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Welcome to MetroDepth’s Atlanta Housing Market Outlook for 2020. This report was created to give home buyers, investors, and real estate agents some idea of what to expect in 2020, in terms of local housing trends.
To create this report, our team spent many hours reviewing current real estate trends in the Atlanta area. We’ve analyzed home prices, sales activity, economic factors, population trends and more.
This in-depth research allows us to offer a generalized forecast about what might happen in the months ahead. We recommend that you use this information as part of a broader research strategy, so you can make well-informed decisions regarding a home purchase.
A Positive Forecast for the Atlanta Housing Market: 2020 – 2021
Home prices in this metro area have risen over the past year, and a recent forecast for the Atlanta real estate market suggests that could continue throughout the remainder of 2020 and into 2021.
In April 2020, for example, the housing market research team at Zillow predicted that the median home price for Atlanta, Georgia would rise by more than 4% over the next 12 months.
According to the company’s website at that time:
“The median home value in Atlanta is $288,746 … values have gone up 3.3% over the past year and Zillow predicts they will rise 4.7% within the next year.”
Population growth has a lot to do with that positive housing market forecast. The city’s population has grown steadily over the past decade, far exceeding the national average.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the population of Atlanta, Georgia grew by nearly 17% from 2010 to 2018. To put that number into perspective, the nation as a whole grew by 6% during that same eight-year period.
The bottom line here is that the Atlanta real estate market is getting a demand-side boost from steady and above-average population growth.
This is partly what predictions call for a continued rise in home values. A growing populace increases demand for housing on both the purchase and rental side. And that puts upward pressure on home prices.
Of course, real estate market forecasts are the equivalent of an educated guess. So we shouldn’t get too wrapped up in the exact numbers being projected here. It’s the big picture that’s more important. The general consensus, as of spring 2020, is that house values in Atlanta could continue to rise through the end of 2020 and into 2021.
Housing Inventory Remains Tight in Atlanta
Housing inventory remains tight across the Atlanta metro area, as of spring 2020. This is another key reason why home prices continue to rise in this market, and why recent housing forecasts for Atlanta suggest a continuation of that trend into the first part of 2021.
In short, there just aren’t enough homes for sale within the Atlanta real estate market to meet the combined demand from all buyers. And that is putting upward pressure on home values in the area.
According to the national real estate brokerage Redfin, the Atlanta metropolitan area had about a 3.4-month supply of homes for sale in February 2020.
This is a theoretical measurement used to track inventory levels over time. In this case, it means it would take roughly three and a half months to sell all homes currently listed for sale, if no new properties came onto the market in the interim.
According to economists, a 5- or 6-month supply of homes is considered to be a “balanced” real estate market (one that favors neither the buyer nor the seller).
Is 2020 a Good Time to Buy in Atlanta?
Will 2020 be a good time to buy a home in Atlanta?
That’s the big question a lot of investors, home buyers, and real estate agents are asking. This is a difficult question to answer across the board, because every home-buying situation is different. There are a lot of personal and financial considerations that must be taken into account.
But from a market standpoint, 2020 could be a great year to buy a home in Atlanta. Given the current supply and demand situation, additional home-price gains are likely for this real estate market. That would put new homeowners on a path to building equity.
Home buyers who need to use a mortgage loan could also take advantage of historically low mortgage rates. As of spring 2020, the average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage loan had been hovering below 4% for quite some time. That’s based on the weekly industry survey conducted by Freddie Mac.
For Atlanta-area home buyers, a sense of urgency might be warranted. It seems likely that home prices in Atlanta will continue to move north – at least in most parts of the area. Mortgage rates could inch upward as well. As a result, those buyers who stay “on the fence” for a while could encounter higher costs down the road.
Facts About the Atlanta Real Estate Market
- The Atlanta real estate market is the largest in the state in terms of population, and by a wide margin. The city itself had a population of nearly half a million people when last counted, putting it way ahead of other Georgia cities.
- The broader Atlanta metropolitan area — which includes Sandy Springs and Rowell, among other cities — is home to more than 6 million people.
- The Atlanta housing market has experienced rising home values for the past several years. Home prices in the area dropped in the wake of the Great Recession, as they did in most U.S. cities. But they’ve been climbing steadily ever since.
- The Atlanta real estate market benefits from a large and robust economy. According to the data insights provided by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the Atlanta metro area was the tenth-largest in the U.S. and among the top 20-largest in the world (as of 2020).
Disclaimer: This report includes a housing market outlook for the Atlanta, Georgia area in 2020. Real estate forecasts and predictions are the equivalent of an educated guess and should not be considered financial advice. Please do not make any real estate or financial decisions based solely on the information found within this guide. This report is meant to serve as just one part of a broader research process.