Welcome to City-Data.com Forum!
U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Georgia > Atlanta
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 06-18-2013, 09:15 AM
 
31,993 posts, read 36,507,354 times
Reputation: 13254

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by CMMom View Post
There are tons of trees in my neighborhood, and it's the furthest thing from a cookie-cutter cluster home type setup. The kids do roam the hood from house to house, and I don't worry. Our n'hood has no outlet, so it's not a cut-through. We see our friends and neighbors everywhere. If you come to Dunwoody, you'll quickly learn the local hangouts (Los Rancheros, O'Brians, Dunwoody Tavern, and on and on).

Regarding schools, there is a divide between Dunwoody and Sandy Springs. Since we sit on the border of DeKalb and Fulton, I find that many of my DeKalb friends (but not all by any means) send their kids to public at least through elementary and most Fultonites go private (at least in 30350).

I recently had dinner at a friend's house in the heart of City of Decatur. It was great, but it's just "not my bag." I don't want to have to park on the street. The houses are very cozy, but cozy really means small. Having an old house is cool; having to spend tons of money to repair/restore an old house that already costs WAY more than you'd pay for a house in the burbs, not so cool (at least not for me). It's just a totally different vibe.
I'm by no means down on our wonderful suburbs.

Just to be clear, though, there are plenty of intown neighborhoods where you can have a large lot with big leafy trees, great public schools, spacious homes and neighborhoods where the kids roam like they do anywhere else. You don't have to go OTP to find those things.

In short, the Perimeter is not a very accurate dividing line between lifestyles. While it's true that housing costs tend to go up when you get closer to the best intown neighborhoods, they also go way up as you get closer to the best neighborhoods further out.

In my opinion the biggest differences are these:

(1) City of Atlanta property taxes are way too high, especially for the school board. As the suburbs age and become more diverse, they'll increasingly face the same issues but for now they are ahead.

(2) Local government in the city of Atlanta and Fulton county is notoriously bloated and unresponsive. I give a definite edge to the suburbs on that.

(3) Shopping, transportation and cultural amenities are more concentrated in the intown areas. They are available in the suburbs as well, but distances are greater and you'll do more driving.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-18-2013, 10:12 AM
 
9,008 posts, read 13,962,159 times
Reputation: 7632
Quote:
Just to be clear, though, there are plenty of intown neighborhoods where you can have a large lot with big leafy trees, great public schools, spacious homes and neighborhoods where the kids roam like they do anywhere else. You don't have to go OTP to find those things.
Just to be clear, though, you're not getting this intown for under $700k. You can have it in the suburbs for around $250k.

Nobody is saying intown doesn't have great neighborhoods. I think the big difference is that for most people, they simply aren't affordable.

I'd also like to say a word about cookie cutter homes. Hey, guess what? I have a cookie cutter home! I don't know for sure, but I bet there are a few houses in my neighborhood that are probably the same exact design, or maybe reversed, or whatever. I guess different things bug different people, but I've never lost an ounce of sleep because someone else might live in a house with the same layout as mine. Maybe it's because I'm such a unique individual that I don't feel like I have to live in a unique house, I don't know. It's not like I would even know how to locate the houses that are just like mine. They'd all be slightly different with variations in the outside finishes, etc., but I'm sure they're around. I've just never even noticed, maybe because I've never looked for them. Cookie cutter is an insult flung around by the intown crowd. It simply doesn't bother me in the least.

The suburbs do have a lot of non-cookie cutter subdivisions. Just not at my price point, which was right at $200k.

EDIT: Reflecting on my thoughts, I think I do "get" how cookie cutter homes bother some people. I am annoyed too by those flat neighborhoods that look like a 20 story tall house pooping machine just walked along and left a trail of houses. I guess I made a subconscious decision because even though my subdivision probably has what some people would call "cookie cutter" homes, it doesn't feel like it to me because we also have lots of hills and elevation differences and mature growth trees to break everything up. Rows of houses in a grid that all look the same, yeah, I get how that is annoying. My "cookie cutter" subdivision doesn't look like that at all.

Last edited by ATLTJL; 06-18-2013 at 10:32 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 10:18 AM
 
9,008 posts, read 13,962,159 times
Reputation: 7632
Quote:
(1) City of Atlanta property taxes are way too high, especially for the school board. As the suburbs age and become more diverse, they'll increasingly face the same issues but for now they are ahead.

(2) Local government in the city of Atlanta and Fulton county is notoriously bloated and unresponsive. I give a definite edge to the suburbs on that.

(3) Shopping, transportation and cultural amenities are more concentrated in the intown areas. They are available in the suburbs as well, but distances are greater and you'll do more driving.
1) Agree. At least, I think I agree. I'm not sure what city of Atlanta taxes are, but I hear they are quite high. I think suburban areas will be able to keep the bloat down if they can keep things like cronyism and no-bid contracts out of the fray like Atlanta has been unable to do. Of course, the burbs have their own corruption.

2) I haven't had any problem with city of Duluth or Gwinnett county. Even got a personal phone call from the tax assessor on disputing the tax value of my home. Of course, I also got good responses from Howard Shook when he was my Atlanta council member. Of course, he was powerless to really change much in that council, but he was empathetic at least.

3) I totally disagree with this. I can't think of any area of Atlanta that has a higher concentration of retail than the Perimeter area. Is there such a thing as a store that doesn't have representation here? And it's on MARTA. Second place would have to go to the Lenox/Phipps area, which I guess would be called intown since it is barely within the city limits. What part of town are you thinking of that has a higher concentration of retail, transit, and culture?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Dunwoody,GA
2,239 posts, read 5,815,000 times
Reputation: 3409
Quote:
Originally Posted by arjay57 View Post
I'm by no means down on our wonderful suburbs.

Just to be clear, though, there are plenty of intown neighborhoods where you can have a large lot with big leafy trees, great public schools, spacious homes and neighborhoods where the kids roam like they do anywhere else. You don't have to go OTP to find those things.
True, but you will pay more. Lots more. My friends' home in Decatur that I mentioned in my original post cost upwards of $500K just to buy it. Then all the $$ to fix it up. You can buy a house almost twice that size with a bigger yard for that price in the suburbs.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 12:52 PM
 
Location: Here
418 posts, read 902,611 times
Reputation: 224
Yes, it is expensive to live intown but it's not even the home prices that bother me, it's the fact that for a $750k-$1M home or more, you're paying 10-20k/year in property taxes What a waste and then to send your kids to private school...wow!! On the other hand, I will say that in no major comparable metro area could you live in town and pay that kind of pricing for housing near the midtown/downtown area.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 12:58 PM
 
31,993 posts, read 36,507,354 times
Reputation: 13254
Quote:
Originally Posted by CMMom View Post
True, but you will pay more. Lots more. My friends' home in Decatur that I mentioned in my original post cost upwards of $500K just to buy it. Then all the $$ to fix it up. You can buy a house almost twice that size with a bigger yard for that price in the suburbs.
That depends on the suburb, of course. Many suburbs are just as pricey as intown homes.

I would imagine that most of the people who live in your friend's neighborhood in Decatur feel like they have made a good investment, as do people who have moved to the upscale suburbs.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 01:19 PM
 
31,993 posts, read 36,507,354 times
Reputation: 13254
Quote:
Originally Posted by WannaBeinBoston View Post
Yes, it is expensive to live intown but it's not even the home prices that bother me, it's the fact that for a $750k-$1M home or more, you're paying 10-20k/year in property taxes What a waste and then to send your kids to private school...wow!!
City of Atlanta property taxes are steep, but at least they're not as bad as Decatur or Lithonia.

Yes, for a $1M home in the city, your property tax bill will run $19,535.

But it's not exactly peanuts elsewhere. For a $1M house, you'd pay $18,938 in Stone Mountain, $16,709 in Alpharetta, $14,125 in Woodstock, and $20,612 in Lithonia.

Property Tax Calculator for Metro Atlanta

Fortunately, many of us living in the city of Atlanta are blessed with outstanding elementary schools and middle schools.

When it comes to the upper grades, most of the folks who can comfortably swing million dollar homes are probably not sweating over high school tuition. They may not like it but they can pay it. A lot of families in the pricier suburbs opt for private school as well.

My guess is that as the suburbs urbanize and age, they will soon face the same issues that inner cities have dealt with in years past.

Last edited by arjay57; 06-18-2013 at 01:38 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 01:35 PM
 
31,993 posts, read 36,507,354 times
Reputation: 13254
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
I'd also like to say a word about cookie cutter homes. Hey, guess what? I have a cookie cutter home! I don't know for sure, but I bet there are a few houses in my neighborhood that are probably the same exact design, or maybe reversed, or whatever.
I hate the term "cookie cutter" home.

For one thing it's totally relative. For instance, in the 1920s these massive, cookie-cutter monsters were built willy-nilly on razed, postage stamp lots. Today they're revered as Midtown treasures.

As to the "unique bungalows" that dominate many intown neighborhoods, a lot of them literally came out of the box.

Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 02:30 PM
 
2,167 posts, read 2,813,058 times
Reputation: 1513
Quote:
Originally Posted by arjay57 View Post

Just to be clear, though, there are plenty of intown neighborhoods where you can have a large lot with big leafy trees, great public schools, spacious homes and neighborhoods where the kids roam like they do anywhere else. You don't have to go OTP to find those things.
At what cost? Can you name, say, 3-5 of those "plenty" where a modernized 4 bedroom home could be comfortably purchased by a family with an annual income of $150k?

I guess much of that is determined by where we set the benchmarks for "great public schools" and "large lots". Those things certainly exist in-town, but finding them in a combination that remains affordable by middle class standards is an extremely frustrating proposition. Especially when considering other savings needs (education, retirement) that are greatly outpacing wage increases.

I'm not trying to be a wet blanket, or paint a negative picture of living near the city center (I did, after all, just buy a house there). I just think a bit of perspective is necessary.

Realistically, you've gotta be pretty squarely in the upper-middle class to be shopping those areas. By definition, that's a pretty small percentage of the population. With a $150k annual income you are pretty much a 5%-er. Many times in these discussions, I think we loose sight of just how out of reach these neighborhoods are for a large chunk of people.

Last edited by red92s; 06-18-2013 at 02:55 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2013, 02:36 PM
 
9,008 posts, read 13,962,159 times
Reputation: 7632
Quote:
At what cost? Can you name, say, 3-5 of those "plenty" where a modernized 4 bedroom home could be comfortably purchased by a family with an annual income of $150k?
I'd like to know this, too.

Where in the world, or in Atlanta, does this exist?

The only place I can really think of is around Chastain Park, and I'm guessing those houses are pretty pricey. I also wouldn't consider the schools beyond Sarah Smith to be "great", maybe passable.

I can't even imagine this anywhere else, really at any price point. Maybe West Paces Ferry, or Ansley Park....but I don't exactly see many kids roaming around these areas.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Settings
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Georgia > Atlanta

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:38 AM.

© 2005-2024, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top