Virginia has long been an attractive destination for those seeking to call it home. Over the years, the state has seen fluctuating market conditions, economic shifts, policy changes, and societal transformations that have impacted the real estate market.
Whether you’re contemplating your next property investment, planning a relocation, or simply curious about the state of the market, this article will give you the latest update on trends in housing prices and some tips for buyers and sellers this year.
Is Virginia Still a Great Place to Buy a Home?
Virginia is home to some of the best public schools, universities, and tourist attractions in the United States. However, housing prices have historically been among the highest in the country.
Nonetheless, Virginia is still a great place to buy a home in today’s market. Here are some additional considerations for prospective Virginia homeowners to take into account before making the move.
Cost of Living
Housing, groceries, transportation, and taxes all contribute to the cost of living in Virginia. Luckily for new homeowners, Virginia has a reasonable cost of living in most parts of the state.
In 2022, MERIC ranked Virginia at 31st out of 50 states, meaning that Virginia is right in the middle of the pack when it comes to cost of living.
Virginia’s Job Market
It’s important to consider the job market before moving to Virginia. Northern Virginia is home to a strong job market with many government and tech-related opportunities, while other areas in the state may have different industries driving their economies.
Overall, Virginia has a strong job outlook with a projected employment increase of 10% in all industries leading up to 2030. Sectors with the highest growth potential include construction, manufacturing, service business, and natural resources.
Trends in the Virginia Real Estate Market
The economic factors above show that Virginia is a great place to find employment for those looking to move to the state. But what about housing?
The Virginia real estate market has seen its fair share of challenges and opportunities so far in 2023, with a decrease in home sales and an increase in housing prices.
The year-over-year change in home sales dropped by nearly 21 percent in 2023 due to the low inventory and rise in interest rates in the US. Buyers in Virginia are struggling with limited options on the market, while sellers reap the benefits of higher prices for homes.
Here are some more key data points on the Virginia real estate market that both buyers and sellers should understand before making any decisions:
- Median Sale Price: The median sale price in Virginia for July 2023 stood at $400,000, reflecting a 3.9 percent increase compared to the previous year. This figure is on par with the nationwide median of $406,700 reported by the National Association of Realtors.
- Days on Market: Homes in Virginia took an average of 23 days to sell in July 2023. While this is three days longer than in the previous year, it still represents a relatively speedy market.
- Inventory Shortages: The state is grappling with a severe shortage of homes for sale, with just a 1.8-month supply. This falls significantly short of what is considered a balanced market, which typically requires a 5-to-6-month supply.
- Competitive Pricing: Redfin data reveals that homes in Virginia are selling for just over their list price, with a sale-to-list ratio of 100.6 percent.
- Closing Costs: According to CoreLogic’s ClosingCorp, Virginia’s closing costs typically amount to 1.7 percent of the home’s sale price, translating to an average of $6,800 on a median-priced $400,000 home.
Should You Buy or Sell in the Virginia Housing Market?
For Home Sellers
Virginia presents favorable conditions for home sellers. As you can see from the data above, median sale prices are on the rise, demand from buyers remains strong, and homes are selling relatively quickly.
Many mortgage and real estate experts advise potential sellers to take note of the local market’s conditions before listing. With ample buyers in the marketplace and few properties to purchase, sellers have the upper hand in the current Virginia market.
For Home Buyers
Virginia’s housing market poses more challenges for buyers, as rising home prices and limited supply are defining features of the current landscape.
New listings and active listings have both decreased by approximately 20 percent compared to the previous year. However, there is a slight silver lining, as the average months of inventory have increased by 4.9 percent year-over-year.
Some lower-priced Virginia markets, like Portsmouth, may offer more budget-friendly options for buyers who may be priced out of the higher-cost areas.
Tips for Sellers in the Virginia Market
Being a seller in today’s market allows you to cash in on the elevated home prices. Here are some additional tips for sellers:
- Price Realistically: Pricing your property right is crucial. Research recent sales in your area and consult with a real estate agent to determine a competitive and realistic listing price.
- Improve Curb Appeal: First impressions matter. Invest in curb appeal by maintaining the exterior of your home, landscaping, and making any necessary repairs.
- Market Effectively: Your real estate agent should have a solid marketing plan in place to showcase your property. This may include professional photography, online listings, open houses, and targeted advertising.
Tips for Buyers in the Virginia Real Estate Market
Buyers have a unique challenge of navigating a sellers market with limited inventory and high prices. Here are some tips for buyers in the Virginia market:
- Understand Your Budget: Before you start your search, determine how much you can afford. Consider not only the purchase price but also ongoing costs like property taxes, insurance, and maintenance.
- Research Neighborhoods: Virginia has a diverse range of neighborhoods, each with its unique character and amenities. Research different areas to find the one that best suits your lifestyle and budget.
- Be Prepared for Competitive Bidding: In many parts of Virginia, the real estate market can be competitive. Consider making a strong, well-structured offer, and be open to negotiation to secure the deal.
Now is still a great time to buy or sell a home in the Virginia market. The state is experiencing an economic boom, with many industries projected to grow by nearly 10% over the next several years.
However, it’s important to consider your budget and finances when moving to Virginia, as housing prices and the cost of living is higher than other parts of the country. Need to sell your home for cash? Capable Home Buyers will make you a cash offer for your home in less than 24 hours! Give us a call at 757-699-1201 or visit our website for more information on getting started.