The Atlanta area real estate market heads into 2018 with several significant differences from the national market. The national reports are consistent with a major drop in inventory; “a shortage of homes” has been the cry for a few years now. However, we look at the six major counties that comprise the “Atlanta” market; none have experienced a “drastic drop” in inventory. Ebbs and flows? Of course but as seen below, patterns are clear and nothing seen is even close to “drastic”
The number of sales is also largely counter to the national reports. The number of sales in every county have increased over four years, again the ebb and flow is clear but year over year the number of sales across these counties is even to increasing.
What does line up with the national data are times to sell – in short, successful buyers are prepared and ready to go. Those not focused or not committed to the task will miss opportunities. Every county median days on market is under 30; three counties are under 20. The well priced, appealing homes disappear, speed kills.
The Atlanta Area Real Estate Market by County
The North Fulton Real Estate Market
Here’s a look at six very popular North Fulton zip codes. Like the county data, these zips codes tend to largely reject the national trends. There is no evidence of a listing shortage, in fact looking back to 2013 Q4 we see most of the zip codes currently have at least the same or more active listings. 30076 might be a smidge under but hardly out of the ordinary cycle.
Note the sale to list price ratio; what percentage of list buyers are paying to secure the home. Each of the six counties is between 98% – 99%; sellers are in control and those buyers expecting discounts of 10% – 15% off list will be disappointed.
The East Cobb – Marietta Real Estate Market
The East Cobb area of Marietta has historically been one of the most desirable locations around the greater Atlanta market. These zips cover the majority of the area and again, each of these zips carries the same or more listings as they did four years ago. Same for the sale to list price ratios; the buyers here are paying very close to list to secure homes. Any buyer searching this area know that.
Sandy Springs – Dunwoody – North Atlanta Market
Closer into the city of Atlanta the trends tend to remain consistent. Inventory in the 4th Qtr ’17 is equal to or greater than that of the 4th Qtr of ’13. The one exception is zip code 30338; here we see a slight decrease from 4th Qtr ’13 but from about 1st Qtr ’14 to present, the inventory levels are about the same. Zips 30319 and 30327 have seen increases while the others are about the same. Sale to list ratios are a bit below the other areas but still very healthy. Zip 30327 had the most significant bump and that was mainly between later ’13 and early ’14.
What’s it all mean? Well the data is clear that home buyers need to be prepared and ready to go; this is not debatable. The 2018 market is almost certain to be one with interest rate increases, now is the time for buyers to commit; particularly rate sensitive ones. A large group of buyers have never seen rates into the 5%’s or more…as rates increase, those rate sensitive ones will fall off the qualified list. The other obvious takeaway is that final sale prices are close to list price. Of course there are outliers and overpriced homes, but once they adjust to where they should be, they sell quickly.
The single most important thing to remember is something often repeated here; every situation is different. Different home, different seller, different buyer, different time, different location…so it’s critical that any agent understand the nuances. These charts are broad; we dive much deeper with our clients and complete appraisal level data research. If you have a question about the market, an area or even a home, just fill out the form below.