Sales Market Summary Q3 2012

Sales Market Summary Q3 2012: This past July-September was no different than the past two quarters, i.e. the Falls Church market remains strong. In fact Q3 was better than the past two quarters. There were 68 sales (18 condos, 4 THs, 34 detached) which is a slight increase over the previous quarter of 60 (18 condos, 12 THs, 13 detached). This is quite a few more compared to Q3 2011 which had 54 sales (19 condos, 5 THs, 30 detached). Townhouses and detached homes sold quickly (both under 30 days on average). Condos were only a bit slower at 34 days. Interestingly, this is the first time in quite a while where the days on market did not really vary by property type. So clearly the condo market has improved. For most of the past year, condos have taken longer to sell. That’s consistent with the overall D.C. market, and in fact with most of the country. The price difference (List vs. Sold) for all property types remained low, in large part since there were few (if any) overpriced listings. The total number of all active listings on any given day stayed around 30 for the entire quarter. In fact this has been the case for all of 2012. We’re not sure why this is, but it’s an interesting fact nonetheless.

However there were 3 Short Sales this quarter, all condos in The Byron. On average, they sold 9% below their 2012 TAV. While distressed sales are never good, there’s no evidence they affected the overall Falls Church condo market and getting them out of the system is a good thing. It will be interesting to see if these short sales, plus one other in The Madison (6/26/12), will affect 2013 tax assessments for condos–especially at The Byron.

Slow Down?? While still early, we’ve noticed things have slowed down since just after Labor Day. Properties don’t seem to be moving as fast as they did in the Summer. There does not seem to be a good answer given the early Fall is usually the second busiest time (after Spring). The economy did not change much (either way) and interest rates have actually gone down. A few folks have said it may have something to do with the pending presidential election. But the Falls Church market is not affected by elections. Frankly the movements of Foreign Service people have a much greater impact. It will be interesting to see if this apparent slow down continues through the end of the year.

NOTE: Below #s are averaged (unless otherwise noted)

Condos:
*29 Sold (as of 9/30)
*Days on Market: 34……MUCH faster than the past 6 months
*Sold Price: $411,172, 3% above 2012 Tax Assessed Value (TAV)
*Seller Subsidy: 59% had Seller Subsidy, $7732
*Price Difference: $3,989 (between List and Sold)
*3 units were Short Sales, all in The Byron.

Townhouses:
*5 Sold (19 as of 9/30)
*Days on Market: 21….quite low, though slightly higher than Q2 (15 days)
*Sold Price: $587,800, 8% above TAV (7% above for Q2)
*Seller Subsidy: 20% had a seller subsidy; $400…..very low, just like Q2
*Price Difference: $3,890 (between List and Sold price)….also very low

Detached:
*34 Sold (80 as of 9/30)
*Days on Market: 21-30….very low; lower than Q2 (25-35 days)
*Sold Price: $776,624, 12% above TAV; higher than Q2 (9%)
*Seller Subsidy: 50% had SS; $3,382, both higher than Q2 ($1634; 23%)
*Price Difference: $28,000 (List vs. Sold price); slightly higher than Q2 ($28,165)

Rental Market Summary Q3 2012: Again, very little change here as the rental market remained strong for the past three months. For July-September there were……

*20 rentals (14 condos, 1 TH, 5 detached)
*Days on Market: 18, very fast and only slightly slower than Q2 (13 days). Three condos skewed this as they took a long time to rent, 85, 61, & 54 days respectively.
*Price Ranges: Condo: $1426-3000; TH:$3100 (only 1); Detached: $2300-4850

Similar to sales, it appears the rental market has slowed a bit. As of early October, there were 14 Active rentals—4 houses and 10 condos. As before, 5 are condos in Roosevelt Towers that are essentially permanent rentals, i.e. they’ve been in MLS for years. So taking them out, you’re left with 9 listings (4 detached, 5 condos). While still a tight market by historical standards, things have slowed down. Four of the 9 rentals have been on for over 30 days. While not very long, this was rare in the first half of 2012. It will be interesting to see if this continues through December.

NOTE: Not all rentals are in MLS. Some are done privately or on-line (Craig’s List, Military by Owner, etc.). So the stats here don’t show everything. However we’re confident they capture the overall trend.