Home Sales Are Still Trending Higher In County
By Hamil R. Harris
It is a great time to purchase a home in Prince George’s County.
That is the word from Cheryl Abrams, President of the Prince George’s County Association of Realtors who said that 2017 was a great year for home sales, inventory is at an all-time low and 2018 has also started well.
“Overall the market in Prince George’s County is very stable,” said Abrams, who organization represents more than 3,600 realtors. “There has been a 5.9 percent increase in the price of a home compared to sale prices one year ago.” She said the average price of a home that is around $300,000.
The soar in home buying mirrors job growth in the county according to Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III who released numbers from the Bureau of Labor statistics in December. The county’s job growth is 3.5% and that is more than double the rate for the state of Maryland at 1.4 percent and the national job growth rate of 1.7%.
“I am especially proud that we are first among jurisdictions in the national capital region as well as the State of Maryland,” Baker said. “The state, region, and nation have taken notice of our job creation, retention and attraction efforts. Creating jobs is not just good for the county’s economy but also for our education system, public safety, health, environment and overall quality of life for our residents.”
Prince George’s County is well known for its enclaves of spacious homes in Bowie, Upper Marlboro, Brandywine and Accokeek. But some of the hottest real estate areas are inside the beltway, according to a number of realtors.
“In inner beltway communities like Capital Heights, we are seeing a notable increase in home values and sales are off the charts because we have so many investors purchasing homes in the area,” said Melanie Gamble, broker/owner of ReMax Supreme of Bowie. “Areas like Capital Heights, District Heights and Suitland are communities adjacent to metro that are either under developed or undeveloped. “
One of the reasons this area is popular has a lot to do with a different mindset among a new generation of home owners. “You have a lot of millennials, they don’t drive, they love Uber and they are transit oriented compared to their parents who were more suburb-minded.
For decades county officials have promoted “Smart Growth,” around Metro stations and as result area like Riverdale Park, Hyattsville and other communities are growing. Many real estate experts have noted that Prince George’s County is the last county in the Metro area that has so much undeveloped property.
“In the last three years Capital Heights has experienced close to a 25 percent rise in property value, based on market data. For example, in 2014 the average price of a home was about $150,000 compared to today’s average of $215,000,” said Gamble, a board member of the Prince George’s County Association of Realtors.