On the outside looking in, you may not have thought that 2020 would be a strong year for the real estate market. But despite social distancing and stay at home orders as a global pandemic presided over the year, the real estate market continued to produce ever-increasing sales prices.
As we enter 2021, both Prince Georges County and Montgomery County continue to experience red-hot sellers’ markets. This creates a big opportunity for underwater sellers who need to choose a short sale to escape the burden of their current mortgage payment, maintenance issues or delinquency.
What Is Driving the D.C. Metro Real Estate Market?
There are various reasons for the sizzling markets in Prince Georges County and Montgomery County. But primarily, the market is being driven by two factors: low inventory and low interest rates.
Buyer demand increased throughout 2020 due to record-low mortgage rates, which have dipped below 3% at times. When an increase in demand combines with minuscule inventory levels, the result is a market that heavily favors sellers. No statistic bears that out more than “Sales Price to Original List Price,” which in December was 101.2% in Prince Georges County and was 100.2% in Montgomery County.
When homes are selling for above original listing price, that is a market you want to enter as soon as possible as a seller.
To illustrate how little inventory is available, we can compare the active listings in December 2020 to the 5-year December average:
Prince Georges County Active Listings
December 2020: 663
5-year December Avg: 1,475
Montgomery County Active Listings
December 2020: 906
5-year December Avg: 1,463
Prince Georges County Market Snapshot
The real estate market in Prince Georges County continues to reach new heights, as closed sales finished 23.1% higher in December than they were a year ago.
The median sales price of $355,000 is up 12.7% from a year ago.
The average number of days on market was 15, down from the year-to-date average of 25.
Overall, the median sales price in 2020 was $345,00, up 11.3% from 2019 ($310,000). Continued momentum has carried over in 2021, and the selling market will only grow hotter as the spring season approaches. With an average market time of just 15 days, make sure your bags are packed when the listing goes live.
Montgomery County Market Snapshot
The market continues to stay hot in Montgomery County, where closed sales were up 26.4% compared to December 2019 and were up 9% over November’s numbers.
The median sales price of $480,000 is up 6.7% from a year ago.
The average number of days on market was 22, down from the year-to-date average of 27 days.
Compared to the 5-year December average of 40 days on market (DOM), the December 2020 DOM nearly cut that in half at 22. While the Montgomery County market does not seem quite as on-fire as Prince Georges, that is most likely due to the higher price point of Montgomery County.
Selling your Home Has Never Been More Lucrative in the D.C. Metro Area
You might be thinking, “sell my home during a pandemic, are you crazy?” Besides being a hot market for sellers, it has also never been simpler to sell your home. With innovations such as virtual walkthroughs and digital signatures, selling your home is much easier than you may be imagining.
With no catalyst in sight for a rapid increase of inventory, prices should continue to rise at a higher-than-average rate as the market matures in 2021.
The competition among buyers is already fierce and will continue to intensify, especially at lower price points that attract more offers. As a seller, this is music to your ears. If you’re considering selling an underwater property or need to sell a home with some equity quickly, it’s time to reach out to Atlas Home Group to understand the options.