We spend a lot of time analyzing data about the region’s housing market. We have examined how home prices have recovered since the Great Recession (here) and we recently looked at the growing affordability crisis in metro Atlanta (here). But with the recent release of the latest Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data for 2016, we have yet another way to examine the local housing market. While these data do lag real time updates by about a year, they still provide good insights because we can also see neighborhood-level trends.
HMDA data provide mortgage lending trends, so they combine both home purchasing trends and bank lending trends. This gives us a different twist, because we can see both where people are buying homes and where banks are lending. But, first, let’s look at some national trends.
As the chart shows below, metro Atlanta ranks third in the total number of loans originated among the largest metro areas, regardless of loan purpose, which include loans for home improvement, home purchase and refinancing loans.
But, in metro Atlanta, the majority of loans were for home purchase. In fact, metro Atlanta ranks first among its peers in the number of home purchase loans originated in 2016.
And, finally, we also see that metro Atlanta also had the largest change in the number of home purchase loans originated between 2015 and 2016. See Chart 3 below.
So, overall, metro Atlanta’s housing market is among the healthiest in the nation when looking at loan volumes for home purchases. But like so many phenomena in the region, the distribution of loan originations is uneven throughout. The maps below show this (click through them). The heaviest concentrations of loan originations for home purchases, per square mile, are located in the northern parts of the region. The greatest changes in loan originations for home purchases since 2012, too, are located in the northern parts of the region. Interestingly, when looking at the single-year (2015-2016), the change is more evenly dispersed, but still has a mostly northern bias. Of course, one year does not a trend make, so we’ll need to continue monitoring mortgage lending trends in the coming years.