ALEXANDRIA 22309 MOUNT VERNON REAL ESTATE MARKET
A Buyer client recently made a comment regarding the local real estate market being in a "state of decline." At first I thought he was merely trying to justify his "low ball" approach to offers and his unwillingness to negotiate when a Seller came back with a counter offer, at which he took great offense.
Since Buyers right now are typically somewhat frustrated by the lack of inventory and multiple offer situations they often find themselves in, I was somewhat taken back by his comment.
I asked him why he felt the market - specifically, the real estate market in Alexandria's Mount Vernon area - was declining. He believed it to be true because a few houses he had his eye on had reduced prices recently.
Okay, fair enough, I said. I get it. However, as Paul Harvey used to say, "And now for the rest of the story..."
The houses that are reducing prices right now are houses that were overpriced when they went on the market. That is not a sign of a declining market - just a sign of miscalculating the price on a specific listing or overestimating demand for a specific house.
You have to look at the "big picture" to understand what is truly going on in the local real estate market.
After a robust few months of real estate sales, where the 22309 zip code saw houses selling for 97% of list price, many with multiple offers, the inventory that remains on the market after more than a few weeks is either simply not what the majority of buyers are seeking or is overpriced, hence, the price adjustments.
The market overall, however? Not declining! In fact, in April, days on market declined almost 46% over April 2011. And the average sales price ratio to original list price? 100.9%. Sales volume was up almost 8% and would have been much higher, had it not been for a double digit drop in inventory.
So, while that house you have your eye on may not be priced correctly - and a quick look at comparable sales should be able to give you an idea of what the price should be - we definitely are not in a declining market in Alexandria's Mount Vernon area.
In fact, the real moral of the story is this: houses that are in good condition and priced correctly won't last. And if you want a shot at the house you think is right for you and your family, don't hesitate and "wait" for a price drop. In this market, those price drops are happening only to the least desirable listings which came on the market at the wrong price.
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