September 8th, 2016
We’re hitting the back side of 2016 so let’s review what’s happening in the market in some Atlanta neighborhoods. So today we bring you our Summerhill Real Estate Market Update for the Second Quarter of 2016. First a little about Summerhill. Although Summerhill is a small neighborhood it has a large and colorful history. Did you know Atlanta’s first public school for black children was in Summerhill? That Summerhill is now over 150 years old and was the site of riots in the mid 60’s by the SNCC and Stokely Carmichael? Sam Massell, Evander Holyfield and Leo Frank are just a few of the famous people born in or lived in Summerhill.
Enough about the past, let’s talk about today. If we’re going to do a Summerhill Real Estate Market Update we need to see what’s going on around Summerhill. There are 3 major factors affecting Summerhill today and they’re all good. First, there’s all the development happening along Memorial Drive. This corridor is busting out with development including new residences, retail and various mixed use projects. These technically aren’t in Summerhill but right next door and it’s going to add many grocery, retail and maybe some new transit options. The second is Parkside Elementary. Recently the Atlanta Public School System re-zoned the schools. Summerhill had it’s small under performing school closed and they were being re-zoned to another under performing schools. Residents of Summerhill organized and raised hell and instead got zoned to Parkside Elementary, a school in Grant Park. Now, no one is going to confuse Parkside with Woodward Academy right now but Parkside definitely is an improvement over the old school and there are a lot of resources (read money) and influential people (read people who have money) working to make the Parkside/Hill/Jackson a great cluster. Having Summerhill zoned here helps to blur the line between Grant Park and Summerhill and this also will help future values here. Last, is the fact that the Atlanta Braves are leaving and Georgia State and Carter Development are moving in. The Braves Stadium was a disaster for Summerhill due to myopic planning that never developed the area around the stadium. Now all of that ugly asphalt that sits empty most of the year will be filled with classrooms, residences and college students. Win for Atlanta and good luck Cobb County with all that Braves traffic and the bills that will come due soon. I’ll be honest, I wasn’t initially crazy about GSU but I think it’s good for Summerhill at the end of the day. But living near downtown, I’ve seen how students have changed the vibe and atmosphere of downtown for the better. And there’s and old saying in real estate. You can’t go wrong owning near a University or a Hospital. Ok that’s enough rambling let’s get to some numbers….
We’re in a tight inventory market in Atlanta and have been for some time. And this Summerhill Real Estate Market Update reflects that. Let’s compare year-over-year numbers since that makes for the best comparison. In the 2nd quarter of 2015 just 4 homes were sold. And they sold quickly. The average sale price was $220,875. They sold for an average of 103% of their asking price and they went under contract in just 8 days. Let’s compare those numbers to 2016. In the second quarter of 2016 11 homes were sold in Summerhill. Their average price was $239,318, or an 8% increase over 2015. These homes sold for 101% of their asking price. This fits right in with our prediction of 6 to 10% increases in these intown neighborhoods.
These numbers reflect what we’ve seen the past two years. Strong demand, an improving city and low inventory continue to push prices higher. This doesn’t mean that your Summerhill house went up 10% as each house is different. That’s why you need an experienced agent. If you’re thinking of buying or selling in Summerhill then you need an agent like David Bottomley that knows the area and the market. Give us a call today so we can get started right away helping you achieve your real estate goals.
August 30th, 2016
Here’s a great opportunity for an investor to purchase now and rehab or tear down and build new. This craftsman style home is located at 984 Michigan Ave NW, Atlanta, 30314. Let’s talk about location. This home is literally surrounded by the beltline. The westside trail is just 2 blocks west and there are two extensions that loop over to the Atlanta University Center. You can’t get better access to the Beltline. And recently revamped Washington Park is also within walking distance. If you’ve seen Lena Street then you know what that park has meant for this area. And we’re offering it today for just $30,000. Rehabbers and builders, here’s your chance.
The westside is red hot with rehabs and increasing values. Right now most of the action is in West End and Westview but it’s about to skip over I-20 and follow the beltline path. This is your chance to get in early, before you have to compete with every other investor. So give us a call today at 404-245-4960 about 984 Michigan Ave NW, Atlanta, 30314.
August 29th, 2016
We’ve hit the 3rd quarter of 2016 so lets take a look at the numbers in our Grant Park Market Update Second quarter 2016. This area continues to be red hot. First a few fun facts about Grant Park. This neighborhood, and Inman Park, contain the best collection of Victorian homes in the city. The centerpiece is the park itself, 131 acres of mostly green space and it contains Zoo Atlanta and for the moment, The Cyclorama. It’s soon to be moved to The Atlanta History Center. The area experienced decline in the middle of the twentieth century as people moved out further. But by the 1970’s it began a resurgence that continues to this day.
On to the numbers! First we look at the second quarter of 2015. During this period a total of 55 homes were sold. The average asking price was $354,115 and the average sale price was $358,223. That’s not a mis-print. Demand was so strong that homes this quarter actually sold on average above their asking price. These homes went over 100% of asking price and spent just 22 days on market on average. The highest priced sale was $689,000. I don’t have to tell you that this showed a very strong market. But could this continue in the second quarter of 2016? You bet it could. During the second quarter of 2016 in Grant Park again 55 homes were sold. This quarter the average sales price was $449,471 and asking price was $451,404. Again homes sold for their asking price. This quarter they got 99.26% of their asking price. That’s an increase of about 20% year-over-year. Yikes! And during this period the average days on market was just 20 days. Wow! Keep in mind the mix of homes for sale can change so this doesn’t mean every home increased in value 20% in one year. These numbers are good indicators of the market but to know the true value of your home you need a Realtor that knows the area. If you’re thinking of buying in Grant Park or anywhere in Intown Atlanta you need a professional to represent you. Feel free to give us a call or send us an email and we’ll get started right away helping you out.
All of our numbers come from First Multiple Listing Service. If you’d like to see the raw numbers click below.
Grant Park Solds 2nd Quarter 2015
Grant Park Solds 2nd Quarter 2016
May 15th, 2016
We’ve been watching the rental market in Atlanta closely and watching those rents go up and up. We’ve wondered where it would end and have rents topped out in Atlanta? Two recent items piqued our interest. First, Atlanta Business Chronicle reported that Atlanta had the 9th largest rent rate drop between April and May. In the article they reported, ‘Madison, Wisc.-based ABODO’s National Apartment Report: May 2016, found Atlanta saw average rents for a 1-bedroom apartment fall from $1,305 to $1,266 — a 3 percent decrease.’ That’s a significant drop. Is it a trend? We think so (although not 3% per month!). There has been an incredible amount of apartment building in Atlanta but that supply is now catching up to demand. That brings us to item 2. Pollack Shores had a 325 unit building planned on Pharr Rd. But they’ve shelved that project because they feel the intown market is overbuilt.
We don’t think this means demand for housing in Atlanta is slowing. On the contrary, rents are still high and supply is tight. But there are many buildings still coming online in the next 24 months. There’s also a shortage of entry level single family homes, condos and townhomes. It’s hard to get condo financing and finding land to build new homes is difficult as well. And people are still moving intown the city. As millennials start to form families they’ll move out of apartments and begin buying. Keeping up with and managing these changes will be a challenge for buyers and Realtors. If you’re thinking ofbuying or selling you need a Realtor that’s experienced and knows the intown market. That’s where Bottomley Real Estate Group comes in. We have been working and researching the Atlanta real estate market since 2000 so we’ve pretty much seen it all. Give us a call at 404-245-4960 or shoot us an email today. We’d love to help you!
May 4th, 2016
Pickin in Grant Park is coming this Friday, May 6th from 5:00 to 10:00 and Saturday, May 7th from 11:00 am to 10:00 pm. Pickin in Grant Park is a barbecue and music festival that benefits the Grant Park Conservancy (more on that later). There will be a barbecue cook-off, and last year there was some great ‘cue! They’ll also have music, including Whiskey Gentry, The Front Porch Session Players and the Mar Tans. (that’s some good Atlanta talent right there.)And like all good festivals they’ll have an artists market, plenty of cold beer and activities for the kids.
So come on down Friday and Saturday. The weather is going to be great with lots of sunshine but a little cooler for this time of year. You’ll have a great time and help Grant Park Conservancy at the same time. Oh yea, I promised more about them. You see, the Conservancy helps preserve and protect the park in conjunction with the city of Atlanta. But why don’t I just let Grant Park Conservancy tell you in their own words.
From their web site. “In partnership with the city of Atlanta’s Parks & Recreation Department, the Conservancy works to focus new resources toward restoration and maintenance efforts and to adapt to the changing needs of its users. Some of these needs relate to landscaping, infrastructure, design, cultural activities and environmental issues.
We are working to create a world-class park, by restoring and preserving its historic importance and features while providing venues for active and passive recreation for all the people who use the park. We aim to become an oasis of greenspace in the heart of America’s greatest city. In working to preserve and enhance Grant Park, the Conservancy serves neighborhood and city residents, local businesses, schools, churches, and other organizations, as well as all park visitors from both inside and outside the community.”
April 28th, 2016
OK, I’ll admit that when I first saw the Bellwood Quarry plans years ago I was skeptical. But now it looks like Bellwood Quarry is getting real. Workers have started chipping at loose rock for safety reasons. The work is expected to be completed in 2018. This park will be Atlanta’s largest park and the quarry will hold over a billion gallons of water. It will be a 30 day emergency supply for the city. And while the quarry work will be completed in 2018, the entire 300 acre park will take about 15 years to develop. Bellwood Quarry already has a spot in Atlanta’s history now as Katniss Everdeen roamed it in Mockingjay and the Walking Dead filmed scenes there.
We originally felt this huge project would be 50 or more years in the making, but the Atlanta Beltline has proved to be that rare project that city planners, real estate developers and environmentalists all could get behind. Our other skepticism was the light rail component of the Beltline but recently passed legislation gives Atlanta the opportunity to levy taxes to finance the light rail. The focus isn’t just the biking and hiking paths and rail but the city is also adding many parks along the route. Atlanta has been criticized for it’s lack of public park space so the Beltline also is helping to correct this. Again, I’ll say it, The Bellwood Quarry is getting real! This will be a game changer for this west side of Atlanta. We’re excited and pleasantly surprised. Want to know more about the Quarry and the Beltline? You can visit the Atlanta Beltline web site here and you can click here to order tickets for the Beltline tours. The tours are the only way to see the quarry. The Beltline offers walking, biking ans bus tours. But you have to get tickets well in advance or they will be sold out.
April 26th, 2016
Come on down, The Taste of East Point is happening on May 7th. This annual Spring event features food and art in and close to East Point. There’s always a great artist’s market here that features local artists. This year is a great time to visit as we’re seeing more people start to explore buying in East Point. This year’s festivities offer East Point businesses to show off and for visitors to catch up with all that’s new in East Point. So come on down to The Taste of East Point, listen to some bands and maybe enjoy a beer or two. And invite your friends! It all takes place on May 7th from 3 pm to 9 pm. For more information go to the official web site here.
April 11th, 2016
The Paddlin 4 Paws Cardboard Boat Race at Lake Wedowee is May 14th. This is the 8th annual Boat Race and it benefits the Randolph County Animal Shelter. Admission is free. Some of the days’ festivities include a Watermelon eating contest and a pet parade. Other events include a silent auction and a dunking booth, all to benefit the animal shelter. And of course, there will be lots of great food and drink for sale.
And there’s the race! You’ll see some crazy designs…some smart, some not so smart but every boat will bring a smile to your face. It’s been a cool Spring but the Lake is warming up and the Paddlin 4 Paws Cardboard Boat Race at Lake Wedowee is a great kickoff for Lake season! For even more information you can visit the Travel Alabama web site here.
You know we’re big fans of Lake Wedowee here at Bottomley Real Estate Group. We think this beautiful, clean lake is a little undiscovered gem. Lake Wedowee is a really clean lake and it’s only about an hour from Birmingham and 1.5 hours away from Atlanta. It’s an Alabama Power lake so they still control a good deal of the shore and they’re currently keeping it natural. Lake Wedowee reminds us of going to St George Island back in the 1990’s before Marriott moved in and suddenly everyone was buying vacation homes on the Island. Lake Wedowee, while gorgeous, doesn’t have anyone marketing it. One day it will happen and prices will get out of control. But today, Lake Wedowee is still that rare waterfront property that’s located close to large cities but still inexpensive. If you’d like more information about how you can buy a lot or a home on Lake Wedowee just email us at david@DavidBottomley.com or call us at 404-245-4960.
April 8th, 2016
When you’re looking to get a mortgage your options are usually going Conventional with at least 5% down or doing a FHA Loan and only putting down 3%. For first time home buyers the lower down payment meant most went with FHA, since the down payment is usually the biggest hurdle for them. But now Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae have introduced Conventional 97 Loans. Now you can get a conventional loan with just 3% down. For first time home buyer’s FHA has been the number one choice. Conventional Lenders want to get back some of that market share. Even though you can get a conventional loan with just 3% down now you still might be better off going with FHA. Let’s look at some numbers.
If you’re getting a FHA loan you’ll get a competitive rate. And your credit score can be lower (currently 640). As a FHA borrower if you put down the minimum 3.5% down then you’ll end up paying mortgage insurance at a rate of .85% of the borrowed money or $71/month for every $100,000 borrowed.
A 3% conventional loan can be a great alternative. However, there are differences. For on thing with a conventional loan the bank will require better credit. And yes, you’ll pay mortgage insurance (assuming you’re putting less than 20% down). But you may get a little lower interest rate and the house appraisal is a little easier with conventional loans.
The bottom line is you now have alternatives. Before if you had less than 5% your only choice was FHA. But now with the 3% down conventional loan you may find a conventional loan suits you better. Whatever type of loan you’re considering you need a Realtor that is on your side and can navigate you through these decisions. So if you’re thinking of buying or selling a home in Atlanta today you need to give Bottomley Real Estate Group a call at 404-245-4960 so we can get started right away helping you.
April 4th, 2016
Holy cow the Atlanta Dogwood Festival is 80 years old, which is coincidentally how long a healthy Dogwood Tree usually lives. And for the 80th annual event the Atlanta Dogwood Festival is April 8th through 10th. And this Festival has it all. Saturday morning is the Mimosa 5k. It’s a Peachtree Race qualifier. You run through Midtown and end at Piedmont Park where you can have Mimosas….and then take a nap!
Saturday afternoon is Backyard Barbecue & Brews. It’s a separately ticketed event where you can get great eats from some of your favorite local chefs. They’ll also have other attractions like corn-hole and private bathrooms (worth the price of admission, amirite?)
Friday is family day and oh yea, how about rides and inflatables in Piedmont Park for the kids? So when we say this one has it all we mean it. There will be an international stage with song and dance from around the world, an exhibit of art from high schoolers around the city of Atlanta and, of course, and artist’s market like no other. This one brings everyone out. That brings us to an important point. It’s Midtown…lots of people will be coming…..you know where we’re going. TAKE MARTA!
Midtown is crowded enough on a pretty weekend. You know traffic will be crazy. And this is the perfect opportunity to use MARTA. Once you’re here everything you could want is within easy walking distance. So do Piedmont Park a favor. It hates your smog. And do your sanity a favor. It hates traffic. But whatever you do remember the Atlanta Dogwood festival is April 8th through 10th. You don’t want to miss it.
For more details visit the official site at http://www.dogwood.org/