President Obama recently introduced a new $4 trillion budget, which could have tremendous benefits for the Washington D.C. housing market. Real estate brokers throughout the area are eagerly waiting for a decision from Congress. They are confident the new bill would be a boon for their business as the local housing market is finally beginning to show signs of life.
Federal Budget Would Lift Sluggish Housing Market
The D.C. real estate market experienced stagnant growth during 2014. However, the market finally began to rally towards the end of the year. According to a recent report from RealEstate Business Intelligence, pending sales increased by nearly 10% year-over-year in December, after falling for most of the year. The report also showed that prices increased for the fifth consecutive year, which also reflects increased demand.
Real estate professionals throughout the region are encouraged by the sudden surge in activity. However, the market still remains fairly weak. Corey Hart, author of the RBI report, said that the market is expected to continue growing through the spring, but doesn’t want to be overly optimistic.
“We’re not predicting astronomical gains, but steady gains,” Hart told the Washington Post. “Seeing contract activity pick up 11 percent in December and 6 percent in January is a leading indicator that sales activity into February and into March will be healthy increases.”
However, other driving forces could cause market growth to outpace expert predictions. Michelle Goldchain, a D.C. real estate reporter, speculates that the new federal budget will drive investment in D.C. real estate projects. Goldchain reports that the new budget includes provisions for nearly $1 billion for new projects throughout the city, including $227 million for a new cyber campus and $150 million to modernize the Hoover Memorial. Renovating government infrastructure and constructing new facilities would strengthen the local market.
The new budget could also mean additional funds for the Federal Housing Administration. According to a recent report from the White House, the new budget means that the agency funds should increase $14 billion over the next two years. The Federal Housing Administration has played a key role in reversing the housing market downturn, so the new funding should further benefit the market both in D.C. and throughout the rest of the country.
Real Estate Professionals Support Budget Proposal
D.C. real estate professionals are encouraged that the market is starting to gain momentum. However, they also want to ensure that the recovery will be sustainable. They are expected to lobby for Congress to pass the new budget to help further stimulate growth.