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Old 06-29-2007, 03:03 PM
 
10 posts, read 61,719 times
Reputation: 17

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My husband and I are going to relocate from the San Francisco Bay Area, hopefully sometime before the end of the year. We're going out to the Atlanta area in mid-late July to scout around but I'm trying to gather as much information as possible.

We're a young, professional, Asian American couple and hope to have children in a year or two. We're relocating from the Bay Area because his family lives in Georgia (though not in the Atlanta area) and as much as we love it the Bay Area, housing is still ridiculously expensive and we can never even hope to afford a house to raise a family in.

The place I'd really like to live is Decatur which sure does look nice. But from all accounts, we won't be able to afford it since it's more expensive there. Then again, the $300k ~ 400k for a nicer house in GA still won't get you a run down, studio condo in the Bay Area!

We're Asian American and are used to the diversity of the Bay Area. Quite honestly, one of the biggest hurdles we've had to try to overcome is that the Atlanta area may not be as diverse. We've always lived in areas that were primarily Asian or Asian American.

I've heard that the Buford Highway area -- I'm guessing this is Doraville and Chamblee? -- have a lot of Asian businesses and I'm assuming that the neighboring towns, etc. also have a more sizeable number of Asian immigrants. Ideally, I'd like a 3BR or 4BR/2BA house with AC for between $150 ~ 225k. I'm not looking to break the bank but I want a decent place to live. Is that possible in this area without, I dunno, getting shot? I'd really like to stay out of what my husband terms the DMZ -- the place between ghettotastic and nicer neighborhoods. I'd really not want to move all the way across the country to own a house in a craptastic neighborhood.
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Old 06-29-2007, 05:10 PM
 
2 posts, read 5,720 times
Reputation: 10
muimi07,

I love SF, but when you talk about an overall quality of life and having money leftover after the housing payment I think you'll find that Atlanta is a great place.

Decatur can be a mixed bag. There are nice neighborhoods, but there are also areas there that are not so great. You should be able to find homes in the price range that you list, but there probably going to be a little older. Unlike in SF, almost every house here has AC so you should have no problem finding that. Doraville and Chamblee do have a lot of Asian businesses. I think you'll find, however, that a lot of Asians have moved to the suburbs in Cobb and Gwinnett county for the simple reason that the schools are a lot better. Atlanta doesn't really have the ethnic neighborhoods that you find in other cities.

Doraville and Chamblee have historically not been the best of areas, although there has been some gentrfication recently that has improved those areas. In general the area along Buford highway is the place for ethnic restaurants, grocery stores etc.... Bear in mind this is different than places like SF. A lot of these retaurants are located in run down strip malls, however, you can find some of the best food here.

As with a lot of people on this board, I would advise trying to find a place close to where you intend on working and then secondly look at schools. Don't be afraid of the suburbs, there are a lot of Asians who live there and you'll find that you'll get more for your money and you will have access to better schools.
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Old 06-29-2007, 05:55 PM
 
Location: 30328
425 posts, read 1,560,929 times
Reputation: 152
300-400k will probably net you a 4 bedroom home of a cookie-cutter variety in the exurbs. If you are looking for a brand new home where Asians are concentrated, do expect long commutes unless you plan on becoming a local business owner.

As for living near a large concentration of Asian families, you'd be better off looking into Duluth, Suwanee, or Alpharetta. Asians are basically all around the metro area but you will find a larger concentration of them in the northern suburbs. A large number of Asians are also migrating toward Cumming (north of Alpharetta).
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Old 06-29-2007, 06:32 PM
 
Location: Atlanta, GA
1,405 posts, read 4,231,980 times
Reputation: 839
The Duluth area in Gwinnett county has a large, affluent Asian population, mostly Korean, I believe. Along Pleasant Hill Road there are a growing number of Asian businesses, including what is called a "Super H Mart", which is basically an Asian Wal-Mart, as well as shopping plazas that where the signs are all in (I think) Korean and Chinese. There are also a growing number of Asians in Suwanee; in fact right down the road from me they are building a large Korean Presbyterian church with a sanctuary for 1500, right next door to another Korean church, and another "Super H Mart" is also opening up in Suwanee. The local elementary school in Suwanee is about 15% Asian; I'm not sure about the schools in Duluth. I would stay away from Doraville and Chamblee; I believe that a number of the Asians moving to Gwinnett are coming from those areas to get away from crime.
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Old 06-29-2007, 08:24 PM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,190 posts, read 29,585,414 times
Reputation: 5091
Do you use transit?

Our rail system (MARTA) is not as extensive as BART in the Bay area and doesn't cover as much ground. If you want to use rail, then Decatur is still your best bet as there are a couple of rail stations in that area, including one in downtown Decatur. Chamblee and Doraville are run down and not what many would call a desireable place to live (likewise along Buford Highway). Duluth too, has a crime problem in some areas.

As someone else has already said, Atlanta is not really an international city like the billing sometimes advertises, in that there is no China Town, Little Italy, or other "ethnic neighborhoods" that are distinct in style from the others. Everyone is pretty much spread out everywhere here. You're certainly not going to find people freakout out because an Asian family moves into the neighborhood, so just find the best place you can afford and go for it.
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Old 06-30-2007, 05:07 AM
 
3,966 posts, read 10,802,153 times
Reputation: 1427
Hi.

I think you need to know where you will be working first -- unless you think you will have your pick of jobs and can find a job near where you are living.

I believe that a decent commute is an important factor of quality of life here. Just my opinion.

For the nicer parts of Chamblee and Doraville, and really the not as nice parts, your price range isn't realistic. In fact, you need to go to the exurbs for the type of house you are describing . You could also consider renting for a while, until your budget increases for housing and you get familliar with the area.
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Old 04-28-2008, 01:55 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,912 times
Reputation: 12
Hi..hope I'm not too late to chime in here.

My husband and I are both young Asian American professionals in our upper 20s who have moved here 4 years ago from the NYC metro area so I'm hoping I can give you a little insight from our perspectives. We too grew up in very diverse neighborhoods and are more comfortable in diverse areas. I know many claim that Atlanta is a diverse city but we had to disagree. We didn't really fit in very well because we were neither white nor black. We have gotten quite a bit of stares from people at the malls, at church, at the gym, etc. I've been asked several times whether I knew Karate, what part of China I was from, what good Chinese food could I make, etc. These are all innocently asked questions but it gets old and annoying after a while. I once explained to a man I was born in New Jersey and he refused to believe me. On 2 rare occasions, my husband and I have been screamed at by kids calling us "chinks" and doing the "ching chong" thing.

It is true that around the Buford Hway area, there are many Asian restaurants and a large Asian immigrant population. However, if you're looking for Asian American professionals, you won't find many of those in that area either. The majority are immigrants who can't speak a word of English.

Also, the South tends to be very conservative and Christian-oriented, and since you're coming from a pretty liberal state, you may notice these differences. Atlanta is also not as environmentally responsible as the Bay Area is. People here love their big homes in the suburbs with their big yards and big trucks and SUVs. Traffic is horrendous because everyone wants to live out in the burbs in their big homes.

Although we've made many friends and have had some great times here, we are planning on moving to the Bay Area by next summer simply because, we plan on having children in a few years and we don't want them to grow up in an area where they feel completely out of place and different...not to mention how cruel little kids can be when it comes to race. We know that the Bay Area will be very expensive but believe it's worth the sacrifice in order to secure a safe and happy upbringing for the kids.

Oh I forgot to mention weather. I absolutely love the summers in the Bay Area but the summers here in Atlanta are hot, humid and unbearable. You can forget about spending time outside in the summers. Spring and Fall are very nice here though.

Anyway, hope I have given you some decent information. Good luck with everything!
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Old 04-28-2008, 03:49 PM
 
5,415 posts, read 4,661,779 times
Reputation: 1114
Quote:
Originally Posted by muimi07 View Post
My husband and I are going to relocate from the San Francisco Bay Area, hopefully sometime before the end of the year. We're going out to the Atlanta area in mid-late July to scout around but I'm trying to gather as much information as possible.

We're a young, professional, Asian American couple and hope to have children in a year or two. We're relocating from the Bay Area because his family lives in Georgia (though not in the Atlanta area) and as much as we love it the Bay Area, housing is still ridiculously expensive and we can never even hope to afford a house to raise a family in.

The place I'd really like to live is Decatur which sure does look nice. But from all accounts, we won't be able to afford it since it's more expensive there. Then again, the $300k ~ 400k for a nicer house in GA still won't get you a run down, studio condo in the Bay Area!

We're Asian American and are used to the diversity of the Bay Area. Quite honestly, one of the biggest hurdles we've had to try to overcome is that the Atlanta area may not be as diverse. We've always lived in areas that were primarily Asian or Asian American.

I've heard that the Buford Highway area -- I'm guessing this is Doraville and Chamblee? -- have a lot of Asian businesses and I'm assuming that the neighboring towns, etc. also have a more sizeable number of Asian immigrants. Ideally, I'd like a 3BR or 4BR/2BA house with AC for between $150 ~ 225k. I'm not looking to break the bank but I want a decent place to live. Is that possible in this area without, I dunno, getting shot? I'd really like to stay out of what my husband terms the DMZ -- the place between ghettotastic and nicer neighborhoods. I'd really not want to move all the way across the country to own a house in a craptastic neighborhood.
Take a look at Alpharetta. Here are new homes.
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Old 04-28-2008, 08:27 PM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,190 posts, read 29,585,414 times
Reputation: 5091
Quote:
Originally Posted by oogoi View Post
Hi..hope I'm not too late to chime in here.
You should note, the last reply to the original posters was nearly one year ago (June 2007). Most likely they are not still monitoring this thread after nearly a year to see your reply.

Thread post dates are located in the upper-left of each post, FYI.
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