With 2,991 transactions completed, June was the highest month for home sales in Northern Virginia in 16 years – back to 2005 when the market overheated into a frenzy that crashed just two years later.
Market forces such as more conservative mortgage lending could help prevent that rollercoaster ride from happening again, as current conditions suggest a slight cool-down but no impending disaster.
“Activity was brisk in early June, but there was a noticeable decline by the end of the month,” said Ryan McLaughlin, CEO of the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors (NVAR), which released sales data for the month on July 13.
This cooling can be for a number of reasons – affordability issues begin to creep in; a lack of available inventory; or maybe agents and prospective buyers have the summer mentality with the vacation in the foreground.
Total sales for the month represented a 48.4 percent year-over-year increase, but that sharp increase is compared to a month (June 2020) when the local economy continued to be hit by the initial effects of COVID . The apartment search slowed significantly in April and May 2020, which affected sales through June before the market turned.
That figure of 2,991 corresponds to transactions in Arlington and Fairfax counties and in the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax and Falls Church. Year-over-year sales in all jurisdictions grew at rates between 31 percent and 127 percent.
The average sales price of all homes that closed in June was $ 741,574, up 14.6 percent year over year. Increases were reported in all localities.
Derrick Swaak, Partner / Managing Broker at TTR Sotheby’s International Realty in McLean and 2021 NVAR President, said the “strong competition” among buyers was also a factor in early summer.
“As more homes came on the market in June, the supply of new supply was quickly gobbled up as demand continued to outpace supply,” said Swaak. “Apartments stayed on the market for a very short time.” The total sales volume for the month was just under 2.2 billion US dollars, almost two thirds more than last year.
Both anecdotal evidence and data suggest that the rest of summer will continue to be healthy, although perhaps not quite as solid as late spring.
“While buyers still face fierce competition for limited inventory, sellers are now facing competition with summer travel plans,” said McLaughlin. “The pent-up demand for home ownership does not seem to cope with the desire to travel now that the restrictions have been relaxed.”
The numbers represent most, but not all, of the homes in the market. The figures from 2021 are provisional and can be revised.