$1M-plus sales up whopping 13% over record 2019 totals

Friday, January 8, 2021, Vol. 45, No. 2

The Greater Nashville Realtors will likely announce next week that 2020 was another record year for real estate sales in Middle Tennessee. As the pandemic grew from speculation to reality, Nashville realty followed the same curve, even in the upper-end market.

With homes priced at $1 million or more still considered luxury homes, Nashville continues to find luxury buyers in record numbers. There were 608 sales of $1 million or more in Davidson County in 2020, Realtracs reports. That marks a 13% increase compared to 2019 luxury sales. There were 537 such sales in 2019.

It doesn’t stop there.

In 2019, the most expensive single-family home sold for $5.25 million. In 2020, there were two sales between $5 million and $6 million and three between $6 million and $7 million. There also was one of $7 million-plus and another of $8 million-plus.

The most expensive condominium in 2019 was a unit in the Icon (600 12th Avenue South) that sold for $3.3 million. In 2020, a penthouse in the 505 (505 Church Street) went for $4.5 million. Next week, the primo unit in 505 will hit the market at $10 million.

Overall, upper-end condo sales dropped from 40 to 26 from 2019 to 2020 as the City Lights development and the 505 were polishing off some of their presales in 2019. In the past, when there were multiple upper-end sales, it could be the result of a particular development closing all of its higher-elevated, hence more expensive, units.

In those years, there were few, if any, other condos with the high-end sales price.

In 2020, 12 condominium developments had sales of more than $1 million. There were condos that qualify for luxury status selling at Adelicia, City Lights, The West End, 505 High Rise, the Jacksonian, Whitland, Craighead, 1212, the Icon, Encore, Terrazzo and the Phoenix Lofts.

No longer an anomaly, buyers are migrating to the high-priced condos. Granted, 26 out of 608 $1 million-plus is not does qualify for what Arlo Guthrie would consider to be a movement, but it is getting closer, as it takes 50 people to earn “movement” status. At least that what he says in “Alice’s Restaurant.”

With New York a shadow of its former self, California closed and weirdness abounding in other cities, they are coming, tax hike or no tax hike.

A rule of thumb for Metro property taxes was that the tax was close to 1% of the property value. In that case, a $1 million home would be taxed at approximately $10,000. By adding 34%, or $3,400, the taxes are $13,400, still less than what those relocating here are paying back home, as the saying goes.

If the average person relocating here makes $100,000, that person would make an additional $10,000 in savings by not paying state income tax, not to mention the bevy of other taxes that are levied upon them in their other states.

The answer to the question is “no,” the Middle Tennessee real estate market is not slowing. Prices are not falling.

Sale of the Week

The condominium known as the Adelicia at 900 20th Avenue South is a Ray Hensler creation named for Adelicia Franklin Acklen Cheatham, who built Belmont Mansion. The high-rise condo was built during the period when the real estate market was teetering and completed in 2007 as the world crashed into the Great Recession. The cynics, skeptics and critics wrote its obituary many times during its construction.

900 20th Avenue South

Like the quote often attributed to Mark Twain, reports of the Adelicia’s demise were greatly exaggerated. Not only did she survive, Adelicia thrived and has proven to be a solid investment, as proven last week when unit 801 sold for $900,000. The seller had paid $577,570 in 2007.

Sold in a matter of hours by Alexa Coulton of Partners Real Estate, the condo includes two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a spacious 1,829 square feet with a floorplan that wraps the home around a corner facing downtown.

Along with the square footage, the sale included two coveted parking spaces and a lease permit, a commodity shred with 15% of Adelicia owners.

The building sits atop the hallowed ground that once supported the famed Peking (pronounced Pee-King, of course) Garden Restaurant, a spot that introduced alcohol to many of those who attended local high schools. In the 1970s, the drinking age was 18.

Known for its original Chinese cuisine, owner Bonnie Chen prided herself on having one of the most accommodating restaurants of all time. She trained Andy Lee, who later opened Chinatown Restaurant.

Richard Courtney is a licensed real estate broker with Fridrich and Clark Realty, LLC and can be reached at richard@richardcourtney.com.