The residential real estate market in McLean and Great Falls is definitely showing strong signs of improvement. The total number of sales for the first half 2012 is up overall a little more than 8 percent over the first half of 2011.
The lower bracket market segment, which is considered to be that below $1.25 million in this market area, is up in terms of number of transactions year over year by around 4 percent. Delving into the numbers further reveals that the number of properties under contract for this price range is about one-third of what was sold in all of the first half of 2012. If this pattern continues, that indicates that the second half of the year should prove to be strong as well. The most significant distinction about this market segment is that there is so little available to buy. With the current absorption of homes, there is less than a 2-month supply of inventory. A balanced market is considered a 6-month supply of inventory, so this clearly indicates that McLean and Great Falls for under $1.25 million it is a great time to be a seller. Good homes priced correctly for the current market are selling quickly and in some cases with multiple offers.
The upper bracket market segment also saw improvement in terms of number of transactions, around 23 percent more the first half of 2012 compared to the same period in 2011. Looking deeper into the data for the upper brackets by including properties under contract, the first half of 2012 sustained an absorption rate of almost 50 percent of what sold in all the first half of 2012 in McLean and Great Falls. The distinction with the upper bracket market is there is still substantial inventory available for purchase, equating to about 8.5 month supply. Even though this segment is still not quite a balanced market, it clearly is moving in the right direction.
Karen Briscoe and Lizzy Conroy are active and experienced Realtors in the Northern Virginia, Washington D.C. market place. The Huckaby Briscoe Group was recognized in September 2011 as one of the Wall Street Journal Top Real Estate Teams in the United States. Contact: www.HBCRealtyGroup.com, 703-734-0192, Homes@HBCRealtyGroup.com.
Market cycles tend to go in 7-year interims, from peak to peak. Real estate values in the Northern Virginia market area peaked in 2005-2006. It has been my prediction that this area should return to market peak in some segments beginning in 2012. The numbers for first half of 2012, should they sustain through the year, indicate that we are on the road to proving this to be the case.
Karen Briscoe, is Principal of Huckaby Briscoe Conroy Realty Group Keller Williams in McLean.