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ArlingtonSingle-family homes continue to gain value in region

Single-family homes continue to gain value in region

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The median price of single-family homes in the Washington region posted a double-digit year-over-year increase in the third quarter, but its bump up was below that of the nation as a whole.

With a median sales price of $548,600 across the D.C. metro region, the area’s single-family home price rose 11.5 percent from the same July-August-September period in 2020, according to new data from the National Association of Realtors.

But that was below the 16-percent increase (to $363,700) year-over-year bump up nationally, as strong homebuyer demand and limited housing supply led to median sales prices rising for existing single-family homes in all but one of 183 measured markets in the third quarter.

The data suggest that home-value appreciation may be cooling somewhat – 78 percent of the 183 markets that are part of the survey saw double-digit appreciation in the third quarter of 2021, down from 94 percent a quarter before. Three metro areas saw gains of more than 30 percent in the third quarter, one-fourth the 12 areas that recorded such gains during the second quarter.

“Home prices are continuing to move upward, but the rate at which they ascended slowed in the third quarter,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors. “I expect more homes to hit the market as early as next year, and that additional inventory, combined with higher mortgage rates, should markedly reduce the speed of price increases.”

The median-sales-price climb of 16 percent from a year before was also well below the 22.9-percent year-over-year increase reported in second-quarter-data. All four major regions had double-digit year-over-year price growth, led by the Northeast (17.5% to $410,900), followed by the South (14.9% to $315,700), the Midwest (10.7% to $273,300), and the West (10.3% to $514,500).

The metro markets with the highest year-over-year price gains were Austin (33.5%); Naples, Fla. (32%); Boise (31.5%); Ocala, Fla. (29.7%); Punta Gorda, Fla. (27.5%); Salt Lake City (26.2%); Phoenix (25.8%); Sebastian-Vero Beach, Fla. (25.7%); Port St. Lucie, Fla. (24.9%); and New York City (24.5%).

The most expensive markets in the third quarter were San Jose ($1,650,000); San Francisco-Oakland ($1,350,000); Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine, Calif. ($1,100,000); Honolulu ($1,047,800); Los Angeles ($860,900); San Diego ($850,000); Boulder, Colo. ($769,400); Seattle ($708,400); Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Conn. ($658,900); and Boston ($657,800).

“While buyer bidding wars lessened in the third quarter compared to early 2021, consumers still faced stiff competition for homes located in the top-10 markets,” said Yun. “Most properties were only on the market for a few days before being listed as under contract.”

In the third quarter, the average monthly mortgage payment on an existing single-family home – financed with a 20-percent down payment, 30-year fixed-rate loan – rose to $1,214. This is an increase of $156 from a year before. With the price of a typical existing single-family home growing by $50,300, the mortgage payment climbed even as the average mortgage rate in the third quarter fell to 2.92 percent from 3.01 percent one year ago.

“While the higher prices made it extremely difficult for typical families to afford a home, in some cases the historically-low mortgage rates helped offset the asking price,” Yun said.

A family typically needed an income of more than $100,000 to affordably pay a typical mortgage in 17 markets, matching the prior quarter. The top 10 markets were San Jose ($299,929); San Francisco ($245,396); Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine, Calif. ($199,953); Honolulu, ($190,464); Los Angeles ($156,490); San Diego ($154,509); Boulder, Colo. ($139,858); Seattle ($128,769); Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Conn. ($119,772); and Boston ($119,572).

In 83 markets, however, a family typically needed an income of less than $50,000 to afford a home, down slightly from 85 markets in the prior quarter.

Among other Virginia metro areas in the data, the median sales price of a single-family home in Richmond stood at $355,300, up 12.7 percent, while the median sales price in Virginia Beach was $290,000, up 11.2 percent.

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