Strong Atlanta Economy Ideal for Millennial Homebuying

by Tom Walsh

Atlanta boasts a strong job market that appeals to young professionals


Metro Atlanta’s unemployment rate fell to 4.9 percent at the end of 2015, the lowest level since 2007, according to the Georgia Labor Department.

According to the report, 140,250 people in the region were unemployed last month, while the labor force grew by 7,912 people, indicating positive growth in the job market, and 77,800 jobs were added in total during 2015. In Q4 of 2015, Atlanta saw more jobs added than in any other Q4 since 1997.

In housing, there was a 7.4 percent increase in construction jobs in 2015, continuing a trend of a strong housing market and a large amount of new construction projects. In November alone, $405 million total was spent on residential construction in Metro Atlanta, 18 percent more than the same time period in the previous year.

Atlanta Offers Education, Affordability

One of Atlanta’s key advantages in rekindling its housing market has been its strong education systems. Atlanta ranked at No. 24 on Degree Query’s 50 Most Educated Places in America, thanks to its number of high-quality schools and high-tech companies in the area looking to hire highly qualified graduates. Higher education also leads to a better median pay – $78,500 annually for college jobs, versus $37,207 for non-college administrative support jobs and $23,584 for the low-skilled sector.

Atlanta is also the most affordable ‘hot job market’ according to information from a joint Indeed and realtor.com resource: 67 percent of Atlanta’s homes are categorized as “affordable,” and the area received the second highest amount of clicks from job searchers looking to relocate. The study ranked affordability far more highly than job clicks, which is key in a market where many renters, especially Millennial graduates, are struggling to make the jump to homeownership, thanks to rising rents and low wages. Eighty-four percent of minimum-wage earners are cost burdened, as well as 77 percent of low income renters. Atlanta’s affordable housing market is appealing for its low prices, which could offer opportunities for consumers in an economy where many struggle with housing costs.

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