Thinking about investing in Atlanta real estate? Not much beats a vibrant, exciting, younger mind-set big city with anything you can imagine to do. When mixed with cutting edge technology and business, as well as some well steeped history and four distinct seasons, nothing compares. That is why you should look at the Atlanta real estate market when you are thinking of investing money in real estate.
- Atlanta is a major business and tourist destination
- Real estate can be real or digital
- What you need to know about Atlanta before investing
- Property in Atlanta is still somewhat a sellers market, but that is changing
- 2018 was the year of price reduction in Atlanta real estate
- Is short term rental property in Atlanta the answer?
- Commute is a really big issue in Atlanta
- Atlanta’s employable population is young – and getting younger
- A younger real estate buyer or renter faces increasing challenges
- Finding a better way to invest time and money
- A high return on investment, fast, is a really good thing
- Smart investing where the need is
Atlanta is a major business and tourist destination
Atlanta, the capital of Georgia, is a key business hub for the southeast. Historically significant from the Civil War to the Civil Rights Movement, Atlanta is a vibrant, growing, progressive modern city with a diverse population. Home to the 1996 Summer Olympics, Atlanta has embraced a broad spectrum of culture and diversity to move into the 21stcentury. The Atlanta Development Authority created some prime incentive programs to draw real estate investment to the city with heritage zones, dream down payment assistance, homebuyer incentives, and what they call opportunity zones, areas they are seeking urban and suburban revitalization. Atlanta has been aggressive in getting people to buy their way out of recession.
Right at half a million population in town and over five million in the area call Atlanta home. Atlanta serves as a primary hub for air and land transport in the US, and Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, home to Delta, the world’s largest airline by capitalization and revenue miles, is the world’s busiest airport. Atlanta is also situated at a cross-roads for major interstates, including I-75, one of the heaviest traveled in the U.S. All this makes accessible Atlanta a primary location for business and growth.
Home to Coca-Cola, Atlanta is known not only for its friendly people, but recreation, faith, and food. Whether you want to party in the Atlanta Underground, (remains of old Atlanta built on top of after Sherman’s unpleasant march through the city), or go to their beautiful Aquarium, there is something for everyone. Home to both major league baseball and football, Atlanta is both proud of its heritage, its culture, and its local resources, and gladly shares them with over 50 million visitors a year.
One of the top ten fastest growing cities in the U.S., Atlanta boasts a younger average age population than most large cities. The greater Atlanta metro area has about 5.8 million in it, expected to gradually grow to 7 million by 2030. The unemployment rate is a decent 3.4%, and average income sits around $54K, well above the national average of $40K. It is also more evenly ethnically and racially diverse than most cities its size. This gives Atlanta an edge for up-and-coming technology, medical development, and business innovation and incubators, and corporate relocation. All those things need skilled labor to push them into the future.
Real estate can be real or digital
One of the things Atlanta has grabbed ahold of and run with is technology and the digital age. I have found in my lead gen business that I get a lot of inquiries from that area, or from companies that have locations there. That is because Atlanta business understands the future of moving in an increasingly digital direction, and a lot of R&D occurs in the area. My lead gen properties, websites, are digital real estate – a lot like real property you invest money into. The advantage is my returns are a lot faster, with a lot higher profit margin. I generally average 80—90% ROI on my lead gen sites that I rent out the leads for. Most real estate investment returns 3-10% a year, if you are lucky. Check out what I am talking about at this link: https://www.bestrealestatedirectory.com/lead-gen/
What you need to know about Atlanta before investing
If you have been to Atlanta you know a couple things about it – it is spread out, people are generally friendly and proud of their city, and the traffic is, well, brutal. That is the only word for it. Even with the beltway system around the city, with sub-feeders, it is still a rough commute most anywhere in the town. And Atlanta’s drivers, well, just say they all think they are at Talladega lol. They drive aggressive and FAST.
Atlanta does have some safety and crime issues, especially in some downtown neighborhoods. If you are in the suburbs, though, you generally are ok. Buckhead, Marietta, Decatur, Alpharetta, Johns Creek, or lovely man-made Lake Lanier are all really nice (read: luxury for the most part) neighborhoods. In fact, several Atlanta suburbs were voted as one of the top places in the US to raise a family last year, if you can afford to live there.
Atlanta, due to the growth, has had a shortage of homes for sale in recent years. It did not get hit nearly as hard in the recession as many places, but still had considerable foreclosures. Not any more. Since 2012, Atlanta has seen a 170% increase in home valuations, a major jump. A lot of real estate investors dove on those low priced homes early, and now there are few bargains left.
Property in Atlanta is still somewhat a sellers market, but that is changing
Atlanta is just now starting to see an increase in the available homes, with median price around $235K last year – an increase of 8% to 15% year to date, depending on whose numbers you look at. It is still, though, a sellers market, but is starting to level out and turn. Most of the Atlanta area real estate investment firms are planning on a more level year in prices and offers due to the economy starting to flat line, turning into a soft buyers market by year end. That is great if you already own property there, but makes it tough to find a good buy to invest in in Atlanta real estate.
The fact that a lot of the better neighborhoods have had bidding wars going on over listed property, and that the price advertised versus sale is still in the single digit range, tells you that Atlanta property is still hot. It makes a tough and not cheap investment market, though. You have to really hunt, or be willing to be creative or take some risk in a less healthy or more remote area to really be able to buy a property you can make investment dollars on, though.
You also have to do a lot of shrew research. When I looked into Atlanta investment real estate, I ran into wildly differing numbers on advertised prices versus sale prices and the percentages. That told immediately me that the companies that make money selling real estate listings and pushing advertising for houses were way off base when I saw what the actual sale prices were off governmental records and the like. It also made me wonder when I saw most of the articles written about Atlanta real estate were fluff, and contained few figures, facts, and little data to support their claims. I am a numbers kind of guy to make sure what I am doing is sound, especially when it comes to money. The facts just are not there in many blogs, posts, and articles dealing with investment in Atlanta real estate.
2018 was the year of price reduction in Atlanta real estate
Another fact they do not advertise is last year Atlanta had one of the largest major market mark-downs on real estate in the nation due to it sitting and not selling. Atlanta was averaging about a 9% drop in prices between listing time and sales previously. Last year the figure went up to 27.9%. Yikes. That means that Atlanta real estate is stalling and falling. Is it really safe to buy an investment property in Atlanta? It sure would make me pause hard.
These facts and conflicts in data make me wonder if now is a smart time to look to buy in Atlanta. Should you jump in now before prices might go up, or wait to see if they might go down? It is hard to say, but it sure is not cut and dried that it would be a good real estate investment with decent return compared to, say, a couple years ago. Any way you look at it the fact is buyers will have a lot more leverage negotiating a home purchase or building rent than they did in the past, and that is not good for your investment bottom line.
All this makes for a very challenging market for a real estate investor in Atlanta property to find a cheap house for sale in Atlanta you can make money on, no matter what you have to spend. And it does not matter if it is you, the individual, or you, the investor in a real estate investment group or firm doing the investing.
Is short term rental property in Atlanta the answer?
Some are looking at vacation rentals through Airbnb and other options, since Atlanta is a huge tourist and short term stay destination. Rental property options in Atlanta generally run 30-50% below average home sale price, so it is a more reasonable investment. It does not mean it is easier to snatch up, though, before a local snags it. Keep in mind that rental occupancy in Atlanta only runs 70%, so your property is not generating income nearly a third of the time.
Commute is a really big issue in Atlanta
Access to public transportation and major business zones is a key factor in those hunts, too. People simply do not want to have to deal with the brutal Atlanta traffic. Due to this, being on-site to view and immediately make an offer on a property helps a lot if you are determined to buy property now in Atlanta. Otherwise you should consider a trusted, vetted real estate investment group with a lot of Atlanta area experience to put equity money into. And remember, people in Atlanta do not like to commute from far outlying areas, so know where the location is and proximity to things before you invest.
Atlanta’s employable population is young – and getting younger
One thing that will help the real estate investor in Atlanta is that the newest growth in population is heavily millennial. Millennials are not prone to buying new single- family homes, especially higher ticket ones. They often prefer to rent, or buy townhouses and condos with less maintenance. They also lean to modern and minimalist architecture, not the traditional brick homes Atlanta is known for. Their lifestyles are different and their income (and available cash/credit) and career outlooks push that need. They generally like to live close to work, they are putting off raising families (thus needing more space), and they do not have the down payments necessary to finance a free standing house purchase, and would not most likely if they did.
Atlanta has been in the top twenty markets to invest in both residential and commercial real estate for several years, and economists are saying they expect it to stay there for a while. Economists say a lot of things that may or may not work out. Buying reasonably enough to make a profit, though, is a challenge in Atlanta. Due to the increase in younger people seeking employment in the growing city, experts feel that more reasonable single-family homes, duplexes, and multi-family housing will hold the best potential for investment dollars – i.e., rental property.
A younger real estate buyer or renter faces increasing challenges
A challenge to this, though, is the strong potential for a rising prime interest rate. Real estate market experts are saying they expect the average mortgage interest to reach 5% in 2019-2020. That means a tougher approval process and harder to save down payment for Generation Z and X, Millennials, and other first time home buyers. Many federal programs are also in jeopardy of being gone. Many of these buyers will seek a rental until they can afford to try and buy their own place.
As a Millennial myself, I know what it is like to not be able to get enough together to make a smart investment in a home. I graduated from college with a background in computers and took a corporate $35/K/yr job that I soon figured out was not going to supply what I needed either in extra income or personal satisfaction. It was pretty obvious that to really make it, I had to get another gig going. I started to look around at some part-time business opportunities. I got into a bunch of MLMs first. It did not take long to figure out the only people who made money on those, no matter how hard I worked, was the person up the line. My constant pushing them made for a lot of friction with my family and friends, too, and that I did not want.
So I continued to look. I was still working my 40++/hr/wk job, mind you, making “the man” richer. I knew from my line of work that digital, the web, was the way to go, the obvious future of business. I looked at drop shipping, thinking it was a more realistic option and less contentious. I started doing that with Amazon, and made a little decent money, but not nearly enough to really pay a down payment on a place, let alone invest in real estate. And I was working my backside off. My entire apartment was filled with inventory, and I was often still up after midnight packing orders and running labels and answering emails and you name it. There had to be something better, so I continued to look for a better fit for my skills, time, and personal goals.
Finding a better way to invest time and money
While browsing around I ran across an article about lead generation, and how businesses needed vast amounts of help getting hooked up with their customers who were already hunting the internet for their goods and services. Now that was something I could relate to because I knew it was totally true from my corporate job. The article mentioned a guy named Dan who was killing it with lead generation websites, and he had written a training program to show how it was done. He was working the business himself, day in and day out. I liked that idea, as it told me he probably was pretty legit or he would not be doing it himself. I did some serious research and found out that yeah, this Dan guy was for real and was making serious money at what he was doing in lead gen.
There was a link to connect to Dan for information about what he was doing and training he had written. There was no cost or obligation to click it and get info, and with what I had already spent (like well into five digits on other programs) hunting a good, honest business model that worked, I thought “what the heck” and clicked it. It took me to a calendar to set up a phone conference and I filled out a short form with my info, and sent it. Soon I got a reply, and had a chat with Dan about what he was doing. This guy not only was legit, he was transparent. That was something I had not run into, lol, and man was it refreshing. Here is a link if you want to check it out for yourself: https://www.bestrealestatedirectory.com/lead-gen/
The training program was reasonably priced and thorough from what it looked like. They had a lot of support, both personal and tech, for free, unlike a lot of programs I had spent money on. It looked like something I would enjoy, could make some serious money doing, and fit my goals well, so I signed up, paid the tuition, and got to work.
A high return on investment, fast, is a really good thing
The first website I wrote was this one:
It took me about six hours to do it start to finish. I got the leads it brought in (like nearly immediately) in the first week to a guy with a tree service, who is my customer to this day almost five years later. I have made over $44,300 in profit (yeah, you read that right…) after very modest monthly expenses to run the site. And the sweet part is I have hardly touched the site in 5 years. That is a really awesome return on my investment in five years for six hours of work! And I still have the same customer, paying me $750/mo, every month, to this day on this site.
And the customer loves what my lead gen has done for him, because has made him a rich man.
I continued to work at my own pace on my new lead gen business on my own time, even with the 40+ hour a week grind at the corporate job – which by now I was really over. Best part was when I got to turn in my resignation from my J-O-B – in five, yes, 5, months. I was paying all my bills and putting money away to invest further in my new business in five months. That felt great.
Smart investing where the need is
What I found out was Dan was totally right. Businesses needed our services really, really badly. They just did not have the knowledge or time to do what needed done to get customers in their door or their phones ringing. That is why what I am doing and I learned from Dan works so well. Yes, it is some work. You get out of it what you put in, just like anything worth doing in life. But the potential is there and the training is thorough. You do not need a lot, if any, computer background to do it. And the returns can be nothing short of amazing.
I just turned 30. I still work and run my lead gen business, plus a couple more I am invested in now. I just moved into a beautiful upscale home. And I am set to make close to seven figures in income, with 80-90% of it being profit, this year. Not bad for 30.
Why would I want to invest in real estate that returns 3-10% to me and I have risk, renters, repairs, you name it, when I can work a part-time week, travel when I want to, do nice things for my family when I want to, party when I want to?
Do you want to? Make an investment in yourself, that is, instead of Atlanta real estate or anywhere else, taking every dime you have to do it? Real estate is not worth having to eat ramen to me.
Invest in your future. Make your money first, then pay cash for a place you really want, and it does not hurt you to do it. Click this link now for info that will change your life. There is no cost, there is no hustle, and no obligation. If you are not interested in doing it for yourself, you will not hear from us again.
Do something really constructive with your life. Don’t wait. Build some lead gen sites. I am.
You will be thanking me as much as I still thank Dan. And I am hungry. Now time for some Hotlanta ‘Q.