I've been getting on the same call several times a week for the past year. Here's how the call usually goes:
Me: Hello, this is Amrish.
Condo Seller: Hey Amrish, it's [so and so], remember me? You helped me buy that investment property in Tysons Corner.
Me: Yes, of course. Thanks for calling. How are things?
Condo Seller: Great! My wife and I were thinking of selling our condo in Tysons when the metro comes. Do you think it's the right time and how much can we get?
Let's talk about the chief considerations below.
Let me start by saying that just because metro is coming doesn't necessarily mean you should sell your condo. Selling an investment property is a serious consideration. You should consult a Realtor® and tax professional before doing so. That being said ... let me answer a few questions I've been getting from condo owners in Tysons.
Will the Silver Line metro increase the value of my condo?
The answer is most certainly yes. It's been well established that increased access to public transportation such as metro rail, bus stations, and even bike routes make a property more desirable. Think of the commuters who sit in Tysons traffic each day. Instead of dealing with traffic they will soon be able to metro out to Reston's Wiehle Ave Station or into West Falls Church and then into Arlington or DC. Commuter condo buyers are willing to pay for this added convenience. These potential commuter buyers also benefit by saving on gas and putting fewer miles on their vehicles.
How much more can I expect to get for my condo when Tysons metro comes?
As with most anything put up for sale, supply and demand will dictate the sale price. Less supply equals greater demand... which means sale prices go up. More supply and the opposite is true. My prediction is that condo sellers will see a conservative 6 to 10 percent increase in value and sale prices in 2013. Perhaps even more than that. What could throw a spoke in the wheels is the increased supply that will be coming on the market. Developers are smart and they plan on building in Tysons to take advantage of metro accessibility. The list prices that developers set for their one, two, and three bedroom condos have yet to be seen. Let's hope they don't list low.
When is the best time to list my condo for sale?
My Finance 101 professor gave the best succinct advice I've ever heard about investing. Here's what he said in a nutshell: “You want to sell when the mob is buying and you want to buy when the mob sells. That's how you make money!” By “the mob” he didn't mean a criminal organization, but rather the crowd/masses. He went on to say that people usually learn this lesson the hard way. It's true, just think about the “buy now or you're losing out" hype of 2004–2006. If people see others buying they don't want to miss out. Logic and sound investment methodology often take a backseat to greed and the thought of “missing out” on what looks to be a good opportunity. Just as in the past, market psychology will play a role in the upcoming condo sales season.
For the 2013 sales season, figure that you're probably not the only condo owner in Tysons looking to sell at or around the time metro starts operating. You want to list when there are few or (ideal case) NO other competing condos listed in your community. Don't wait til you see the price you want appear on the MLS. Wait until you see something lower and list to get your target price.
Which communities will see the greatest gains in sale price as a result of the metro?
The communities that will see the greatest gains are the ones closest (within walking distance) to the Tysons East, Tysons Central, and Tysons West Metro Stations. However, some communities are more desirable than others, so one has to take recent sales comps and inventory into consideration. Evaluating proximity to the upcoming metros along with recent sales, here's what I expect to see from most to least gains expected:
Gates of Mclean
Encore of Mclean
Lillian Court at Tysons
Fountains At Mclean
Regency Club Mclean
Morgan at Mclean
The Reserve At Tysons
The Colonies At Mclean
What's your prediction? Which condo community do you think will benefit most? Post a comment below and let me know!
Amrish Pinto is a Tysons Corner Realtor with over a decade of experience in condo sales. Brokerage of record: Virginia Condo Realty LLC - 1604 Spring Hill Road, Tysons Corner. Licensed in VA.