2020 was an unbelievable year in so many ways. Who would have thought possible the amount of change we have all had to endure and live through? Some thrived, a few failed, and many struggled. Everything considered, real estate would been one industry that thrived.
So, where is real estate now that 2020 is over? The last half of 2020 was great, 2021 is looking to be another great year. In 2020, while sales slowed significantly in the spring, the market has been full steam ahead since. In many areas single family homes have been flying off the market with multiple offers and prices far above asking. In Tysons Corner, detached homes have been selling well while condominiums have been slower in Tysons Corner condominium communities like Gates of Mclean, One Park Crest and Fountains at Mclean.
The graph below shows the marked activity in the Tysons area. Notice the slowdown in April and May.
Real estate sales recovered in July and is now back to the 5 year average.
To put the numbers in a regional perspective, NVAR put out year-over-year statistics for December 2020 for the region.
Fairfax, Va. – “Defying expectations, the 2020 housing market in Northern Virginia was a powerful driver of the region’s economy,” says Derrick Swaak, partner and managing broker with TTR Sotheby’s International Realty in McLean, Va. and 2021 president of the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® (NVAR).
“Even with the downturn we experienced in the beginning weeks of the pandemic, the NVAR region housing market had an incredibly strong year,” says Swaak. “We closed 2020 with a dollar sales volume that was 13% higher than last year, with $15.3 billion sold, compared with around $13 billion in 2019,” Swaak says.
Historically low interest rates helped to fuel the 2020 seller’s market, driving prices up throughout the region as buyers competed for available listings. The 2020 average home price in the NVAR footprint, which covers Fairfax and Arlington counties, the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax and Falls Church, was $670,408, up 9% above the 2019 average. The 2020 median sales price also rose by 9%, from $541,000 in 2019 to $590,000.
The total number of homes sold by Northern Virginia Realtors® in 2020, 22,840, was about 4% higher than the 2019 total of 22,030. And those homes sold quickly, with the average number of days on market reduced by about 21% — from 24 days to 19 days.
“Notwithstanding the uncertainty we experienced in 2020, our members rallied to help people in Northern Virginia safely buy and sell homes,” says NVAR CEO Ryan McLaughlin. “Not only did Realtors® represent their clients under difficult circumstances, but also lobbied on behalf of home buyers and sellers to ensure that their critical transactions could be completed,” McLaughlin says.
So, will prices go up or down in 2021? I believe 2021 will build upon the great second half of 2020. January was very busy for us at Soldsense. The last two homes we had buyers make offers on had about 20 offers (yes, each listing had about 20 offers…)
While we are all waiting on vaccines to be widely available, I believe things will really take off when schools open.
The real estate market is very local. In many communities homes are selling as soon as they are listed with multiple offers and waived contingencies. In others there is a slower or sales pace. Send us a message if you are wondering how things are selling in your community.