A Buyer's Guide to Washington D.C. Real Estate

As you begin your search to move to this nation-changing city, here are six things to think about before buying your next home

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Whether you’re trying to make your mark in homes for sale in Capitol Hill or you’re just looking to build a family in some nice Logan Circle real estate, Washington D.C. is unlike any other place in the US. After all, this is where the American government, as we know it, began. So, if you’re interested in becoming a part of this historic city center, let’s give you some tips on how to prepare. From laws to location concerns, here’s everything you need to know before moving to Washington D.C.

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A reputation for unrelenting work ethic, integrity, and honesty backed up by unparalleled knowledge of the local market

Kyra Erika Agarwal
Vice President

Washington Real Estate Agent
KYRA.A@COMPASS.COM
M: (424) 666-9202

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What’s available in D.C.

When looking at homes in Washington D.C., you’ll find that these properties, much like many metropolitan areas, can be a little pricier. After all, the national average price for a home was $269,039 as of 2021, and Washington D.C.’s prices are at $692,376, over $400,000 more. Also, those prices have been steadily increasing over the past year, with a 5% increase since early 2021. However, given that it’s such a premier metro area (especially being the country's capital), the prices here aren’t nearly as bad as in other major cities. For example, New York City’s average price sits at $746,354, and Los Angeles has an average of $944,651.

Whether you prefer homes for sale in Capitol Hill or Logan Circle real estate, the pricing has nothing to do with how many houses are available. Roughly 3,447 homes are currently for sale in Washington D.C. as of May 2022. Compared to other popular metro areas, there are less than 100 homes for sale per 10,000 properties. So, at the very least, you have quite a few options throughout the area. 

Low interest rates

As 2022 has gone forward, interest rates have been rising. Luckily for people looking for homes for sale in Capitol Hill, the mortgage interest rates in Washington D.C. still remain below average. District of Columbia mortgage rates sit roughly around 5.13%, compared to the national average of 5.25% (as of May 2022). While that may not seem like a lot, when you’re talking about hundreds of thousands of dollars, it is. After all, paying a $1 million dollar loan with 5.13% interest is $65,376 a year, while 5.25% is $66,274 a year. That’s a minimum of almost a thousand dollars back in your pocket each year. While mortgage rates have been rising and are higher than they were 6-12 months ago, they are still historically low and this is a great time to buy.

What to look for

Before you buy Washington D.C. real estate, you should brush up on your local property laws and the county lines of the houses you’re looking at. Knowing these facts is important because homes in D.C. proper are required to give full property disclosure (AKA the install date and condition of everything, from roof to furnace). However, if you end up a little outside the D.C. county lines, the story could be completely different. Sellers with homes in Virginia, for example, aren’t required to disclose much information, so be careful where you buy and know what you’re getting yourself into. 

Also, if you’re looking into Logan Circle real estate and other great neighborhoods, be sure to do thorough testing. When it comes to radon testing, in particular, the EPA has designated Washington D.C. as a place with high potential for radon. So a radon test is a must before you buy any property in this area. 

A seller’s market

Just like most other places around the country, Washington D.C. is a seller’s market, which means that a lot of the power is in the seller’s hands. After all, homes are in high demand, so they can often sell their homes for high prices. While looking at homes for sale in Capitol Hill, be aware that buying your perfect dream home might cost more than you expect. If you want to try to get a better deal, try looking for a home during winter. That’s when the market is the least competitive, so you’ll have the most advantages as a buyer.

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Professional help

Any home purchase and move should be assisted by professionals. So, whether you’re looking for Logan Circle real estate or homes for sale in Capitol Hill, you should enlist a local real estate agent. Not only will an agent be able to help find your perfect home, they will also be able to introduce you to trusted mortgage brokers and lenders. Having someone who knows the market and is able to negotiate on your behalf will help you find the right home within your price range and put in a winning offer in the area’s competitive market.

Other important professionals to enlist are cleaners and movers to help you in your process. With their help, you should be able to get rid of any lingering pet dander or smells, as well as move your furniture into your new home as safely as possible. Once they’re done, the place will feel fresh and ready to be yours. Also, you’ll actually have the energy to unpack instead of it turning into something you avoid for the next month or two.

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Neighborhood vibes

Each neighborhood in Washington D.C. has its own flair, and you should look up what they’re like before picking one because you could pick the right house in the wrong part of town. For example, Logan Circle real estate is surrounded by more recent, stylish upgrades, new parks, artisan boutiques, and restaurants. It’s a clash of old and new that makes space for anyone wanting an active and lively Washington D.C. life in a tight-knit community. The crowd of Dupont Circle is a bit more academic and artsy, surrounded by museums, bookstores, and bistros. And then there are homes for sale in Capitol Hill, a popular place for political up-and-comers and people desperate to be a part of the hottest part of D.C.. Here, mix history with the progressive politics of 2022. 

Ready to look at homes for sale in Washington DC?

No matter which neighborhood is more your style, finding your perfect neighborhood means less time on the bus and more time enjoying your new life. Ready to start looking for your Washington D.C. home? Reach out to trusted local agent Kyra Erika Agarwal for assistance.

Work With Kyra

Kyra specializes in helping her clients navigate the complex process of finding a new home. Her impeccable interpersonal skills endow her with a deep understanding of her clients’ needs, while her ability to think creatively and strategically ensures that every deal is as seamless and efficient as possible. Call Kyra today to schedule a showing in Washington D.C.

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