Some all around good news from the Atlanta Business Chronicle is making homebuying in Atlanta a more tempting proposition than it has been in recent years. First off, a report by Zillow bursts the bubble a little bit in the current rental craze. Maybe you’ve noticed all the cranes around Atlanta lately - they’re for apartment buildings, not condos. While renting is a sound choice for many people these days, it might not be the long term trend that some have predicted. Simple economics say that as rental demand increases and rents rise with it, some people are going to start seeing buying as the more attractive option.
According to Zillow, it only takes an average of 2.5 years for an Atlanta homebuyer to break even on their purchase. So while short term renters should feel confident in their decision, they may be missing out on building equity in the long run. 2.5 years is the average, but the turnaround period could be as little as 1.1 years or as long as 7.7. And it’s not only an Atlanta thing: Zillow found similar numbers for 75% of the country’s housing markets.
Next up is the news that Atlanta’s housing inventory is the absolute lowest it’s ever been since Sherman came through town. As a result, new home construction starts are up 38% over the same time last year (closings on single family homes are also up 12% over the same time period). The numbers could only get so low before homebuilders saw the opportunity to satiate demand. And where are these new homes being built, you ask? Atlanta’s intown neighborhoods continue to see new homes going up on the sites of old ones, particularly in Morningside, Virginia Highland, Midtown, and all over Buckhead. Outside the Perimeter, closer in suburbs with great schools are continuing to see demand for new housing. East Cobb fits the bill perfectly, as do Roswell, Alpharetta, Dunwoody, and Johns Creek.