Fairfax County: Down to Two Months’ Supply

If there was ever any doubt in your mind that we’re in a seller’s market, the latest Fairfax County stats should put it to rest. As we finished off the month of March, the Fairfax County market was down to just about a two months’ supply of homes for sale.  Brace yourselves as we break it down by home type: While there’s a 2.8-month supply of single family homes, supply of townhouses is down to 1.4 months, and condos are down to 1.3 months of supply.  Six months of supply typically signifies a balanced and healthy market, and anything below that makes for a seller’s market.  More than six months’ supply tips the scale toward buyers. The good news is that the number of homes for sale in Fairfax County did increase by more than 10% month-over-month. But it wasn’t enough to keep up with demand, as the number of homes sold was up by more than 35% in the same time period.

The second piece of good news is that despite what you learned in Econ 101, low supply and high demand have not caused home prices to skyrocket.  In fact, they’ve remained fairly stable over the last year.  “In addition to lenders and appraisers being more conservative, the increasing trend toward all-cash deals we’re seeing is helping to keep local housing prices stable,” explains Redfin Fairfax agent Ana Ventura. “Cash is king, and buyers with cash enjoy price discounts. If a seller has a choice between a cash buyer (investor) or a buyer who is getting a loan, the seller will almost always choose the cash offer, even at a lower price.  Cash buyers can close quickly, usually in less than 30 days, and sellers don’t have to deal with appraisals or financing contingencies.”

For a complete picture of the Washington, DC area market’s most recent stats and trends, download the Redfin Market Report here: Redfin-Washington-Real-Estate-Market-Report-March-2012.

  • Jonathan Bunn

    While I agree that we are in a sellers market, I respectfully disagree that prices are not improving.  RBI Intell, the Metro area's stat tracker for real estate (for those who don't know), says that March had a 7.7% price increase over last year's prices which is huge!  I also find very few situations where cash is king.  Banks are no longer dumping properties in our area to investors who pay cash.  Strong financing is king.  I recently had 5 offers on a property and the first to be thrown out was a low ball cash buyer who thought they would get a special bargain based on it being cash.  It is therefore my opinion that prices are beginning to press upwards.  However, appraisers are in no rush to go back to the days of aggressive appraising.  They caught all of the flack for it last time.  Jonathan Bunn

  • Cindy

    I hesitate to call our market a sellers market.  Though inventory is lower and prices have increased in many areas, the DOM have also gone up as well.  Let's just say our market is more balanced than it was 12-18 months ago and leave it at that.

  • Alexandrian

    All-cash deals are what's keeping prices stable, really?  How many all-cash deals are there in relation to financed offers? 

  • TNPT Prop

    Not a seller's market and will not be for years.  When people start to sell their houses for a noticeable amount more than their loan amount that is when it will be a seller's market.  Considering the average buyer chooses a 30 year fixed (worst loan type) and puts little down, their lack of equity combined with the lack of appreciation, and of course the 6% egregious loss they take because of the monopolized Realtor system it will not be a seller's market for any for a long long time. Its true that one niche or specific area it can be a seller's market because families are always willing to pay unreal premium of hundreds of thousands of dollars just to live in a specific area that only gives them slightly more convenience.  For the market as a whole, and even the DC metro area in general, it will be a long long time before it is truly a seller's market.

    • real estate lover

       why is the 30-year mortgage the worst type?