David Rathgeber's

Local Market Report

(there is no national real estate market)

May 2018

Who cares? The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently reported that the number of pending sales increased less than one-half of 1% in March (from February). But don't panic yet: The number of pending sales for our area increased 22.5% in March. If you base your decisions on national news; good luck! There is no national real estate market.

The media will report April pending sales in a month or so, but why wait? For our area, April pending sales were up 4.3% from March. No need to base your decisions on old news, as cited in the paragraph above. Remember where you heard it first!

Even more important than pending sales, the market index increased seasonally to 1.2 months supply from last month's 1.1. Loudoun County and Northern Virginia are tied for the lead with 1.1 months supply; Washington DC with 1.2; then Montgomery County with 1.5. Coming months should be slightly better for buyers, but many will have to fight other buyers to win their home of choice. Our market is stronger than it has been for 5 years, with inventory much lower and sales much higher; hence the hot market index.

Special notes: You will recall that pending sales usually peak in April, not June, July, and August as you have heard. See Demand (pending sales).
Also, the market index is usually strongest in March. See Market Seasonality.

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The report above is prepared monthly from David's independent research for his clients. It does not contain important data for macro-economists, is not tailored for a TV audience, includes no national data, and is not prepared by the computer weenies at the MLS. Click this link to learn how this report is prepared and why it is the best available anywhere!

Notes
1. The Market Index represents the months supply of resale homes and measures the ratio of home buyers to home sellers. Below 1.5 is a hot sellers' market; 1.5 to 3.0 is a normal sellers' market; 3.0 to 5.0 is a neutral market; above 5.0 is a buyers' market.
2. Northern Virginia: Alexandria, Arlington County, and Fairfax County (including Fairfax City and Falls Church City).
3. Results are not seasonally adjusted.

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