardson says. "And in Alexandria, properties stayed on the market for an average of just 10 days - a 68% drop in the course of one year," Richardson adds.
Today marks the one-year anniversary of Amazon's announcement of its HQ2 location coming to Arlington's National Landing neighborhood, and the Northern Virginia housing market is still in reaction mode.
"The average and median home prices in our NVAR region were up by about 7% and 12%, respectively, and the total dollar volume was up by about 16% over last October," says NVAR CEO Ryan Conrad.
"Inventory continues to be a challenge, but we're encouraged by collaboration throughout the region to address our housing needs.
"In NVAR's just-released 'Real Life' podcast, we invited leaders of the newly formed Northern Virginia Economic Development Alliance who were instrumental in bringing HQ2 to the region to discuss housing availability and what's next on the Northern Virginia horizon. And we're eager to be part of the solution," Conrad says.
Amazon has 200 employees in temporary office space in National Landing with 200 additional open positions advertised for hiring, explains Richardson.
"Construction on two 22-story towers for HQ2 will begin next year and will have office spaces for 12,000 employees. And Amazon expects to hire 25,000 to 40,000 employees for HQ2 over the next 10 years," Richardson says.
"One year after the announcement, homebuyers are excited about Amazon coming to Northern Virginia and are making decisions accordingly. We continue to see active interest from investors as well as firsttime buyers in the areas around HQ2," says Richardson.
NVAR Board Member Gary Lange with Weichert, Realtors® in Vienna, Va. says that the inventory challenge has been good news for sellers. "Interestingly, we have seen homes that have been sitting are now getting showings and, in some cases, multiple offers."
The price point makes a difference, according to Lange. "Anything under $800,000 moves quickly depending on how close you are to D.C., while properties $1.3M and above are sitting on the market longer and struggle to get traffic and offers. Competition in that price point is fierce.
"Buyers continue to look for 'HGTV homes' first, and sellers whose homes aren't move-in ready have to be realistic with their pricing," Lange says. "As we move into the slower months it will be imperative for sellers to temper their expectations on pricing.
"You can't push the envelope the same as you can in the spring market," Lange says. "Our Realtors® are helping more sellers do work to their houses and stage them to maximize the amount they can get for their home."