Total new-home closings: 12,161
The good: Nearly 3% year-over-year job growth keeps starts high and vacancies low.
The bad: An expanding labor force outpaces the economy, keeping unemployment relatively high.
The bottom line: With median new-home prices increasing year over year for five straight years and spec houses sitting just 2.9 months on average, this remains a good spot for breaking ground. With net jobs increasing year over year and record employment levels striking the region, it comes as no surprise that America’s eighth most populous metropolitan statistical area (and home to “the Beverly Hills of the East”) boasts a strong buying stream for new homes. According to the latest available data, speculative homes sit vacant for just 2.9 months, on average, amid this robust market—well below the historical norm of 3.5 months for the region.
Atlanta ranks third highest for single-family building permits, as annual construction starts in the region increased by 18% and new-home closings jumped by 23% as of February 2014. At the same time, new-home prices marked their fifth consecutive year-over-year increase, rising 4% over a one-year period and clocking in at an average of $271,700. Those are numbers worth building on.