A quick look at the Arlington and Northern Virginia Real Estate market for 2012:

20.52% Increase in dollar sales volume
3.01% Average price (sales price of home) sold 17.00% Total units sold (2,788)
-13.11% Days on market (53 days on average)

Northern Virginia:
14.80% Increase in dollar sales volume
4.36% Average price (sales price of home) sold 10.08% Total units sold (19,248)
-15.00% Days on market (51 days on average)

The overall market is improving but still off 5 year averages. Locally, the DC metro market, particularly Northern Virginia, was positive: number of sales, home prices up and selling faster. 2012 was a ‘sellers’ market, more buyers than sellers. This trend will most likely continue into 2013.

The new home construction market is changing. For the most part, big national builders have left Northern Virginia mar- ket, focusing on areas where there is more land. Custom builders are very busy with specs and ‘for client’ construction. This has been a trend in Arlington for a number of years; driving through Vienna and McLean are busting with new custom homes and renovations.
Talking with my custom builder friends, they are optimistic for 2013.

2013 predictions: I see the market improving, barring a major outside event. Interest rates should remain close to current levels and banks are eager to lend to qualified builders and owners. It may take patience, hard work (looking). I think there will continue to be good opportunities for sellers, buyers and investors. As with any investment, it’s important to know the risks, have clear goals and be prepared to move when the right property is available.