A recent article in Curbed describes describes 30327 as "the Most Expensive, Exclusive Zip Code of Atlanta." The story includes the typical descriptions, "Beverly Hills of the South," "Georgia's most expensive zip code" and factoids such as it being the second wealthiest zip code in the South behind Palm Beach's 33480.
Yes, it's true when Forbes reports the median home price in 30327 is about 1.5M, but is it really "exclusive?"
- excluding or not admitting other things
- restricted to the person group or area concerned
- catering or available to only a few, select people; high class and expensive
The truth is, unlike other other high-priced areas around the country; 30327 actually has affordable housing options, too. For example, right now there are 2-bedroom, 2-bath condos listed for sale from $135,000. So, for a very reasonable price, one can live in the same "exclusive" zip code as multi-millionaires, and have access to the same highly sought-after public schools in Buckhead. Many of these affordable condos are in Cross Creek, which is a gated community complete with with an 18-hole golf course, three swimming pools and tennis courts. It also has a clubhouse with a health club, restaurant and lounge with both indoor and covered outdoor deck seating, which overlooks the...
As if you needed another reason to move from the 'burbs to Intown Atlanta, you can add to the list growing evidence that your commute is killing you. If you live in the suburbs of Atlanta and work in the city, you know how miserable the commute can be. But are you fully aware of the very real effects of that commute on your overall health and happiness? Long commutes can contribute to obesity, neck pain, stress, insomnia, even loneliness and divorce. If you don't have time to read the full article, this infographic sums it up nicely:
For more interesting reading, visit the source of the infographic, which discusses how some government housing policies can be a major contributor to wealth inequality.
What price did that listing end up selling for? Now you can find out on IntownElite.com
Ever wonder what that house down the street sold for? You know what the list (asking) price was when it went under contract, but what was the final sale number? Previously, our local MLSs, who provide the listings on our site, wouldn't allow agents or brokers to display sold listings or their prices. There were some national portal sites which would show sold prices, but they got their data from public records, which were several months behind, and had some issues with accuracy.
That all changed with a recent decision by the National Association of REALTORs®. NAR changed their IDX policy to recommend that MLS's make sold listings and their prices available for agents and brokers to display on their websites. (IDX, or Internet Data eXchange, is the system by which agents and brokers share their listings on each others websites.) Although neither of our local MLSs are governed by the NAR, they both have decided to allow sold listings to be displayed on our websites for properties that have sold within the last 3 years. GAMLS was the first to go forward with this, and their sold listings can already be seen on our site. FMLS followed along later, and those sold listings should be available shortly.
Since our data comes directly from the MLS you can be assured that it will be both timely and accurate. MLS rules require agents update the system within 3 days of closing, so the sale price will be available on our site quickly, sometimes even the day of closing. Also, all of the listing photos remain available, so you can get an idea of the condition of the property. This is yet another reason why our site is superiorto the national portals, which typically...
Could it be that, along with the increasingly popular trend of living "intown," now sprawl in Atlanta has ended? That's the conclusion of a report from the School of Business at George Washington University. Report author Christopher Leinberger, a professor of urban real estate and chair of the Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis at George Washington University told USA Today, "Atlanta has reached peak sprawl. This is the end of that trend."
Walkable intown communities are preferred by young professionals and by high-tech businesses over automobile-dependent suburban neighborhoods. As we've mentioned previously, neighborhoods near downtown Atlanta have seen a 61 percent surge in young professional residents who have at least a four-year degree since 2000. These kind of communities, which comprise less than 1% of the Atlanta region's land area, accounted for 60% of the growth in income-generating real estate (offices, retail spaces, rental apartments and hotels) over the past four years, Leinberger said. This trend has steadily and rapidly increased in each of the last three real estate market cycles. Further, real estate products in established walkable intown communities command rents that are 112% higher than those in drivable suburban areas.
Of course, this doesn't mean that all of the sprawl that has occurred over the last several decades will somehow magically vanish. A drive from Lake Lanier to the airport during a Friday-500 rush-hour will remain an experience you'll want to avoid at all costs, if you wish to retain your sanity. So that won't change,...
When speaking to people who live OTP, I often find that their perception of living intown is markedly different than the reality that I experience every day. Three of the most common misperceptions I hear about are the crime, traffic and schools - they're all worse than the 'burbs, right? Well, I've covered the topic of schools before, so in this article I'll tackle crime, and we'll save traffic for a later article. Often times people who grew up in the metro Atlanta area have their opinions forged over decades past. There is a tendency, as we get older, to have nostalgia for the "good ol' days" of our youth, and think that everything is going downhill now. However, what many may not realize is that, in reality, things have dramatically improved over the last couple of decades.
Let's speak for a moment on a macro scale. Because of the 24-hour news cycle and the tendency to sensationalize bad news, many people think we are living in an era of declining morals and increasing violence and crime. In actuality, that's not the case. Stephen Pinker makes the case in his book, "The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined," that we may be living in the most peaceful moment in our species' existence. You might say, "Interesting book, but I bet the statistics say otherwise." Actually, no, statistics confirm that ...
If you're involved in the Atlanta residential real estate market in any capacity, buyer, seller, agent or other, you've noticed that something has changed over the last year. The market has shifted significantly. Homes are selling fast, and I mean crazy-fast. What's "crazy-fast?" Days. Sometimes just one day. Sometimes not even a day. Often with multiple offers. I've experienced faster than expected sales recently on both sides of the transaction, on my own listings and when representing buyers. And from speaking with other agents around time, I'm not alone. "Sure," you might say, "that's anecdotal evidence, but is it really true for the Atlanta market as a whole?" I looked at the numbers and here's what I found.
I checked the FMLS records over the last 3 years to see how many homes sold each year in various days-on-market brackets. For the purposes of this blog post, I'm just using single-family homes sold in the city of Atlanta. Below are the numbers:
Homes sold in 14 days or less in Atlanta:
Homes sold in 7 days or less in Atlanta:
Homes sold in 3 days or less in Atlanta:
Homes sold in 1 day or less in Atlanta:
Atlanta has a unique feel compared to similar sized cities owing much to its ample tree canopy and collection of parks. It has earned the nickname of "the city in the forest" based on the fact that its tree coverage is the highest of all major US cities. Atlanta also has 343 parks, gardens, nature preserves and public greenspaces, totaling 3,622 acres. This blog post is the first in a series that will profile the various parks and greenspaces around Intown Atlanta and Buckhead. Today's featured space is Tanyard Creek Park
Tanyard Creek Park is located in the southern portion of Buckhead, between the neighborhoods of Collier Hills and Ardmore Park. Tanyard Creek Park has a little bit of something for everyone. There is a paved path that runs the length of the park from north to south, which is part of the Atlanta Beltline project. This path is stroller-friendly and suitable for running and biking as well. On the east side of this path is a huge, open grassy area. Here you'll often see groups of people playing frisbee or tossing a football around. This area has become sort of an unofficial off-leash dog park, though technically Atlanta's leash law applies, so use your discretion. On the west side of the path is a large playground area with swings, slides and other play equipment. The northern end of the path runs up to southern extremity of Bobby Jones...
As mentioned in a previous blog post, Atlanta has some fine public schools. But, like most other cities, there are also those that are underperforming. This has a predictable effect on people's behavior, both in terms of real estate as well as the attendance of the schools. Home buyers are attracted to the Intown Atlanta and Buckhead neighborhoods that have the best schools in Atlanta. This bolsters home values in those neighborhoods, but also leads to overcrowding in those schools. This overcrowding is exacerbated by the 61% surge of young professionals living in Intown Atlanta. In decades past, most young couples would move to the 'burbs when they settled down. Now many of them are staying intown. Meanwhile, other schools end up under capacity. Simple solution; just move kids from the overcrowded schools to those that are under capacity, right? Not so fast.
A portion of one of the proposed options The Atlanta Public Schools district is in the early stages of studying how to remedy this situation. The demographers have come up with 4 options on...
Now that we have a kid on the way, we sometimes hear some of our our suburban friends say, "Well, now you have to move OTP!" We actually had one friend-of-a-friend stridently exclaim, "You can't raise kids in the city!" (Gasp!) Oh really? Why's that? Of course everyone has their biases, but putting those aside, the subject that often seems to come up is schools. Some of the more "open minded" suburbanites would concede that it might be OK to raise kids in the city, but one would have to send their kids to private school. But is this true? Are there really no good public schools in the city of Atlanta?
The recent, well-publicized APS cheating scandal did much damage to the image of Atlanta Public Schools. But let's not throw out the proverbial baby with the bathwater. There are still several excellent public schools in Atlanta. For the most part, the schools which were implicated in cheating to improve their test scores, still had poor test scores overall! By contrast, the highly-rated schools that were not involved in the cheating scandal continue to post high test scores. Below is a list if highly-rated public schools inside Atlanta's perimeter. Click on the school name for info & test scores. To see school ratings and search homes by school district / attendance zone, vist our Atlanta School Guide.
In the Atlanta Public School district:
Of course we all know that neighborhoods are important for many reasons; friendly neighbors, community support, etc. And we all know there are many reasons to choose a particular neighborhood; location, style, affordability, etc. However, from the perspective of your wallet, there's another important benefit the right neighborhood can provide; price stability.
A recent study by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University showed that higher-priced homes are less susceptible to bubbles than are lower-priced homes. Higher-priced homes don't appreciate as quickly in a run-up, but neither do they fall as quickly in a downturn. According to analysis of Standand & Poor's / Case-Shiller home price data, prices of lower end homes in Atlanta fell by nearly 50% from the 2007 peak to December 2010. The drop for higher-end homes fell by less than half that percentage. Of course, this is a macro look at the entire Atlanta metro area, in which "low tier" homes were qualified as those under about $122k and "high tier" homes were those above approximately $221k. You might extrapolate from this data that even higher-tier homes in desirable neighborhoods may have lost even less value since the 2007 peak. You'd be right. A quick check of the sought-after Intown Atlanta neighborhood of Morningside shows an average sale price of $668,952 in 2007. The average sale price in 2010 was $582,339, a 12.9% decrease from the peak. That's certainly a lot better than the national average. Checking the Buckhead neighborhood of ...
In our experience selling homes, we often find that a person's perception of their home's value often differs from the reality of the marketplace. There are number of reasons for this, from psychological factors to simple misconceptions about market value. In this article we will discuss these issues as well as how best to determine an accurate selling price.
Home Seller's Top 7 Pricing Mistakes:
1.) Not being objective
One of the first explanations of the disconnect between real and perceived value is simply human nature. Outside of family, friends and pets, our home is quite possibly the most difficult thing in our lives to be objective about. We likely have more emotional connection to our home than only other inanimate object. Sure, some guys might claim it would be their car, truck, motorcycle, boat or flat-screen HDTV. But when you factor in the monetary investment that the home represents, that usually bumps the home into the number one position in importance. When looking at our own homes we tend to play up the positives and overlook the negatives. When looking at other people's homes, whether they be recently sold comparables, competing homes on the market, or homes one is considering purchasing, we tend to do the opposite. The goal is to try to view your home through the eyes of a prospective buyer. This is very difficult to do, so it's best to just look at the cold hard facts, i.e. the numbers. But what numbers? Where do you get them? How are they derived? We'll get more into that later.
2.) Depending on online home valuations
Previously we wrote about online home valuations, and how misleading they can be. They can be fun to play with, but they're simply not accurate. They can be off 25-30% or more, easily skewing the real value by hundreds of thousands of dollars in some cases. They're brain-dead number-crunching computers that don't know the Intown Atlanta market. You can read the full content...
We've received a number of complements on our recent website makeover, and we're flattered to hear that it's been so well received. A number of you have asked about the stylized skyline outline in the website header, and whether it really represents Atlanta. It does, in fact, and it was inspired by the photo below. This spawned questions about this building and that, which got us thinking - maybe we should put together a guide to the buildings of the Atlanta skyline. So here goes!
New to Atlanta? Don't worry...it seems like almost everyone in Atlanta is from somewhere else! This diversity of backgrounds is one of the things that makes Atlanta great. If you don't want everyone to know you're new in town, you may want to familiarize yourself with some of the terms below.
Brookwood Split: Where I-75 and I-85 split heading northbound, in the vicinity of the neighborhoods of Brookwood and Brookwood Hills, forming the south boundary of Buckhead.
Cobb Cloverleaf: Intersection of I-75 and I-285 on the northwest side of town, in Cobb County.
Downtown Connector: The section of highway where I-75 and I-85 join as one and pass through downtown. Often shortened to simply, "The Connector."
East Freeway: Another name for I-20 from downtown through the east side of metro Atlanta.
Financial Center Tunnel: Section of Georgia 400 that passes under the Atlanta Financial Center, in Buckhead.
Freedom Parkway: Parkway running from the Downtown Connector to Ponce de Leon Avenue.
Friday 500: A reference to Friday's worse-than-usual evening rush hour which seems resemble a NASCAR race.
Grady Curve: Giant curve in the Downtown Connector, near Grady Hospital, tends to slow traffic when heavy.
Inner Loop: The inside lanes of...
There are more festivals in Intown Atlanta this weekend. Today and tomorrow is the Sweet Auburn Springfest celebrating this historic district in Downtown Atlanta. In the 1940s, '50s and '60s, successful African-American-owned businesses and entertainment venues thrived on Auburn Avenue.
The festival is produced to support the business development, branding and marketing of the district. Major projects are envisioned, including transforming the Auburn Avenue viaduct into an outdoor international music café and arts and craft market, and establishing Auburn Avenue as the Beale Street / Bourbon Street / Church Street Station of Atlanta.
Festival attendees can enjoy several attractions including an Artist Market, Business and Technology Expo, a Health and Fitness Fair, an Active Senior's Pavilion, Sports Carnival, a Literary Marketplace, Just For Women’s EXPO and the Kids Fantastic Fun Zone. Live music performances will be held on eight different stages.
Another celebration of a different historic district is the Atlanta West Fest, in the West End. Attractions include a benefit concert at the Wren's Nest, a festival in Gordon-White park, and West Fest's first annual dog parade. For those of us with real estate on our minds, there is a tour of 10 historic homes, many of which are over 100 years old.
Tonight and tomorrow night are the last nights to catch Georgia Shakespeare's popular "Shake at the Lake". "A Midsummer Night's Dream" will be presented overlooking Lake Clara Meer in Piedmont Park in Midtown.
The performance is free, but you'll need tickets (well, actually wristbands). Around 900 wristbandswill...
Today is Earth Day, which seems like a fitting day to discuss ways to "be Green". Well, one of the simplest ways to do this is to live closer to the core of a city. Yes, living Intown is Green, in several ways.
The most obvious reason is that urban sprawl leads to long daily commutes, which leads to more automobile exhaust. Even though we make a living by putting people in our cars to show them properties for sale, our suburban friends are shocked out how few miles we put on our cars compared to theirs. The fact is, the overwhelming majority of our trips are well within a 5-mile radius of home.
Though you might think that a green oasis should be just that, lush with greenery, Manhattan may be one of the greenest places in the country, as ironic as that may sound. The carbon footprint of the average Manhattanite is thirty percent smaller than that of the average American. With nearly two-thirds of the population walking, biking or riding mass transit to work, the rate of car ownership in Manhattan is the lowest in the country.
Of course, with Atlanta's limited mass transit system, it's hard to compare us with New York City. However, if you live and work in Intown Atlanta you'll use your car less without even thinking about it. We can walk to grocery stores and restaurants from our home. Even if we decided to drive everywhere we went, everything is so close and convenient that we drive far fewer miles than our friends who live in the suburbs.
Also, large apartment or condo buildings are more efficient to heat and cool than single-family homes. There are tons of ...
Well, what seemed like Atlanta's worst winter in over 20 years is over, and spring has finally sprung. That means, among other things, that spring festivals are just around the corner in many Intown Atlanta neighborhoods. The first four major events kick off this weekend.
The biggest event this weekend is the popular Atlanta Dogwood Festival. Held at Piedmont Park in Midtown Atlanta, this annual celebration of the blooming of the Dogwood trees has been a perennial favorite in Atlanta for over 70 years. In the 1970s an art show was introduced to the festival, and the juried Fine Art Market has played a big part in the festival ever since. The 1980s saw the tradition of live music begin at the Dogwood Festival, and this year is no exception with well over a dozen acts playing this weekend.
Another fun even this weekend is the 6th annual Sweetwater 420 Festival, a two-day music and arts festival. It's free to attend and enjoy live music and activities, and $5 gets you a wrist band that allows you to buy all the wine and Sweetwater beer you can "responsibly enjoy." A portion of the proceeds go to back to the Candler Park neighborhood which hosts the event. A big part of the event is "Planet 420", which sponsors local, regional and national non-profits and environmental organizations. Exhibits and forums will be presented including diesel to grease demonstrations, sustainable living...
This month's Buckhead neighborhood profile is Brookwood Hills. Developed in the early 1920s, historic Brookwood Hills is located near the dividing line between Buckhead and Midtown, just north of the "Brookwood Split". Like many of the neighborhoods in this area, The Battle of Peachtree Creek occurred on part of the grounds of Brookwood Hills. The area was later named after the estate of Joseph and Emma Thompson, known as "Brookwood", which was located near where Brookwood Station is today.
The developers hired engineer O.F. Kauffman, who had previously worked with Frederick Law Olmsted in the design of an earlier Intown Atlanta neighborhood; Druid Hills. Olmsted preferred wide, wandering, curvy roads versus the more planned grid layout of some neighborhoods. Olmsted's influence can be seen in other area neighborhoods including Ansley Park, and Morningside in Intown Atlanta as well as Garden Hills and ...
House hunting can be fun and exciting, but it can also be frustrating at times, especially if you're in a strange new city. We love Atlanta, but if you're new to town, you'll have some special annoyances to get used to as you drive around the various Intown Atlanta neighborhoods shopping for homes.
Getting to know Atlanta can be difficult to the newcomer for a number of reasons. One of the first things you'll notice is that it's very common for the street that you're driving on to change names without notice. There are examples of this all over Atlanta; Monroe becomes Boulevard, Briarcliff becomes Moreland and E. Rock Springs becomes N. Decatur.
It can get even more confusing. In Midtown, Spring Street is one-way southbound, but in Downtown, Spring Street is one-way northbound! Don't worry, you don't have people crashing into each other, because Spring Street in Midtown isn't even the same street as Spring Street in Downtown. The southbound Spring Street in Midtown becomes Centennial Olympic Park Drive in Downtown. The northbound Spring Street in Downtown turns into West Peachtree in Midtown.
That segues nicely into our next pet-peeve: multiple roads with variations of the same name. And "Peachtree" is the most common example. According to Wikipedia, there are 71 streets in Atlanta with some version of "Peachtree" in their name. There's Peachtree Street, West Peachtree Street, Peachtree Road, Peachtree Drive, Peachtree Park Drive, Peachtree Circle, Peachtree Lane, Peachtree Walk, Peachtree-Dunwoody Road, and ... we'll, you get the idea. Peachtree is guilty of the previous annoyance...
This month, we're featuring with the Intown Atlanta neighborhood of Morningside/Lenox Park, most commonly referred to as "Mornginside".
Morningside is one of Intown Atlanta's most beautiful neighborhoods with curving tree-lined roads, multiple parks and well-kept homes. The neighborhood is highly-sought after not only for it's beauty and convenient location, but also for it's school district. Most childern in Morningside go to Moringside Elementary, an award-winning public school.
The homes in Morningside are bursting with character, with a various styles represented. The neighborhood boasts one of the city's largest collections of Tudor Revival style homes (along with Druid Hills), as well as numerous Spanish and Mediterranean style homes. In addition to the large number of 1920s to 1940s homes, Morningside also has some stunning Contemporary homes, and mid-century ranches, the latter of which are common in the Johnson Estates and Noble Park areas.
As of this writing, there are currently 86 single-family homes active on the market in Morningside. Prices range from a low in the $200s to a high around $2 million, with an average in the high $700s. Last year 105 single-family homes sold with an average sale price in the $600s. For more detailed information and to see all the homes for sale in the neighborhood,...
Whether it's environmental concerns, an interest in national energy independence, or just personal economic motivations, more and more home buyers are asking about "going green." But in real estate, what does "going green" really mean? There is talk of "green homes," but how do you know which homes are actually green?
There are a number of local and national green building certification programs to help the home buyer make that determination, including EarthCraft House, Energy Star Homes, LEED for Homes and NAHB National Green Building Program. For more information, our Atlanta Green real estate page gives an overview of each of these green building programs. But how does one put all this information to work in their home search? Well, on most home search web sites, you're out of luck. But here at Intown Elite, our property search engine is actually empowered to help you to find green homes.
Our Atlanta Green homes page displays all the listings in the Atlanta area that are certified in at least one of the above mentioned green building programs. Living in a walkable location promotes better health, a reduction in greenhouse gas, more transportation options, increased social capital and stronger local businesses. So, if you're in the market for a Green Home in Atlanta , check out our Green Homes Atlanta page, and feel free to contact us if you have any questions, or if you would like to schedule a...