Not Even Two Months Of Inventory!

I was sniffing through the latest real estate data for our area out here in Northern Virginia, and I saw something that shocked me, even as a rookie agent.

Inventory Right Now–Under TWO MONTHS!

In real estate, we have what’s called “inventory.”  We measure inventory in “months”–as in, if no new homes were listed on the market beginning right now, how long would would it take to sell them all?  Six months’ inventory means just that–it would take six months to sell all of the homes.  (Six months, by the way, is generally known as a “balanced market”–if the number rises or falls too far from six months, the market will become tremendously out of whack.)  It’s basically supply vs. demand;  three or five years ago, when this area had 14 months’ worth of inventory, there were too many homes for the amount of people there were to buy them.  Back then, it was a “buyer’s market,” which means that buyers were able to get closing costs (and plenty of other things) paid by sellers, who were practically begging someone to take their property off their hands for them.If you click on the link above, scroll down to the second-to-last graph, labeled “Inventory vs. Closed Sales.”  You’ll notice on the right side that the graph shows that we have just under two months of inventory in Fairfax County.  Inventory here is almost three times smaller than it should be in a balanced market, making the market very decisively in the seller’s favor (or, a “seller’s market”).  We (real estate agents) are seeing more and more commonly very-well-equipped properties which are priced well staying on the market for three or five days, and selling under five or eight competing offers.  It’s very competitive right now to find great homes for your clients.

If you happen to find yourself looking to buy a home in a market as intensely comeptitive as this one has become, here are some tried-and-true tips to win against everyone else.  And if you are looking within the Washington, DC area, you need to get me on the horn as soon as possible, so I can help you find a house that feels like home when you first open the front door.  (I know, I know, and I’m sorry…I’m working on trying to find a picture of my mug that will fit there…but in the meantime, feel free to browse the area’s inventory at your leisure!)

I’m glad that I was able to find a great place for my clients (we are under contract and working toward a mid-March close date), and I understand now why we were out-competed in the first three properties they wanted to buy!  Lesson=Learned!

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