Arlington home sales, February 2019

This home in the Lyon Park community of Arlington currently is on the market, listed at $897,000 by Natalie Roy of Keller Williams.

Home sales were flat but average prices were up slightly in February across the Northern Virginia homes market, as anticipation of Amazon’s plopping down roots in Crystal City caused a variety of impacts on the market.

“Some members are telling us that their sellers are taking Arlington properties off the market or delaying listing in the hopes that prices will increase as the Amazon ‘HQ2’ activity ramps up,” said Ryan Conrad, CEO of the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors, discussing home-sales data reported March 13.

Across Northern Virginia, home sales totaled 1,146 in February, an increase of a statistically insignificant three homes from a year before, according to figures reported by MarketStats by ShowingTime.

Data represent market activity in Arlington and Fairfax counties and the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax and Falls Church.

The average sales price of all homes that went to closing stood at $571,375, up 2.6 percent from $556,791, and was higher in two of the three segments of the market:

• The average sales price of single-family properties rose 2.8 percent to $761,154.

• The average sales price of attached homes, such as townhouses and rowhouses, was up 2.3 percent to $436,022.

• The average price of condominiums was down 0.4 percent to $343,247.

“Home sale and price averages held steady – but we are seeing upward price momentum in Arlington, Fairfax County and Falls Church,” Conrad said.

There has been a noticeable uptick in investor interest, according to NVAR president Christine Richardson. “I’m hearing from my colleagues that they’re fielding more calls from investors asking about the Arlington market – both in- and out-of-state,” Richardson said.

Open-house activity in Arlington has also risen.

 “Last weekend I had 37 groups come through an open house,” Richardson said. “This reflects the [limited] availability of inventory, which continues to be well below the number of houses on the market in 2018.”

Inventory as the market transitions from winter to spring has proved a concern; the 1,896 properties on the market across the region represent a decline of nearly 21 percent from a year before.

“This is exacerbating an already tight market in terms of inventory,” Richardson said. “I have to believe that we are going to see larger increases in average sales price as we move through the spring market.”

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