Market trends and housing reports around North Atlanta

It's Spring of '21 and there's no relief in sight for the shortage of housing inventory around the greater Atlanta area. The usual first quarter bump was virtually non-existent for 2021, instead the deserted landscape continues to have buyers frustrated and sellers delighted. We continue to look at year over year (by month) key indicators for 16 major markets around north Atlanta. We've examined them in terms of the number of homes for sale and also tracked steadily increasing home prices, (both pages continuously updated). Below we look at the current data in terms of "months of inventory". Months of inventory reflects an estimate of the amount of time it would take to sell all of the current listings in a given area if no new listings became available.…

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Appraisers are an easy target, but the real estate sales industry is a huge contributor to appraisal problems. Appraisers are downstream from the sales process; working with the data produced while writing reports that must conform to underwriting requirements. Appraisers use what data is available, they have no control over any of it. That data stream is controlled by the real estate industry and the multiple listing service. The economy  the volume of sales, agents influence the quality of information in the multiple listing service; which is the primary information source for appraisers. 

Why Are There So Many Real Estate Agents?

How can there be more agents than homes for sale? Consider this…

number of real estate agents

Then consider that not all agents are members…

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How bad is the current housing inventory shortage in the greater Atlanta area? It resonates when presented graphically; hearing about it is one thing but seeing the precipitous drop visually drives the point home. Why the shortage? We see several factors. The most important one is a shortage of inventory. Huh? While it may be easy to sell fast and at a significant premium, how many sellers want to become buyers right now? Record numbers refinanced over the last couple of years and over the pandemic, many renovated and completed projects while locked in, why move? For those that do, many are looking for the next house before they list, trying to avoid the mad scramble. In some cases, homes never hit the market. Word of mouth, off market sales are up as…

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We all make mistakes; the challenge is to keep them from being catastrophic. Rushing to buy a home and not doing proper due diligence…that can be both emotionally and financially crippling. Home buyer remorse is a major issue, 44% of buyers overall and 63% of millennials regret their purchase. Despite the grip of the pandemic (Feb 2021); records were inexplicably shattered in both the real estate and the stock market during 2020. Real estate heads into 2021 with historic shortages and mortgage rates too good to pass up. It’s easy to see why the impulse to buy is there, it’s also easy to see how not being very careful can lead to buyer’s remorse. It doesn’t need to end wearing a bag soaked in tears.

The Agent Problem

There are too many agents, over 2…

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The greater Atlanta area is one of the most popular destinations for folks relocating, and that's not good for local home buyers. Just behind Nashville, buyers headed into the metro Atlanta market significantly out spend local buyers by a staggering average of 33%. This is higher in many of the area's most desirable markets and communities. The "400 Corridor" which includes Sandy Springs, Roswell, Milton, Alpharetta and Cumming is home to multiple major corporations and small businesses, growth has been explosive over the last several years. Relocating employees often work with the security of "buyouts" when they leave; they know they can push prices and be covered when it's time to sell. Others moving from more expensive markets look at prices here and…

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Here's a link the Atlanta Area Housing Market Report for the 4th Qtr 2020. Data is included for over 30 markets in and around Atlanta; from Blue Ridge to South Atlanta. We examine both attached and detached homes and look at homes under and over one million dollars. A quick, visually pleasing way to know what's going on.

Remember, we have appraisal assets and access to much more and much better data than agents do. We also aren't hesitant to couch the the data; every client sees and understands the data exactly as we do. Good or bad, the data is what it is and decisions are based on it.

Hit the image below to see the latest report. If that image doesn't work, CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST ATLANTA AREA HOUSING REPORT.

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Atlanta is a recognizable location, but the housing market for the many cities north of Atlanta is significantly different. From Smyrna to Woodstock to Alpharetta to Cumming to Johns Creek, they share little in common besides the Georgia connection. Below we compare housing prices between 16 cities broken into 4 regions.rising home prices in atlanta

2020 was a crazy year for residential real estate. Despite everything, the housing markets around north Atlanta treated sellers exceptionally well; buyers...not so much. Inventory was scare and competition fierce, multiple offers continue to be common. Many factors combined for this; mainly historically low interest rates and a global plague. In short, buyers exploited rates that make ownership more attractive than renting and the…

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The Covid-19 impact on real estate is a study in contrasts when the "before" and "after" data is reviewed. Seismic shifts of day to day activities impacted every aspect of life, including residential real estate. The pandemic seems to have changed how home buyers and sellers act and what they value (for now anyway). Also clear; the pre-covid inventory shortage was further exacerbated by shut downs and fears of having people walk through homes. Fewer homes, low rates, increased competition and prices came together. A section of the 2020 national association of realtors report compared the housing market before March of 2020 with that after; some familiar trends were reinforced while new ones appeared.

Multi-Generational Homes are In

Desire for…

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In a strong market, sellers may not formally list their home but take a position of “here’s my price, make me move”. These are typically called “quiet, whisper or pocket listings” and while this can be a successful play, there are things for sellers to consider. Usually there is an agreement between a seller and real estate broker that allows the broker to market the property outside of the MLS. Agent networking, social media, open houses and other ways are used to expose the home. Sometimes there is no formal agreement, just a “hey agent, if you know someone that is looking….”. That informality can be problematic, there are legal and contractual aspects to be considered. Many owners talk about a move "if they get their price", but several things need to…

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One yellow rubber duck surrounded by colorless ducks

Learning how to win a bidding war when buying a home usually comes from losing; as others win you learn. There are fundamental techniques and steps to take that will make your offer shine when multiple offers are received. Working with an experienced buyer’s agent is key; one that can dissect data, honestly guide you, write an effective offer and respond rapidly during the process. Many strong offers are lost because buyer agents fail to respond in a timely manner. In situations where "highest and best" offers are called for, remember; highest is not always best. A cash offer with no appraisal contingency and a few days of due diligence can be more appealing than a 97% FHA offer. 

Don’t Overpay

The very first step in winning is not overpaying;

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