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Metro Atlanta housing market continues to look strong for 2022

Inventory of homes remains at low level

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NORTH METRO ATLANTA — Cooler weather has not slowed the housing market in north Metro Atlanta.

The most recent numbers from real estate tracking services report that homes continue to sell, values continue to rise, and the demand remains at historic highs for the area.

The numbers also support the recent flood of permits and zoning applications for residential development across the northern Atlanta suburbs.

Alpharetta OKs more residential development

Tracey Craft, Alpharetta Realtor with the Craft Dolan Team of Ansley Real Estate in Atlanta, said she expects the trend to continue into 2022.

Housing inventory, a measure of available for-sale homes on the market, stands at about one and one-half months in December, about the same level it posted through 2021. That’s a far cry from just three years ago when 2019 began with an eight-month supply.

Housing inventory

Housing inventory, the amount of supply of available houses on the market, is another indicator of the real estate market in a given area. Housing inventory is measured in months. Usually, the fewer the months of inventory, the greater is the demand and higher the price for real estate. This chart shows the amount of inventory during the months of January and December through the past three years.

Area Jan./Dec. 2019 Jan./Dec. 2020 Jan./Dec. 2021
North Fulton 8/5 months 7/3 months 2/1 months
Forsyth County 6/3 months 5/1 months 1/1 months

Inventories typically dip during the spring and summer when homebuying picks up. That’s true in north Metro Atlanta, but buying and selling hasn’t dipped much since August.

Craft said home inventory is still at historic lows for the area, and there’s no sign the housing market will slow in 2022.

“I’ve been practicing for eight-ten years, and I’ve never seen it like this,” she said. “I’ve never seen something so fast-moving and competitive.”

The high demand has sent some home values through the roof. The price tag on homes has climbed 15% in Forsyth County over the past year. North Fulton real estate has climbed more modestly, but it remains at levels much higher than four years ago.

Craft said she’s seen some properties post 19% gains in value through 2021. And demand is still strong.

Values continue to climb

According to realtor.com, the average list and sale prices for homes in north Metro Atlanta continue to climb from levels year over year. Here are the latest numbers for November 2021:

City Median listing price Median sale price Yr. over yr.
Alpharetta $525,000 $507,500 +5.2%
Forsyth County $489,900 $467,000 +15.3%
Johns Creek $550,000 $552,000 +10.9%
Milton $895,000 $817,500 +12%
Roswell $492,000 $505,000 -1.6%

“You can put a house on the market now on a Thursday, if it’s move-in ready, you can still sell it by Sunday,” she said.

There are not quite as many offers coming in as there were during the summer, she added, but even so, sellers are getting their list price. Of course, some sellers will want to list high, and those prices are often adjusted downward, she said.

Average days on market

The average days a home is listed before it is sold provides a picture of how hot the real estate market is. The length of time between a home listing and its sale has declined sharply over the past two years in the cities of Alpharetta, Roswell, Johns Creek and Milton. This chart tracks the average number of days a listing remained on the market through the year over the past three years.

Area 2019 2020 2021
North Fulton 70-75 days 60-55 days 22-18 days

“I think we’ve hit a season of reasoning here in this last quarter,” Craft said. “But the buyers are still out there. If you have a move-in ready home, you’ll do really well right now.”

All the while, homebuilders continue to lay plans for more houses.

Alpharetta continues to approve plans from developers seeking to add townhomes and detached homes to its downtown core. Interest is also growing for residential building in the North Point and Northwinds area of the city.

Alpharetta approves increased density in Northwinds development

Forsyth County has seen a steady flow of applications for residential building development.

Right now, the greatest obstacle to more homes has been getting supplies to build.

Just last month, the Forsyth County Commission agreed to hold a public hearing on a measure to end certain architectural requirements for lap siding because builders complained they couldn’t get materials to meet the standard.

Craft said that when supply issues and labor shortages are resolved, the housing market will probably level out to a slower pace, with longer due-diligence periods for buyers and more time to secure financing on a purchase.

“The pressure on buyers in 2021 was just crazy,” Craft said. “It was a tough year for buyers.”

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