Atlanta

How to Navigate a Higher Rate Environment in Atlanta Real Estate

I am sure most of you have heard the words “higher for longer” as a headline in mainstream media, where the majority opinion is that the FED will maintain current rates for the more immediate future. 

So, what does this mean for mortgage rates and buyers and sellers in Atlanta?

As we navigate through 2024, the Federal Reserve’s commitment to maintaining “higher for longer” interest rates will shape the economic landscape for the second half of the year. Importantly, it will have ramifications on the real estate market in Atlanta. 

This blog post will examine how interest rates are reshaping mortgage affordability, home prices, and the overall market dynamics in Atlanta. I will provide strategic insights for both buyers and sellers to help navigate the market.

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April 2024: Quarterly Market Update

Since my last quarterly update, mortgage rates have been steady as the Federal Reserve continues to maintain interest rates at current levels. 

The current 30-year fixed mortgage rate is historically high when looking at the period of time since the 2008 financial crisis; see the 20-year chart below. 

30-year fixed rate average

However, demand has been steadily increasing despite the historically high rates. The most recent pending home sales data (a forward-looking indicator) from February shows an increase of 1.6%. 

As we enter the spring season, I am optimistic about the Atlanta real estate market. Since the start of the year, I have seen a significant increase in traffic from both buyers and sellers, which is very encouraging, given that it is so early in the season.

As you will see in the numbers, Atlanta is still in a constrained supply environment, well below the national average. This should help keep us in a dynamic yet stable local market in the near term.

Below, I outline the most recent data from a national and local market perspective.

National Market Analysis

Median home price

The national median home price in February was $384,500, up 5.7% from February 2023. In February, all four U.S. regions saw an increase in median home prices.

Days on the market

The national average for the number of days homes were on the market in February was 38, compared to 34 days in February 2023. 

Supply

The national supply for February is 2.9 months, up 6% from February 2023, when it was 2.6 months. 

Buyers

First-time buyers accounted for 26% of sales in February, down from 27% from February 2023. Investors and second-home buyers accounted for 21% of home sales in February, up from 18% from February 2023.

Region

In the country’s southern region, home sales are down 7.7% from February 2023. However, prices in the southern region have increased by 9.8% from January. The median home price in the southern region during February was $354,200.

As of March, the 30-year fixed rate mortgage average is 6.74%, up from 6.60% a year ago.

Atlanta Market Analysis

Median home price

The Atlanta median home sale price in March was $429,990, up 8.9% from March 2023. The median sales price continues to rise from its low of $400,000 at the beginning of the year.

Days on the market

The Atlanta average for the number of days homes were on the market in March was 35, compared to 43 days in March 2023. The average number of days homes are on the market is down 14.6% from the beginning of the year.

Supply

The Atlanta supply for March is 2.7 months, up 42% from March 2023. A healthy market has 4-6 months of supply, so Atlanta still has significant supply challenges. It is also below the national average of 2.9 months.

Home sales

Atlanta home sales in March were down 22.5% from February 2023 but up 38% from the beginning of 2024.

Atlanta is still challenged with finding a balance of supply and demand. However, the Atlanta real estate environment has remained positive so far this year, with healthy pricing and ongoing new construction to meet demand. 

Likewise, sellers are starting to step back into the market. Within the last several weeks, I’ve had two new properties come on the market in desirable areas: a one-bedroom, one-bathroom condo at the Mayfair Tower and a two-bedroom, two-bathroom condo at Lennox Green.

Conclusion

Home prices in Atlanta are stable, and buying and selling interest has picked up significantly despite historically high mortgage rates. I believe that the Atlanta market will continue to have a resilient and positive 2024 as we move into a busier season. However, we are still in a supply-challenged environment both nationally and locally, so I do not anticipate any significant fluctuations in price in the near future.

As of now, there are many attractive buying opportunities available in select areas of the Atlanta market. It is important to act quickly on these opportunities, as I am seeing properties moving faster than they have in 20203. 

To ensure that you find the best home for your needs, it is essential to work with an experienced realtor, such as myself. If you are ready to buy or sell a home, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Trilith Georgia

Why Trilith Development Stands out In Georgia Real Estate

If you have not heard about Trilith, I will put it on your radar today.

The Trilith development is becoming one of the state’s most sought-after residential planned communities. Located in Fayetteville, It is a model for innovative urban planning. As such, it has become an amazing community with architecturally beautiful homes and a burgeoning hub for the film and soccer industries.

In this post, I will share with you what makes Trilith one of the best options when considering residential communities in Georgia.

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Downtown Atlanta

Atlanta Market Trends for 2024

With stabilizing interest rates, buyers and sellers are beginning to step back into the Atlanta market. In December, there was a 3.4% increase in monthly sales in what is typically a slower month. While the numbers for January are not in yet, I do expect to see another increase as, anecdotally, I have participated in an increase in client activity.

Now that we can anticipate stabilizing markets, we can forecast some key trends that may play out here in the Atlanta residential real estate market. These trends can help buyers and sellers make educated real estate decisions in 2024.

Below are four trend predictions for 2024.

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Atlanta real estate

January 2024: Quarterly Market Update

Since my last quarterly update, mortgage rates have been decreasing. This decrease has caused home sales declines to level out and increase in some cases.

Looking forward to 2024, I remain optimistic about the Atlanta real estate market. I believe that we will continue to see a moderate decline in mortgage rates, perhaps settling around 6% in the back half of the year. This decline should propel demand forward, leveling out prices.

Likewise, as you will see in the numbers, Atlanta is still in a constrained supply environment, well below the national average. This should help keep us in a stable local market in the near term.

Below, I outline the most recent data from a national and local market perspective.

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Atlanta housing market

Navigating the 2024 Atlanta Real Estate Landscape: Top Predicted Trends

2023 has been an interesting year in Atlanta residential real estate. Prices have remained stable, and inventory has remained low. Yet, the Atlanta population continues to grow, and while demand has been somewhat subdued, it is still one of the more resilient markets in the country.

As we approach 2024, I expect the real estate landscape in Atlanta to continue to evolve, reflecting changes in market dynamics, buyer preferences, and economic shifts. In this blog post, I’ll go into my top predicted trends for Atlanta’s residential real estate market in the upcoming year.

Continued Stability in Home Prices

2024 is set to have a continuation of relative stability in home prices. While specific neighborhoods may see modest increases, the overall market is expected to maintain median price fluctuations similar to 2023. This moderation is attributed to stabilizing interest rates, increased inventory, and increased demand, all leading to a balanced market. 

As of October 2023, the Atlanta median home price is $420,000, up 6.3% year over year. Additionally, there are currently 2.6 months of supply, up 8.3% year over year.

However, if we see a sharp decline in interest rates in the back half of 2024, then I would expect a relatively sharp increase in demand, which could cause an increase in the median home price.

Demand for Walkable Communities

The year ahead will see a continued preference for walkable, amenity-rich neighborhoods. Areas like Midtown, Inman Park, and Kirkwood are in high demand due to their proximity to shops, restaurants, parks, and public transportation. This trend is driving developers to create mixed-use communities, blending residential, retail, and office spaces for a vibrant living experience.

Likewise, I expect to see continued demand for property in some of the more up-and-coming neighborhoods and developments that I have written about previously, such as Blandtown and Centennial Yards.

Robust Rental Market with Affordable and Flexible Options

Atlanta’s rental market is expected to remain strong, fueled by demand from millennials and Gen Z renters. Developers are focusing on new apartment buildings with amenities like fitness centers and co-working spaces. Flexible leasing options, including shorter terms and pet-friendly policies, are becoming increasingly popular.

Affordability remains a crucial factor, especially for first-time buyers in Atlanta. This is pushing demand towards more leases in the short term. Developers are responding by focusing on smaller, flexible, and energy-efficient units, enhancing value without compromising quality.

Leasing a condo in-town remains an excellent option for those looking to experience Atlanta urban living while either waiting for interest rates to fall or looking for a property. Last month, I wrote an article on the short-term benefits of leasing in Atlanta.

Likewise, I believe that the Mayfair Tower is one of the best values in luxury condos in Midtown. It has the perfect blend of location and amenities for an optimal experience of Intown living. You can see all of my Mayfair listings here.

Sustainable Development, Eco-conscious Choices, and Technology

Sustainability is becoming a key consideration in the Atlanta real estate market. Buyers and renters seek properties that prioritize energy efficiency and use environmentally friendly materials. Developers are responding with LEED-certified buildings and sustainable designs. Georgia is recognized as one of the top states for green building initiatives.

The demand for smart homes continues to rise, with buyers seeking convenience, security, and energy efficiency. New homes are being equipped with smart thermostats, voice-controlled lighting, and automated security systems while existing homes are being retrofitted with similar technologies. Expect this to be an ongoing point of differentiation when buyers are making decisions on their future homes.

Conclusion

The Atlanta real estate market in 2024 is set to be stable and perhaps somewhat dynamic, adapting to changing preferences and market conditions. These trends highlight the city’s ongoing growth prospects, distinctive character, and innovative spirit. 

Looking beyond 2024, Atlanta continues attracting new residents and businesses, and the demand for quality housing options remains strong, paving the way for a vibrant and forward-looking real estate sector.

If you are interested in getting a head start on 2024 with a new home, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Midtown Atlanta

Navigating High-Interest Rates: How Leasing a Condo Can be a good Short-Term Move

In every one of my blog posts this year, I have shared with you my thoughts on mortgage rates. High interest rates have been in the headline news for the past two years. We are all trying to navigate this current economic environment to ensure we make the best financial decisions.

When it comes to making a decision on buying a home, the higher mortgage rates are a significant factor in the decision-making process. If you must move into a new home, you may feel caught in choosing between buying a house or leasing a condo. 

In this blog post, I will shed some light on the advantages of leasing a condo, given the current interest rate scenario.

Benefits of Leasing with High-Interest Rates

1. Predictable Monthly Expenses: It’s obvious that when you sign a lease, you pay that amount over the lease period. What’s advantageous about predictable expenses is that you can budget appropriately in the event you are planning on purchasing a home in the future.

2. Mitigate risk to property value declines: While I believe that Atlanta is less vulnerable than other big cities with high-interest rates, there’s a potential risk for property values to decline. As a lessee, you avoid this risk in the short term. 

3. Flexibility to Relocate: With a potential recession looming, there is the possibility of economic volatility in the short term, which could lead to job changes or lifestyle changes. Leasing gives you short-term flexibility with the liberty to move as life demands.

Cost Comparisons

Mortgage interest rate increases have caused monthly mortgage payments on 30-year fixed loans to nearly double. On the other hand, rents have approximately 8% from 2022 to 2023. 

As of October in Atlanta, the average rent payment was $1,564 per month. Where as a monthly mortgage payment on a home with a median sales price of $419,900 and 20% down at an 8.6% interest rate is $3,168 (30-year fixed, including taxes and fees).

The above data can provide some good perspective if you are working within a budget over the next year and attempting to choose between waiting to buy or holding out for interest rates to abate.

Opportunity

Atlanta is full of some amazing neighborhoods. The silver lining of high interest rates is that they may force your hand to lease in the short term. This gives you an opportunity to test out a neighborhood in Atlanta before committing to making a purchase there.

There are many great lease options available right now if you know where to look. For example, I have several condos available for lease at the Mayfair, like Unit 2609 that just became available, which is a renovated 1 bed 1 bath.  

I also have some great ultra-modern lofts available, like 845 Spring Street NW Loft 315, which is a 1 bed 2 bath.

Both of these units are in the heart of midtown and allow you to get a feel for one of Atlanta’s best urban neighborhoods.

Conclusion

Navigating a high interest rate environment can be challenging. However, understanding your options and the benefits of choices like leasing condos can offer clarity. While homeownership has its merits, the current economic climate showcases some of the undeniable advantages of leasing. Likewise, leasing provides you with a great opportunity to know your neighborhood before making a commitment.

If are ready to lease or buy a home in Atlanta, please do not hesitate to contact me.

October 2023: Quarterly Market Update

Since my last quarterly update, mortgage rates have been gradually increasing. Despite this increase, the market still displays a robust demand. The limited inventories have played a key role in keeping the market steady amidst the current economic conditions.

It is important to highlight that Atlanta has emerged as one of the most resilient markets in the United States, with a significantly lower supply than the national average. As a result, the demand for properties in this area has remained high. In fact, buyers are quickly stepping in when quality properties hit the market.

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Midtown Atlanta

Leasing an Atlanta Condo: Factors to Consider

Leasing a luxury condo in Atlanta can be an excellent choice for those searching for a unique living experience while looking for a future home-buying opportunity. Additionally, leases are great for buyers who need a new home due to a move or relocation but don’t want to commit to buying before knowing the city. 

I’ve recently listed some fantastic luxury condo lease options that are in high demand. As residential properties are in limited supply, these available condos are leased quickly, and many clients have been asking me about Intown condo leasing opportunities. 

Therefore, in this blog post, I will provide a comprehensive guide to assist you in deciding on the perfect luxury condo to lease in Atlanta. 

Location and Neighborhood

Atlanta has diverse neighborhoods, and choosing the right location for a condo is crucial for your lifestyle and convenience. Look for a neighborhood with easy access to your workplace, schools, shopping centers, restaurants, and recreational facilities. A desirable location can add value to your living experience and help you decide whether or not you want to buy a home in that particular neighborhood.

For instance, Midtown (image below) is an excellent location for testing out intown living. It is highly walkable and has close proximity to grocery stores and public transportation. Moreover, Midtown offers easy access to Piedmont Park’s green space and all the restaurants and retail on the beltline.

Piedmont Park & Midtown

Amenities and Facilities

Luxury condos are renowned for their amenities. Prioritize properties that offer top-notch features such as concierge services, fitness centers, private parking, and 24/7 security. These amenities can enhance your living experience and make intown living more accessible and affordable.

The Mayfair Tower is one example of an affordable luxury condo in Midtown that has all the amenities mentioned above and a perfect location. It is located one block from Piedmont Park and has private parking and concierge services.

Interior Finishes and Design

The quality of interior finishes and design is another crucial consideration. High-end features such as premium flooring and countertops, designer fixtures, and modern appliances are the hallmarks of a luxury condo. They can make or break the intown high-rise living experience.

For example, a unique condo that recently came on the market at the Mayfair Tower (images below) has sustainable hardwood floors, modern kitchen countertops, cabinetry and appliances, and a porcelain tiled bathroom, checking all the boxes on quality and luxury.

199 14th Street NE, 211
199 14th Street NE, #211

Security and Privacy

Safety is paramount in high-end living spaces. Inquire about the security measures in place, such as surveillance systems, security personnel, and access control. Additionally, consider the level of privacy the condo offers, as exclusivity is a crucial component of luxury living.

Accessibility and Transportation

Consider the accessibility of the luxury condo to public transportation and major highways. Convenient transportation options will make commuting and exploring the city hassle-free, adding value to the overall location.

Conclusion

Leasing a luxury condo provides an opportunity for an upscale living experience. By carefully considering factors such as location, amenities, and security, you can find the perfect Atlanta condo that aligns with your lifestyle and preferences.

Finding the right fit and location in Atlanta requires working with an experienced realtor who can guide you through the leasing process. If you are interested in buying or leasing a property, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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