Covid-19 and its repercussions have been felt worldwide in all sectors of society and across all economic fields. The rental property market has been no exception, with many houses standing vacant as tenants lost their jobs and were unable to pay their rent. Even after these renters leave, finding new ones remains a challenge as families struggle during these challenging economic times.
But how, if at all, has Georgia’s bustling capital, Atlanta, been affected?
Atlanta’s solid jobs market
Up to 50% of homes in Atlanta are rented, according to recent statistics. That makes the market a landlord’s paradise. However, in cities where job figures are declining, this can become a nightmare as families depart. This leaves rental property owners with vacant houses and no rental income to help them pay off their mortgages.
Professional Atlanta property managers such as Evernest and CBRE believe that what separates Atlanta from many other cities is its robust jobs market. Rental property owners have a history of turning their property management processes over to these companies to handle them on their behalf. Therefore, these companies can make accurate statements and forecasts about Atlanta’s rental property market.
Jobs in Atlanta continue to be available, despite the COVID-induced economic slowdown. The city acts as a transportation hub. Additionally, many tech firms and startups are choosing to base themselves in Atlanta. With so many people looking for housing, landlords seem spoiled for choice regarding selecting tenants.
Population migration trends – Cushman & Wakefield
Atlanta’s strong jobs market results in thousands of people streaming to the city each year to seek employment, healthcare, and education opportunities. The city’s population has been growing year-on-year for decades, and this trend looks unlikely to change.
As most people arriving in Atlanta need time to settle in and put down their roots, they regard home rental as ideal. It gives them the freedom to leave the city should things not work out as planned. Being bound by a mortgage and how long it can take to complete a property sale is not an attractive prospect.
The idea of buying a home and settling down for the next 20-30 years is no longer a trend among younger generations as they prefer to follow work opportunities wherever they might lead, according to property management giants like CBRE and Evernest.
Reduced interest rates
As part of America’s response to the hard-hitting coronavirus pandemic, the Fed announced unprecedented interest rate cuts. This has made having a mortgage less expensive, causing many potential investors to begin eyeing the property market to grow their capital. Lower interest rates also mean reduced returns on other savings investments, adding to investors’ determination to buy property.
Those landlords with variable interest rate mortgages have been able to lower their rental price during the pandemic’s toughest months, making their rental homes more attractive to struggling, would-be tenants. Now that the crisis has passed, landlords will raise their rates in anticipation of an interest rate increase by the Fed.
Demand exceeds supply
Even pre-pandemic, there was always a shortage of rental homes in Atlanta, say the experts at Specialized Property Management Atlanta and One Source Atlanta Property Management. With more potential tenants than available rental homes, finding a property and signing a rental agreement was a competitive process. Landlords had their pick of prospective renters and could ensure that they chose those with the best financial and rental history.
Despite what might be happening in other cities across America, Atlanta continues to face a rental housing shortage. With so many people flocking to the city, demand continues to outstrip supply. Indeed, when looking at the property rental market from this perspective, it seems that Atlanta has faced few repercussions from the pandemic compared with other cities.
Strong economic recovery expected
Additionally, planned infrastructure programs will benefit Atlanta as it is a transportation hub, as mentioned before. All indications point to a strong economic recovery across most areas of America, with Atlanta being no exception. Experts anticipate Atlanta’s rental market seeing unprecedented growth.