Apr 1, 2022 - Real Estate

D.C.'s supercharged spring market

Animated gif of a house going down a supermarket checkout conveyor belt
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Washington’s housing frenzy will continue this spring, local real estate professionals tell Axios.

Why it matters: Rising interest rates are raising the stakes for homebuyers. Couple that with still-low inventory, and D.C.'s always-busy spring market promises to remain competitive. Some would-be buyers may be staring down another season of discontent. 

Yes, but: It won’t last forever. Higher interest rates are pricing some buyers out. Senior Zillow economist Jeff Tucker anticipates that any noticeable slow-down in competition will come later this summer. 

State of play: The rise in mortgage rates in recent weeks is jaw-dropping, and outside the range of any recent experience, Axios’ Neil Irwin writes

  • Freddie Mac said the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 4.42% last week, up from 3.76% three weeks earlier. That's the biggest three-week rise since 1987. Just three months ago, the rate was 3.05%. 
  • The speed and scale of interest rate increases mean that a home within budget for a buyer one week can become unaffordable not long after. 

Between the lines: D.C.’s wealth of well-qualified buyers is also contributing to the competition. 

“You’ve got a well-paid, well-educated and a continuing-to-grow workforce and a limited amount of homes for that workforce to actually purchase,” Greater Capital Area Association of Realtors president Harrison Beacher tells Axios.

What to watch: While housing prices rise, rent is also increasing. McWilliams|Ballard vice president Robbie Cook says he anticipates that more renters will enter the District’s condo market in an effort to make the most of their money.

avatar

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Washington D.C..

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Washington D.C. stories

No stories could be found

Washington D.C.postcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Washington D.C..

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more