What Buyers Want: Intown’s condo and townhome market booming despite pandemic

J5 in Midtown

The demand for condos and townhomes continues to grow throughout Intown, and developers are doing their best to meet the demand. Still, COVID-19 concerns are leaving their mark on every part of the economy, including real estate.

“We definitely saw a slowdown in the condo market due to COVID-19, but things are starting to pick back up again,” reported Karen Rodriguez, GROUP KORA/Berkshire Hathaway.

She said that while new pending townhome and condo sales are on a recovery trajectory, they are being surpassed by the more robust recovery in single-family home new pending sales.

“At the end of the day, not everyone wants to live in a single-family home,” Rodriguez said. “There are still people who want one-level living and the ability to be get out and walk to their destinations.”

Aqua

What buyers are looking for
COVID-19 has caused a major cultural and social shift in the way people are thinking about their homes, she added. “With condos, they want features like large outdoor terraces, private elevators and even services like buildings with increased cleaning protocols and air filtration systems.”

Rodriguez and her team, GROUP KORA, have taken over the sales and marketing for the J5 project (ownJ5.com) in Midtown. “The building was just completed a few weeks ago and has many of the features people are requesting – a smaller number of units, large terraces and enhanced cleaning protocols,” she said. J5 also offers contemporary modern interiors with high-end finishes. Prices range from $500,000 to $1 million.

Rodriguez also referenced a penthouse condo that she recently listed in the Aqua building in Midtown. It has a lot of features that appeal to current homebuyers, she said.

“The penthouse has all the elements that today’s luxury condo buyer is looking for. Aqua only has 83 total units, unlike some of the other high-rises,” Rodriguez explained. “#2301 has a private elevator that lets you off in your foyer rather than a hallway. It also has over 1,600 square feet of private outdoor space, a private kitchen and even a dog respite so that you don’t have to leave your home to take your dog out to potty.”

The Roycraft

Brand new and clean
According to David Tufts, CDO & Managing Partner, @Ansley Developer Services, buyers are looking for more space for in-home offices and fitness areas, as well as private outdoor space, whether that’s a terrace, patio or roof deck. “Interior space and the benefits of a new state of the art home are huge!” he said.

Tufts added that there are many benefits to buying new construction. “These homes have never been lived in, so they’re incredibly clean and have updated finishes and new appliances with warranties. More importantly, new construction homes offer buyers state-of-the-art living in a pristine environment.”

He pointed to several developments that are drawing homebuyers right now.

The 10 new luxury townhomes of Ardyn (ardynvahi.com) boast smart home technology with private fenced-in yards and a rooftop terrace available. Ardyn is just minutes from Piedmont Park and Ponce City Market and prices start at $869,900.

Graydon Buckhead (thegraydon.com) is a boutique collection of luxury condominiums located on Peachtree Road. Currently under construction, the 22-story tower will feature dramatic views and resort-style living. Graydon Buckhead condos start at $1.6 million.

The Roycraft (theroycraftcondos.com), in the Virginia-Highland community, offers one-, two- and three-bedroom and penthouse homes with rooftop terrace floorplans. Roycraft condos are priced from the low $400,000s.

Oxley Edgewood

Outdoor space and walkability
Allen Snow, Vice President, Developer Sales and Marketing, Atlanta Fine Homes Sotheby’s International Realty, said he sees a strong Intown condo and townhome market now. “Since 2013, there has been an ongoing shortage of Intown townhomes and condos,” he explained. “That shortage continues, but as more and more Intown communities are being developed, buyers have more options to consider. I expect the steady sales trend to continue.”

Since the pandemic, a common request from buyers is the need for outdoor space, whether it be a rooftop deck, fenced side, rear or front yard, he said. “If a community offers thoughtful floor plans with private outdoor space in a walkable neighborhood, the community will be a home run for all parties involved.”

Snow suggested a few hot spots for homebuyers to consider.

1200 Ponce (minvera-homes.com/1200-ponce) is a community of 51 one-, two-, and three-bedroom condo-flats and townhomes in Druid Hills located at a former church and school building. The homes are priced from the low $600s to $1 million+ with occupancy this fall.

Oxley Edgewood (oxleyedgewood.com) is a community of 51 townhomes, flats and cottages located in Edgewood. Homes range from the high $200s to high $500s with occupancy in the first quarter 2021.

Ten Park East (tenparkeast.com) is an ultra-luxury high rise of 10 full-floor, 3,457 square foot residences in the heart of the Old Fourth Ward, adjacent to the Eastside BeltLine. Homes start at $2.3 Million, with occupancy in 2022.

28th at Brookwood

More space for work and play
Anne Schwall, Vice President, Atlanta Fine Homes Developer Services Division, said that the Intown condo and townhome market remains strong due to the low inventory and mortgage rates, as well as the fact that people are spending more time at home. “People who are renting apartments or living in smaller condos are more motivated than ever to purchase a larger space that meets their needs,” she said.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Schwall added, consumer needs have shifted. “People are looking for home offices or multiple spaces that can flex to become work-from-home spaces to accommodate couples that are both working from home,” she said. “Buyers are also seeking spaces with outdoor connection and places in the home where they can escape noise.”

New construction condos and townhomes offer healthy living, she noted, with brand new homes removing any concern over cleanliness and air quality. “Since buyers don’t have the time to focus on costly renovations, they’re more inclined to favor move-in ready, new homes that eliminate any inconvenience in dealing with work being done in an older home.”

Schwall mentioned several communities that meet the needs of today’s homebuyers.

The Charles (thecharlesbuckhead.com), located in Buckhead Village, is now selling its final few residences. All remaining two- and three-bedroom residences have dens and ample indoor and outdoor space for an ideal home office. Two-bedroom + den homes start at $1.6 million; three-bedroom + den homes start at $2.3 million.

The Charles

28th at Brookwood (AFHDeveloperServices.com) offers both townhomes and single-family homes located adjacent to the Northside BeltLine trail and Ardmore Park. The four-story Dartmouth plan features rooftop terraces; the main-floor sunroom and deck will allow for a private home office. Homes start in the high $600,000s.

The 30 single-family homes at Enclave at Chastain (enclaveatchastain.com) are located in the neighborhood of Chastain Park in North Buckhead. This secluded collection of homes is bordered by Nancy Creek and the picturesque Blue Heron Nature Preserve. Phase 1 of construction is now sold out. The newest floorplans feature an open layout with access to outdoor space. Homes start in the $800,000s.

Snow said that the historically low interest rates give buyers enormous buying power. “If you’ve considered purchasing a home and you’re waiting on the sidelines, contact your lender and get pre-approved,” he advised. “You might be surprised how much buying power you have!”

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