The DC housing market … why is it so hot

Every recent market report seems to add the caveat that DC is an anomaly. Most markets are still attempting to recover from the 2006 crash. DC took a bit of a dip, but is roaring back. How can this be happening?  The economy is certainly not much better today than it has been for several years. Federal workers haven’t seen a raise in pay for a few years. If all economic indicators remain uncertain, why are homes in DC costing more every month?

The answer is as plain as day.  DC has jobs.  Very few places across the country can make the same claim. DC is a small 10 square mile area. There are only so many homes that will fit. Engineers and builders and architects can do a lot of things …. they can not create more dirt. Space is limited in DC. Put those two factors together and you have recipe for rising home prices (regardless of the economy).

This little chart covers the phenomena.  At the top, the various places new residents come from are depicted.  People moving to DC come from Universities (college dorms or off campus shared housing), their parent’s home, homes they own in other parts of the country or homes they rent elsewhere.  They want to live in or near DC and begin a search. Almost every last one of them jumps on the internet and begins their search there.  After all, there are hundreds of thousands of websites that share available homes in DC.  The majority of the people searching do not understand that the accuracy of the data is often outdated or limited at best.  For every single home/town home/row home/condo listed there is just one property. How that property is displayed has more to do with syndication by agents and brokers than it has to do with the actual property. (A word to the wise: If you want to be more successful in your search, contact an agent in the area. Talk to someone that knows more about the area than can be revealed in wikipedia or some local towns site. Boots on the ground, an ability to listen and then share information is the best way to discover DC (or any other area for that matter).

housing flow chart

As always, DC has more people wanting to live here than there are places to live.  More buyers than available homes creates an imbalance and that old supply and demand process takes over.  Multiple bids appear, prices continue to rise and the market remains “hot”.  Regardless of promises that might be made by some, the truth is you may not find a home you are seeking for the price you are willing or able to pay.  I certainly would never guarantee that home prices will continue to rise, but I promise you that I can see nothing in the marketplace that will slow down the DC market in the near or distant future.

If you are considering a move to DC, you need factually based assistance.  You need to begin the process now, rather than later. You need to begin putting together a comprehensive home buying plan today.  Remember, a comprehensive plan begins with a discussion with a lender. Know what you can comfortably afford. Then, and only then, take the next step. Contact an agent that knows DC. Speak with someone that knows the difference between Adams Morgan and Madame’s Organ. Have a conversation with some one that understands the difference between Petworth and what is a pet worth, the difference between NOMA and no mas or the difference between the Capitol and Capitol Hill.  Subtle differences of a few blocks can add 30 minutes to an hour or more to your commute each day. A map of the subway (Metorail Line) does not include information regarding ease of use or ease of transfer.  A google map of DC will not reveal the walking score of a neighborhood.

DC is my town. I was born here. I know the neighborhoods. I know the Metro stops. I know the nightlife. This is a great place to live. Before you move here and decide on an address, don’t you think we might need to talk.  My phone number is 301-509-5111.

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Carry Lofts … DC’s upscale affordable new address

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Carry Lofts 257 15th St SE Washington DC 20003

Priced in low to mid $500’s

(condo fees under $350 per month)

Carry Lofts is located a few blocks east of Eastern Market at 257 15th Street SE . The project has three two-bedroom units and a one-bedroom w/den condo that range in size from 928 to 1,022 square feet (monthly condo fees run in the mid-$300s). Each unit is unique in layout and style.

Every unit in the building has up to 18-foot ceilings, unique loft details, stainless steel railings, private outdoor space, silestone counters in the kitchen, stainless steel appliances, gas cooking, distinctive lighting features with dimmers, prewired for security systems, Dolby surround sound and two full bathrooms (one has a shower, the other has a tub), modern full size front-loading washer/dryer and central A/C. Every appliance (in both the kitchen and laundry) is Energy Star rated. A casual walk through each unit reveals an attention to detail not always found in new condos as well as the use of top of the line materials in every facet of construction.  And on top of all of that, every unit has multiple exposures offering plenty of natural light.

The private residential lobby has an electronic guest entry system and the building has bicycle storage. Nearby features are a upscale Safeway Food Store, 2 metro stations, the aforementioned Eastern Market and Barracks Row. The neighborhood is walkable.

The owners, builder and management company have all put their efforts in creating a delightful building that will be home to 4 very happy owners.  If you, or someone you know, is looking for that perfect home in DC, the Carry Lofts might just be the spot they are seeking.  I would be glad to arrange a private tour of the building, just give me a call at 301-509-5111.

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