Q1 2022: Housing Market Round Up

Hello friend, I am happy you’re here. Thank you for your continued support!

Below you will find a massive amount of digestible housing data. If you need a refresher on real estate terms, I encourage you to re-visit my THIS BLOG that has more detail than you even knew you needed.

The burning question: what in the world is going on with Maryland Real Estate right now?

In Quarter 1, we saw lower inventory numbers close than in Q4 of last year. That is pretty standard; many closing in Q1 for me were ‘pending’ during the Holiday season. I’ve already experienced more movement three weeks into Q2.

Markets like Baltimore and Frederick -areas that did not have the same health issues we have been seeing in Central MD- are now sick with the same competition bug for buyers. Sellers are still selling high and buyers are coming out at the tail end of Q1 with the break in weather.

Interest rates are on the rise. This has caused panic for some people while others have been able to seamlessly navigate (both buyers and sellers) as they are educated on the current market standard practices.

Quick example for how interest rates impact your buying power. The purchase price is $400,000 and you are putting 5% down conventional in Anne Arundel County.

2020: At a 2.99% interest rate your payment is roughly = $2,180.00

2021: At 3.50% interest rate your payment is roughly = $2,285.00

Now: At 4.50% interest rate is roughly = $2,505.00

Looking at it differently: to get a $2,180 mortgage payment in 2020 you were capped at $400,000. To get a $2,180 mortgage payment now you are capped at $342,500.

What do you think is going to happen Nina?

We are going to remain in a low inventory market for a while. Many are saying two years for a rebound, some are saying longer. I still have buyers from 2020 and 2021 that have not found their homes. Circumstances are specific, absolutely, I think time is a luxury and if you can be thorough in your search, that is a gift. However, if you are in a crunch to buy, you can be picky about two things only: location and pricing bracket. But guess what?! That is what you should have been picky about all along.

buckle up, it’s time to snack on some numbers.

Showing single family houses in AACO, I have a hard time to not shop for myself. I love it here! There are too many places I want to live, but most of them land right here.

The median price is down about $40k and unit count down 600, ‘day on market’ count is about the same as the previous quarter. I toured a lot of price points in this specific bracket and almost every home went off the market within a week, regardless of pricing.

If you’ve been to the blog before, you know I have a serous interest in this particular group, because, I own a townhouse in AACO – skyrocket baby! Seeing my neighbors houses go up for sale $100k over what I paid for just a few years ago is truly a thrill. Have no fear, we are not moving anytime soon. We love our front porch stoopin’ too much.

The median sales price didn’t see much fluctuation this quarter, but the inventory in Q1 vs Q4 was at about 50% for townhomes and condos. The competitiveness (think of the list price to closed price ratios) was the same, but days on market went down by a week (well a business week of 5 days).

Come here all you cuties with Slate roofs! I love you! Price bumped up $25k from Q4 while units went down. The DOM (that’s ‘days on market’ for future) went WAY up. I think I know which house tipped the scales; it sat on the market for roughly 10,000 years. Also, look at that 99.7% you’re seeing – I haven’t witnessed a Sold/List price without a ‘1’ in front of it in a while.

Charm City Row homes are always fun to tour. It’s a blind date, but speed dating and you hit your head every so often (low clearance basements). But boy howdy do I like parking pads!

Median price was up with units were down nearly 50% from last quarter. DOM was 2x Q4 and the sold/list price ratio was down significantly. Just you wait, Q2 closings are rolling in and that number will be back up I promise you that.

Look at that bungalow! I sold it! We not so low-key stalked it when it was ‘coming soon’. I was in quarantine when it went live, have no fear I didn’t test positive and I have hired staff to support me, so I didn’t see the magic moment when they walked in BUT I got to flex my offer structuring skills sight unseen and won the house for them – cancelled the other showings and everything.

Price, DOM and Sold/List ratio are all steady here; units tipped down ever so slightly.

Maybe you can help me make sense of what happened here. I know Baltimore County is a massive geographic area that is not a clear cut radius, rather a ‘C’ shape around the City. BUT…

Price went up, inventory went down (ok I’m following), DOM doubled and Sold/List is about the same. Tell me what you think!

The sold price for a single family home in Howard County is 3% higher in Q1 than Q4 and the inventory was nearly cut in half. WOW! Where are these sellers moving after receiving a minivan filled with cash (not literally of course)? This market has always been competitive, I’m not terribly shocked and I am sure you aren’t either.

For perspective on what 3% means on a $640,000 house…that is $19,200. That IS a minivan with some mediocre mileage…at car/max…and no power windows. But still, $20k!?

Howard County Townhouse market sort of reminds me of getting picked for JV soccer in High School. Like, I was super athletic and well-rounded in all sports. My entire life I was told of how great I was. But, not making the cut for Varsity was only made worse by being told ‘I was next up and could be a ‘floater’ next year if I worked a little harder this season’; is what gave me my first frown line. Only to find out a sub-par player made the team because her parent was also a team coach, I didn’t have the same ‘in’ – ok that part might have prompted my ’11’s’ to come through.

I’m not bitter about you Howard County.

I am not one to make blanket statements. However, many of the Montgomery County listing agents I’ve had the pleasure working with are shady as heck. I’m talking, lying through teeth, making up elaborate backstories, not responding to anything via email/text rather by phone only. Again…frown lines. Wow, I am getting more and more bitter as we move down this post. Bring it back Nina, get your head in the game!

Truthfully, we had major success in the SFH department in Montgomery Q1. I enjoyed the quirky nature of layouts and general proximity to good take for all. We snagged a property, essentially waived every contingency and the appraised came back seriously over what we paid for it- first time in nearly two years. Lender even said, ‘yes, we thought it might be a typo, we don’t see much of that kind of instant-equity anymore’. Also helped that my buyer deserved some good karma after the hoops they jumped through.

To be walkable to a metro stop is one of my favorite ;wish list’ items from a buyer. With a TH budget in Montgomery County you can achieve that! Accessibility has always been one of my favorite things about where I live and I see it beautifully displayed in the Montgomery County market. You can be in the heart of DC in a matter of minutes.

See? I turned it around there.

The inventory was down from Q4 along with DOM and median price. Q2 has already moved 305 as of 04/20/2022 and we still have 10 weeks left in the quarter; things are looking up!

So…you scrolled to the bottom for a synopsis

  • We saw the first of many scheduled interest rate bumps
  • Sellers are still controlling the market
  • Inventory for Q1 was substantially lower than Q4
  • Success can happen for buyers if educated on market health and standard practices
I am taking on new sellers and buyers for Spring/Summer ’22
Call me (or share my information!) if you…
  • have no storage space left in your home
  • want to sell your home for a historically high price
  • are hearing rumors and too many opinions about real estate
  • want to move in 2022 or 2023
  • know someone starting the process who wants house hunting to be a fun experience
  • have been following the interest rate vs inventory shortage over the last months and don’t know if it is the best time for YOU to buy/sell

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