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Old 03-27-2009, 01:35 PM
 
4 posts, read 5,596 times
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You guys give such great advice to those of us who have no clue about the Atlanta area that I that maybe you could send some my way. My husband just got a job working downtown and we are needing some input about housing. We are planning just to rent for awhile since he is with a new company and we don't know the area very well. We are not too picky-it could be a house or an apartment and would prefer a commute an hour or less (don't mind taking the Marta). We have four kids but I am going to homeschool them for now so school district is not an issue. They are involved in soccer, ballet, and swim lessons but I think most any community would have something similar to that.
We are not looking for any certain amenities, just as long as it is safe. We like to keep the rent around $1000-$1200 if possible. We could go higher if we need to, but we have some pretty aggressive saving goals so would prefer not to.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 03-27-2009, 01:54 PM
 
Location: East Cobb
2,206 posts, read 6,084,578 times
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raemurphy, when you write your husband is working "downtown", do you specifically mean the area that Atlanta locals call downtown? Inside the perimeter, Atlanta has a lot of offices not just "downtown" (around the state capitol and Georgia State Univ.), but also in "midtown" (north of downtown, around the Arts Center and Georgia Tech) and in "Buckhead" (further north again, around Lenox and Phipps Plaza malls).

The reason I'm asking is because it can make a difference to what residential areas are within a reasonable commuting distance.
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Old 03-27-2009, 02:20 PM
 
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He is working near the CNN center. I think that is considered five points, right?
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Old 03-29-2009, 01:27 PM
 
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Nobody has any suggestions?
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Old 03-29-2009, 01:35 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raemurphy View Post
Nobody has any suggestions?
Just pick points on the Marta north line. The further up you go the longer the commute but North Fulton/Dunwoody up to Alpharetta are likely the best areas and rents tend to be fairly manageable. In this market I would think you'd be able to find a townhouse in that range if you go up closer to Alpharetta which lengthens his commute but that might be rough given your family size.

1200/mon isn't a huge amt of money when you're talking about a family of 6. If you're willing to squeeze into a 3bdr then 1200 might be possible just inside the perimeter but you've given very broad requirements so there's a lot of directions you could go.

Most of the somewhat decent cities outside the perimeter will have single family homes available in the 1200 range which may be best suited for you. Marietta, Roswell, and some areas in Gwinnett would probably work fine but would be on the edge of the commute times since none are directly Marta accessible.

Sorry I'm not more help...I'm a single guy paying a bit more than that on rent but I value not having a commute to school over all else.
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Old 03-29-2009, 04:27 PM
 
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Check out Dekalb County in a several mile radius of Kensington or Avondale MARTA stations. Seems to be pretty safe, it's very convenient to everything going on intown (and also the Dekalb County Farmers Market - high quality inexpensive food), and your husband can easily commute. If working downtown at CNN center, I highly recommend taking MARTA or express bus transit as driving in can be rather stressful due to the screwiness of the road network and parking difficulties. Plan your housing location around your commute options and convenience to other things that are important to you. Check out the following websites for commute planning: MARTA - MARTA - Map Viewer (http://www.itsmarta.com/maps/viewer.asp - broken link) , GRTA express - Xpress GA - Routes I disagree with the above poster that only places North of the city are acceptable, and these places are definitely not more affordable. What is important to you? (ranked?): housing price, diversity or lack thereof, food options, cultural access, public transit access, parks, perceived crime, etc? How you rank these factors will make a huge difference in what area of Metro Atl is the best fit for your family.
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Old 03-29-2009, 05:13 PM
 
Location: Cobb County, Georgia
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Try Mableton it's located about 2 miles from 285 and 1 exit away from I20.
from where I live it's about a 30 min drive to the CNN center and there are plenty of homes around here of all shapes, sizes and prices. I live in Cobblestone Creek. you can also do a search on mableton here on these forums to get other opinions.

Mableton is a major find | ajc.com (http://www.ajc.com/services/content/homefinder/stories/2009/02/08/mableton_spotlight.html?cxntlid=inform_sr - broken link)
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Old 03-30-2009, 11:34 AM
 
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Everybody has their preferences and its always a balance of safety, value, etc. I chose the north side b/c those tend to be more bedroom communities as evidenced by the larger homes, newer communities, etc that would probably appeal to someone w/ a large family that's schooled at home but maybe not in the future. All of this while still being on the Marta line which is why it's the only area in the state w/ any kind of real estate appreciation. There would also be an abundance of children oriented activities like youth leagues, etc.

As it stands I'm renting in Midtown and looking to buy here but I don't think I'd ever recommend a large family to live here. Sure there are parks, diverse people, restaurants, cultural events, etc but I wouldn't recommend it for a family just b/c of the higher density, level of crime, etc. My old place in Marietta in a cul de sac community or my parents' home in Gwinnett seem a lot more appropriate for someone w/ their family as a priority.

I regularly bike from Midtown to Stone Mountain so I've seen everything from one end to the other on the Marta East line and it definitely didn't compare to the communities on the North line that I mentioned. While there is an abundance of cheap housing, there's also plenty of blighted areas and places that I wouldn't be caught after dark.

If school is a consideration later the only passable school systems are likely in East Cobb, North Fulton, and a few in Gwinnett. I'm a product of Gwinnett County schools and can safely tell you they're largely terrible and yet somehow some of the best the state has to offer. It's no wonder we're consistently bottom rung in the nation.
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Old 03-30-2009, 02:04 PM
 
4 posts, read 5,596 times
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Thanks guys-this is helping!
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