Newsletter


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: Is the number of home sale contracts in Alexandria City closer to normal levels this year than in 2020?

Answer: In August we wrote about our mid-year Market Report, which takes a look at closed sales in Alexandria City for the first half of 2021 compared to the same months of 2020. As expected, there were substantial improvements this year compared to the peak months of shutdowns and isolation due to COVID. But 2020 was definitely not a normal year as far as traditional spring and summer markets are concerned, so this week we decided to go a little further back and compare contract activity for this year with both 2020 and 2019, which was a more “normal” year for Alexandria real estate.

For the past three years, overall contract activity for the first eight months of each year breaks down as follows:

  • 2019 had 1,824 contracts
  • 2020 had 1,873 contracts
  • 2021 had 2,256 contracts

As the first two charts below show, those strong numbers for 2021 bear out for each price category and property type (condo, attached and detached homes). The third chart looks at contracts by month and demonstrates that this year mirrors 2019 with more activity during the spring months and a bit quieter in July and August. COVID was a major disrupter to that typical spring and summer cycle last year. (Source: BrightMLS. Data deemed reliable but not guaranteed.)

In August we included the following thoughts about what’s ahead for the second half of the year. We look forward to a strong fall market!

  • We expect buying activity to continue to improve — modestly — through the rest of the year.
  • While the abundance of condo inventory will gradually be absorbed, there will continue to be relative bargains available to the purchasers of smaller units.
  • Continuing a trend from the last couple of months, there will be marginally more new listings coming on the market than homes going under contract. That will gradually begin to ease the very tight supply of attached and detached homes.
  • Based on our own projections and the BrightMLS forward-looking Home Demand Index, almost every area of the city will be in the “high demand” category, signaling a healthy second half of the year.
  • The area with the highest demand will likely be the West End.
  • By price range, we will likely see detached homes priced between $700,000 and $1,250,000 continue to be exceptionally strong. For attached homes, the hottest price range will be $500,000 to $1,000,000. In both cases, these will be what we consider “extreme” seller’s markets.
  • For condos, the hottest part of the market will be for units priced between $500,000 and $800,000, but that price range will not be as strong as the market for attached and detached homes.

If you would like a question answered in our weekly column or to set up an appointment with one of our associates, please email [email protected] or call 703-549-9292.

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The Return to Earn initiative was launched in June of this year to help small businesses find and retain the talent they need while also helping unemployed Virginian’s transition back into the workforce.

As a program incentive, businesses can receive $500 per hire for a maximum of 25 employees. That means your business could receive up to $12,500 depending on hiring and staffing needs.

Basic eligibility requirements for program participation follow.

Employers must:

  • Be incorporated in Virginia
  • Be in good standing with the state
  • Have 99 employees or less

For new hires:

  • Must have been brought on board after May 31, 2021
  • The position must be W2 and come with a wage of $15 an hour or more (tips can be included in wage determination)
  • Must attest to having been unemployed at the time of hire*

The SkillSource Group, Inc. and Virginia Career Works Northern Region are working hard to make this program available to the small business community and to make the application, enrollment and reimbursement process as simple as possible. Stand out from the competition, increase new employee morale and take part in the Return to Earn Program. Click here to access an online application.

*Length of unemployment is dependent on time of hire

Just Listed in Alexandria

Just Listed highlights Alexandria City properties that came on the market within the past week. This feature  is sponsored by the Jen Walker Team (Licensed in VA) of McEnearney Associates Realtors®. 

Welcome back!

Jen Walker here with The Jen Walker Team! We are a real estate group based out of Alexandria. I, along with my two rock-star team members, Sue Kovalsky and Micki MacNaughton, have more than 35 years of experience in real estate and sold over $107 million in 2020.

Almost completely new in 2014. Totally rebuilt and renovated — new windows, roof, electrical, plumbing, fixtures, systems, layout and more. Situated on a corner lot in the heart of Del Ray, this beautiful 4 bed/3.5 bath detached beauty is truly a dream home. Completely remodeled in 2014 and meticulously maintained, prepare to be wowed! A large front porch greets you — enjoy quiet fall mornings sipping coffee and watching the world go by! From the porch, head inside — light and airy with tall ceilings, great lighting and ample square footage, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a model home.

The dining room flows easily into the kitchen and living rooms. The kitchen is a true chef’s dream. Gorgeous Carrara marble countertops are offset with crisp, white shaker-style cabinetry; a six-burner Wolfe range with a commercial hood is flanked by two windows and herringbone-set backsplash. A large island with wood cabinetry provides a great contrast to the neutral whites and grays and anchors the kitchen, which overlooks the bar area and family room. Additional features include a beverage refrigerator, coffee-bar area, ample cabinetry, pantry with custom roll-outs, built-in drawer microwave and more. Great for holidays or everyday living, enjoy appetizers at the kitchen peninsula or clear the space for a day of baking.

To the left of the kitchen is a perfect breakfast nook with built-in banquette seating. The living room overlooks a gas fireplace and has ample seating for family and friends! Glass French doors line the rear of the living room and overlook a serene, private stone patio and backyard. Rounding out the main level are a beautiful half bathroom and a rear entry with mudroom cubbies!

Head upstairs to a fabulous layout of 4 bedrooms filled with light and 2 full bathrooms. Each bedroom is spacious and has great closet space. Three bedrooms share a hall bathroom and feature tall ceilings, crown molding, ceiling fans and recessed lighting. The primary bedroom is a true retreat. Generously sized to easily accommodate a king-sized bed, this room features a fabulous tray ceiling, two walk-in closets and an en-suite bathroom. You will feel like you are escaping to the spa in the lovely bathroom with oversized shower and double vanity. A linen closet and laundry area round out the home’s upper level.

Head downstairs to the recreation room which can double as a 5th bedroom. With legal egress, this room could be used for an au-pair suite or could double as a playroom/guest space with a pull-out couch. With amazing ceiling height and light, you don’t feel like you are in a basement at all. A conveniently-located full bath can be found on this level as well as a utility/storage room. The fully-fenced yard is a true landscaper’s dream.

Planned and cared for by a landscape architect, the yard features flourishing limelight and oak leaf hydrangeas, green emerald arborvitae, miscanthus and more! Enjoy outdoor entertaining on the patio. The rear of the home also features a detached one car garage. Park here or use this space as a gym, office — the world is your oyster! With an amazing location, you can easily walk to shops and restaurants in Del Ray, and don’t miss Saturday’s Farmer’s Market in Pat Miller Square.

Located close to National Landing, Amazon HQ2 and Virginia Tech’s new campus, this location cannot be beat. Just a 15 minute drive to D.C., 8 minutes to Regan National Airport, close to Old Town and more, you will love living at 400 E Bellefonte! Welcome home!

400 E Bellefonte Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22301The Jen Walker Team

Sought after Clarendon Model in Fairlington Meadows! 1500 square feet of living space with hardwood flooring on the main and upper floors! Freshly painted and ready for your finishing touches. Spacious living room flows easily into the dining room. Kitchen with pass-through into dining — wall could be removed for a totally open feel. Walk out to the private bluestone patio with fabulous landscaping and new privacy fence. You’ll love quiet fall evenings dining al fresco! Upstairs you will find two bedrooms with a large bathroom. A finished lower level has a recreation room, office/den, full bathroom and laundry. You will love living in Fairlington — pools, playgrounds, tennis courts, the community recreation center and more! Just minutes to I-395, Shirlington and close to Del Ray and Old Town, don’t miss this opportunity! Welcome home!

3315 S Staggord Street, Arlington, VA 22206The Jen Walker Team

Stunning, completely remodeled and spacious 2 bedroom, 2 bath plus den condo in the desirable Hallmark building! Not a surface has been untouched in this beautifully updated corner unit with almost 1400 sq. ft. and completely remodeled in 2018. Enter into the foyer where you’ll find an open floorpan with tons of natural light and milled VA Oak hardwood flooring with superior cushion throughout. The gourmet kitchen features stainless steel appliances, quartzite countertops and ample cabinetry for storage.

Flow right into the dining room and open living room with LED recessed lighting, crown moldings, and access to the large patio overlooking the park. Don’t miss the extra den offering the perfect work from home space or additional living room. The primary room is a true retreat offering a custom en-suite bathroom with heated porcelain floors, walk in shower, a double vanity and a walk-in closet. You’ll have plenty of room for guests in the second bedroom and hall bathroom, also with heated floors! Plentiful storage is offered in this home in the laundry room with a full size washer and dryer, and a hall closet with a customizable shelving system. Park in your secured garage space and enjoy all of the amenities at the Hallmark building, including a gym, outdoor pool, tennis courts and community spaces. Walk right outside and enjoy the scenic Holmes Run Trail.

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This week’s Q&A column is sponsored and written by Lisa Groover of McEnearney Associates Realtors®, the leading real estate firm in Alexandria. To learn more about this article and relevant Alexandria market news, contact Lisa at 703-919-4426 or email [email protected]. You may also submit your questions to McEnearney Associates via email for response in future columns.

Question: What updates should I consider if I’m thinking about selling my home in a year?

Answer: This is a frequently asked question and one I am happy to address here. It is also a service I provide to my friends, neighbors and potential clients on a regular basis.

Start at the street, remembering that you only have one chance to make a first impression.

Does your home have curb appeal? Based upon the condition of the outside, would a buyer be motivated to check out the inside? Or do you need to think about painting, enhanced landscaping, new front door hardware or gutters? Is the driveway or sidewalk cracked? Does the fence need to be repaired or power-washed and stained? How old is your roof? (All buyers ask this question!)

Take a look at the photos of recent sales in your neighborhood to identify what the sellers did to get ready for market. Then walk through your house room by room to make a list of what types of repairs and/or upgrades would best showcase the features of your own home.

Because you have time before you are seriously thinking about selling, you can spread the updates and budget over a period of time. So many people wait until they are about to sell their house to make changes, and then wish they had been able to enjoy them earlier.

Consider the condition and age of your floors, walls, light fixtures, countertops, cabinets, bathrooms, and appliances and systems like the A/C, furnace, and hot water heater. Once you have your list, determine the priorities based upon your budget, keeping in mind that there are ways to update without a full remodel.

Unless you are planning to sell your house “as-is,” meaning you are not going to make any repairs or replace any of the mechanicals, buyers may pass on a purchase that will require a new HVAC system or roof or a home that has previous water damage. Fix those things upfront rather than waiting until a home inspection creates an opportunity for your buyers to void the contract.

Keep in mind that fresh paint is the least expensive way to make a big impact. I have a lime green kitchen, hot pink bathroom, and orange accent walls in addition to my collection of colorful contemporary art. I love the look, but I know that the colors will be distracting to buyers when the time comes. Although I have no intention of selling, I just had all of my hardwoods refinished, added new light fixtures and ordered some new furniture. I am also painting the walls white and moving my artwork around for a fresh new look to a home that I have lived in for almost 24 years.

Keep in mind that your goal when selling your home is to provide the potential buyers the opportunity to picture their own furniture and accessories in the space — not to worry about what they need to fix or replace. Take a step back, keep an open mind and consider bringing in a professional to make some suggestions.

Whether you are thinking of buying or selling — or just need suggestions for updating your home — I am happy to provide ideas or recommend contractors for your specific projects. I am a resource for the duration of homeownership, not just the buying or selling process. Feel free to reach out anytime!

Lisa Groover is a licensed real estate agent with McEnearney Associates, Inc. in Old Town Alexandria, VA. As an active member of the community since 1989, Lisa specializes in Alexandria and is thrilled to have the opportunity to work closely with her friends, neighbors, former clients and their referrals.

In addition to enjoying the Old Town lifestyle and the art-related events and activities, she is a member of a number of volunteer organizations. Having had eight Golden Retrievers, she is dedicated to helping other dog owners through the challenges of renting, buying and selling their home.

If you would like a question answered in our weekly column or to set up an appointment with one of our Associates, please email: [email protected] or call 703-549-9292.

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

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Address: 601 & 607 Oronoco Street
Neighborhood: Old Town
Listed: $5,995,000

A rare offering, the Potts-Fitzhugh House resides on a half-acre double lot in the heart of Old Town Alexandria.

The grand entrance greets you to a storybook foyer with magnificent architecture juxtaposed with historic period details and natural light creating both a majestic yet warm scene. Beyond the entry, the main level offers ideal settings for unforgettable entertaining with an oversized great room, stately dining room and gourmet kitchen. Designed with traditional elegance, this timeless estate is light, bright and open throughout.

The unique, expansive primary suite is the perfect escape that boasts a custom dressing room and spa bath with dual vanities and a soaking tub. The home features five additional bedrooms and four additional bathrooms. Equally impressive, outside the home, the verdant garden awaits. With patios, countless specimen trees and lush grounds, this estate is truly magical.

Just through the garden, you will find the bonus, detached two-car garage and studio space. Significant renovations and professional restorations over the years have been completed with great attention to detail. Walk along Oronoco Street’s beautifully tree-lined red brick sidewalk to the waterfront, restaurants, shops and entertainment. A masterpiece for the most discerning buyer.

Listed by:
Lauren Bishop
McEnearney Associates Realtors
202.361.5079
[email protected]
www.laurenbishophomes.com

Just Listed in Alexandria

Just Listed highlights Alexandria City properties that came on the market within the past week. This feature  is sponsored by the Jen Walker Team (Licensed in VA) of McEnearney Associates Realtors®. 

Welcome back!

Jen Walker here with The Jen Walker Team! We are a real estate group based out of Alexandria. I, along with my two rock-star team members, Sue Kovalsky and Micki MacNaughton, have more than 35 years of experience in real estate and sold over $107 million in 2020.

1305 Bayliss Drive, Alexandria, VA 22302The Jen Walker Team

Welcome to this adorable Cape Cod home on a huge lot in Alexandria City! Nestled in the desirable neighborhood of Tuckahoe, this 2 BD/1 BA home is just waiting for your personal touches.

Enter into the living area that features a wood-burning fireplace and tons of natural light. Flow right into the kitchen and dining area that overlooks the huge backyard and a gorgeous scenic view of Alexandria. Walk out onto the patio and enjoy fall evenings while dining al fresco. Two bedrooms and one bathroom are also on this level, boasting hardwood flooring and wonderful views. Walk to the lower level where you’ll find a bright and sunny recreation room overlooking the gorgeous green space. Tons of storage can also be found on this level.

This is a prime lot with almost 10,000 square feet — the possibilities are endless! Located near King Street, enjoy easy access to Old Town, shopping, dining, the Metro and the VRE!

702 W. View Terrace, Alexandria, VA 22301The Jen Walker Team
Open House: Sunday, Sept. 12, 1-3 p.m.

Timeless and sophisticated, this fabulously expanded Cape Cod exudes impeccable curb appeal, charm and modern elements. Nestled in the sought-after neighborhood of George Washington Park, you’ll experience the luxury of city living with almost 3500 square feet of finished living space.

Enter into this gorgeous home and you’ll appreciate the character of the hardwood floors, wood-burning fireplace, designer lighting throughout, and elegant built-ins. The gourmet kitchen features stainless-steel appliances, a double oven, tall plentiful cabinetry and a large island overlooking the great room. Don’t miss the butler’s pantry and extra storage off the kitchen, which flows right into your formal dining room. Entertain inside or out on the deck overlooking a great, fully fenced backyard. Upstairs, you’ll find a huge primary retreat featuring two closets, one that’s is a walk-in, and a spacious and bright primary bathroom with a shower, double vanity, and jetted tub. Two additional bedrooms and a hall bathroom complete this level. The lower level of this home does not disappoint with a large recreation room, an additional bedroom with en-suite bathroom — perfect for an in-law suite, au pair suite or guest room! This home is complete with a detached garage, providing even more storage.

702 W. View Terrace is less than one mile to the King Street Metro and the Amtrak. Take a stroll down to Old Town and enjoy dining, shopping, farmers markets and more!

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Photo by Tod Connell for the Civic Association of Hollin Hills

Hollin Hills is one of the largest collections of mid-century modern homes in the country, located right here in Alexandria! As you drive through, you can’t help but notice the floor-to-ceiling window, glass box homes that thrive on bringing the lush green surroundings inside. This renowned, historical community was designed by Charles Goodman in the late 1940s (and developed by Robert Davenport) with the inherent concept of connecting daily life with nature through large windows, pristine lines and minimalist design.

Goodman’s work is most notably exemplified by the varying angles in which the homes are sited — many appearing at an angle from the road vs. directly facing the street in a more traditional fashion. Why? When inside, you’ll notice his thoughtful design makes it so you can hardly see another home through most windows. The large windows showcase peaceful views of nature creating a feeling of seclusion and retreat from city life.

Additional notable highlights in this community are that trails, parks and green spaces abound. Hollin Hills is simply an intentional oasis of nature.

Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2013 for the significance of its architecture, community planning and development efforts, this neighborhood is a true community! Hollin Hills has its own volunteer-driven Civic Association and hosts annual events such as a July 4 picnic, Oktoberfest and Winter Potluck.

Photo by Tod Connell for the Civic Association of Hollin Hills

One of the most popular annual events is the Hollin Hills House and Garden Tour. This year it will be held on Saturday, Sept. 25. It’s no surprise to residents (and non-residents who frequent) that it’s already sold out! The Seward Group is one of the proud Premiere Sponsors of this event.

Hollin Hills is less than 30 minutes from our nation’s capital. It is bordered on the south by Sherwood Hall Lane, on the north by Paul Spring Road, on the east by Fort Hunt Road and on the west by Elba Road.

If you live in the Hollin Hills neighborhood, you don’t need to venture into D.C. for shopping and eating. Hollin Hills sits between Belle View Shopping Center and The Hollin Hall Shopping Center, both offering an array of well-known establishments. In the Hollin Hall Shopping Center, you’ll find the Hollin Hall Pastry Shop, a children’s clothing store (529 Hollin Hall), River Bend Bistro & Wine Bar (dine in), Roseinas (catering plus food/wine to go), Via Veneto, Village Hardware and the beloved Hollin Hall Variety Store (the local five-and-dime store). Belle View Shopping Center highlights include Unwined, Primos Family Restaurant, Dishes of India, The Virginia Florist and more. It’s also a quick drive — or lovely walk — to Old Town Alexandria and the Potomac River.

Westgrove Dog Park, another local favorite, is conveniently located just off Fort Hunt Road.

Houses don’t last long on the market in this coveted community, as anxious buyers are snatching them up and multiple offers are the norm. The average DOM (days on market) YTD (year to date) is 3 days, and the ratio of average listing price compared to average closed price is 104.7%. In other words, the average home in this neighborhood sells for 4.7% over list price so far this year.

Here’s a quick snapshot of market activity in July:

If you’re seeking a community feel, life close to Washington, D.C. and a mid-century modern home (BONUS: with access to a neighborhood pool membership), please reach out. Email [email protected], call 703-298-0562 or visit The Seward Group website to set up an appointment with one of our agents.

About The Seward Group: We are award-winning real estate agents with TTR Sotheby’s International Realty. Lyssa Seward, Brittanie DeChino, Melody Abella, Anita Edwards, Laura Catron, Gina Wimpey and Elaine McCall make up our team. We offer our clients Full-Spectrum Concierge Real Estate Service at all price points, assisting with every step of the process from beginning to end. We are licensed in Virginia, D.C. and Maryland with TTR Sotheby’s International Realty in Old Town Alexandria.


This week’s Q&A column is sponsored and written by Kim Peele and Hope Peele of The Peele Group and McEnearney Associates Realtors®, the leading real estate firm in Alexandria. To learn more about this article and relevant Alexandria market news, contact The Peele Group at 703-244-5852 or email [email protected]. You may also submit your questions to McEnearney Associates via email for response in future columns.

Question: How much is my home worth?

Answer: Whether you just bought your home or you have owned it for years, it’s always fun to keep up with the current value and to see how your investment has appreciated.

As interesting as it is to see the recent sales and speculate your home’s worth, it’s important to note that many homeowners get a false idea of value by looking at online sites and other assessments. While those sources offer estimates of home value, most of them are not accurate and are just very rough approximate values. This is fine if you are not planning to sell anytime soon. However, it is super important to know the correct value range when it’s time to put your home on the market.

Your most important resource for a true value assessment of your home will be an experienced professional Realtor.

First, let’s talk about where homeowners tend to find information on home values. Everyone gets a city or county tax bill, which includes an assessment of value. The tax assessed value can be much lower or much higher than what your home would actually sell for on the open market. In most cases, an assessor has never seen the inside of your property. They use a software program based on sales data and a rough comparison of property features. Their goal is to provide a tax bill for town revenues, and they are not purporting to be an accurate source of value.

Another popular, yet misleading, source of home data is online valuation sites. Zillow is the main one that homeowners cite when discussing value. However, as with most of the online sources, Zillow gets its information from a combination of county websites, user input and recent sales. They publish their margin for error on their website, and in many cases, the error range can be significant. For instance, in Arlington County, Zillow lists the median error rate as 2.5%, so their valuation of a $1 million home is likely to be off by $25,000 or more. In other areas, the error rate is even higher. To view the Zillow margins for error in Virginia, check out Virginia Data Coverage and Zestimate Accuracy.

Another frequently used source of value is the neighborhood grapevine. Your neighbor sold their home, had multiple offers and it sold for well above list price. You think that your home is better than their home, and therefore, you decide that your home value is even higher. Unfortunately, unless you are planning on listing your home within a few weeks of your neighbor’s sale, this data can be unreliable. The real estate market can change drastically in just a short period of time, and it is important to look at not only comparable sales, but also the most recent ones. And, of course, the ages of the roof, HVAC, windows and other features must be accounted for in a value calculation.

So, as you can see, county assessments, online sites and neighbors are frequently used unofficial sources of home value. It’s fine to keep tabs on the market using these sources if you just want a general idea of value, but when the time comes to get serious about selling your home, it’s time to drill down into the details to determine value.

When the time comes to sell your home, what do you do to determine a good list price?

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Just Listed in Alexandria

Just Listed highlights Alexandria City properties that came on the market within the past week. This feature  is sponsored by the Jen Walker Team (Licensed in VA) of McEnearney Associates Realtors®. 

Welcome back!

Jen Walker here with The Jen Walker Team! We are a real estate group based out of Alexandria. I, along with my two rock-star team members, Sue Kovalsky and Micki MacNaughton, have more than 35 years of experience in real estate and sold over $107 million in 2020.

Click here for Just Listed properties in Alexandria and call The Jen Walker Team to schedule a home tour at 703-675-1566 or email [email protected].

3333 Helen Street, Alexandria

Happy House Hunting!

In our highly competitive Alexandria market, the Jen Walker Team has the insider knowledge to connect you with homes that are not even public yet. With more than 35 years of experience, the Jen Walker Team has the expertise to answer questions, calm fears, and streamline your transaction. Want to see other homes not featured in this article? Contact our team today!

Please note: While The Jen Walker Team provides this information for the community, they may not be the listing agents of these homes. Equal Housing Opportunity.

McEnearney Associates Realtors®, 109 S. Pitt Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 #WeAreAlexandria

Just Listed highlights Alexandria City properties that came on the market within the past week. This feature is sponsored by the Jen Walker Team (Licensed in VA) of McEnearney Associates REALTORS®.

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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: Are there benefits to listing my home on the MLS vs. selling it privately?

Answer: In today’s hot real estate market, some sellers may be tempted to sell their home privately, though a private sale does not include full exposure to the market through the multiple listing service (MLS), the internet, and the thousands of agents and brokerage companies who work in this region. We’ve heard a number of possible reasons for wanting to do so, including convenience, privacy and security.

At McEnearney Associates, we believe homeowners have the right to make that decision. We also believe that it is crucial to be informed, and sellers should fully understand the implications of listing privately when making their decision. The simple fact of the matter is — regardless of the listing company — sellers almost always benefit from full market exposure, and the data validate our conviction.

BrightMLS, our regional multiple listing service, recently completed a two-year study looking at almost a half-million sales and analyzing the results of “off-market” sales vs. those sold through the MLS. To help ensure objectivity, the study was guided and validated by two Ph.D. economists who have no ties to the MLS. The results are conclusive.

The study showed sale records of homes that were sold through the Multiple Listing Service and promoted to the entire BrightMLS network of 95,000 real estate professionals, concluding that these homes sold for higher prices than homes sold off the Multiple Listing Service. The median sales price for homes sold on-MLS was 16.98% higher than homes sold off-MLS. Similar results are demonstrated across BrightMLS’s three major Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) of Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

As a subset of off-MLS sales, Bright analyzed “private sales,” which are defined as office exclusive listings promoted only within a brokerage office or company. Those office exclusives make up a small percentage of transactions, and nearly two-thirds (63%) ultimately end up not selling off-market and are instead promoted through the MLS. Like the findings from all off-MLS sales, homes marketed on the MLS sold for a median sales price of 16.84% more than those marketed through office exclusive arrangements. Additionally, those office-exclusive listings typically took longer to sell: Homes entered into the MLS from the start went under contract faster than properties that started as an office exclusive and were later marketed on the MLS.

It’s stunning that the results are so similar and so compelling.

Now, doesn’t this stand to reason? No individual agent or company has access to all of the buyers or even the majority of the buyers. Thus, in a time of record-low inventory, does it make economic sense to artificially restrict the number of buyers who could be interested in a property? To intentionally curb the demand side of the supply and demand equation?

Furthermore, we believe it is in the best interests of our clients to provide all qualified buyers equal access to all homes on the market, not only to protect equal housing opportunities but to ensure that they maximize the value of the investment in their property.

We’ll leave you with the following two questions:

  1. Is almost 17% a big price to pay for the perceived “convenience” of selling off-market?
  2. Who benefits most from an off-market sale — the seller or the listing company?

Read the full Bright On/Off MLS Study on our website.

If you would like a question answered in our weekly column or to set up an appointment with one of our Associates, please email: [email protected] or call 703-549-9292.

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

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