According to an article yesterday in the Washington Examiner, the DC Metro area is predicted to see the largest gains in home prices in 2011. This is obviously great news for our area though not surprising. Thanks largely to government and procurement jobs boosting the local economy we have an unemployment rate at just over half the national average with even more jobs on the way.
DC’s strong local economy has already become evident as home prices rose 5.3% in 2010 and the report by Clear Capital, which tracks real estate trends, forecasts that we will see an increase of another 6.5% in 2011. That forecast is almost twice as much of an increase as Houston, TX which was ranked second in the report.
Home prices in the DC Metro and Northern VA real estate market have also not experienced as large a decline in home values as most other markets. Home values our local real estate market are around 2004 levels whereas much of the country is hovering around values they had in 2001. This has helped to keep the number of bank-owned properties low which is beneficial because distressed properties tend to depress home values even further. Out of all homes for sale in the DC area only about 15% are foreclosures compared to the national average of 40%.
So what does this all mean? If you’ve bought in the past 2 years this is great news because it means you probably already have some equity in your home and will probably be seeing more appreciation in the coming year. If you’ve been thinking about buying this means that now is definitely the time to dive in as interest rates are still incredibly low but home prices are on their way back up.
If you’re interested in learning more about the Northern Virginia real estate market or are ready to begin searching for your new home then give me a call, I’m always happy to help.