Atlanta Real Estate Market Showing Increasing Prices for the First Time in Three Years

Between 2009 and 2012, the Atlanta real estate market was one of three major metro areas in the United States that saw record declines, with housing prices down nearly 12 percent over that period of time according to data from Standard and Poor's Case Schiller Indices. Those interested in buying or selling in the 2013 market find themselves wondering if this downward trend has continued. In the first quarter of 2013 it appears that Atlanta has turned a corner and started an upward swing.

Home Prices Finally Trending Upward in Atlanta

In April of 2013, the median list price of a home in Atlanta was $175,000. This was an astounding 14.75 percent increase over the prior year, and a nearly 3 percent increase over March. For those who are interested in selling in the Atlanta real estate market, this is welcome news.

What is causing this upward trend in Atlanta home sales and prices? While some will point to the potentially rebounding economy and lower interest rates, a closer look at the number of homes in the market in Atlanta may show the answer. In April there were 37,463 homes on the market, which was down almost 7 percent over this time last year. A shrinking inventory tends to drive home prices up, as buyers have fewer properties to consider.

Homes are selling faster this year as well. Homes are on the market for an average of 69 days in Atlanta in April of 2013, which is down 9.21 percent over last year. This time frame is also lower than the national average of 81 days.

Improving Statistics Indicate a Seller's Market

These statistics surrounding Atlanta home sales indicate it may be shifting to a seller's market, which means that sellers will find higher demand and higher prices for the homes they are looking to sell. Buyers are going to have less negotiating room when seeking a bargain-priced property, although short sales and foreclosures are still commonplace in the market due to the economic situation.

The Right Agent Is Important

While Atlanta home sales are encouraging, sellers need to remember that this fact does not mean they can put an exorbitant price on their home, or even a price close to what they paid for it before the real estate market crash. Finding an agent who not only knows the Atlanta market, but also the local neighborhood where a property is located will be key to pricing it properly to sell quickly and for a fair amount. Buyers will also find that working with a local agent will improve their negotiating potential and their ability to find a home within their price range.

Whether you are looking to buy or sell in the Atlanta real estate market, understanding the current trends, and then finding an agent who understands the market, is essential to helping you reach your goals. Take the time to do your research, and you will be happy with the outcome of your next real estate transaction.

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