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Old 05-03-2010, 02:06 PM
 
19 posts, read 96,199 times
Reputation: 19
Default Living In Phoenix Arizona vs Marietta or Sandy Springs Georgia

My famly and I are contemplating a move to the north Atlanta metro area next year from Phoenix AZ. We are considering Marietta and Sandy Springs as possible places to live.

Whereas Sandy Springs benefits by being closer to downtown Atlanta, the average single home values seem to be almost double those of Marietta. Meanwhile, we are having trouble trying to establish why this might be so? Is it all relative to proximity to downtown Atlanta?

Any thoughts on the matter would be appreciated. Thanks for your help.
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:21 PM
 
Location: Jonquil City (aka Smyrna) Georgia- by Atlanta
16,249 posts, read 11,281,625 times
Reputation: 3587
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColinM View Post
My famly and I are contemplating a move to the north Atlanta metro area next year from Phoenix AZ. We are considering Marietta and Sandy Springs as possible places to live.

Whereas Sandy Springs benefits by being closer to downtown Atlanta, the average single home values seem to be almost double those of Marietta. Meanwhile, we are having trouble trying to establish why this might be so? Is it all relative to proximity to downtown Atlanta?

Any thoughts on the matter would be appreciated. Thanks for your help.
Marietta has lots of minorities and Sandy Springs is almost all white. This is the south and race matters here. Also the houses in Marietta are older and smaller. You have to compare houses of similar age and size. You will pay much higher taxes in Sandy Springs for the same sized house and the Fulton school system is not as good as Marietta either.
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Old 05-03-2010, 07:26 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
15 posts, read 21,854 times
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We moved to Smyrna from Phoenix in early 2009. Are you looking for newer developments or established areas, Marietta has both, Sandy Springs tends to be higher end older homes.

It would be helpfull on the price range, schools, commute to job for the posters to help your search.
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Old 05-29-2010, 02:11 PM
 
19 posts, read 96,199 times
Reputation: 19
Thanks KevK and azbadger for your replies, sorry it's taken so long to get back to you. I didn't get an email notification of your posts for 2 weeks and then I have delayed too. I have more idea now about the set-up in Atlanta.
There are some comparisons to be made with living in Phoenix. Predominantly white areas tend to be more affluent. Mixed areas are middle of the road and heavily Hispanic areas tend to be more working class.
The demographics are probably more educationally based though. The more professonal types are better educated and traditionally white, although this status quo will no longer apply in the future, since many Hispanic immigrant's children are becoming well educated.
We are white and live in a mixed area. Our home values have taken a plunge during the recession. I have no idea what we could get for our house now? A complete fixer upper, two houses away, sold for $105,000 some months ago. A nicely appointed house in the next street sold for close to $300,000, yet a similar house a couple of doors away from that sold for barely $200,000. Our house has some cosmetic repairs needed, but it is structurally sound and remains attractive. So who knows what we would get for it?
Considering property prices in Sandy Springs, it is doubtful whether we would be able to afford a house there. Marietta looks more of a safe bet. However, we live in an area of Phoenix where we are close to downtown, the streets have mostly side-walks, there is street lighting and all the stores, schools and other amenities are all within half a mile of our house. Our neighbourhood is pretty safe, crime is low and it is safe to walk around the area at night. I wonder if anything similar exists in Atlanta, or if Marietta has similar?
Anyway, I'm sorry to have not gotten back to you earlier. I would be interested in your thoughts.
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Old 05-29-2010, 03:50 PM
 
8,687 posts, read 11,908,281 times
Reputation: 1940
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColinM View Post
Thanks KevK and azbadger for your replies, sorry it's taken so long to get back to you. I didn't get an email notification of your posts for 2 weeks and then I have delayed too. I have more idea now about the set-up in Atlanta.
There are some comparisons to be made with living in Phoenix. Predominantly white areas tend to be more affluent. Mixed areas are middle of the road and heavily Hispanic areas tend to be more working class.
The demographics are probably more educationally based though. The more professonal types are better educated and traditionally white, although this status quo will no longer apply in the future, since many Hispanic immigrant's children are becoming well educated.
We are white and live in a mixed area. Our home values have taken a plunge during the recession. I have no idea what we could get for our house now? A complete fixer upper, two houses away, sold for $105,000 some months ago. A nicely appointed house in the next street sold for close to $300,000, yet a similar house a couple of doors away from that sold for barely $200,000. Our house has some cosmetic repairs needed, but it is structurally sound and remains attractive. So who knows what we would get for it?
Considering property prices in Sandy Springs, it is doubtful whether we would be able to afford a house there. Marietta looks more of a safe bet. However, we live in an area of Phoenix where we are close to downtown, the streets have mostly side-walks, there is street lighting and all the stores, schools and other amenities are all within half a mile of our house. Our neighbourhood is pretty safe, crime is low and it is safe to walk around the area at night. I wonder if anything similar exists in Atlanta, or if Marietta has similar?
Anyway, I'm sorry to have not gotten back to you earlier. I would be interested in your thoughts.

First of all, ColinM...

Are you talking about within the City of Marietta (within incorporated city limits) or unincorporated Marietta?

There is a difference between the two--Metro Atlanta does cities/towns/addresses much differently than most metro areas within the U.S.

Usually, when people are asking questions on here about Marietta, they are inquiring about unincorporated Marietta.

What KevK described was more like the City of Marietta.

I (or others) can explain the difference in future posts if you'd like.


Which specific areas of "Marietta" are you interested in?
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Old 05-29-2010, 03:53 PM
 
8,687 posts, read 11,908,281 times
Reputation: 1940
Quote:
Originally Posted by azbadger View Post
We moved to Smyrna from Phoenix in early 2009. Are you looking for newer developments or established areas, Marietta has both, Sandy Springs tends to be higher end older homes.

It would be helpfull on the price range, schools, commute to job for the posters to help your search.
Yes--

ColinM,

Read the link below. Answer the questions, and then repost your answers on this thread you've already started:

Moving to atlanta soon? Read this first



*You will get more informed answers and more answers in general if you follow the procedure above.


I hope this helps. Good Luck!
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:08 AM
 
19 posts, read 96,199 times
Reputation: 19
Thanks for your pointers Aries4118. I checked out your link and have answered these questions as follows:

Budget: Difficult to say given the precarious housing market in Phoenix. Hopefully, we will be looking for a single family house (ranch style or other) at around $200,000.

I / We shall be commuting to work by car. Hopefully up to a maximum of 10-20 miles.

Children's education: They have gone to very good public schools in Phoenix / Arcadia. We shall continue to send them to a High School within a good public system. I understand that Marietta has a very good school system?

At the moment we live in a suburban area but we have the city feel less than half a mile away from our house, with Macy's, Saks 5th Ave, and many designer clothes stores at the Biltmore Fashion Park. Across the road from this is the Esplanade which there is an AMC, many restaurants, bars and hotels such as the Ritz Carlton. Adjacent to these are several banks. There are tall office buildings and high end apartment buildings there too. John McCain the Republican Senator keeps an apartment in one of these buildings.
Downtown Phoenix is about 5 miles away. As yet, it does not have the same draw as other parts of Phoenix, Glendale, Scottsdale etc. Downtown there are some large hotels and US Airways Center for concerts etc, also the Bank One Ballpark for the D-Backs. Apart from that, downtown is just business with a few bars / pubs and a smattering of restaurants.
So we like the suburban life that has close proximity to the urban one.

We have buses that traverse the city. Most run every 15 minutes. Public transport is fairly important to us, although we don't use it as much as we could. It is at the very least a safety net and has allowed our kids to explore and get around with their friends.

Demographics: at the moment we live in a neighbourhood that has (guessing) about 80% white, 15% Hispanic and 5% black people. We have been used to living in mostly white areas all our lives. It would be more desirable to move into an area that was predominantly white, although I realise that these areas are more expensive in the N Alanta metro. At least we could consider an area where there are a good proportion of whites to blacks. Probably more important than demographics is the crime level. We are safe at the moment, walking out of our house at any time of the day or night for a stroll around our neighbourhood. This is another important aspect for us.

So that is our position. Your thoughts / advice would be welcome.
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Old 06-14-2010, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
2,688 posts, read 3,410,838 times
Reputation: 1469
Quote:
There are some comparisons to be made with living in Phoenix. Predominantly white areas tend to be more affluent. Mixed areas are middle of the road and heavily Hispanic areas tend to be more working class.
The demographics are probably more educationally based though. The more professonal types are better educated and traditionally white, although this status quo will no longer apply in the future, since many Hispanic immigrant's children are becoming well educated
.

You will probably find that the demographics in Atlanta much different than what you describe above for Phoenix. First of all in Atlanta even affluent areas are often heavily black (Especially intown and the close in suburbs). There are some very nice neighborhoods that are majority black. The Hispanic population is much less than in Phoenix with a few majority hispanic neighborhoods mostly in the Buford highway area and a smattering of them elsewhere. With the exception of Buckhead maybe, the majority white neighborhoods tend to be more prevalent the further from downtown you get and you have to get pretty far out to find them.



Quote:
At the moment we live in a suburban area but we have the city feel less than half a mile away from our house, with Macy's, Saks 5th Ave, and many designer clothes stores at the Biltmore Fashion Park. Across the road from this is the Esplanade which there is an AMC, many restaurants, bars and hotels such as the Ritz Carlton. Adjacent to these are several banks. There are tall office buildings and high end apartment buildings there too. John McCain the Republican Senator keeps an apartment in one of these buildings.
Downtown Phoenix is about 5 miles

The area you described living in sounds similar to the Perimeter Center area of Sandy Springs with the exception that it's only 5 miles from downtown. 5 miles from downtown in Atlanta would put you in Buckhead for example which is probably alot more urban and expensive than what you described.


Quote:
We have buses that traverse the city. Most run every 15 minutes. Public transport is fairly important to us, although we don't use it as much as we could. It is at the very least a safety net and has allowed our kids to explore and get around with their friends.
There's good access to a really good Public transport system in MARTA in Sandy Springs. You can catch the train at two stations in Sandy Springs including the Perimeter Center Station and the train will take you to downtown, Decatur, etc. all the way to the airport and you have free transfer to a bus with a train ticket and vice-vs. It's underground and above ground rapid rail so very fast and alot of people do use it. Safety is another issue. While I feel safe using it some people have issues with the level of crime in areas of Atlanta including the MARTA system and there are a couple of threads in this forum heavily discussing that now.


Quote:
Quote:
Whereas Sandy Springs benefits by being closer to downtown Atlanta, the average single home values seem to be almost double those of Marietta. Meanwhile, we are having trouble trying to establish why this might be so? Is it all relative to proximity to downtown Atlanta?
Yeah I think Sandy Springs is largely more expensive because of it's closer proximity to town. In general the closer you get to town the more you pay for less unless you're buying a fixer upper type deal maybe.
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Old 06-25-2010, 07:28 PM
 
2 posts, read 4,055 times
Reputation: 10
While race does matter here, it's either incredible naivete', or demographic superiority, that would lead one to think it matters more in the south. As someone who's lived in Wisconsin, Maine, Colorado, El Paso, and metro Atlanta, I can say that race matters everywhere. But, so does education, family money, and other factors.
I'm curious as to why you chose Marietta and Sandy Springs, but I think Sandy Springs is out of the question for your budget. Buckhead is even more out of the question. Marietta is quite large, so of course there are areas that are safe, though it's hard to name just one or two areas. There are many, and safety is a personal matter. I think that only you and yours can judge how safe you feel in areas, and you'd have to do that by driving around.

The reason I ask why you chose Marietta and SS is because there are places in between the two that you don't mention, like Vinings (too expensive again) and Smyrna, which has some places within your budget.
I think the best thing to do is to give an agent your budget and what you want in a house, and let him/her take you to some homes. What I've done before buying is drive the neighborhood near the homes I'll be shown, usually before even seeing the homes, so time isn't wasted going to neighborhoods that don't feel right to me. There are a lot of places for rent, too, or you can get an extended stay at some hotels relatively cheaply ($900/mo. for a furnished room) as the hotels are scrambling for guests sometimes. It seems like a temporary stay somewhere is best til you get a feel for the neighborhoods you want to be in. Yes, we can all go by race, but that really only skims the surface of what is needed for someone to really be happy in a neighborhood.
You may find everyone is your race, but their yards aren't well-groomed enough, or you want swim/tennis (or don't want it), or maybe there are trucks parked on the lawns, maybe there are a lot of abandoned or neglected pregnant or unneutered (aggressive) dogs and cats running about the neighborhood (this is a terrible problem in some parts of Cobb, and one that gets quickly out of control. If you call Cobb animal control, you'll get a recording that says they get 35,000 calls per month, so they may not return your call....ever.)
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