The real estate markets in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties in Maryland show very different signs of growth halfway through this year. Whereas Montgomery has been traditionally the wealthier county, Prince George’s has continued to show rapid growth in 2016, according to Rockville-based multiple-listing service MRIS.
The larger bump in Prince George’s is reflective of the greater affordability and development happening there.
Here are a few indicators of how the markets in the two counties are faring:
• Average sales price
In Montgomery, the average sales price of homes rose 1.82 percent to $508,412 compared with 2015. In contrast, homes in Prince George’s rose 5.54 percent to $254,060 this year.
Sales prices remain highest in Montgomery cities. The highest average sales price — 1,062,804 — is still found in Montgomery’s Chevy Chase area. This is followed by Potomac at $996,390, and Bethesda at $984,868.
The highest average sales price in Prince George’s is found in Glenn Dale — $339,365. The highest gainers between the counties can be found in Bladensburg ($984,868) and Capitol Heights ($179,986), both with a 16 percent increase this year.
• Median days on market
In all, the average days on market for Montgomery have stayed the same since 2015 — 57. In Prince George’s, the average days on market are up to 52 days in 2016 from 51 in 2015. This change, while slight, may be in response to the sharp rise in prices.
Days on market — the number of days a property takes to go from active to under contract — are lowest in parts of the Prince George’s communities of Brentwood (12) and Mount Rainier (13). In Montgomery, Rockville (15) and Takoma Park (18) are where homes are selling the fastest.
• Sales to list price ratio
Both Montgomery and Prince George’s had very small to negligible increases in their sales to list price ratios — the ratio of the price a property sells for compared to its original listed price. In Montgomery, the sales to list price ratio increased just 0.17 percent from 2015 to 96.9 percent while the ratio increased slightly more in Prince George’s from 2015 to 97.6 percent.
The highest sales to list price ratio for 2016 between the counties has been in Lanham — 100.53 percent. Hyattsville is close by with a ratio of 99.64 percent. In Montgomery, Rockville has the highest ratio — 97.84 percent. Other cities of note in Montgomery include Kensington (97.73) and Takoma Park (97.47).
What does this mean for the rest of 2016?
If there is a clear sign of development so far in 2016, Prince George’s is a clear winner in several categories. The average sales price increase in the county is likely because of greater inventory being delivered to the area, and while the prices in the District continue to sell for significantly higher than surrounding areas, Prince George’s will likely continue to see increases.
Meanwhile, Montgomery will still be the standard for high prices for years to come with wealthy neighborhoods still seeing conservative growth throughout 2016.
Coming up: Virginia market tomorrow.
Tim Savoy, a real estate agent with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage Dupont/Logan Circle, writes an occasional column about the Washington-area housing market. Savoy can be reached at Timothy.Savoy@cbmove.com and on Twitter @SavoyRealEstate.