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Seasonality? The DMV's Signed Housing Contracts Are So 2006's a blogger, an appraiser, a's Jonathan Miller!

After the release of the RBI Pending Home Sales Index for July and incessantly espousing my observation of "the return to seasonality" (I can't wait to publish the full August data after last week's stock market roller coaster!), I thought I'd present the market over the past decade to provide some context.

I overlaid each year to show what seasonality looks like based on contracts signed each month. The chart reveals where DC Metro stands in 2011 as a market in the context of the decade: smack in the middle. When you look carefully at the year you find that

• 2001-2005 shows a higher rate of contract signings
• 2006 shows about the same rate of contract signings
• 2007-2010 shows a lower rate of contract signings

The seasonality of a May peak and a September mini-trough is very consistent across all years except 2008 (credit crunch) and 2010 (tax credit). We seem to be sitting in the middle, between the credit/housing boom and the credit/housing bust, consistent with the year 2006.

· 2001-2011 RBI Pending Home Sales Index [Miller Samuel]
· July 2011 RBI Pending Home Sales Index [CDC]