Ask McEnearney: How Did Contract Activity for the 3rd Quarter of 2020 Compare to Last Year?

This week’s Q&A column is written by David Howell, Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer, of McEnearney Associates Realtors®, the leading real estate firm in Alexandria. To learn more about this article and relevant market news, contact David at 703-738-9513 or email [email protected]. You may also submit your questions to McEnearney Associates via email for response in future columns.

Question: How did the real estate market in the City of Alexandria for the 3rd quarter of 2020 compare to 2019?

Answer: As we discussed back in July, the first half of the year saw a significant impact on Alexandria’s real estate market from the COVID-19 pandemic. After a solid start from January 1 to March 15, contract activity dropped off 13% through the end of June. Decreases were greatest through April and almost “normal” by mid-May. Activity in June actually surpassed 2019 and that growth has increased significantly through the third quarter of this year.

Overall contract activity in the City of Alexandria increased 33.3% in the 3rd quarter of 2020 compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019. As the chart above indicates, homes priced $300,000-$749,999 saw the most significant increases by quantity, but the number of contracts for homes priced $1+ million has more than doubled in that time period.

If we look more closely at contract activity by property type, the most significant increase was for attached homes which includes townhomes and duplexes — up 64.6% for the third quarter. Detached homes are the smallest part of the Alexandria market. The modest increase of 5.2% may have been held down by lack of inventory, not lack of demand. Contract activity for condos in Alexandria City also saw a sizeable increase of 26.5%.

Despite the market contraction brought on by COVID-19 in the spring, contract activity has come back strong. Inventory is low and we expect to see very tight supply for the foreseeable future, which is great for sellers and a bit challenging for buyers. That tight supply will put upward pressure on home prices.

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McEnearney Associates Realtors®, 109 S. Pitt Street, Alexandria, VA 22314. www.McEnearney.com Equal Housing Opportunity. #WeAreAlexandria