Washington, D.C. Housing Market Continues to be a Stand Out

25 07 2011

As the health of the overall U.S. economy is still at question, some sectors of the housing market are starting to show optimistic signs of recovery and the Washington DC housing market is one of them.  The Washington, D.C., metro area, shown in many house price indices as one of the few markets where values are growing, is continuing its upward and onward trend, according to one forward looking benchmark.

Numbers show that people are buying homes.  Some 5,500 new purchase contracts were signed in May, a 7% increase from the 5,170 deals that were inked in April and a whopping 43% jump from May 2010, according to figures compiled by the Metropolitan Regional Information System, the D.C. area’s multiple listing service.

The contracts signed in May are the most since May 2005.

In another positive sign, the region’s median sales price edged higher for the third consecutive month, according to the RBI Pending Sales Index produced by Real Estate Intelligence Business, a MRIS subsidiary. The median for May was $353,600, up 6% from $334,000 in April and 4% from 341,750 in the previous May.

Also, the average number of days on the market in May were the fewest in seven months. And in another key benchmark measure, properties also were absorbed at a quicker rate.

On average, it took 68 days from the listing date to the day a sale closed. That’s 10 days quicker than in April.  At the same time, the monthly absorption rate – the time it would take to sell all active listings at the current sales pace – slipped to 2.8 months from 3 months in April and 4.1 months a year earlier.

The RBI is a two-year moving window index that covers Washington, D.C., Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, Alexandria City, Arlington County, Fairfax County, Fairfax City, and Falls Church City.

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