Employers are expected to add to their local payrolls for thefifth consecutive year, with 22,200 new positions forecast through2008, according to the firm's latest Atlanta Apartment ResearchReport. Those prospects are driving investor demand for localrental units, with properties selling for a median price of $64,800per unit over the past year, up 17%.

"Investment activity will continue to moderate this year, slowedby conservative lending practices," John Leonard, Marcus &Millichap's regional manager in Atlanta, stated in the firm'sreport. "Out-of-state buyers, especially from California, willremain present, targeting the metro for its higher initial yieldsand prospects for steady long-term growth."

Approximately 3,400 new apartment units are expected to open inMetro Atlanta this year, with vacancy forecast to end the year at8.6%, Marcus & Millichap states in its report. Asking rents areexpected to increase 2.4% to $864 per month, while effective rentswill advance 2% to $773 per month.

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