This post looks at the spatial distribution and mix of owner and renter housing units, long a key feature of the landscape of Atlanta growth. Map 1 (below) sets the stage by illustrating the dramatic nature of recently built units–across all types of housing–in almost all areas of the region. The larger tracts on the periphery have had the greatest amount of new housing on a percentage basis, but many tracts inside and just outside the perimeter along the interstate highways have also seen a lot of newer units (more than 33% increase 2000-2019). That said, more than three-fourths of the region’s census tracts have seen an increase of greater than 10 percent in housing units built in the past two decades.
Map 1: Share of Units Built 2000 or Later, American Community Survey, 2019 5-Year Estimates (Source: DataNexus)
How has the tenure/choice changed with this growth? Owner housing continues to predominate in 2019, as it did in 2000, but the region’s mix is diversifying. From 2000 to 2019, almost 450,000 units have been added through to 2019, and 52.5% of these were owner units, 47.5% renter units. In most areas, the growth in rental units outstripped that of owner units, and as such the share of rental as a percentage of all units increased. This is not true in the case of the region’s largest county–Fulton–which could be explained by the strong acceleration of single-family development in the northern part of the county, as well a large condo share for the multiple-unit development in the City of Atlanta.
Table 1: Trends in Owner and Renter Housing, 2000-2019 (Source: Social Explorer, ARC RAG/ Nexus Analysis)
As seen in Map 2, the tracts with the higher shares of owner-occupied housing are concentrated outside the I-285 perimeter in suburban and exurban counties, and are primarily to the north of I-20. Map 3 shows that the largest tract-level shares of rental housing are found inside I-285 and in the City of Atlanta, as well as along other interstate corridors running to the northeast and northwest of the downtown core.