On the other hand, these luxury amenities help developers achieve rents that make more housing generally viable with higher land, labor and construction prices.
A new analysis of the 100 largest US cities suggests that the hold these renters have in Atlanta is justifiable — and that the city has emerged as an anomaly in terms of the proportion of luxury apartments being built to affordable base units.
Over the past decade, Atlanta has seen an increase in the number of new apartments that promise VIP living experiences, as other rapidly developing urban centers like Seattle and Houston are trying to provide more housing options in places people want to be, according to researchers at STORAGECafé, a service Online for storage spaces.
In the decade between 2012 and 2021, the city of Atlanta crammed 48,200 apartments in multifamily buildings with 50 or more rental units, according to Yardi Matrix data. That amount is a good seventh in the United States overall, after New York, Seattle and four Texas cities, according to STORAGECafé results.
But of those condos built in Atlanta, 94 percent were considered luxury residences, offering more average interior spaces and “a great number of amenities,” the researchers said.
In other words, only 2,700 apartments in new compounds across Atlanta have been classified as non-luxury since 2012.
It ranked Atlanta 12th out of 100 cities – almost all of them much smaller – in terms of the share of luxury apartments achieved versus non-luxury ones.
Dallas was the only larger city that ranked above/below Atlanta Its share of 96 percent of luxury rentals is seventh.
Luxury apartments in Atlanta are relatively large, with roughly 1,000 square feet on average — or 80 square feet more than units considered non-luxury. Shared amenities in high-end ATL communities include resort-style pools, co-working spaces, EV charging stations, tennis courts, and outdoor storage, according to STORAGECafé.
Across the US overall, more than 3 million new apartments have been delivered in the past decade, with 2021 being the peak year so far, when 417,000 new units were delivered — or 12 percent of the 2020 bump rocked by the pandemic. Researchers have found that a tight housing market is causing many potential homebuyers to rent longer and enhancing their expectations of what residential communities have to offer.
On the local affordable housing front, the administration of Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens reported in May that it had already opened or supported the development of 1,500 affordable homes since the mayor took office in January. Dickens pledged to maintain or build 20,000 affordable housing units in the city across two terms, if elected again.
Affordable housing projects have recently been announced or delivered in Reynoldstown, Grove Park, Bankhead, and Capitol View, among other neighborhoods.
• ARC: Metro Atlanta packed 65,000 more people last year (Urbanize Atlanta)