In the years I've been selling Atlanta real estate there is normally a pause in home sales in April. This year has been beyond sluggish! Atlanta homesales are way off their norms! Usually at certain times fo the year, sales slow and then pick up! I call it the "Spring Bounce!" April usually represents, Easter (This year it was early) Passover, spring break and tax time! It is a months where sales in real estate fall off while folks attend to the more important things in life. The last item tends to be "TAXES!" Yep the other shoe drops! Folks like to take a financial picture of where they are money-wise. It is the only time of year that a person is forced to look at the dollars in the bank, taxes they are paying, and ways to avoid paying more taxes! Home owners ship provides some of the last great tax benefits and shelters for earning money - real estate.
Owning a home allows the individual to write off the interest paid on the mortgage and deduct them from taxes. It also allows for the deduction of local property tax. The benefits of ownership also apply to profit if any when the home is sold, and allows over 250K in profit tax free for the individual and 500K for married couples for property held over 2 years. It is an item too good to be true, and a major motivator for Atlanta home sales!
So now the question remains will there be a major spring jump in home sales? Let's face it. There are no more excuses. Interest rates are still very low by historic standards, there are loads of properties in inventory to choose from. Sellers are willing to negotiate and even pay closing costs of home buyers to assist them in their home purchase! So where are the home buyers? Unless we see a major jump in sales activity this is going to be a totally lackluster year for home sales in Atlanta. Home sales in Atlanta always coincide with school letting out in early May and starting in early August. I am seeing the listing side of the equation rising, but not the buyer side! All we can do is wait and see how many buyers come into this market! Yes real estate is local, but this year in particular many other parts of the nation are also slow! If a person cannot sell a home in Boston, Chicago, California or Florida...they cannot buy a home here in Atlanta. The next few weeks will be critical in determining where the Atlanta market is going! There will be no more excuses saying sales will be up next month, or I think it is picking up! The truth will bare this out quickly, the Atlanta real estate market is either getting better, or worse!