DC area home prices and sales volume climb again in October

Posted on November 12, 2019 by Corey Hart



Washington D.C. Metro median sales prices at October record of $460,000; sales rise by a strong 9.3%; inventory levels continue to plummet

Rockville, MD – (November 12, 2019) – The following analysis of the Washington, D.C. Metro Area housing market has been prepared by Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. of MarketStats by ShowingTime and is based on October 2019 Bright MLS housing data.

Click here to view PDF version of this report


  • The October 2019 Washington D.C. Metro area median home price of $460,000 set a new October record, up 7.9% or $33,525 compared to last year.  This was the largest year-over-year percentage gain since December of 2013 and the 37th consecutive month of price appreciation.
  • Regional sales volume across the DC Metro area was up 15.1% to $2.4 billion,
  • Closed sales of 4,435 were up 9.3% compared to last year, the second consecutive month of near double-digit gains in closed sales. New pending sales were up 4.1% to 4,926.
  • New listings of properties compared to last year were nearly flat at 6,230.
  • Resulting overall inventory levels were down to the lowest October level of the decade at 8,495.
  • The average percent of original list price received at sale was 98.5%, up from 97.8% last year and at the highest October level of the last ten years.
  • Median days on market were at the lowest October level of the decade at 14.


  • October’s median sales price of $460,000 was a 7.9% or $33,525 gain over last year and a 6.7% increase over last month. 
  • Compared to last year, prices for single-family homes rose 7.0% to $565,000, condo prices also gained 7.0% and rose to $329,500 and townhome prices rose 3.9% to $441,750.
  • Prices are well above the 5-year average of $419,720 and the 10-year average of $390,113.
  • This month’s median sales price is 43.7% higher than the $320,025 trough seen in October 2011.
  • Falls Church City saw a 7.5% decline in median sales price but still had the highest in the region at $745,000, while Prince George’s County remains the most affordable area, with a median sales price of $315,000, a 12.5% increase over last year.
  • Washington D.C. (-3.9% to $578,858) and Fairfax City (-2.9% to $545,000) also saw declines in median sales price, but everywhere else prices rose, with the largest percentage gain in Fairfax County (+12.6% to $535,000) and the smallest in Montgomery County (+3.5% to $439,850).
  • For the year-to-date, prices across the region are up 4.2% to $458,244.


  • The 4,435 closed sales in October were up 9.3% over last year and 11.7% over last month.
  • Sales of townhomes rose by 13.9% to 1,211, while single-family detached home sales were up 11.9% to 1,983.  Condo sales increased by 3.7% to 1,239.
  • Sales are above both the 5-year average of 4,130 and the 10-year average of 3,748.
  • October closed sales are 57.5% above the October 2011 trough of 2,815 and are 2.7% above the 4,320 sales in October of 2017 that had been the peak until this month.
  • Sales activity was mostly up across the region, with the largest percentage gain in Montgomery County (+19.2% to 1,041) and the smallest percentage gain in Alexandria City (+2.8% to 218).  Only Arlington County (-4.6% to 210) and Fairfax City (-13.3% to 26) saw declines.
  • For the year to date, regional closed sales are up 1.3% to 46,857.


  • There were 4,926 new pending sales in October, up 4.1% from last year and up a slight 0.3% from last month.
  • New pending sales of townhomes were up 9.3% to 1,374 and new pending sales of single-family detached homes were up 5.2% to 2,253.  However, new pending sales of condos slipped a slight 0.5% to 1,298.
  • New pending sales are above both the 5-year average of 4,857 and the 10-year average of 4,561.
  • New pending sales this month were 34.3% more than the October 2010 low of 3,669 and are just 0.9% below October 2017’s peak of 4,969.
  • New pending sales across the region were mixed, with Washington D.C. seeing the largest percentage gain (+14.8% to 892) and Falls Church City seeing the largest decline (-37.5% to 10).


  • For the second month in a row, new listings rose by a tiny 0.3%, translating to just 6,230 new listings this October, although still the highest October level of the decade.  This was a seasonal 7.9% decline compared to last month.
  • New listings of single-family detached homes compared to last year were down 5.0% to 2,791, but new listings of condos were up 5.5% to 1,760 and townhomes were up 7.7% to 1,677.
  • New listings are above both the 5-year average of 5,955 and the 10-year average of 5,591. 
  • October new listings are 35.8% above the October 2012 low of 4,588.
  • New listing activity was also mixed, with the largest percentage gain in Fairfax City (+29.4% to 44) and the largest decline in Falls Church City (-70.0% to 9).
  • For the year-to-date, regional new listings are down 2.8% to 65,220.


  • Active inventories declined 18.2% to just 8,495, the fifth consecutive month of double-digit declines in year-over-year inventory levels and the ninth consecutive month in a row of declines.  Compared to last month, inventories were nearly flat.
  • Compared to last year, condo inventories are down 21.6% to 2,083, single-family detached inventories are down 17.0% to 4,634, and townhome inventories are down 14.7% to 1,778. 
  • Inventories are well below the 5-year average of 10,410 and the 10-year average of 11,257.
  • October inventory levels are about half the peak level of 16,629 seen in October 2010.
  • Inventory levels declined everywhere except in Washington D.C., where they rose a slight 1.4% to 1,841.  The smallest percentage decline was in Fairfax City (-9.0% to 61), followed by Montgomery County (-10.2% to 2,252), Prince George’s County (-18.6% to 1,846), Fairfax County (-27.5% to 1,999), Alexandria City (-46.1% to 228), Arlington County (-48.5% to 260) and Falls Church City (-77.8% to 8). 


  • The regional average sales price to original listing price ratio (SP to OLP ratio) for October was 98.5%, up from both last year’s 97.8% and last month’s 98.4%.
  • Townhomes have the highest October SP to OLP ratio of 99.1%, followed by condos with a SP to OLP ratio of 98.6%, and single-family detached homes with a SP to OLP ratio of 97.9%.
  • October’s SP to OLP ratio exceeds the 5-year average of 97.7% and the 10-year average of 96.7%.
  • Over the last decade, the lowest SP to OLP ratio was in October 2011, when it was just 93.4%.  Prior to this year, the October high had been in 2017 when it was 98.0%.
  • Fairfax City had an SP to OLP ratio of 100.8% (compared to 98.1% last year), the highest in the region.
  • Montgomery County had the lowest SP to OLP ratio in the region at 97.7%, up from 97.6% last year.
  • For the year to date, regional SP to OLP ratio is 98.7%, up just slightly from last year’s 98.4%.


  • The median days-on-market (DOM) in October was 14 days, down from 19 days last year and 16 days last month.
  • Condos have a median DOM of 11, while townhomes have a median DOM of 12, and single-family detached homes have a median DOM of 17.
  • October’s median DOM was six days below the 5-year average of 20 days and 11 days below the 10-year average of 25 days.
  • The highest October median DOM of the last 10 years was 44 days in 2011 and the previous decade low was 18 days in October of 2017 and October of 2013.
  • Montgomery County and Prince George’s County both have the highest median days-on-market in the region of 18, down from 20 and 24 days, respectively.
  • Alexandria City has the lowest median DOM of 6 days, down from 18 days last year.
  • For the year-to-date, the overall regional median DOM is 12 days, down from 14 days from the same period last year.


About the DC Metro Housing Market Update

The DC Metro Area Housing Market Update provides unique insights into the state of the current housing market by measuring the number of new pending sales, trends by home characteristics, and key indicators through the most recent month compiled directly from Multiple Listing Service (MLS) data in ShowingTime’s proprietary database. The DC Metro Area housing market includes: Washington, D.C., Montgomery County and Prince George’s County in Maryland, and Alexandria City, Arlington County, Fairfax County, Fairfax City, and Falls Church City in Virginia. Data provided by MarketStats by ShowingTime, based on listing activity from Bright MLS.

About Bright MLS

The Bright MLS real estate service area spans 40,000 square miles throughout the Mid-Atlantic region, including Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and West Virginia. As a leading Multiple Listing Service (MLS), Bright serves approximately 95,000 real estate professionals who in turn serve over 20 million consumers. For more information, please visit www.brightmls.com.

About Elliot Eisenberg

Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. is the Chief Economist of GraphsandLaughs, LLC, a firm specializing in economic consulting and data analysis.  He is a frequent speaker on topics including: economic forecasts, economic impact of industries such as homebuilding and tourism, consequences of government regulation, economic development and other current economic issues. Dr. Eisenberg earned a B.A. in economics with first class honors from McGill University in Montreal, as well as a Masters and Ph.D. in public administration from Syracuse University. Eisenberg was formerly a Senior Economist with the National Association of Home Builders in Washington, D.C.   He is a regularly featured guest on cable news programs, talk and public radio, writes a syndicated column and authors a daily 70 word commentary on the economy that is available at www.econ70.com.

dc metro, market analysis, press release
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