Is it time to buy a home in Montgomery County? Maybe. While the available data can be interpreted in a lot of different ways, the question to ask yourself is the recovery starting to take hold?
It’s easy to over-analyze macro county level views of different markets. Affectionately termed “paralysis by analysis,” over-analysis often leads to bad investments.
The issue, therefore, is having the experience to recognize the difference between a bubble and a long term trend. The challenge with typical real estate macro views is that they tend to show diffuse view of existing trends.
For example, Bethesda and Chevy Chase may see long-term rise in prices, higher closed price to original list price ratio, and shorter days on market – in other words, homes are selling close to listing prices quickly.
The below chart compares the medium sales price in Bethesda to Chevy Chase over the past year.
Yet in nearby Gaithersburg and Germantown, home sellers might be experiencing a completely different market. Confused? Remember the first rule of real estate: location, location, location.
The below chart compares the medium sales price in Gaithersburg to Germantown over the past year.
The price increases in most of the Montgomery County market has slowed in 2014, but prices stayed relatively stable. While the amount of new listings increased, the amount of home sales decreased – meaning some homes listed never found a buyer.
The takeaway: Montgomery County has a lot to offer potential buyers with a variety of housing styles in every price segment. Interest rates are still at historical lows and in many cases you can buy a home for less money than you could rent it for.
We have over 15 years’ experience appraising properties in Montgomery County, MD. If you need an experienced Maryland Certified Residential Appraiser visit us at www.MarylandAppraisal.com
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