Babies driving growth in metro Atlanta

The 10-county metro Atlanta region added 37,200 residents over the past year, with experts largely citing natural increases through childbirth as the primary driver instead of migration, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. With more families starting in the city, and existing families growing in numbers, the market for houses for sale in Atlanta could see substantial activity in the near future.

Despite the overall growth, the increase was significantly lower than the boom years of the aughts, when the region regularly added more than 100,000 people each year over the past decade. Despite the slowdown in organic growth, and the stemming of migration rates amid the economic downturn, the region still projects to add another 3 million people by 2040.

The slowdown of births in Atlanta is in line with the national fertility rate. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the number of births per 1,000 women aged 15-44 between 2010 and 2011 declined 1 percent to 63.4. For comparison's sake, the number of babies born at Gwinnett Medical Center, in one of the largest counties in metro Atlanta, reached a high of 6,332 in 2008 but slumped to just 4,914 this past year.