Category Archives for "Real Estate Tips"

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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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.

Atlanta residential real estate

July 2023: Quarterly Market Update

Over the last few months, mortgage rates have remained steady, with the FED pausing rate increases in the immediate term. 

Nevertheless, the FED has hinted at the possibility of resuming rate hikes during the back half of the year.

As I mentioned in last month’s newsletter, I believe that home prices will gradually tick up through the summer. Therefore, with some current stability, buying sooner rather than later this summer could be a wise purchasing decision. Likewise, you can avoid a potentially higher mortgage rate in the later months of the year if rate hikes resume. 

As you will see from the analysis below, buyers are already starting to step back in to take advantage of some of the current prices and rates. 

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

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Downtown Atlanta

How to Prepare for the Atlanta Market This Spring

Spring is right around the corner, and veteran agents like myself, start preparing far in advance in anticipation of the influx of buyers and sellers. This advanced preparation is essential for me and allows me to expose my clients to the best opportunities and options in the market. 

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downtown atlanta

Be Ahead of the Game with Atlanta Real Estate in 2023

As we move into February, the Real Estate market seems to be stabilizing along with rates. I am seeing buyers and sellers with renewed interest as spring approaches. 

As we stabilize and look to the year ahead, I wanted to share with you some developments, neighborhoods, and ideas to help you find good long-term value and investments in our Atlanta market.

Below are four opportunities to keep an eye on and potentially explore as your next real estate move.

Welcome to Blandtown

Are you looking for the next up-and-coming neighborhood in Atlanta? If so, put Blandtown on your radar. 

Blandtown is anything but bland; the name comes from the original owner of the land, the Bland family. Blandtown is located on the Upper Westside off Huff Road between Marietta and Howell Mill.

I’ve written many times about the evolution of the Westside, and I believe Blandtown will follow the path of many other pocket neighborhoods in Atlanta that have become household names like Cabbagetown and Kirkwood.

Some new housing developments are sprouting up in the neighborhood and I will be on the lookout for unique buying opportunities for this year. 

New mixed-use developments

Centennial Yards is the $5 billion urban revitalization project near Mercedes-Benz stadium. It’s expected to feature 8 million square feet of commercial and residential space. 

Recently, they broke ground on the first development phase, a boutique hotel and apartment tower.

The Junction Krog District brings Old Fourth Ward and Inman Park together on the Beltline’s Eastside Trail. The development will house office space, shared outdoor space, and restaurants.

I believe this development will be a spectacular urban living boost and one more reason to love beltline living.

The neighborhoods surrounding these developments will be excellent long-term investment choices if you are in the market for a new home. Now is the time to start looking. 

Downtown

As you read above, with the development of Centennial yards, downtown development is booming. There’s a planned $4.5 Billion in new investment going into downtown and surrounding neighborhoods. I’ve been bullish on downtown and the surrounding neighborhoods, and it appears to all be coming together as a place to live and work in the future of Atlanta. 

Here are some of the notable projects underway:

Five Points MARTA transformation. $150 million will be invested in the MARTA hub to make it more accessible.

Underground Atlanta. Plans are underway to develop and improve this destination to make it more accessible and modernized.

South Downtown. $100 million has been invested in the buildings along Peachtree to be part of a large revitalization project that will include new retail, office, and residential spaces. 

This is the year to get ahead of the curve and take a serious look at home-buying opportunities Downtown.

Market Timing

If you have followed my blog and newsletter for any length, you know that I don’t see us having any meaningful slowdown in home prices. Yes, we have seen some short-term fluctuations and pullbacks due to increased rates, but these fluctuations have been minimal in the Atlanta market, and the overall trend is still up.

We have solid population and economic growth but insufficient residential inventory to meet long-term demand. Therefore, I don’t see a significant crash in the Atlanta residential real estate market short of a black swan event.

For this reason, people trying to time the market is on my list of things to watch. I suspect many are doing this right now hoping for the best change in rate and price. 

I hold a contrarian point of view, which is not to time this market because once people realize that this interest rate environment is the new norm, they will come back in full force and push prices up quickly.

Conclusion

Overall I couldn’t be more excited about Atlanta this year. So many big new urban developments are taking place that I believe will present a lot of new opportunities for buyers and sellers. 

Likewise, I believe that if you do plan to make a move this year then now is the right time to start looking and potentially buy. I believe home prices will continue their upward trend this year given everything the city has going for it and which I’ve been discussing for the last several months.

If you’re looking for a home and are ready to see what the market has to offer in some of the up-and-coming areas and unique opportunities of urban Atlanta then please don’t hesitate to contact me.

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