Here’s a look at the housing market in 5 Atlanta suburbs. This data is through 2nd Qtr 2017 and considers Marietta, Alpharetta, Suwanee, Cumming and Decatur. Each with their own unique characteristics and appeal; these markets show consistent patterns that can help when trying to time the market for both buyers and sellers. See detailed data for 20 areas around Atlanta and answer the question of “How’s the Market”?
Number of Closed Sales
Easy enough, this shows how many homes closed in each area during each quarter. As expected, the 2nd Qtr is usually the most active and each area peaks at that point. Note that several markets had strong 2nd Qtr results in ’15 and ’16 as well.
Number of Pending Sales
The 2nd Qtrs are again the busiest. Here we see that ’17 sets new highs everywhere except Cumming. Note the sharp increases in all areas coming out of the 4th Qtrs into the 1st Qtrs.
Number of Active Listings
We’ve heard about the “shortage” of inventory but these charts don’t necessarily demonstrate that. Comparing 2nd Qtr ’17 with 3rd Qtr ’14 we see Decatur and Marietta showing a drop. The others are largely at about the same levels of inventory – and this doesn’t consider homes not listed in the MLS. Might be best to say there is a shortage of “quality” listings – no shortage of overpriced garbage.
Number of Days to Contract
How fast are homes going under contract? Fast – And in the 2nd Qtr of ’17 really really fast. In fact, each of the five markets displayed saw medians under 20 days. So you are either very focused as a buyer working with and listening to your experienced agent or you are one of the whining buyers working with your nephew Timmy who sleeps on a cot in basement and wakes up for dinner.
How Close to List are Final Sale Prices?
Well if you’re looking in Decatur, you’re competing against buyers paying virtually full price on homes. The 2nd Qtr of ’17 saw each of these five markets post their highest sale to list ratios in the last two years. In short, if you want that house, then be the “fastest with the mostest..”. This of course mandates that buyers are ready to go and that agents have briefed them on each micro market; there isn’t time for learning as you go.
Home Prices over the Last 3 Years
All areas are up year over year. The good part here is that it’s not crazy, it’s a steady glide. That said, note the seasonal fluctuations; you might find yourself selling when activity – and values – are off a bit. There are many variables that play into price trends but these broad charts look like they should.
Home Prices over the Last 5 Years
Always good to use the long lens with home prices. The recovery around most areas began in mid-later ’12; and while we’ll see the seasonal fluctuations the last several years have been positive. Don’t take all of this literal; everything in Decatur did not appreciate 115% nor did Alpharetta see an across the board 38% bump. Trends though, are positive.
Our usual warnings apply – DO NOT look at this and consider it gospel; every situation is unique when it comes to real estate. These snapshots are certainly indicative of the overall market but we can go much deeper. Find out what your home is worth or sign up for free micro market reports for your particular area. We want our readers and clients to be fully educated, it’s better for all involved.