The housing market started off pretty hot in 2018 but then tapered off about halfway through the year. It was an exciting year in real estate, full of twists and turns. Still, a lot of people were able to sell their homes, and many were able to buy the homes they wanted. So what will the rest of 2019 bring for both buyers and sellers? To answer that, here are 5 real estate trends to watch in 2019 for Northern Virginia properties.
1. Booming New Construction
In 2019, new construction is going strong, according to those who watch these real estate trends, especially in multi-unit rentals. “Some of the largest markets in the U.S., while increasingly expensive, are seeing the most construction right now…. With new construction comes new opportunities for real estate investors and an assurance that demand is currently strong.” Several large “metro areas and surrounding communities will see a real surge in residential construction.”
2. Home Prices Slowly Rising
Home prices made a big jump in 2017 and early 2018, as much as 10% in some markets. In 2019, while home prices will continue to go up, the rate of increase will be much slower, which also means a lessened increase in the number of homes for sale. The primary contributing factors here are increasing mortgage rates and general economic uncertainty.
For sellers, this continued but slower increase in prices may mean fewer offers, but still plenty of opportunity for a good profit. And fewer offers will mean more intensive and more creative marketing. As a result, the services of a good agent will be even more valuable during 2019. (Find out more by calling 571-402-5155.)
Buyers must still carefully determine how much home they can afford before making an offer. And, again, partnering with a good local agent will remain nearly a necessity in 2019.
3. Rising, But Still Low-Interest Rates
One of the obvious real estate trends to watch in 2019 for Northern Virginia properties is that mortgage interest rates are rising. After several years of remaining fairly steady, mortgage interest rates are on the rise and expected to “increase to an average of 5% for a 30-year mortgage and 4.4% for a 15-year mortgage.” And the good news about rising rates is that it is an indication that the economy is fairly healthy, that “more people are willing to spend and borrow.”
With rising rates, sellers should expect their Northern Virginia property to be in the market a bit longer and possibly to receive fewer offers. Buyers should keep in mind that, although interest rates are rising, they are still comparatively low, which means that 2019 is a good year to buy a home.
4. High Tech in High Demand
Everything is now digital and high tech, and this phenomenon is definitely bleeding over into real estate trends. Renters and buyers have definite expectations for tech features in their homes. The high tech features they’re looking for range from energy-saving toilets to smart-phone controlled lighting – things that span the price range but make life easier. Other desired high tech features include Alexa capabilities, smart refrigerators, and voice-activated payment options.
5. Millennial Buying Strength
One of the noteworthy real estate trends to watch in 2019 for Northern Virginia properties is that the majority of home buyers will soon – very soon – be millennials. They are maturing, settling into stable careers, earning incomes of $88,000 and above – and looking to buy their first home. Market watchers maintain that “Millennials will lead the way in the number of mortgages, accounting for 45% of the market. They’ll be followed by Gen Xers at 37% and baby boomers at 17%.” So a parallel phenomenon that works hand in hand with the millennial buyer surge is that baby boomers are retiring, downsizing, and buying properties more suitable for retirement living.
Sellers must be aware that millennials shop almost exclusively online, so savvy online marketing will be a must. In addition, quality more than size, location and walkability, and low-maintenance lifestyle are the three most important considerations for millennials. For buyers, this millennial strength in home buying will mean a lot more competition for some properties. And this will mean, again, that you will need a good agent in your corner.
Pulling It All Together
These, then, are the 5 real estate trends to watch in 2019 for Northern Virginia properties. And in order to take advantage of these trends, especially new buying trends that are now emerging, whether you are buying or selling, your best bet is to partner with a qualified local real estate agent. For every opportunity also presents its own set of problems and challenges, and you will need professional guidance to navigate them successfully. We are prepared and ready to help. Just contact us today at 571-402-5155!