Thursday, June 14, 2007

MRIS May Housing Report: Spring is a bust

While I was on vacation, MRIS was kind enough to release its report on May's sales of existing homes and condos in the District, those listed or sold by real estate agents. In short, May's YoY data show declines across all metrics [see figure below]:

  • Dollar volume was down 11.44%
  • The average price fell 7.08%
  • The median price was flat, declining 0.24%
  • The number of units sold - transaction volume - was down about 4.69%
  • Average days on market increased 22% to 61 days

Condos maintained their lead over homes in terms of units sold, homes led in dollar volume. In May we see:

  • Sales volume. Overall, down 4.69%. Condo sales volume was up 5.1% YoY, but home sales volume dropped 13.98%. All categories of single family homes saw a decline in sales volume: -20.69% for 2 bedroom homes; -18.44% for 3 bedroom homes; and -5.19% for 4+ bedroom homes.
  • Dollar volume. In aggregate, down a whopping 11.44%. The sales volume story repeated: condos up (+4.15%), homes down (-20.19%). Lower dollar volume for all home sizes.
  • Average sales price. Again, down: 7.08%. Average prices for condos relaxed [I need a thesaurus] .94% to $415,915, while homes dropped 7.22% YoY to $658,192.
  • Days on market. Yes, on average the DOM grew to 61 days, but a closer look shows that 2/3 of all homes sold within 60 days.
  • Inventory. Based on May's transaction rates and active listings, there is a 4.35 month's supply of condos, an increase of 9.27% over April, while home inventory's fell 8.06% to 4.84 months.

So what to make of all of this?

The most important conclusion I come to is that the Spring selling season is off to an inauspicious start. April's data was uninspiring and May's should make a seasoned real estate agent Google the nearest bar capable of mixing a stiff dry martini [three olives, please]. Condos are holding their own, but homes are getting squishy. The market was no friend of two and four bedroom homes; three bedroom homes had positive growth in average sales prices although the market favored the detached variety for unit sales and dollar volume. Of note is that for the first time in a while, high end homes (+4 bedrooms) had been tamed.

Detailed Data

Average Sales Price

Dollar Volume

Transaction Volume

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