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Old 09-05-2015, 03:49 AM
 
30 posts, read 60,895 times
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Okay, I promise I read the sticky!

We're moving to Atlanta and would love any advice regarding neighborhoods, commute times, schools and places to avoid.

My husband's new job is near the Midtown Marta stop. We'd like him to either be able to take Marta to work or drive no more than 30 minutes. Our approximate housing budget is up to $575K and we'd like at least 4 bedrooms. School district is important as we have a kindergartener and preschooler. We've heard good things about Brookhaven, Sandy Springs, and Dunwoody but we know very little about those school districts. Also, we are not against sending our kids to private school so any advice on potential private schools in the area would also be helpful.

Thank you in advance for any advice you can provide!!! We are looking forward to our new adventure in Atlanta.
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Old 09-05-2015, 05:39 AM
 
Location: n/a
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Brookhaven, Sandy Springs, and Dunwoody are all typically good choices for folks wanting to live near MARTA, but as far as private schools go, don't forget East Point and Woodward Academy in College Park, too. Welcome to GA!
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Old 09-05-2015, 11:58 AM
 
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With a few exceptions, the better private schools here are 15K plus for elementary, so unless you are committed to private, you may be better offer finding a house in a decent school district.

One possibility is to consider the school districts in the Midtown area (Morningside, Mary Lin, Springdale Park). Another is City of Decatur. Alot depends on what you are looking for in a house and how you define a good school.

What kind of house are you envisioning?
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Old 09-05-2015, 06:43 PM
 
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Should we completely avoid public schools if we move to one of the areas I mentioned? We'd like to have the option to send our kids to public (and also for eventual resale value) and by no means are committed to private.

With that said, we do like what we saw in Sandy Springs especially. We'd like a larger (2500+ square feet) house with at least 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. We'd like a good sized yard but it doesn't have to be huge. Does that take us outside of Atlanta/Midtown? I'm assuming yes.
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Old 09-05-2015, 07:44 PM
 
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City of Decatur schools are the best in the state, but it's a small school system and very exclusive IMO. Dunwoody and Brookhaven are also fine. Upscale areas with lots of great jobs which generally means the surrounding areas are nice and the school systems are fine. Sandy Springs are also fine, but you'll be a little outside of the perimeter, but you can still take MARTA to Midtown from the Dunwoody or Roswell station.
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Old 09-05-2015, 09:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lastminutemom View Post
With a few exceptions, the better private schools here are 15K plus for elementary, so unless you are committed to private, you may be better offer finding a house in a decent school district.

One possibility is to consider the school districts in the Midtown area (Morningside, Mary Lin, Springdale Park). Another is City of Decatur. Alot depends on what you are looking for in a house and how you define a good school.

What kind of house are you envisioning?
Those are all elementary schools/areas I would recommend (Mary Lin has been great for us). Finding at least 4 bedrooms is probably doable for a single family home (Candler Park-Lake Claire, might be your best bet at that price). Even if you do find something with 4 bedrooms at that price--do not expect anything very grand--or even a typical suburban 200K home at that price. You may want to consider really investigating those 3 Atlanta schools plus the entire City of Decatur, and if you feel comfortable with any them--use your "private school cushion money" to buy a home that you are comfortable with in these neighborhoods. If you are open to townhomes, it might be easier.
With that said--we found a home that fits 5 for much less than your budget just over a year ago--but, by suburban standards--it looks like a 100K to 150K home--maybe. If you aren't picky, and just the space and commute time matters, you can probably get very good elementary schools for $575K, and be very close to midtown. (Inman Middle is working reasonably well for our oldest child--and, I think that it should work well for most kids--but it is less of a sure thing than the elementary schools. I expect for Grady high to be similar) Decatur City is a little further out--but its schools are probably more of a sure thing K-12 for most folks than the best Atlanta City schools--but 30minutes might be a stretch--especially for some of its neighborhoods.
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Old 09-05-2015, 10:40 PM
 
30 posts, read 60,895 times
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We weren't impressed with the homes in our price range in the City of Decatur when we visited. We live in a large home (3600+ square feet) now so I'm concerned about the size of homes within Atlanta. I don't think we need a house as big as what we have now, but I also don't want to feel squeezed in to a smaller place.

What about Smyrna? I know it's OTP but what would a commute from there to Midtown look like? It's in Cobb County versus Fulton so are schools better there?
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Old 09-05-2015, 11:47 PM
 
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East Cobb. Sorry about the commute--but it doesn't sound like you will find the house you want closer in. Wonderful schools.
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Old 09-06-2015, 04:44 AM
 
2,325 posts, read 3,549,200 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ConsideringDE View Post
We weren't impressed with the homes in our price range in the City of Decatur when we visited. We live in a large home (3600+ square feet) now so I'm concerned about the size of homes within Atlanta. I don't think we need a house as big as what we have now, but I also don't want to feel squeezed in to a smaller place.

What about Smyrna? I know it's OTP but what would a commute from there to Midtown look like? It's in Cobb County versus Fulton so are schools better there?
Smyrna is not a bad commute to Midtown plus there are lots of surface road options when the highways have a melt down.

MARTA is not an option from Smyrna although for the occasional times when you don't have a car you can take the CCT bus from Cumberland Mall to the MARTA Arts Center Station.
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Old 09-06-2015, 08:03 AM
 
Location: ATL -> HOU
4,129 posts, read 3,221,864 times
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Avoid the schools in Smyrna. They're still a work in progress. Only exception is I've heard the IB program at Campbell high is top notch. Practically a different school.
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