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Jul. 2, 2020
2:19 pm


Health of Lanier real estate market during pandemic

By Bev Knight

You might be surprised to hear that the Lake Lanier real estate market is still going strong. Even though we lost three or four weeks when we were required to shelter in place, there have been 79 lake home closings through May 15th. That’s only four fewer than 2019 which was a banner year. The metro-Atlanta market is also thriving, especially in certain parts of the city.
The good news for sellers is that home prices continue to rise due to the very limited inventory. The average lake house is selling for $650,269, an 11 percent increase from the same period in 2019. The number of days on the market has decreased from 103 in 2019 to 77 this year. That is a very quick turnaround and a clear reflection of the competition created by the low levels of homes for sale. Our Atlanta neighbors are enjoying similar trends. For you luxury homeowners, twice as many homes over $1 million have sold compared to last year at this time. Three years of a strong economy have had a positive impact.
While this is good news for sellers, traditional logic would indicate that buyers are being priced out of the market; however, the interest rates are so low, their buying power remains high. Just a quick warning to buyers, the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 crisis has forced lenders to raise their requirements for loans, especially jumbo loans (over $510,400). As always, it’s important to line up your financing before you go house hunting. You don’t want to fall in love with a house you can’t afford.
Real estate is considered an essential business in Georgia with some restrictions. A fair number of at-risk homeowners have understandably taken their houses off the market. This has severely limited our inventory even more. Many owners of homes that remain for sale require lookers to wear masks, use hand sanitizer and take other precautions for showings. Agents are using wipes and gloves to open houses and turn on lights. Many are offering virtual showings via FaceTime and even virtual open houses. Almost all are practicing social distancing, so life goes on.
In normal times, many of the people who look at lake homes are just “someday” buyers trying to learn the market. Those who venture out during a pandemic have their checkbooks in-hand, literally. If you shelter in place for two months, it is human nature to want a better shelter. Why not choose beautiful Lake Lanier just north of Atlanta?
Bev Knight is lead agent and founder of The Good Life Group, Lake Lanier specialists. Her team members all live on the lake and sold $45 million last year, mostly on Lanier. To suggest other topics of interest, email her at

Posted online 5.28.20
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