We bought our house back in 2004 near the peak of the market. It still went up another 20% according the the tax assessments and an appraisal I had done when I was looking into a refinance years ago. But as of this week, that’s all officially gone.
Washington D.C. has weathered the housing crisis fairly well compared to other regions of the country, but not well enough to keep our home value from depreciating entirely. Unfortunately, we could never get a good gauge on our home’s value since we have some unique features not found on other homes in our community. For example, we have almost double the square footage, double the land, updated siding/roof/windows and of course, an in-ground pool. The closest house in size, lot and number of beds/baths is across the street, but no others come close after theirs.
Well, those owners finally decided to sell. And they couldn’t have picked a worse time to do so. Actually, another house across from ours went up for sale recently. The first, on a small corner lot with no additions but brand new siding/roof, went up for sale for $40,000 less than we paid for our home. I checked yesterday and they dropped it another $10,000!
But we’ve been waiting to find out what the other neighbors (the ones with a more similar house to ours) would price theirs at. I guess they’ve been trying to find a house to buy where the sellers would accept their contingency clause. Perhaps they found one because a for sale sign went up this week.
Their house is also priced $40,000 less than we paid for ours! They’re in a rush to sell and wanted to make sure it would go quickly. I guess if you had the option of their house or the one two doors down for about the same price, you’d probably go with theirs.
So now it’s official that if we needed to sell our house in the near future, we can’t justify listing for much more than what we paid, if that. And then after seller fees, we’re in the hole. I guess we’re staying put for a few more years, eh? And that’s assuming the house sells for the list price!
How has the housing market affected your decisions to move (or stay)?
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