2014 Year in Review for Real Estate in McLean and Great Falls

by Karen Briscoe
January 7, 2015

It was the best of times and the worst of times in real estate in the Northern Virginia market area of McLean and Great Falls, Virginia in 2014.  The Huckaby Briscoe Conroy Realty Group with Keller Williams experienced the best year ever since the recession of the last decade in terms of volume sold.  That made it the “best of times” for the clients of HBC Realty Group-KW. The broader market of McLean and Great Falls however was down by almost 14% in terms of overall number of real estate transactions. 2014-year-in-review

Delving deeper into the data, it reveals that all price points experienced a loss in number of sales year over year in this market area.  The chart provided breaks out sales for both areas into the upper brackets which is considered over $1.25 million and the lower brackets which is below $1.25 million.

The number of sales in the lower bracket segment in this market area decreased the most.  This is a significant development and could have occurred for several reasons.  One reason is that there was a low supply of inventory relative to demand in the under $1.25 million segment.  It seems that if there wasn’t anything acceptable to buy, many buyers sat on the sidelines.  Another reason is that buyers perhaps found they had to pay more than in recent years for the same house.

One of the factors contributing to the low supply of inventory is that new home builders that pulled back during the recent recession have entered back into the market looking to purchase lots and land.  Much of the development in the inner Washington, DC suburbs of McLean and Great Falls is in-fill.  This type of development occurs by tearing down an older existing home for the land value.  When that scenario happens there is less available for owners that would buy the home to live in.  These scenarios actually can be healthy signs of recovery for the lower bracket price point.  Good homes priced correctly for the current market sold quickly and in a few situations with multiple offers.

All three of the upper bracket categories in McLean and Great Falls experienced sales in 2014 in line with 2013, just at a slower pace.  It is our opinion that Sequestration in the fall 2014 took the wind out of the 2013 market.  That trend continued through 2014 when in January, 2014 Mortgage reform was put into place. The good news is that 2015 is poised to be a strong year for real estate in this area.

The typical interim is 7-10 years between market cycles from peak to peak.  The Northern Virginia area saw real estate values peak in 2005-2006.  Therefore, our prediction for this area is that values will return to market peak in some segments beginning in 2013-2014 was on target.  Should similar conditions prevail, then 2015 should be a very good year in real estate in McLean and Great Falls!

 Karen Briscoe and Lizzy Conroy are active and experienced Realtors® in the Northern Virginia, suburban Maryland and Washington DC market place and would be delighted to assist whether for home buying or selling.  Please contact via the means most convenient for you:  www.HBCRealtyGroup.com, 703-734-0192, Homes@HBCRealtyGroup.com.

Karen Briscoe is Principal of the Huckaby Briscoe Conroy Group (HBC) and author of "Real Estate Success in 5 Minutes a Day". She is an Associate Broker in Virginia, a Certified Luxury Home Market Specialist, and a member of the Women’s Council of Realtors. Karen began her real estate career developing residential lots with the Trammel Crow Company in Dallas, and in commercial real estate with The Staubach Company in the Washington, DC Metro area. Karen has a Masters Degree from Southern Methodist University and her BA from Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri – her hometown.
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