The “Amazon effect” is still buffeting Northern Virginia. But instead of disrupting industries and putting brick-and-mortar stores out of business, the retail behemoth is dashing the hopes of home buyers.
The infographic above shows just how frenzied the market in Alexandria City, Arlington County, Fairfax County, Fairfax City, and Falls Church City has become since Amazon.com Inc. AMZN, -0.05% announced plans to locate a second headquarters there.
Just one metric – price – might be enough to prove the point. The average selling price in March was 4.3% higher than the average selling price in February, which in turn was 1.1% higher than the average in January.
There is some seasonality in monthly price fluctuations, which is why prices are usually compared to the same period a year earlier. So: in January, prices were basically flat compared to January 2018. In February, they were 2.62% higher versus the year-earlier period. In March, they accelerated again, rising 4.85% compared to 2018.
And inventory is shrinking about as fast as mom-and-pop bookstores. Homes were on the market for 39 days, down 31.6% compared to a year ago in March.
“Open house traffic is way up, and multiple offers are the norm at the most desirable price points,” said the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors.
The group put out a press release Thursday titled “Home sellers win in Northern Virginia’s March Housing Market Madness.” Another way to put that, of course, is that many would-be buyers are losing out.