ATLANTA HOUSING 1Q18: Strong Growth Continues in 2018, but Lot Shortages and Inventory are at Historically Low Levels
- Annual New Home Starts in the Atlanta metro region are up 10% YoY, and Annual Closings are up 9% from 1Q17 levels;
- Quarterly New Home Starts are up .4% from 1Q17; Quarterly Closings are 5,575 YoY
- Resale Inventory is at historically low levels – the region has had less than a four months supply for over three years
Metrostudy’s 1Q18 survey of the Atlanta housing market showed that metrowide, Atlanta’s quarterly construction starts numbered 5,575 – an increase of only .4% from 1Q17. Atlanta’s quarterly new home closings ending 1Q18 totaled 5240, increasing by 11% from 1Q17. Annual new home starts are up 10% YoY to 24,251, while annual closings are up 9% to 22,727.
There were 105,200 single family detached used and REO properties sold over the past 12 months ending in March, up 5.8% above last year’s closings volume. 9% of the closings in 1Q were REO sales (one year ago it was 13%). The 1Q18 median sales price was $195,000 which is 2.7% above the year over year median sale price of $189,900. The average sales price will always be higher and was $242,900 in 1Q18. In March resale inventory dropped by 25% YoY and remains extremely low at only 2.2 months supply. The record low was set last quarter at 2 months. 6 months used to be normal for resale inventory but the new normal will probably be 4 months. The region has had less than a 4 months’ supply for over three years.
“The metro Atlanta economy expanded by 1.7% annually in March, versus 1.5% nationally, and net job growth is expected to continue through 2018,” said Eugene James, Senior Regional Director for Metrostudy. “Housing supply is low for both new and resale homes. Total vacant lot inventory (VDL’S) months supply remains skewed at 40.7 due to many in less desirable locations but several submarkets have a months supply less than 18 months. These areas have a lot shortage.”
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