Thursday, June 11, 2009

MRIS May 2009 Sales Report: Preliminary data

OK. I've closed on the house, the floors have been redone, and hopefully the rest of the interior touch up will be completed by the end of next week. And let me tell you, preparing for the PMP test isn't a walk in Logan Circle, either.

MRIS released May's data for sales of existing homes in the District yesterday. Key points [YoY]:

  • Dollar volume collapsed, down 21.3%
  • Average price is down 13.34%, median is down 10.24%
  • Unit sales volume [aggregate] down 9.19%
  • Home unit sales eked a small gain, up 2.67%
  • Condo unit sales tanked, down 20.66%

Sales prices were 91.4% of list, about the same as April. Based on my recent experience, without having access to real MRIS data there's no way to tell how omitting seller subsidies would affect this statistic, i.e., it could be much lower, ditto average/median sales price. At May's sales rate, the condo market has a 8.1 month supply listed for sale, homes 7.2 months.

Analysis forthcoming.


Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your new home and good luck on the exam. My husband recently passed it.

If you are happy with how your floors turned out, would you share the name of the person who refinished them? We will need to have our floors refinished next year.


cccrewmom said...

I'm very frustrated with this and other blogs because my husband believes real estate prices are declining and that is the party line on many blogs. BUT we are searching for a nice detached single family home in the Tenley, Friendship Heights or Cleveland Park neighborhoods for $600,000 or less and there's nothing out there. What's more, when a rare something comes along, it's a battle zone - for example, an unrenovated 4BR house in Friendship Heights listed in May for high 600,000s had 7 offers and sold $75K above asking. That is not a sign of prices going down!! And inventory is these neighborhoods is low. I just don't see any decreases in desirable houses in the abovementioned neighborhoods in the starter house category. Sorry I didn't add much to this blog comment but I am just so darn frustrated and wondering if prices will ever fall in those neighborhoods -- they seem to be pretty rock solid along with Arlington VA.

Keith said...


While prices in general may be declining, that isn't true across the board in DC. You need to segment the market by housing type [condo, rowhouse, semi-/detached housing], neighborhood/zip code, and price range.

I can tell you that in some neighborhoods, such as those you've listed, your chances of finding a detached SFH below $600K are nil; the best you'll find is a condo and probably a 1/1 at that. I've rented a home in one of those neighborhoods for 5 years and during that time I don't recall ever seeing a home listed for below $650K. The most recent listings have been $750K-1.1M.

I understand your frustration. But there are neighborhoods where you can find properties for less than $600K, it's all about the trade-offs you're willing to make.

Keith said...

Anonymous 5:03

Send me an email [dchousingprices AT gmail dot com] and I'll send you the information.

Anonymous said...


Condos in those areas ARE expensive, but there are plenty of 2 bedrooms for less than $600,000.

Brandon said...


Probably more than most other cities, the DC market is really segmented. Overall trends don't reflect that market in many neighborhoods.

Anon412 said...

There *are* detached homes in Chevy Chase for under $650k; here's one:

Of course, it went under contract after 8 days, but I think it shows that prices are falling in every neighborhood in DC, even if they are falling more slowly in some areas.

cccrewmom said...

thanks for the input everyone...i did find a bargain this spring (May) in Chevy Chase.. ..4BR with garage and basement au pair apartment close to CT avenue for $700K (unrenovated but liveable) but my husband wasn't ready to buy. It went under K almost immediately. it seems like chevy chase offers a little more price flexibility than than Tenley, CP or Friendship...especially the closer to Rock Creek park you get - prices are definitely falling there as inventory stacks up. But the further out (and cheaper houses) aren't close enough to metro for my husband. Maybe this fall we'll find another bargain like the above (I definitely regret that the husband wouldn't go for it).

Keith said...


Prices may fall, but interest rates may go up [as they have in the past month] and credit may get tighter so in the end it may be a financial wash.

If you haven't done so, I suggest you look at to get a realistic idea (based on actual market data) of what's in the market, how long homes are staying on the market, and what pricing actions are being taken. Your purchase criteria may not be realistic and, if not changed, could make this an unnecessarily long, frustrating search.