2011 Real Estate Statistics- Bethesda/Chevy Chase & DC

2011 Wrap up

On Wednesday of this week I had an opportunity to share some local real estate statistics on the new Washington Post’s Where We Live blog. While it didn’t exactly launch into a vibrant on-line discussion (come on… it’s statistics), it was fun having it out there.

The table below breaks down real estate activity for 2008-2011 in the Bethesda/Chevy Chase/DC markets.  Read below the graph for detailed analysis on what it all means…

[tomatoframe width=”500″ height=”500″]https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/pub?hl=en_US&hl=en_US&key=0AlDNFnBZWli0dHZyOU1PeWl1ejlkTnoxN3BLbVMtemc&output=html[/tomatoframe]

I’ve been selling real estate for 12+ years. I’m always getting asked how the market is doing. The simple answer is that it’s a whole lot better than the rest of the country.  But those in the market always want more detail, and that’s complicated. It’s easier to talk about real estate when there is a distinct swing in the market. I’ve been tracking real estate trends in Bethesda/Chevy Chase/Northwest DC for many years (specifically zip codes 20814, 20815, 20816, 20817, 20015 and 20016) and in 2011 we’ve got a hodge-podge of plusses and minuses, ending the year on a bit of a dull plateau.  Still, given the turmoil in other parts of the US, this is a fine predicament.

  • In 2007 2,153 homes sold with an average price of $918,074
  • In 2008 1,796 homes sold with an average price of $870,833
  • In 2009 1,951 homes sold with an average price of $819,145
  • In 2010 1,978 homes sold with an average price of $834,749
  • In 2011 1,964 homes sold with an average price of $839,263

The one extreme in this market is the reduction in foreclosure and short sale activity. Collectively, there were 22 bank sales in 2008; 75 in 2009; 91 in 2010; and 30 in 2011, a welcome reversal.

Sellers in these zip codes received between 93.1% and 96.8% of their original asking price.  With two exceptions (20814 & 20015), this number has improved gradually since the market bottomed out in 2008/9. The number of days on market has improved, too.

In the last three months (10/10/11 onward) 429 new listings have hit the market.  As of today, 206 remain active, 41 have withdrawn from the market, 78 are under contract, 4 are temporarily off the market, and 94 have successfully sold, leaving a mysterious 6 listings out there in limbo land.  Crunching numbers from the MLS is not always an exact science

I’ve been complaining about a lack of inventory for ages now.  The once guaranteed annual 10-15% return on real estate investments is long gone. Trade-up buyers are waiting it out for a variety of reasons:

  • Job security
  • A return to previous $ levels
  • Upside down on mortgage

Lastly, those who previously ditched DC for other locales are choosing to stay put due to our strong job market. Thank you, government.

As buyers or sellers, I’d love to hear what you think about the current market conditions.