Atlanta Jobs Move Housing Closer To Full Recovery

Posted in Atlanta Market | Posted on 02-24-2015 | Written by Metrostudy News

  • The Atlanta region is showing strong job growth and strong levels of single-family home permits
  • Annual Single Family Home Starts are up 15% in North Atlanta, and up 28% in South Atlanta
  • Inventory Levels are low, and the difficulty of finding a replacement home is keeping many people from listing their existing home.

February 2015: The Atlanta employment statistics through December 2014 show that the region has experienced positive job growth through 4Q 2014. Net jobs in Atlanta through December 2014 increased by 67,400 positions, up 2.6% year over year. Atlanta ended the year as the eighth most populous MSA in the country, seventh for job growth and ranked third highest for single family building permits. Foreclosure activity has hit a twelve year low and resale inventory remains low. All key metrics point towards stronger housing growth for 2015.

“There were 73,099 single family detached used and REO properties sold over the past 12 months ending in 4Q 2014,” said Eugene James, Regional Director for Metrostudy.  “21% of these closings were REO sales (one year ago it was 25%). The 4Q14 median sales price was $166,900 11% above the year over year median sale price of $150,000. Pre- foreclosure activity continues to decline and is at a twelve year low, resulting in fewer foreclosed homes and additional upward pressure on home prices. December single- family listings moved upwards by 9% YoY to 15,700 but the months supply remains very low (and declined this quarter) to 3.8 months. Equilibrium or a normal month’s supply of resale inventory for the region is about 6 months. The difficulty of finding a replacement home is keeping some people from listing their existing home.”

Collectively the Atlanta region saw annual construction starts increase by 18% (as forecasted) to 16,437 and new home closings increased by 23% to 14,806 units closed (move-ins). Metrostudy expects slow but steady growth in 2015.

ATLANTA:

Metrostudy’s 4Q14 survey of the Atlanta housing market shows that there were 16,437 Annual Single Family Housing Starts in Metro Atlanta, up 18% from 4Q13. The fourth quarter 2014 Quarterly Starts of 3,993 were up nearly 18% as well, from 4Q13. Single Family annual Closings reached 14,815 units at the end of 4Q14, up a whopping 22.6% from 4Q13. 4Q14 Quarterly Closings of 4,087 are up 19% from the 4Q13.

Total housing inventory – a figure that includes houses under construction, model homes and finished but vacant or unsold houses, is at or below equilibrium levels and the months supply declined to 7.9. One year ago it was an 8.1 month supply.  The most important housing inventory metric to pay close attention to is the Finished
Vacant inventory (homes completed but unsold or still vacant) months supply which is at 2.9. Normal for the region is about 3.5 months.

According to Metrostudy the Atlanta metro area’s new home prices continued to climb higher this year closing out 2014 at a median price of $271,700, up 4% from the prior year and marks the fifth consecutive year that new home prices have increased year over year.

“The Atlanta metro area is creating jobs at a healthy pace, up 2.6% year-over-year and has averaged above 2.3% growth for the past two years. With 2.51 million people now employed, Atlanta has set a new record for total people employed. Despite good job growth, unemployment was relatively high due to migration into the region thus expanding the labor force faster than the economy could absorb. But solid job growth has spurred consumer confidence which is helping to move the housing market toward a stronger recovery. 2015 should be another good year for housing in the Atlanta region”, said James.

4q ATL

For information contact
Eugene James
404.510.1080
ejames@metrostudy.com

About Metrostudy

Metrostudy is the leading provider of primary and secondary market information to the housing and related industries nationwide. Metrostudy provides research, data, analytics and consulting services to help builders, developers, lenders, suppliers, retailers, utilities and others make investment and business decisions every day. For more information, visit www.metrostudy.com

About Hanley Wood

Hanley Wood is the premier information, media, event, and strategic marketing services company serving the residential, commercial design and construction industries. Utilizing the largest editorial- and analytics-driven construction market database, the company produces powerful market data and insights; award-winning publications, newsletters and websites; high-profile executive events; and strategic marketing solutions. To learn more, visit hanleywood.com

Lots of Catch-Up

Posted in Atlanta Market, Austin Market, Central Florida Market, Dallas - Ft. Worth Market, Denver - Colorado Springs Market, Houston Market, Inland Empire Market, Jacksonville Market, Las Vegas Market, Maryland Market, Naples - Ft. Myers Market, National Housing Market, Northern Virginia Market, Phoenix - Tucson Market, Raleigh - Durham Market, Sarasota - Bradenton Market, South Florida Market, Southern California Market, St. George - Mesquite Market, Tampa Market | Posted on 08-04-2014 | Written by Brad Hunter

brad hWe have been talking for years about the lot shortages that builders are facing.  Now, it’s time to talk about how many lots are being developed.  Builders and developers are now playing “catch-up,” with builders buying land and lots and developers/investors paving roads and putting in infrastructure to serve the builders’ needs at a frenetic pace.

The pace of lot delivery (completion, ready for the builder) has gone up 140% in the past two years, much faster than the pace of housing production has risen (+84%).  Despite this increased pace, lot development STILL lags the pace of home production nationwide.

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In some markets, the lot production machine is in full gear, and has caught up with demand.  This is a good sign for builders, and a vital turning point for home production in 2015 and beyond.

The TOP TEN states for lot production in 2Q14 are:

State       2nd Q.   Starts        2nd Q. Lot       Deliveries
Texas 19,714 18,931
Florida 12,416 10,974
California 10,050 10,219
North Carolina 4,866 3,168
Georgia 4,489 1,270
Colorado 3,985 3,276
Arizona 3,519 4,596
Maryland 2,436 2,122
Utah 2,328 2,498
Virginia 2,198 1,850

Note that lot production has caught up with new home production in California, Arizona, and Utah.   Florida development is woefully far behind demand for lots, hence the skyrocketing cost of finished lots there.

Metrostudy defines “future lots” as those that are in the pipeline (some are pre-entitlement), and Florida has the deepest pipeline.   Below are the top 10 states ranked by known future lots.

State Future Inventory
Florida 1,597,055
California 1,378,299
Arizona 1,213,476
Texas 651,413
Colorado 406,613
Georgia 316,956
Illinois 281,054
Nevada 227,121
Maryland 194,829
Virginia 183,613

 

Is Activity in the South…Going South?

Posted in Atlanta Market, Central Florida Market, Charlotte Market, Dallas - Ft. Worth Market, Houston Market, Jacksonville Market, Naples - Ft. Myers Market, National Housing Market, Northern Virginia Market, Raleigh - Durham Market, Rio Grande Valley Market, San Antonio Market, Sarasota - Bradenton Market, Suburban Maryland Market, Tampa Market, The Triad Market | Posted on 08-04-2014 | Written by Brad Hunter

The brad hgovernment release on housing starts for June showed a sharp decline, concentrated in what the Census Bureau defines as “The South.”  Single-family starts were down in June by 9.0% from the previous month, and down 4.3% from twelve months earlier.  Within that number, almost all the decline was in the South, down 20.1% versus the previous month and down 14.5% versus a year ago.

Rumors of the South’s demise are greatly exaggerated.

Read Full Article and See Quarterly SFD Starts

 

 

 

 

Land to Build On!

Posted in Atlanta Market, National Housing Market | Posted on 06-25-2014 | Written by Eugene James

True Statement – Atlanta has more finished lots than any other market.

What is interesting however, is that a small number of  communities (11 to be exact) contain a rather large share of these finished lots.

Many of the existing developed lots are located in areas that are significant commutes (25 to 50 miles) from the CBD. Most of these communities have been dormant from the time that they were even developed back in 2005 and 2006.  However, since those darker days, Class A lot supplies have been depleted, especially those positions that might be categorized as “in-fill” or simply “closer in” to our job centers here in Atlanta.  This has led to an abrupt increase in both lot and home prices as they are reaching new highs.

Is it time to start building in the hereto now dormant exurban communities?  It’s to late to ask the question as it has already begun.  Remember the 11 communities referenced earlier (see list below)?  New construction has kicked off in 5 of them at an aggressive pace.

Just four years ago there were less than 25 annual starts in these neighborhoods, today it has grown to nearly 200 annual starts. It looks like the recovery is starting to occur even in the most the most exurban parts of Atlanta.

ATL

green mapUsing Builder Insight, our mobile, tablet-based tool, I can quickly get a clear view into what the recovery situation is on the ground in a local area – who’s got the VDLs and who’s leading the way in starts activity.

Learn how Builder Insight provides you with local market activity trends analyses and get a sample of just one of our local market reports designed to get you the answers you need to make informed decisions.

Metrostudy: Atlanta – New Home Construction and Prices are on the Rise in first quarter of 2014

Posted in Atlanta Market | Posted on 05-22-2014 | Written by Metrostudy News

(Atlanta, GA –May 22, 2014) Single family housing construction continued to heat up in Atlanta during the first quarter of 2014. Good Job growth and low inventory continues to lead to strong demand for new housing throughout the Atlanta region. Area builders started 3,401 homes here during the first quarter, according to a report from Metrostudy, a national housing information and consulting firm. That was a 28 percent jump over the same period last year.

“Job growth is one of the single most important drivers of home demand, and Atlanta’s pace of job growth is one of the highest in the nation,” said Eugene James, regional director of Metrostudy’s Atlanta’s market. Employment is up by 2.2% from March to March and the region created 51,500 new jobs during that time. “This ranks Atlanta as the 6th best region among all metro areas in terms of year-over-year job creation and we have recovered 98% of the jobs that were lost to the Great Recession,” said James.

“Another important driver for new home demand is the extremely tight inventory of resale homes available on the market. The supply of available homes for sale has remained low for more than two years and the months supply remains below normal at a 3.9 month supply. Homeowners seem reluctant to attempt to sell their existing homes even though equity and home prices have been on the rise” said James.

“All of these factors have contributed to an impressive first quarter of 2014 for the single-family home market in Atlanta ” James said. On an annual basis, housing starts are up 55 percent. As of the end of March, Atlanta builders started 14,615 new homes, the highest annual tally since the third quarter of 2008. Although construction starts have been increasing lately the finished housing inventory months supply number is still below normal. According to Metrostudy’s research, the current months supply for finished and vacant homes is 2.7 months. Normal is between 3 and 3.5 months. “We have not seen a number this low in over 12 years” said James.

New home starts have always been a good forward looking indicator of demand and closings. New home annual closings of 12,908 was 38 percent above last year’s closings volume. First Quarter 2014 quarterly closings were up, increasing to 3,141 units closed or 37 percent above last year’s quarterly closings.

Increasing demand and the limited supply of houses is pushing prices higher as well. The median sales price of new homes in the first quarter was $275,000, an all-time high for the region. “We expect to see continued price increases this year due to the limited supply of houses for sale. Another big reason new home prices may go up is because of the sharp increases on the price of raw land and finished buildable lots ” said James.

For information contact: eugene james @ 404.510.1080 cell
email ejames@metrostudy.com

About Metrostudy

Metrostudy, a Hanley Wood company, is the leading provider of primary and secondary market information to the housing and related industries nationwide. Established in 1975 in Houston, Metrostudy provides research, data, analytics and consulting services that help builders, developers, lenders, suppliers, retailers, utilities and others make investment and business decisions every day. www.metrostudy.com

About Hanley Wood

Hanley Wood is the premier information, media, event, and strategic marketing services company serving the residential, commercial design and construction industries. Utilizing the largest editorial- and analytics-driven construction market database, the company produces powerful market data and insights; award-winning publications, newsletters and websites; marquee trade shows and executive events; and strategic marketing solutions. To learn more, visit hanleywood.com.

Atlanta experienced huge gains in housing starts in 2013; more expected in 2014

Posted in Atlanta Market | Posted on 02-21-2014 | Written by Metrostudy News

(Atlanta, GA –February 21, 2014) The 22 county Atlanta region experienced 13,862 housing starts in 2013, up 67% year over year and new home closings were up 39% coming in at 12,079 units closed (move-ins). The 2014 forecast is that housing starts will increase at least by another 25%, according to a report from Metrostudy, a national housing information and consulting firm.

The Atlanta region finished the 2013 year with huge gains in new construction housing starts. By the end of 2013 there were 13,862 annual single family homes either being constructed or built in the region, up 67% from December 2012 when Annual Starts ended the year with 8,311 housing starts. The northern portions of Atlanta (areas above I-20) have experienced the bulk of the housing starts with an 80% market share. But for the first time in many years starts rose significantly in every county, including the exurban markets. For instance, counties located south of I-20, an area hit hard with foreclosures and declining property values, saw housing starts increase by 97% from one year earlier.

“Coweta, Henry, Douglas, even Clayton county all had new construction starts to increase over 100% from a year ago” said Eugene James regional director for Metrostudy, the research firm that physically inspects new home subdivisions each quarter. At the county level some of the percent changes in starts from the prior year may look “Unbelievable”. “That’s because starts were nearly non-existent last year in the exurban market areas”, said James. For example, in 4Q13 Henry County had a 245% increase in starts activity; it went from 47 starts to 162. The numbers are even more dramatic in Paulding which had a 436% increase in housing starts. They went from 22 starts in 4Q12 up to 118 this past quarter.

“With housing demand outpacing the low supply of new and resale homes in the region I think we will have another year of huge gains in housing construction activity, probably by at least 25% above the 2013 figures” said James.

About Metrostudy
Metrostudy is the leading provider of primary and secondary market information to the housing and related industries nationwide. Metrostudy provides research, data, analytics and consulting services to help builders, developers, lenders, suppliers, retailers, utilities and others make investment and business decisions every day. For more information, visit www.metrostudy.com

About Hanley Wood
Hanley Wood, LLC is the premier information, media, event, and strategic marketing services company serving the residential, commercial design and construction industries. Utilizing the largest editorial- and analytics-driven construction market database, the company produces powerful market data and insights; award-winning publications, newsletters and websites; marquee trade shows and executive events; and strategic marketing solutions. To learn more, visit hanleywood.com.

US Senator Johnny Isakson and Eugene James from Metrostudy spoke recently to a full house at a West Georgia real estate event

Posted in Atlanta Market | Posted on 02-12-2014 | Written by Metrostudy News

Eugene and US Sen.

US Senator Johnny Isakson and Eugene James from Metrostudy spoke recently to a full house at a West  Georgia real estate event. The Senator spoke about his push to extend the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act, which expired on January 1st, 2014. The extension would forgive homeowners from having to pay the IRS taxes if they had to use short sale or a deeds in lieu of foreclosure to sell their primary residence (the home that you live in). If the act is not extended and you sell you short sell your home today, you may owe the IRS on the deficiency or the difference between the loan amount and the short sale or foreclosure amount. If the act is expended it will be made retroactive.

Eugene spoke about the improving economy nationally and locally. As it relates to the Atlanta market and job growth,  the region ended 2013 up 58,900 net new positions, up 151,200 new positions over the past three years, and up 57,600 new positions from five years ago. Peak employment in Atlanta occurred in December 2007. Atlanta employment is down by 29,700 jobs from this point in time.

With regard to housing starts, the region ended the year with new construction starts increasing by 67% above 2012. Higher starts mean even more job growth (typically 3 new jobs with each new housing start) and the forecast for 2014 is an additional increase in starts by at least another 25% (per Metrostudy).

Stay tuned for more stats about Atlanta and the region.

From the Outside Looking In – the Importance of Submarket Analysis

Posted in Atlanta Market, National Housing Market | Posted on 11-25-2013 | Written by Madison Inselmann

Proving that there is no such thing as a “national housing market”, a few select markets came out of the housing recession earlier and stronger than the rest of the pack.  For markets like Austin, Houston, Phoenix, and others, their early growth has attracted the attention of industry players from around the country, and even around the globe.  Now while many of our clients would prefer we put out the “Market Closed” sign, it has been interesting to make these national connections and vet their interest in the local housing markets.

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For these players, the local housing market gets even more layered, Read the rest of this entry »

The Atlanta New Home Market…Continues to Accelerate

Posted in Atlanta Market | Posted on 11-12-2013 | Written by Metrostudy News

(Atlanta, GA –November 12, 2013) The temporary Federal government shutdown will prevent September employment figures from being released until November 21st but as of August, Atlanta employment grew by 57,100 new positions year over year (up 2.4%) and currently ranks as the fifth best MSA in the country in terms of annual employment gains. The biggest gains were in the construction sector, up a whopping 9.2%! “It’s no surprise that construction jobs jumped by such a large percentage since new home construction starts rose significantly as well, up 71% in the third quarter compared to the same period one year ago,” said Eugene James, Regional Director for Metrostudy, a national housing intelligence and consulting firm that maintains the most extensive primary database on residential construction in the US housing market.

According to Metrostudy’s proprietary “boots on the ground” third quarter 2013 field research, Atlanta new home starts increased  by 76% annually, and closings were up by 37%. Third quarter quarterly starts were up by 71% year over year and even increased above last quarter by 10%. Quarterly new home closings were up by 46% year over year and jumped above the previous quarters closings by 19%.

Since the beginning of this year, a shift occurred in the Atlanta new home market, with most homes that started out the construction process as a “spec” (or no particular buyer in mind) wound up “under contract” with a buyer well before the home was completed.  A major driver for the increase in activity in today’s new home market is the low availability of homes of any sort that are “for sale”. The months supply for used homes now stands at around 4 months and for finished new homes it is 2.3 months, the lowest it’s been in well over a decade. “My forecast is…housing starts will increase in 2014 but metro Atlanta will continue to experience a shortage of homes,” said James.

About Metrostudy

Metrostudy, a Hanley Wood company, is the leading provider of primary and secondary market information to the housing and related industries nationwide.  Established in 1975 in Houston, Metrostudy provides research, data, analytics and consulting services that help builders, developers, lenders, suppliers, retailers, utilities and others make investment and business decisions every day.  www.metrostudy.com

About Hanley Wood

Hanley Wood, LLC is the premier information, media, event, and strategic marketing services company serving the residential, commercial design and construction industries. Utilizing the largest editorial- and analytics-driven construction market database, the company produces powerful market data and insights; award-winning publications, newsletters and websites; marquee trade shows and executive events; and strategic marketing solutions. To learn more, visit hanleywood.com.

The Atlanta housing market is Hot in the second quarter of 2013

Posted in Atlanta Market | Posted on 08-02-2013 | Written by Metrostudy News

(Atlanta, GA –August 2, 2013) New Home Construction continued to heat up in Atlanta during the second quarter of 2013. Good Job growth and low inventory has lead to strong demand for new housing throughout the Atlanta region. Area builders started 3,713 homes here during the second quarter, according to a report from Metrostudy, a national housing information and consulting firm. That was a 77 percent jump over the same period last year.

“Job growth is one of the single most important drivers of home demand, and Atlanta’s pace of job growth is one of the highest in the nation,” said Eugene James, Regional Director of Metrostudy’s Atlanta market. Employment is up by 2.4% from June to June and the region created 56,300 new jobs during that time. “This ranks Atlanta in the top 10 among all metro areas in terms of year-over-year job creation and we have recovered 75% of the jobs that were lost to the Great Recession,” said James.

“Another important driver for new home demand is the extremely tight inventory of resale homes available on the market. As the supply of homes continues to shrink, Atlanta has been a seller’s market for about the past year,” said James. Properties for sale through the Multiple Listing Service amounted to a 3.6 month supply.

“All of these factors have contributed to a very impressive first half of 2013 for the single-family home market in Atlanta,” said James. On an annual basis, housing starts are up 70 %. As of the end of June, Atlanta builders started 10,965 new homes, the highest annual tally since the fourth quarter of 2008. “Are we building too many new homes? Not hardly, our field survey has reviled there are only 2,180 finished but vacant homes standing in inventory, a record low according to our records. That works out to be a 2.6 month supply, a number that has not been this low in over 12 years,” said James.

New home starts have always been a good forward looking indicator of demand and closings. New home annual closings of 10,060 was 27 % above last year’s closings volume. Second Quarter 2013 quarterly closings were up, increasing to 2,876 units closed or 33 percent above last year’s quarterly closings.

Strong demand and limited supply is pushing prices higher as well. The median sales price of new homes in the second quarter was $271,500 compared to $259,900 one year earlier. “We expect to see continued price increases this year and into next mostly due to the limited supply of houses and lots in the core market areas,” said James.

For information contact:
eugene james @ 404.370.9001 x 111
email ejames@metrostudy.com

About Metrostudy

Metrostudy, a Hanley Wood company, is the leading provider of primary and secondary market information to the housing and related industries nationwide.  Established in 1975 in Houston, Metrostudy provides research, data, analytics and consulting services that help builders, developers, lenders, suppliers, retailers, utilities and others make investment and business decisions every day.  www.metrostudy.com

About Hanley Wood

Hanley Wood, LLC is the premier media, event, information and strategic marketing services company serving the residential, commercial design and construction industries. Through its operating platforms, the company produces award-winning digital and print publications, Newsletters, websites, marquee trade shows and events, Market Intelligence data and strategic marketing solutions. The company also is North America’s leading publisher of home plans.