The DC area real estate market continues to outperform the rest of the nation. We’re frequently seeing multiple bids and waiving of contingencies, and it’s only February! It feels a little like 2005…
The market is HOT! If you are thinking of selling, now is definitely the time. DC made Zillow’s list of Top 10 Sellers’ Markets — the only city on the East Coast (see the full Zillow article here). You can easily see it in our area with the return of residential construction everywhere.
Nationwide the story is shifting as well. Freddie Mac is projecting “sustainable growth” and hedge funds and private equity firms are buying up large inventories of housing to convert to rental properties. Economists are projecting that housing will be the primary driver of economic growth in 2013.
FHA is making some big loan changes, which we wrote about on our blog here. FHA loans have accounted for as much as 50% of the market recently thanks to their low 3.5% down payment. But now some loans will increase the down payment requirement to 5%, higher premiums will be implemented across the board, and mortgage insurance will now be permanent even when the equity reaches 20%, making FHA a far less attractive option. We’re starting to see a lot of lenders offer 2nd trusts now, so we expect that conventional 5% loans will become much more common in 2013 as buyers with good credit steer clear of FHA loans.
We have some upcoming first-time home buyer classes scheduled. If you or someone you know is thinking of buying their first home (or just wants a refresher on the process), have them register here. Classes are scheduled for February 27th, March 27th, and April 23rd at 7:00 pm at Arlington Central Library.
We’ve also been honored with a few press interviews lately. The Wethman Group was prominently featured in a nerdwallet.com article about first-time home buyers in DC (I guess this means we’re finally ‘officially’ nerds???). And we were also featured on homefinder.com, so check it out!
Spring is right around the corner. Please contact us if we can help you decide if the time is right for you to buy or sell. We have big goals this year, and we appreciate you keeping us in mind with your referrals!