The little cluster of homes in the shadow of the National Zoo on the 1600 to 1800 blocks of Harvard and Hobart is one of the most stable and desirable areas of the city. Even in down markets it’s held its value, often attracting multiple offers when homes have sold.
Washington is the richest, most successful housing market in the country. The number of sales here in 2010 increased 3% from 2009, the median sale prices rose from $378,700 to $390,000 and the average number of days houses stayed on the market declined from 91 to 67. Even better, in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood as a whole, inventory dropped by 17% in November as compared with the same month a year earlier.
Whereas nationwide, home prices were down an average of 5.8% in the third quarter, median prices in the Washington area, went up 1.5% for the quarter and rose 7.5% from a year ago.
The dollar volume of sales in DC has been down for the past five months compared with the same period in 2009. However, the average price has continually risen for the past twelve, with November (most recent month’s data available) showing a bullish 14.5% increase in average price over the same month in 2009.
Much of this good news has to do with scarce inventory of active listings in this area as compared to an oversupply in much of the rest of the country. In addition, the city’s unemployment rate remains a low 5.9% as compared to 9.8% nationally.
Single-Family Homes Sold on the 1600 and 1700 blocks of
Hobart and Harvard in 2010 as compared with 2009:
Number of Sales
2009 = 6 2010 = 10
A 67% increase
Average Sale Price
2009 = $682,080 2010 = $715,567
A 5% increase
Average Days on Market
2009 = 10.7 days 2010 = 8.8 days
18% fewer days
My Clients' Resultss in 2010:
Overall, the sellers I worked with received an average of $24,538 over their asking prices. And my buyers paid an average of $19,677 less than the asking prices of the properties they purchased.
The 2010 Overall Outlook:
Lawrence Yun, the National Association or Realtors’ chief economist, is hopefulfor 2011. “The relationship recently between mortgage interest rates, home pricesand family income has been the most favorable on record for buying a home since we started measuring in 1970,” he said. “Therefore, the market is recovering and we should trend up to a healthy, sustainable level in 2011.
“In the short term, mortgage interest rates should hover just above recent record lows, while home prices have generally stabilized following declines from 2007 through 2009,” Yun added. “Although mortgage interest rates have ticked up in recent weeks, overall conditions remain extremely favorable for buyers who can obtain credit.”