Washington Real Estate Monthly Muse | by Nate Ward
A concise synopsis of the Washington DC real estate market
Buzz around the office
When the $8k tax credit was originally nearing expiration, news sources were already abuzz about a potential extension. This time around, with no indication of an additional extension in sight, buyers have been hopping off the fence and into the market. Of the 7 offers I wrote this month, 5 of them were competing against multiple offers. Not surprisingly, the lower priced end of the market saw a ton of activity in April. One agent in my office received 20 offers on a bank owned property that was priced well and in decent condition.
Washington DC Real Estate Trend Indicators
The number of homes sold in Washington DC in April 2010 was up 58.27 percent over the same month last year!The time properties sat on the market fell 28 days over last April, with the current average at 64 days on the market. There were 3349 active listings in Washington DC in April 2010 and 989 of those properties went under contract. Average sales price this April was $498k; which is down $19k over last year's April's average.
Mortgage Rate News
The one constant has been the Federal Reserve's willingness to hold the federal funds rate near zero. The Federal Open Market Committee met on April 28th. After their meeting, they stated that, "Conditions justify their plan on leaving it (the fed funds rate) at exceptionally low levels for an extended period." If you're thinking about buying or selling a home anytime soon, then that's very good news! The rate on 30-Year fixed mortgages fell from 5.21% on April 8th to 5.00% on May 6th. The rate drop translates into a savings of $12.91 per month for every $100k you borrow over the life of the loan.
Local Business Spotlight
This month I’d like to give a big green thumbs up to Johnson'sGardenCenteron4200 Wisconsin Avenue NW. Even if you don't have any outdoor space, it's a wonderful place to visit and possibly pick up a plant or two for your window sill. They have an incredible selection of seeds, plants, and gardening supplies. I've been improving my urban gardening skills ever since I turned my back porch into a small vegetable and herb garden. This place has everything I need and their staff is extremely helpful with all my questions!
After location, a second key factor to consider when buying a home is how much space you'll need and how much you'll be paying per square foot. You can make more efficient use of the space you have, but you certainly can't make it any bigger! You have to look past the clutter, but this house is a great value once you consider the square footage of the house and lot. Plus, both the Columbia Heights and Petworth Neighborhoods are experiencing major revitalization. A buyer with a little imagination could turn this property into a fantastic investment! Check it out: (link no longer active)
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