The Dirt on the Market (March 2012)

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Subdivision Analysis: Villages of Purcellville 2011 09 15

Prices on the Rise

Last month there were no active listings in the Villages of Purcellville and there were three homes with pending contracts.  None of those three have settled yet (two are short sales) and their average list price is $318,267.  Whew, that’s low.  The good news though is that three new listings have entered the market with an average list price of $404,000 (none are distressed sales).  It seems that the community had to work through its short sales and now the market is back to a normal level.

There has been no change in the number of closings in Village of Purcellville since August (seven year-to-date closings).  The year-to-date median sold price is $349,000, down 11 percent from the 2010 median.  Sellers in 2011 had more modest expectations than in 2010; original list prices more accurately matched market conditions as seen in a much lower average price decrease.  But, seller contributions increased 43 percent to an average of about $5,000.  The time it takes to sell a home did improve though from an average of 99 days in 2010 to just 50 days through August 31, 2011.

Please call me if now is the time for you to sell your home.  Prices are back!  Let’s take advantage of low supply and high demand.


Western Loudoun County Analysis: 2011 08

What Housing Downturn?  Not Here!

According to the Metropolitan Regional Information Service (MRIS), 379 homes were sold in the Western Loudoun area (consisting of Middleburg, Purcellville, Round Hill, Hamilton, Lovettsville and Waterford) from January 1 to August 31, 2011.  That represents an 11.5 percent increase over the total sales volume in the first eight months of 2010 and a 24 percent increase over the sales volume over the same period in 2009.  This is especially encouraging since the 2010 market was artificially stimulated by the First Time Buyers Credit.  2011 did not enjoy that boost and is still outperforming 2010.

By contrast, January through August home sales in the entire county totaled 3,234 units, 5 percent behind the 2010 total at the same time and 9 percent behind the 2009 total.

The table below lists August sales and median sales prices by area. In the second half of the year, sales volume typically declines so it is not unexpected to see a 19 percent monthly decline in Western Loudoun in August.  The good news though is that sales in August beat the August 2010 total by 12.5 percent.  Purcellville continues to dominate Western Loudoun with 37 percent of total sales volume.

After a rare and dramatic decrease in July, the median sales price in Western Loudoun rebounded 26 percent from $335,000 to $422,500.  The year-to-date median sales price is $410,000 (equal to the 2010 median).  Compare that to $365,000 in Eastern Loudoun and $395,000 in Leesburg.  So far this year, 40 percent of home sales in Western Loudoun were priced between $200,000 and $399,999, 32 percent were priced $400,000 to $599,999 and 3 percent were priced above $1,000,000.

Other pertinent statistics include:

  • The average days on market spiked again in August, this time it reached 138 days, primarily due to the fact that five of the 54 total sales were on the market an especially long time – four took over a year to sell and one finally sold after more than three years.  However, five units also sold in less than 30 days, three in 30 to 59 days and 4 in 60 to 89 days;
  • Compare the 138 day average in August in Western Loudoun to 45 days in Eastern Loudoun and 47 days in Leesburg;
  • So far this year, the average days on market in Western Loudoun is 134 days, 9 percent higher than the 2010 average;
  • The average close price to average original list price ratio measures sellers’ willingness to negotiate price.  In August, the ratio fell to 90.5 percent from 91.9 percent in July.  The comparable ratio in Eastern Loudoun was 96.9 percent and in Leesburg it was 95.7 percent;
  • In August, 50 of the 54 Western Loudoun sales were single family detached homes with an average close price of $459,420.  Interestingly, four townhomes sold last month – two in Middleburg – with an unusually high average sold price of $404,999;
  • Perhaps a plentiful supply is the secret to Western Loudoun’s success this year.  One would normally think that the market is oversupplied when inventory levels are at 7.3 months but sales here are outperforming Eastern Loudoun and Leesburg which have much lower inventory levels (2.4 and 3.5 months respectively); and
  • The year-to-date share of short sales and foreclosures (24.8 percent share of total sales) in 2011 rose slightly in August.  Middleburg and Waterford have had only one distressed sale each so far this year explaining their low shares while the percentage exceeds 23 percent in the other local areas.

Spotlight on Hamilton

Through the end of August 2011,

  • 43 homes have sold in Hamilton this year, 16 percent higher than over the same period in 2010 and a remarkable 48 percent higher than the 2009 total;
  • The August median sales price was $465,000, 58 percent higher than the July median;
  • On average, the days on market for the homes sold in August was 87;
  • The close price to list price ratio was 91.4 percent in August, slightly better than the Western Loudoun average;
  • So far this year, 24 percent of Hamilton sales have been distressed;
  • The average close price for the four detached homes sold in August was $491,725; and
  • The supply of available inventory amounted to 5.4 months.

Fortunately, Western Loudoun’s very low median sales price in July remedied itself in August and sales volume continues to amaze. Even though houses take much longer to sell than elsewhere in the county, who would’ve thought Western Loudoun would be boasting such a good 2011 record?

Rosemary deButts, Realtor, is associated with Atoka Properties located in historic Purcellville. She has the Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource certification and is a Member, Institute of Residential Marketing. Rosemary earned her degree in Economics from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College and her MBA from Old Dominion University.  For more information on the Western Loudoun housing market and guidance in buying or selling a home, contact Rosemary today (rosemary@atokaproperties.com; 540-454-6792; http://www.housinganalyst.net).                        


Subdivision Analysis: Villages of Purcellville 2011 08 16

No Active Listings = No Competition!

There are no active listings in the Villages of Purcellville.  Three homes have pending contracts with an average list price of $318,267.  Two of the three are short sales and the average days on market was 187 days.

Three homes sold in the Villages in July to bring the year-to-date total up to seven closings.  One sold for $412,000 while the other two sold for $330,000 and $349,000.  The year-to-date median sold price is $349,000, down 11 percent from the 2010 median.  Sellers have clearly moderated their expectations; the average price decrease has escalated dramatically this year compared to last.  Compounding the issue, seller contributions have increased 43 percent to an average of about $5,000.  The time it takes to sell a home did improve though from an average of 99 days in 2010 to just 50 days through July 31, 2011.

Please call me if now is the time for you to sell your home.  Be the only option for folks looking for the small town charm of Purcellville and the convenience of your highly desirable neighborhood.


Western Loudoun County Analysis: 2011 07

Record Breaking Home Sales in July

According to the Metropolitan Regional Information Service (MRIS), the 67 home sales during July  in the Western Loudoun area (consisting of Middleburg, Purcellville, Round Hill, Hamilton, Lovettsville and Waterford) increased 12 percent from June and reached its highest monthly level in at least four years.  In fact, 2011 sales through July have outpaced total sales from January to July 2010 by 11 percent and beat the 2009 total through July by 23 percent.  In a typical year, the highest monthly sales in Western Loudoun are posted in June or July so we can expect monthly sales to decline through the rest of the year.

By contrast, home sales declined from 574 units in June to 452 in July for the entire county (-23 percent).

The table below lists July sales by area. Purcellville regained its dominance by posting 39 percent of the total sales last month in Western Loudoun in addition to a 53 percent increase over June and an 86 percent increase over last July.  Middleburg’s five sales in July represented a 400 percent increase over the one sale it had last July.

Although Western Loudoun posted stellar home sales in July, the median sales price took a huge hit.   The  median in both May and June was $435,000 in Western Loudoun.  In July, it dropped 23 percent and $100,000 to $335,000.  A whopping 51 percent of the increased number of sales in July were priced between $200,000 and $399,999 and only one home sold at a price higher than $1,000,000.  Compare that to June when only 33 percent of sales were priced in the $200,000 to $399,999 range and 3 homes sold for more than $1,000,000.   The good news though is that the year-to-date median sales price only decreased $5,000 from June to $410,000 which is equal to the 2010 median.  The median sales price more than doubled last month in Middleburg, the only Western Loudoun area to see a month-over-month increase.  Although not shown above and interestingly, the year-to-date median sales price in Waterford is $749,000 while it is only $550,000 in Middleburg.

Typically,  homes in Western Loudoun are on the market longer than those in other areas of the  county.  For example, the average days on market in Western Loudoun during July 2011 amounted to 87 days, down from a revised  114 days in June and 60 days last July. By contrast, homes sold in only 41 days on average in Eastern Loudoun during July  while the average was just 61 days in Leesburg.  Since January 2010, the lowest  average in Western Loudoun occurred last July (60 days) and the highest was in January 2010 (235 days).

Thirty homes (45 percent) sold in 30 days or less last month with an average close price of $350,480.  Compare that to 52 percent across the entire county with an average close price of $401,527.  There were three closings in Western Loudoun during July that took longer than a year to sell; the average close price of these units was $786,000.  They combined with three others in Eastern Loudoun and Leesburg to bring the county total to six units during July that were on the market over a year; the average close price of all six was $713,750.

Like sales totals, the days on market indicator varies significantly by individual market.  Lovettsville had the lowest July average with 43 days while the average in Middleburg was 208 days (one of the five was on the market 508 days).

The average close price to original list price ratio may reflect two things: sellers’ ability to accurately price their homes to match market conditions and/or their  willingness to negotiate price.  The ratio decreased in July to 91.9 percent from a revised 94.9 percent in June.  Western Loudoun normally has the lowest close price to original list price ratio; it was 96.5 percent in Eastern Loudoun and 94.8 percent in Leesburg last month.  Here in the west, the lowest ratio occurred in Hamilton (86.0 percent) and the highest was found in Waterford (94.2 percent).

In June, eight townhouses sold in Western Loudoun at an average price of $209,113.  The average price for the 59 detached homes sold last month was $426,211. Condominiums are not a factor in Western Loudoun.

The year-to-date share of short sales and foreclosures (24.6 percent distressed sales) in 2011 is the result of five consecutive months of declines from February to June.  Compare that 24.6 percent to this time last year when the year-to-date share of distressed sales was 34.9 percent.   Middleburg and Waterford have had only one distressed sale each so far this year explaining their low shares while the percentage exceeds 23 percent in the other local areas.

Even though the month’s supply of inventory reached its lowest point this year in July at 5.8 months, it is considerably higher in Western Loudoun than elsewhere in the county.  Note that the months of supply in Eastern Loudoun was 2.7 months during July and it was 4.0 months in Leesburg.  West of Leesburg, Waterford had the highest available inventory at 18.5 months and Round Hill had the lowest at 4.1 months of supply in July.

Spotlight on Round Hill

Through the end of July, 69 homes sold in Round Hill this year representing 21 percent of the Western Loudoun total.  That’s an average of about 10 homes per month which matches the 2010 pace.  The year-to-date median sales price was $370,000 at the end of July, -1 percent from the 2010 median of $373,000.   About 51 percent of Round Hill’s 2011 sales were priced between $200,000 and $399,999, another 25 percent were in the $400,000 to $599,999 range.  The average days on market in Round Hill was 115 days in June; it declined to 86 days in July.   The close price to original list price ratio was 93.9 percent in July, a far cry from 64.3 percent in February.  So far this year, 30 percent of Round Hill sales were distressed (one of the highest ratios in Western Loudoun) but the month’s supply of inventory, at only 4.1 months, is the lowest in the west and suggests it may be on the verge of being undersupplied.

Western Loudoun had a shocking number of sales in July, posting the highest monthly sales figure in years, something the county as a whole cannot claim.  However, the dramatic decline in the median sales price is troubling and hopefully a one-month anomoly.

Rosemary deButts, Realtor, is associated with Atoka Properties located in historic Purcellville. She has the Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource certification and is a Member, Institute of Residential Marketing. Rosemary earned her degree in Economics from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College and her MBA from Old Dominion University.  For more information on the Western Loudoun housing market and guidance in buying or selling a home, contact Rosemary today (rosemary@atokaproperties.com; 540-454-6792; http://www.housinganalyst.net).                        


Month’s Supply of Inventory by Price Range 2011 06

Not Enough Inventory for Homes Priced below $800,000

The cluster of columns on the far right of the graph below illustrates the month’s supply of inventory in Loudoun County for all price ranges.  A market is generally considered to be in equilibrium (there is enough supply to satisfy demand) when the MSI equals four to five months.  As you can see, Loudoun County is undersupplied in the eastern portion of the county and in Leesburg.  However, there is enough supply in western Loudoun by virtue of its 6.4 month’s of supply.

If we break this down by price range, we can see that all three areas are undersupplied at list prices below $200,000.  Further, eastern Loudoun and Leesburg are undersupplied at all prices below $800,000.  Western Loudoun has a healthy supply of inventory for homes priced $200,000 to $599,999 but becomes oversupplied with homes priced over $600,000 and it is severely oversupplied with homes priced in excess of $1,000,000 (only four homes priced $1,000,000 or more have sold in all of Loudoun County this year, all in Waterford).

As of July 7th, there were 20 active listings in eastern Loudoun, 69 in Leesburg and 77 in western Loudoun priced over $1,000,000.  Compare that to the 50 listings for homes priced below $200,000 (21 in eastern Loudoun, 23 in Leesburg and 6 in western Loudoun) at the same time.

This analysis confirms that Loudoun County continues to suffer from a shortage of supply that is severely constraining existing home sales.

The month’s supply of inventory is calculated by dividing the active listings in a particular area (snapshot of activity) by the sales in that area over the previous month.  The definition of active listings excludes rentals and pending sales (those with contingencies or contracts) in this analysis.  Close prices are used for the sales and current list prices are used for the active listings to group them by price range.


Western Loudoun County Analysis: 2011 06


Western Loudoun Sales and Prices Strong in June

According to the Metropolitan Regional Information Service (MRIS) and as of June 30, 2011, the year-to-date preliminary existing home sales (257 units) in the Western Loudoun area (consisting of Middleburg, Purcellville, Round Hill, Hamilton, Lovettsville and Waterford) exceeded the year-to-date total at this time in 2010 by four units and by 43 units over 2009.  The highest monthly sales are typically recorded in June in this highly cyclical industry and June did not disappoint in Western Loudoun.  59 homes closed during June in Western Loudoun, up from a revised 46 in May and 57 during June 2010.  This was the highest monthly total since at least January 2009. For the sake of comparison, the year-to-date sales totals in all of Loudoun County are still the lowest in at least six years.

The table below lists June sales by area. Sales in Round Hill outpaced Purcellville for the first time since March of 2009, doubling the number of sales there during May.  Lovettsville posted a huge monthly gain, jumping from 3 sales in May to 10 in June.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As shown above, the June median sales price in the Western Loudoun area increased 1 percent to $440,000 from $435,000 in May. At this time last year, the median was only $415,000 (+6 percent).  June’s increase boosted the year-to-date median to $415,000, reflecting the highest annual median since 2007.  (The year-to-date median sales price for all of Loudoun County is also the highest in four years at $375,500.) Four homes closed in Waterford in June that ranged in price from $749,000 to $1,065,000 resulting in a monthly median sales price of $935,000 and a year-to-date median of$775,000 – clearly the area leader so far this year.

Year-to-date, 37 percent of the sales in Western Loudoun were priced between $200,000 and $399,000, matching the share in this price range during 2010.  However, the percentage of homes sold at prices between $600,000 and $799,999 was 16 percent in 2011; it was only 13 percent in 2010.

Typically,  homes in Western Loudoun are on the market longer than those in other areas of the  county.  For example, the average days on market in Western Loudoun during June 2011 amounted to 115 days, down from a revised  163 days in May and 107 days last June. By contrast, homes sold in only 41 days on average in Eastern Loudoun during June while the average was just 57 days in Leesburg.  Since January 2010, the lowest  average in Western Loudoun occurred last July (60 days) and the highest was in January 2010 (235 days).  While 42 percent of the June closings were under contract within 30 days of listing, 10 percent took a year or longer to sell.

Like sales totals, the days on market indicator varies significantly by individual market.  Middleburg and Purcellville tied for the lowest average with 51 days while the June average in Waterford was 248 days.

The average close price to original list price ratio may reflect two things: sellers’ ability to accurately price their homes to match market conditions and/or their  willingness to negotiate price.  The ratio increased significantly in June to 94.4 percent from a revised 86.6 percent in May.  Western Loudoun normally has the lowest close price to original list price ratio; it was 97.0 percent in Eastern Loudoun and 96.8 percent in Leesburg last month.  Here in the west, the lowest ratio occurred in Waterford (86.9 percent) and the highest was found in Hamilton (98.4 percent).

In June, four townhouses sold in Western Loudoun at an average price of $235,000.  The average price for the 55 detached homes sold last month was $511,980. Condominiums are not a factor in Western Loudoun.

The year-to-date share of short sales and foreclosures (24.5 percent distressed sales) in 2011 is the product of two months below 19 percent (April and June).   Compare that to this time last year when theyear-to-date share of distressed sales was 34.1 percent.   Middleburg and Waterford have had only one distressed sale each so far this year explaining their low shares while the percentage exceeds 22 percent in the other local areas.

The month’s supply of inventory is also considerably higher in Western Loudoun than elsewhere in the county.  As of July 7th, there was a 6.4 month’s supply of available inventory in Western Loudoun.  While it is high, there was improvement; the month’s supply of inventory exceeded 8 months from January through May.  Compare 6.4 months of supply to 2.1 months in Eastern Loudoun during June and 2.9 months in Leesburg.  Middleburg had the highest available inventory at 21 months and Round Hill had the lowest at 3.1 months in June.

Spotlight on Purcellville

Purcellville is having a good year compared to its recent history.  It typically has the highest sales volume in Western Loudoun and has posted 101 sales so far this year.  By comparison, at the end of June 2010, Purcellville had only 95 total sales and at the same time in 2009, sales only totaled 82 units.  Close prices in Purcellville ranged from $139,500 to $2,250,000 this year.  Of the 101 2011 sales, 46 percent were priced between $400,000 and $599,000 and 30 percent were priced between $200,000 and $399,999.  Four homes sold at prices exceeding $1,000,000 (three more than in Middleburg!).  The median sales price in 2011 was $425,000 as of June 30th, +6 percent over the 2010 annual median.  The June median was $458,000, 4 percent higher than the May median and 12 percent higher than the June 2010 median.  Finally, about 28 percent of the sold homes this year were distressed.

Western Loudoun is having a banner year compared to Loudoun County as a whole.  2011 Sales have not suffered here in comparison to 2010 sales as they were expected to do in the absence of the First Time Buyer’s Credit this year.  If historical trends hold though, sales will decline from 59 units beginning in July through the rest of the year. However, I predict we will end the year ahead of 2010 totals.  Additionally, median sales prices have increased 7.5 percent since January, clearly indicating a healthy market.

Rosemary deButts, Realtor, has lived in Purcellville for almost twenty years and is associated with Atoka Properties, currently located near Bloom.  She has the Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource certification and is a Member,
Institute of Residential Marketing. Rosemary earned her degree in Economics from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College and her MBA from Old Dominion University.  She and her husband, Jimmy (a lifelong resident of Western Loudoun), have seven children, six of whom are Loudoun Valley High School alums.  For more information on the Western Loudoun housing market and guidance in buying or selling a home, contact Rosemary today (
rosemary@atokaproperties.com; 540-454-6792; http://www.housinganalyst.net).