The fall market began before fall even started this year for Beacham & Company, REALTORS. The number of sales and dollar volume sold by the fi rm’s agents was up 25%in September, making it the best September ever in the history of the 11-year-old company and keeping it on track for another record sales year. Like the broader market, Beacham was boosted by sales in Buckhead and Cobb County, where the East Cobb and Smyrna areas remain as hot as they have all year long. The sales picture for the entire Atlanta market in September was not as rosy, however. The number of attached and detached single-family home sales in the five-county metro (Cobb, DeKalb, Forsyth, Fulton, and Gwinnett) was down 6.8% in September from the previous year, while closed dollar volume was down 1.8%. Areas that have been strong but weakened in September include Ashford Park, Dunwoody, and North Fulton County.
The summer issue of The Beacham Insider re-caps the record performance of Atlanta’s real estate market in the first half of 2017. This insightful issue digs deep into trends in the market such as the divergence in housing inventory above and below $800,000. We discuss the reasons why as well as predict how the market will fare in the coming months and years. We also examine performance of the market inside and outside the I-285 perimeter, a new take on the trajectory of interest rates, and the comparison of cost to own vs. rent in Atlanta.
In this issue of The Beacham Insider we recap the Atlanta real estate market in 2016 and look ahead to 2017. The Atlanta real estate market is more complicated than ever and explaining it requires more than just a word or two. The Insider shows how housing inventory, age demographics, population growth, home prices, changing buyer criteria and new construction are combining to determine which homes sell and which don’t. We also take a close look at the Buckhead market and drill down to specific price ranges to reveal subtle nuances that help buyers and potential sellers better understand the prospects of a quick or extended sale process.
Last year (2016) was the best year for Atlanta residential real estate hom
e sales and prices ever, beating the previous marks set for both in 2015. However, the pace of growth moderated as the year progressed with election hysteria, a slowing economy, and insufficient inventory below $1 million putting pressure on market performance.
One clear trend emerged: home buyers sought out homes and areas where home prices still represent a value relative to traditionally
celebrated neighborhoods. The number of home sales in the five county metro was up 6% from May to December but sales among The Beacham Bellwethers which track the areas of Atlanta with the highest average sales prices (see page 4) declined 2%. Average home sales prices grew at the same pace (3%) for both categories.
Single family detached and townhome construction sales gained steam in 2016 and many builders appeared to be riding high in the saddle as 2017 began. Builders who can deliver product at a price buyers can/will pay in locations they want will be the big winners in 2017 and in the foreseeable future. The Atlanta housing market is starved for new condominium deliveries as evidenced by the increase in condo sales in 2016 – which was nearly double the increase for single family detached home sales on a percentage basis (+11% to +6%).
Seasonally adjusted housing inventory began increasing again late last fall but the increase is a “drop in the bucket” compared to the inventory needed to bring most of the market into a normal balance (six months of inventory supply). Currently, there is just a three months’ supply of housing inventory.
While there were more $3 million plus sales in Atlanta last year than any other year in the city’s history, the market conditions are not necessarily favorable. Inventory of ultra-luxury properties is at recent historic highs. For instance, the months’ supply of inventory in North Fulton for $3 million-plus homes is nearly eight years. In many areas of Buckhead, the months’ supply is more than three years. Until age demographics work back in seller’s favor, this part of the market is expected to heavily rely on price discounting.
Read more about the state of the Atlanta housing market in the current issue of The Beacham Insider.
The May 2016 issue of The Beacham Insider looks at the differences between Atlanta’s most affluent neighborhoods and the broader market. Demographic factors influencing home sales are given consideration including an analysis of Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials. Housing inventory is front and center once again and we paint a stark picture of how critical the inventory shortage is. We also look at a measure of international home buying interest and how Atlanta stacks up. Finally, we give you the top five highest appreciating neighborhoods in Atlanta over the last 10 years.
In the January/February 2016 issue of The Beacham Insider, we re-cap the record year of 2015 in Atlanta real estate and look ahead to 2016. The greatest challenge to continued growth is a lack of adequate housing inventory. The months’ supply of inventory sank to a two-year, near all-time low last month. We also look at how changing demographics are having a ripple effect on the entire market and what can be done to ensure to best meet changing buyer demands. In addition, we ponder the upcoming presidential election and look to see how the terms of presidents have affected home prices over the last 40 years.
The fall issue of The Beacham Insider recaps the best spring/summer market for Atlanta real estate since 2011 and looks ahead to an autumn with the most favorable market conditions in more than a decade. We provide eight reasons why fall is a terrific time to list a home and hear from National Association of Realtors’ chief economist Lawrence Yun on whether home prices will continue to climb. We also look at the impact of the recent Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) changes to mortgage lending and what buyers need to do to prevent closing delays under the new rules. The robust state of luxury real estate market is documented, as are the mammoth gains by Beacham & Company in website traffic, social media reach and market share growth.
The spring issue of The Beacham Insider highlights the strong start to the selling season with home sales up 21% from March a year ago. We also look at why May is the best month to list your home for sale and why selling in 2015 may be a good idea with forces outside of real estate possibly dictating a less than favorable 2016 for real estate. We also re-cap the visit by Georgia State University economist Rajeev Dhawan’s to Beacham in March and hear his keys to the future health of residential real estate. As always, we analyze the sales data of Atlanta’s most desirable neighborhoods and see which areas are hottest.
Our year-end report on Atlanta real estate reveals that 2014 was the first year since 2011 in which home sales were higher than the previous year. Beacham & Company outperformed the market as the firm’s home sales were up 14.6% from 2013 while overall Atlanta home sales were up just 1.9%. Predictions for 2015 are very favorable due to rising housing inventory levels and a slowing in home price appreciation. In fact, an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta notes that “Atlanta is the most affordable housing market in the country.” We also examine demographic trends influencing home sales including the rise of Millennials and singles as a new force in the marketplace.
The Atlanta average home sales price continues to hit all-time highs as we move through fall. However, the number of home sales is still well below the peak in 2006 (-25%) and has been declining for more than two years. However, things appear to be turning around. Through the end of October, there were 350 more homes closed in 2014 than 2013. If that margin holds, then 2014 will be the first year in three years with more closings than the previous year. Rising housing inventory is helping to restore balance in the market and should fuel continued sales growth. In this issue of The Beacham Insider, we look at Atlanta’s four most priciest neighborhoods. All of them have average sales prices of more than $1 million. We also take note of a fast-moving trend in condo sales that bodes well for future condo development and apartment conversions.