First and foremost, if you're reading this, I deeply appreciate your involvement in my real estate journey, whether as a client, a referral source, or a fellow market observer. This year, I'm mixing it up a bit with a candid look at the winners and losers of 2023 in our market, coupled with a blend of professional insight and personal reflection.

Glass House Sales Numbers

I extend my heartfelt thanks to everyone who played a part in our success this year. This includes our past, present, and future clients, those who've referred us, and all who've engaged with us in any capacity. 

At the year's start, I faced a critical decision: expand significantly or operate with a 'SEAL Team 6' approach, focusing on high efficiency and performance. I chose the latter. Despite a broader market downturn, we managed over $70,000,000 in sales across 82 transactions, almost an even balance of buyers and sellers. We sold every listing we took, bar a luxury penthouse condo in Washington DC that is currently available!

2023 Market Timeline Recap: 

The year started strong in Q1-Q2, then Q3 brought a nerve-wracking quiet period, exacerbated by rising rates and a dip in new buyer interest. However, Q4 saw a resurgence, setting a promising stage for Q1 of 2024. In the last 45 days alone, we've seen buyers make offers on homes sight unseen before market listing – a testament to the urgency we saw once rates started dropping.

Based on recent activity, January could be a golden opportunity for sellers, given the current low rates, a rallying stock market, and scant competition.

The Biggest Winners of 2023:

Suburban homeowners, particularly in Fairfax, Arlington, Loudoun, and Montgomery County, emerged as the year's victors. These areas saw significant equity gains, offering homeowners the equity needed to offset higher rates when moving or building new homes.

The Stock Market also deserves a mention. Despite a shaky start, the market's robust performance buoyed many, including myself, back into a position of strength, which influences key decisions like home buying, which bodes well for the market. 

Biggest Loser of 2023:

It's challenging to report that Washington DC's real estate market experienced a no good very bad year. The market faced an oversupply of luxury condos and apartments, a consequence of relaxed redevelopment policies, which adversely affected the condo sector. While established communities managed to fare somewhat better, the market was further strained by high-profile issues, such as rising crime rates and the relocation of the Washington Wizards and Capitals. These factors, combined, suggest more of the same in 2024. This most recent article on homicide rates declining in just about every major city with the exception of DC is particularly devastating. 

This trend is reflected in our clientele, with almost a dozen would be DC home buyers who decided to move further out, often citing the optics of crime as the driving factor. 

Personal Goals for 2024:

After strategically delegating responsibilities and taking a step back, I am now re-engaging directly in sales with renewed vigor. My goal is to reach a personal sales volume of $100,000,000, a benchmark I previously achieved in 2020. This past year's more relaxed pace allowed for a surprising and welcome change. It provided an opportunity to engage more deeply with clients and to apply the extensive skill set I've developed over the last 20 years, a contrast to the previously hectic pace. 

New Construction Consumer Advocate:

My experiences this past year, particularly in representing clients in new construction deals, have galvanized my resolve to advocate more fiercely for buyer interests. Look out for my upcoming self published book, "The Builder is Not Your Friend," a skeptic's roadmap to navigating new construction, set to publish in 2024.


As we welcome the New Year, my family and I extend our best wishes to you and yours. If you, or someone you know, need guidance or assistance in the real estate market this coming year, don't hesitate to reach out. Here's to a prosperous and successful 2024!

Khalil El-Ghoul

Discover our 2.25% Full Service Listings and alternative commission models for home buyers. Khalil is dedicated to guiding home buyers and sellers with expert advice and objective information. For professional real estate assistance, text Khalil at 571-235-4821 or email today.