What makes a building “hot?” Is it always the location (location, LOCATION!) or could it be the amenities, average size of floor plan offering, or perhaps the restaurant or services nearby on the ground floor?
For my first installation of By the Numbers, I knew I wanted to look at Gallery, a Novare Group project that (as its name suggests), has an amazing offering of fine art located on the ground floor lobby. In keeping with the 2007 signature Novare look popularized, Gallery focused on utilizing floor-to-ceiling glass and focused on larger floor plans with finer finishes than their entry-levels homes at Metropolis and Eclipse. If I remember correctly, Gallery was pitched as a “step up” to the more discerning buyer. The typical elevated pool and clubhouse amenity package was enhanced at Gallery by adding an-adjoining tennis court. rotating offering of fine art in the lobby also helps to distinguish this building from earlier Novare product.
Gallery does not disappoint. It has gone through a recent interior renovation – the Greek key blocked grasscloth on the walls pairs nicely with new lighting in the lobby and elevator vestibules. The building has taken on an effortless classic yet modern look. A fellow agent I was previewing homes with kept saying how much he liked the entry vestibules at Gallery — and how he wished The Brookwood homes had that feature. The only downside to Gallery IMHO is that there are no services on site. You are situated right on “God’s corner” so the nearest shopping is the Publix at The Peach (.3 mi north on Peachtree) unless you count the Farmer’s Market at St. Phillip’s on Wednesday and Saturday or Fellini’s Pizza across Rumson.
After eating at Watershed last week (try their artichoke heart spread is amazing!), I thought The Brookwood would be a good project to hold against Gallery. The Brookwood was complete in 2010 and also located in the south Buckhead neighborhood. However, The Brookwood has a different exterior design outlook, taking a much more traditional approach to the high-rise aesthetic (perhaps taking cues from the historic design elements of historic Ardmore Park?), is a certified LEED building, and pushes the finish-level up a notch as well (think Viking ranges and 5′, Carrara marble, and rare hardwoods).
Lets look at the statistics, shall we? To be clear, all data is from the last 6 months.
Total number of homes in community: Gallery – 203, The Brookwood – 219
Units sold: Gallery – 6 (3%), The Brookwood – 8 (3.5%)
Average Days on Market: Gallery – 98, The Brookwood – 63
Size Matters: Gallery – `2 Bedrooms 2.5 Baths with 1591 square feet.,The Brookwood – 3 Bedrooms, 3.5 Baths with 1,777 square feet
Average home sale price: Gallery – $561,250, The Brookwood -$664,375
Percentage ale price over original list price: Gallery – 92%, The Brookwood – 96%
Average price / sf: Gallery – $353, The Brookwood – $374
Active now: Gallery – 4, The Brookwood – 11
Withdrawn or Expired: Gallery – 6, The Brookwood – 2
By the numbers, I have to say that it appears that The Brookwood is currently the winner. A higher percentage of original listing price, higher price / sf, and a faster turnover in sales help me interpret this. However, based on current listing information, what does it mean that there are currently almost 3 times as many homes listed at The Brookwood? Is this a direct result of the higher pricing of recent sales? Or is it something else?
Gallery enjoys an almost isolated sophistication on Peachtree Road with no amenities or restaurants on site. There are some stores and restaurants that I would consider walkable from this location, but its nothing like The Brookwood’s location (at least 5 hairdressers, The Saltyard, Watershed, and Egg Harbor Cafe inside the building and also within a stone’s throw of at least 6 other restaurants). I believe having these lifestyle amenities within walking distance is proving to become more and more attractive as Atlanta’s traffic increases on surface streets. Which may be why sales prices have been higher and at a faster clip at The Brookwood.
I would love to hear your take on what drives sales in communities. Feel free to leave a comment below. Thanks for reading!