March 22, 2012 | by Sue Goodhart
Real estate market in bloom

The Spring market in D.C. bloomed with the cherry blossoms.

In the last month, we have seen almost every competitively priced listing go under contract within the first week on the market, often with interest from multiple parties and sometimes multiple offers. This time last year, we saw multiple offers but did not often see the price going above list price. Not so for this year where we have seen multiple offers escalating above list price.

While just a few months ago many buyers were still trying to “play the market” or sit and wait for a price reduction, this is not the reality of the new spring market. Inventory has declined significantly from this point last year, so the good properties are selling and they’re selling fast.

We have also been seeing a lot of competition within the first week of a price drop — even if the house has been on the market for months. When there is a price adjustment on a home, other buyers who have been circling may also decide to throw their hat in the ring. The result is often a multiple-offer situation even if the house has been on the market for several weeks or months. When you are in competition with another purchaser, you are competing with the other purchaser by upping your price, instead of negotiating with the seller for a lower price.

Despite the competitive market, it is still a great time for buyers. Thirty-year fixed interest rates are still hovering at a historical low.

We are seeing a healthy market in our area. If you are thinking about buying a new home, talk with a realtor early in the process to see how the market is moving in your price point and desired location. Many realtors will set you up on a search and will email you properties that will fit your criteria. Even if you aren’t ready yet, it will help you to see what’s out there so you can make an educated decision when you are ready to buy.

Sue Goodhart works at McEnearney Associates. She can be reached at202-507-7800 or sue@suegoodhart.com.

 

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