Coronavirus curbs foreign home buyers in Northern Virginia

Home sales in Northern Virginia to foreign buyers have seen a slowdown due to coronavirus. (Getty Images/iStockphoto/Feverpitched)

The Northern Virginia housing market had a largely healthy February, with the exception of a notable decline in foreign buyers looking in the market.

Some real estate agents who work with foreign buyers have seen a slowdown in activity during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors.

“We have strong business relationships in several Asian countries, which usually results in many international purchasers in our area,” said Thai-Hung Nguyen, a member of NVAR’s board of directors.

“The recent virus scare has kept a lot of these buyers at bay since they are not able to travel here. We have clients who were scheduled to move here but have been delayed.”

NVAR President Nicholas Lagos said the virus outbreak remains a wild card in Northern Virginia.

“It may be a month or two before we see the effects of the epidemic here and what, if any, adjustments our market may experience,” Lagos said.

Even so, sales in February were up 4% from a year ago in the NVAR region, which includes Arlington and Fairfax counties, the cites of Alexandria, Fairfax and Falls Church and the towns of Vienna, Herndon and Clifton.

The median price of what sold in the Northern Virginia region was $560,000, up 10.9% from a year ago.

And buyers in Northern Virginia have more to look at. New listings were up 12.2% compared to a year ago.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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