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Old 10-27-2012, 01:46 PM
 
3 posts, read 3,540 times
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Hello everybody,

My family and I are planning on relocating to Atlanta sometime in the next six months, given a successful job search. Like lots of others, we would like some advice about where to start searching for a home. Answers to the sticky questions:

1. Budget - up to 400,000, and we need 3 beds (would prefer 4) and 2.5 baths. probably a minimum of 2500 sq ft.
2. House/Condo/Townhome? - prefer a house
3. Employment Status(commute/work from home) - my husband will commute to midtown/downtown/buckhead (one of those areas with his current applications). This is the sticky point for us - he would be pretty miserable with an hour commute each way. If possible, he would like to spend no more than 30 minutes in the car...possibly up to 30 minutes in the car and a short MARTA ride?
4. Children(public school vs. private) - public.
5. Suburban or Urban lifestyle preference or a mix of the two - mix of the two. We want an area with the feel of a real neighborhood - I'd like to actually know my neighbors. I'm a stay-at-home mom with a toddler, and I would like to meet other people interested in playgroups, etc.
6. Easy access to public transit, important or not? - if possible, and if it helps with a commute, yes.
7. Preferable demographics of desired neighborhood. - a diverse neighborhood would be great.

A couple of other questions:

1. There seems to be quite a bit of negativity re: realtors on this forum. Does anyone actually have a good experience with a buyers' agent they would recommend?

2. Renting vs. buying. I've seen suggestions on other forums to rent rather than buy in order to get to know the area. Thoughts about this?

Thanks in advance for your responses!
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:13 PM
 
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The general recommendation around here is to rent first. Home prices and interest rates are not going up anytime soon.

My first thought on your requirements is Candler Park. Others that know more about in town neighborhoods will have other recommendations.

Roswell (which is outside the perimeter) is also another good choice and could meet your commuting requirements.
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Old 10-27-2012, 04:28 PM
 
3 posts, read 3,540 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lorilove View Post
The general recommendation around here is to rent first. Home prices and interest rates are not going up anytime soon.

My first thought on your requirements is Candler Park. Others that know more about in town neighborhoods will have other recommendations.

Roswell (which is outside the perimeter) is also another good choice and could meet your commuting requirements.
Thanks! I guess the only hesitation about renting is that it seems more expensive to rent - well, and moving again. I really dislike moving

Candler Park may be a little out of our budget, although I'm sure new homes come onto the market all of the time. We'll look into Roswell, too!
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Old 10-27-2012, 07:05 PM
 
2,530 posts, read 4,772,627 times
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I personally don't think you need to rent first. But I do think it is important that you can clearly define the type of area that you want to live in and to able to rank your priorities.

Individuals that I know that choose the wrong area get side tracked by what everyone else, including real estate agents tell them they should live and not what fits them best. I think there are great things to say about most areas inside and outside the perimeter, it is a matter of what works best for you.

Also make sure you are realistic about how long you will live in a place. I know what works today, does not necessarily work 5 years from now. That is fine if you are single or no kids and you make a move but much harder when you have kids in school.
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Old 10-27-2012, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
738 posts, read 1,377,574 times
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Take a look at City of Decatur or Oakhurst - I think you can find what you're looking for in your price range. Candler Park or Lake Claire might also work well. Va-Hi and Morningside may be out of your price range, but are probably worth a look.

I second the recommendation to rent before buying. I know moving sucks, but if you end up not liking the area you've chosen, selling can potentially be a lot more of a pain than just waiting out your lease.
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Old 10-27-2012, 08:51 PM
 
Location: GA
2,791 posts, read 10,808,379 times
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Atlanta Fine Homes Sotheby's International Realty

We used this agent to buy and were very pleased.
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Old 10-27-2012, 09:53 PM
 
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A number of co workers have been buying near Agnes Scott in your price range. I think this is either Oakhurst or Decatur.
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:23 AM
 
2,167 posts, read 2,830,432 times
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2,500 square feet is going to be tough to do with your budget in the City of Decatur (which includes the neighborhood of Oakhurst), Lake Claire, or Candler Park. Not necessarily impossible, just more difficult. The 4 bedroom requirement will be easier to meet than the square footage requirement. You just don't have huge secondary bedrooms or "bonus" rooms in a lot of these houses, so you typically see 3 bedroom homes in the 1,200-1,800 square foot range, and 4 bedrooms above that.
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Old 10-28-2012, 11:13 AM
 
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Oh yeah, I glossed over the size requirement. You will not find 2500 sq feet anywhere nice in town at your price. You will have to size down or consider suburbs. I think 1800 sq feet is the largest my co workers have bought.
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Old 10-28-2012, 11:43 AM
 
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Thanks everyone! We'll add those areas to our list. We can be a little flexible on the square footage, but we lived in a 1600 sq ft house before we had the baby, and I'm afraid it would be a little difficult for us now.

Are suburbs out in terms of commute? We wouldn't mind a suburb, but we would want an older, established suburb (we would prefer to stay away from track houses, no trees, etc.)
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