The real estate market is characterized by a constant churn of activity that results from residents who for various reasons –job relocations, a desire to upsize or downsize, move to a different part of the City or elsewhere–sell their homes in any given year. This normal churn of activity can be influenced as well by economic and market conditions that can make it more difficult or less advantageous to sell.
In this post we examine sales of single family homes in the District to see how long sellers in the District held on to their property before selling and whether the gains realized by sellers depend on how long they held their property.
Here’s what the data shows for single family home sellers in fiscal year 2015.
Median Gains Realized by Sellers in FY 2015 by Length of Time Property Was Held
- The highest median appreciation was for those who had been holding on to their properties for over 14 years, these sellers realized median gains of over $324,000.
- The lowest gains realized were for those who purchased their homes 8 to 9 years ago at the height of the previous housing boom. For these sellers the median gain was only $46,000.
- Sellers who bought their homes recently, less than 5 years ago, also realized substantial gains exceeding $100,000.
- The median gain for all sellers was $108,000.
- There were 185 properties with gains that exceeded $500,000- Thirty-one sellers realized gains exceeding $1,000,000.
- More than half of the sellers held on to their homes for less than 7 years, with a median hold time of just over 6 years.
- The data indicates high turnover among sellers who hold on to their homes for less than 3 years. This is consistent with other data that we have analyzed on mobility in the District.
- Data from the National Association of Homebuilders indicates an average hold time of 10 years for the nation, another indication of the higher housing mobility in the District.
Peter Johansson and Bob Zuraski contributed to this post
What exactly is the data?
Data was compiled using information from the DC Office of Tax and Revenue and the DC Recorder of Deeds. The data focused on market rate transactions of single family homes, excluding non-arm’s length transactions. Sales of single family homes in FY 2015 totaled 3,674 based on preliminary data.