It’s a New Year, but with familiar opportunities and challenges.

Some of the whole year numbers for 2020 are starting to roll in but I’m going to initially focus on what we are seeing as a group in our Platinum Club team.  The inventory shortages that I have posted about ad nauseum are expected to continue into the Spring market.  Nearly all of us have historically had more homes on the market now and more in the hopper as we move into spring which is powerful anecdotal evidence of a continued lopsided market.  All of our contract submissions since the beginning of the year have involved multiple contracts, oftentimes many multiples.  I wrote an offer on a SF in Sterling this week-end that had 17 offers on it.  So get ready for another good year to be a home seller and a challenging one to be a buyer.

The good news for patient and creative buyers is that rates are still in the 2’s which is just tremendous and provides cover against having to bid up beyond the comps on a great house they love.  To provide some context each additional $10,000 you pay for a house only increases your monthly payment by about $41.  This is still a great time to get into a home, or to do a move up or down.  Coordinating these double transactions in such an imbalanced market creates unique challenges so reach out to me well in advance so I can lay out your options and we can put together a game plan.

In a little peek behind the real estate curtain there were some 41,409 sales last year in the NOVA region and there are 35,000 agents in our Board.  There are a whole lot of our peers doing very, very little.

Let’s talk a little bit about what we see coming in the first half of the year.  70% of those surveyed expect their remote work to continue.  But guess what?  70% also don’t have adequate facilities in their current homes to effectively work remotely.  What that means is that people are almost universally willing to move or to consider moving.  Therein lies some hope for the inventory crunch.  People are not just looking for more space and dedicated office areas but are willing to go more rural.  According to Gallup 48% of buyers prefer rural areas, up from 39% just 2 years ago.

Stay tuned for more commentary on the Biden economic plan and its impact on the local housing market as it gets announced and implemented.  It’s too early and uncertain for concrete analysis about that but I will certainly do so as they become clearer.

It’s a good life.