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Loudoun home sales remain sluggish

For the third month in a row, Loudoun's housing market has hit a snag.

Second quarter reports released by Dulles Area Association of Realtors for April, May and June 2014 showed a 6.7 percent drop in home sales compared to the second quarter of 2013.
The number of houses on the market has grown, however, with a 21.1 percent increase in new listings since last quarter, showing a buyer's market this season.

According to the Q2 2014 report, despite the increased listings, only 1,706 unites were sold overall. The market also saw a modest 1.3 percent sales price increase over the year, with a median sales price of $435,400.

The numbers don't explain why buyers aren't buying in such a ripe market. But Jeannette Newton, chief executive officer of DAAR believes a prime factor is a continued buyer insecurity in an uncertain economy.

“Most of what you've got is buyers who are changing jobs and have to move, but people aren't just choosing to move because of the uncertainty [with the economy],” she said. “The economy is still a big concern for people, and it's constantly in their minds.”

Another factor stalling the market, Newton said, is the bad weather that slowed sales in the spring market.

“When the spring market got here, it got here so late that we didn’t enjoy the fruits of it. … It has delayed everything.”

Sue Smith, associate broker with Remax Premier and The Sue Smith Team owner, said the market has stalled because buyers are picky. The surplus of listings means buyers can afford to take their time.

“It is a great time to buy,” Smith said. “You have a lot of options right now. You have a lot of homes to choose from and you possibly could have a little more negotiation power if you're a buyer, depending on the situation. I expect to see that role into the fall.”

Buyers taking their time is not a bad thing, she said. But it's not good news for sellers, who have experienced an increase in days-on-market, with some homes staying unsold for as much as 16 days, six days longer than the average DOM in the second quarter last year.

“Sellers right now are going to need to understand that it will be taking a little longer, and they have to be realistic and patient,” Smith said.

And like many things, Smith said the market is always changing. And Christine Windle, director of public policy and communications at DAAR, said the Loudoun County housing market is doing OK.

“The fact is, we're in one of the best markets in the country,” she said. “You don't want to complain about the good fortune at all. We put out the numbers in order to understand the different dynamic that's going on within this market.”

Comments

I think Ed hits the nail on the head. Loan rates are up home sales are slowing in all markets.

Lack of job creation does not help people’s confidence and add to that the 400% higher debt students are coming out with; people under 35 are hitting new lows for home ownership in decades.


The Economy overall is still bad. People still worry about losing their job or having hours cut. It doesn’t help that Loudoun’s taxes are so high, school boundaries change every year or two and we have to pay high tolls or sit in traffic.


I would think that whole Algonkian Pkwy area of Cascades is very desirable. Kind of where if you keep going south it turns into FFX county pkwy.

It is close to the 7 freeway, you miss all the traffic around the 28 freeway, the 15 freeway, and all those other areas west. Big plus is only 15 or so minutes from the Reston Station (phase 1).

I looked for a place there, but did not find anything really that met my needs.


You missed an important reason. Who wants to move and give up that below 3% mortgage rate for a new one at 4.5% or more unless one really has to move?

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