Why Is Midtown Atlanta Inventory So Low?

Why Is Midtown Atlanta housing inventory low April 7, 2015This is a question/challenge I face daily when working with Buyers that are looking to purchase a Midtown Atlanta condo. After viewing properties in an afternoon, the question often comes up, “Is that all we are going to see?” My reply is often, “That is all there IS to see!”

Why Is Midtown Atlanta Inventory So Low?

I’ve attached a link below to an article that recently appeared on the website Inman News which is real estate news for real estate agents. Always good stuff and very informative. However, as I am sure you have heard, real estate is local, local, local. So while this article gives you that 30,000 foot view of the market and conditions nationwide, I wanted to touch two points that relate to Midtown Atlanta…

Value Disruption/Reset in 08/09

As the article states, between 2007 and 2010, we saw a major change in values in Midtown Atlanta. Condos that originally sold for $350,000 were selling in foreclosure for $190,000!  Prices have returned to the higher values, so those that purchased at the high price, may now finally be able to sell their condo and not be “under water” in terms of the value. Those that snapped up at that $190,000 certainly are ready to move, but….

SQ5 Under Construction April 7, 2015Where Would I Go? (Move Up) and Stunted New Development

A quick glance at the Midtown skyline gives one the impression of “Wow, look at all those new condo buildings going up!” Ahhhh…not so fast. All those cranes you see are producing a bumper (maybe even an excess) crop of rental apartments, NOT condominiums For Sale! For the Midtown Atlanta condo buyer, a primary reason for a move, is to move into the latest and greatest new building. But what do you do, or where do you move, when you don’t have ANY new buildings?

Current Midtown Atlanta condo construction is limited to a couple buildings and townhome developments and those prices start in the $700,000 range. That might be a bit more of a “move up” than many buyers can afford.

So, when we are out looking at Midtown Atlanta condos for you to purchase, it’s not me giving you any kind of “salesperson pressure” to make a decision. It’s the market telling you, make that offer now, or it may be gone while you think about it.

Here is a link to Why Is Housing Inventory So Low?

Thom Abbott

I'm a real estate broker living and selling the Midtown Atlanta lifestyle. From high rise condominiums to historic homes, I enjoy everything Midtown Atlanta has to offer. I'll help you find the right home in Midtown Atlanta or any of the other exciting Intown Atlanta communities that border the Midtown Area!

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Atlanta Real Estate to outperform rest of United States

Atlanta Real Estate to outperform rest of the United States

Atlanta Real EstateThe Atlanta real estate market is brisk and most metrics indicate positive growth. The seller’s market continues and Atlanta will likely out-perform the rest of the country in both value growth and unit volume.

The intown market has experienced the greatest appreciation, with many communities seeing more than a 20 percent increase in value since early 2013. Empty-nesters and millennials alike continue to migrate to the intown market to take advantage of the lifestyle benefits that urban density offers … including restaurants, shopping, public transportation, entertainment … and of course the Beltline. The Beltline phenomenon may be the single biggest driver for intown growth outside of the rebound of key intown employment sectors. Professionals are seeking communities that offer a walkable live-work lifestyle and are abandoning expensive commutes. The announcement that NCR will move 3,500 employees into the city only reinforces this trend.

With prices having accelerated to 2007 levels in many intown and Buckhead sub-markets, I think we can expect only moderate value increases in 2015. Inventory has stabilized into the four-month range (six is considered normal) as seller pent-up demand levels off. Clearly, there appears to be a normalizing in the market. Sellers can sell at prices that motivate them and buyers, anxious to lock in — in advance of rising prices — and at low rates, continue to step up.

311 Harp Road Fayetteville GA 30215The suburban market was subject to some of the market’s worst foreclosure rates and value declines in the recession. The evaporation of foreclosure notices has helped property values rebound. Suburban values are edging close to 2004 levels, according to Case-Shiller. Also, the tide of foreign purchasers continues to be a positive factor for suburban — and to a lesser extent — intown sellers. Anecdotal reports suggest that as many as 20 percent of all suburban purchases are driven by international buyers. This is true at all price points. The Atlanta market continues to be a magnet for inbound international migration as well as foreign investment.

Exurban markets continue to lag, but are showing unit and price growth as well. Only the second home market remains for value hunters. Prices in the North Georgia and North Carolina mountains — as well as the Georgia coast — have not yet approached a full rebound, though anecdotal reports from our brokers are that signs of vibrancy are returning. That said, absorption is still slow in those markets.

New home construction is at a seven-year high. Intown infill building has led the way with players scouting the market for tear-downs. With builder margins in the 20 percent range and so much buyer pent-up demand for new construction product, it’s clear that home-building will be a leader in the 2015 market. Of course, leading corporate homebuilders are selling new homes as fast as they can build them in the suburbs.

MyMidtownMojo Sells Viewpoint Midtown AtlantaThe vibrancy of the intown and Buckhead condo markets continues to surprise. Inventory is at a record low (one to two months) and prices are rising at the rate of 1 percent per month and have been doing so for 24 months. Buckhead uber-luxury projects such as Sovereign and The Ritz-Carlton Residences, which had been sluggish, are now long sold out. The Mandarin Oriental – with unit prices in the $2 million range – only has some 18 homes remaining. The Midtown market’s key recession-plagued projects — 1010, Luxe, Viewpoint, and lower Buckhead’s The Brookwood — are also long recovered with recession buyers in those projects being rewarded richly in this seller’s market. With few or no new condo projects over 100 units on the horizon, lack of inventory will continue to drive price gains. In Midtown, only The Atlantic (some 250 units remain) and The Lowes project (60 units, give or take) are scheduled to release new inventory in 2015. Alta, a Wood Partners proposed 250-unit project on Piedmont Park, has yet to confirm whether its units will be built for sale or lease.

Interest rates continue to remain at historical record lows and lending requirements appear to be softening. Good or bad, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have just unveiled new mortgage programs that will allow qualified homebuyers to put down as little as three percent and President Obama has announced reductions in private mortgage insurance (PMI) rates. This should aid first-time buyers, buttressing the foundation of the marketplace, and allow trade-up buyers to migrate through the cycle.

In short, 2015 looks to be a fine year to be in the residential real estate business whether you’re a broker, a builder, a lender, a closing agent … or a buyer or seller.

Kevin L. Palmer is the CEO and founder of PalmerHouse Properties, a residential and commercial real estate agency. Prior to founding PalmerHouse Properties in 2006, Palmer spent 25 years in the financial services industry within Atlanta

Thomas Ramon Realty is affiliated with Palmer House Properties. MyMidtownMojo.com is owned by Thom Abbott. 

Thom Abbott

I'm a real estate broker living and selling the Midtown Atlanta lifestyle. From high rise condominiums to historic homes, I enjoy everything Midtown Atlanta has to offer. I'll help you find the right home in Midtown Atlanta or any of the other exciting Intown Atlanta communities that border the Midtown Area!

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When Should I Sell My Atlanta Condo?

In real estate, I often wish I had a crystal ball. It would make it so much easier for myself and everyone of my clients. I could just look into it, glance up and say, “List your condo on March 2, 2015 at 1:45pm and a Buyer will find in 10 minutes later and it will be sold in 21 days.”

But, that is not the reality of real estate, is it? I have to rely on hard work, good marketing and my knowledge of what is happening in the market. Those things, combined with you being ready to place your condo on the market at a price that makes market sense, will bring that Buyer to our door.

When Should I Sell My Atlanta Condo?

But, the Buyer has to FIND something to buy! And inventory is at an all-time low! In Midtown Atlanta for example, all the construction cranes you currently see are for rental apartments, NOT for new condominiums! Yes, there is a chance they might convert in the future to For Sale homes, but if construction is underway, they most likely do not have the type of financing that will allow for a conversion right away. (NOTE: One new building, Seventh Midtown at Peachtree and 7th Streets is new construction condominiums…..prices start at $739,000 for a 2-bedroom home)

So, here are two graphs that clearly indicate the problem….

Buying Midtown Condos

So, the Buyer’s are out there….and they are looking. But what do they have to look AT?

 

Condos For Sale Midtown Atlanta

While these are national stats from the National Association of REALTORS, they still reign true in Atlanta condos! Many buildings that I work with, have as little as 1 or two homes For Sale, and there are some that have nothing listed for sale! Nothing!

If you are “on the fence” as to whether this is the time to sell, let’s talk. Sure, there are other factors we have to consider if you are going to sell your home! When did you buy? What did you pay? What are homes selling for now in your building? The answers to some of these questions might truly say it is NOT the time for you to sell.

But having a conversation and talking about all these factors is the only real way to know what is right for you.

My phone is right here next to me.

Thom Abbott

I'm a real estate broker living and selling the Midtown Atlanta lifestyle. From high rise condominiums to historic homes, I enjoy everything Midtown Atlanta has to offer. I'll help you find the right home in Midtown Atlanta or any of the other exciting Intown Atlanta communities that border the Midtown Area!

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Atlanta Condos For Sale | Consequences of Overpricing

Overpricing Atlanta Condos For SaleEveryone wants top dollar when they sell their home or condo. Every little bit the price is lowered comes right out of your pocket….I get that as your real estate agent. But when we sit down during our listing consultation and talk price, there is something to be said when we overprice your home. There ARE consequences for our actions!

Atlanta Condos For Sale | Consequences of Overpricing

When a buyer contacts me about buying an Atlanta Condo For Sale, most likely they have already spent weeks, if not months looking on-line and doing comparison shopping. Many times, they even come to me with a list of condos they have identified they want to see. So, if your condo is priced at $365,000, and is should of been priced at $350,000, you probably lost that buyer. NOT good!

But here are some other results of being overpriced:

  • Overpriced properties become “stale” during those crucial first weeks on the market. Reducing the price later may not ignite the market interest in your home.
  • Overpriced properties won’t be shown to the prospective Buyer. Take the example above. If the Buyer’s agent has a buyer pre-approved for $350,000, they most likely  hopefully won’t be trying to squeeze their Buyer into a home they are not qualified to purchase.
  • Overpriced properties just help sell everything else. Yep, pretty much.
  • Overpriced = longer time on the market.
  • The longer a property is on the market, the lower the offer may be. “You’ve been on the market a long time Mr./Ms. Seller…you must be desperate now to sell. Here’s our low offer.”
  • Last, but not least…..the appraisal! Ultimately, the house or condo has to appraise if the buyer is getting a mortgage.

If your home or condo is priced right, is should sell quickly. This is not a bad thing!!! Many sellers think that a quick offer and sale on their home means they should have asked for MORE! NO! It sold quickly because we priced it RIGHT! 

If you are looking to sell your Intown Atlanta home or condominium, I’m here to help!

Sending

Thom Abbott

I'm a real estate broker living and selling the Midtown Atlanta lifestyle. From high rise condominiums to historic homes, I enjoy everything Midtown Atlanta has to offer. I'll help you find the right home in Midtown Atlanta or any of the other exciting Intown Atlanta communities that border the Midtown Area!

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Midtown Atlanta Condos For Sale | How Can I Improve My Condo’s Value?

What is my Midtown Atlanta Condo worthWhen I meet with prospective Sellers, part of our discussion is always about what they can do to make their condo “stand out” from the rest. Even in a market when inventory may be limited, if your condo does not show well…well it won’t sell well!

But let’s rewind to when you first bought it. (This IS important, in case you happen to be reading this as a recent Buyer, or your plans to sell may be off in the distance.)

Midtown Atlanta Condos For Sale | How Can I Improve My Condo’s Value?

Most Midtown Atlanta condos look like they did when they were built. Seriously. Most buyers have never changed or upgraded anything in the condo they bought. Especially if they purchased it as new construction. But now that the condos have some years on them, some easy things you can do to make your condo stand out include:

  • New and different granite counter tops — something that will make your condo “pop” from the others. A majority of the kitchens are not that large and so the cost of the granite may not be that expensive. This applies to the bathrooms as well
  • New and different kitchen backsplash. Every condo seems to have a black tile back splash. See how great things look with a different color! That said, be careful not to go wild and crazy or that could work against you.

But in the short term, let’s say you want to list your condo for sale in the next 30-60 days. Here’s some things to do:

  • Paint. If your walls are scuffed, or you have not painted since you moved in…do it. The fresh paint (and smell) will give your condo a new feel
  • Make sure everything works. You might consider getting a pre-listing inspection done by a home inspector. Why not find out all the little things that might come up during the Buyer’s inspection, and take care of them NOW!
  • The video below mentions landscaping, which certainly applies to a single family home, but not so much a condo! But you can “landscape” be decluttering your condo. If you’ve got lots of winter (or summer) clothes, books, or other stuff, consider a short term storage unit to place these things in. Space (especially closets) can be a premium in a condo, and you want to show them you got it.

I’m happy to meet with you after we list your home to make sure we have highlighted these things. I also recommend having a home staging company come in and help arrange your furnishings to make the most of what that potential buyer will see when they walk through the door!

If you are considering selling your Midtown Atlanta condo, let me know! I’d be happy to meet with you and talk about the market in general as well as what is happening in your particular building.

Sending

Thom Abbott

I'm a real estate broker living and selling the Midtown Atlanta lifestyle. From high rise condominiums to historic homes, I enjoy everything Midtown Atlanta has to offer. I'll help you find the right home in Midtown Atlanta or any of the other exciting Intown Atlanta communities that border the Midtown Area!

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