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Thread: Tell me about the Buckhead area in Atlanta...

  1. #1
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    Smile Tell me about the Buckhead area in Atlanta...

    DH just had a job interview at the humongous hospital there and liked it quite a bit. i've only ever been to the airport!
    if he took a job there we would have to live in the Buckhead area so he could be near the hospital.
    what i want to know: nice neighborhoods with homes around 3500 sq feet or so? parks or walking trails? farmers markets? are the schools good? any good private or single sex schools?(all girl and all boy?) good catholic churches? moms groups?
    how is the library system? is there a rec dept? the rec depts here are wonderful as are the county parks and the libraries.
    are there good yoga studios? are babysitters/nannies hard to find?
    and anything else you think might be useful.
    oh and where NOT to live would be useful as well!
    TIA angela
    angela - mom of abby age 2, miles born 4-18-05;physician; yoga enthusiast; amateur cook

  2. #2
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    if he took a job there we would have to live in the Buckhead area so he could be near the hospital.
    You may already have looked at real estate (and not been surprised by it), but living near Buckhead is crazy expensive. Atlanta in general is expensive, but it gets less so the further away you are from that area.

    Buckhead is a cool area of Atlanta, though - it would be fun to live near it.

  3. #3
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    Buckhead has just about everything. Elton John lives in Buckhead ... I would not be looking IN Buckhead unless I had a LOT of money. That term covers a pretty wide area, and some are more expensive than others. Still, it's THE in-town neighborhood for those with bucks, and it's highly developed as well.

    Which hospital? Northside? There are plenty of in-town, attractive, amenity-filled neighborhoods which would not be difficult commutes but which would not command quite the premium that Buckhead does.

  4. #4
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    living in charleston as you prob know nothing about expensive out of control real estate prices surprises me anymore
    i just never thought of myself as a georgian (or atlantan?)
    angela - mom of abby age 2, miles born 4-18-05;physician; yoga enthusiast; amateur cook

  5. #5
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    living in charleston as you prob know nothing about expensive out of control real estate prices surprises me anymore
    Ha! Well that's certainly true about Charleston. A friend of mine (who lives in Charleston and knows a lot about Charleston real estate) was talking to a new collegue who was moving to Charleston from Memphis - the new collegue was complaining that he couldn't find anything affordable on the peninsula. My friend intially said, oh - I can find something for you. But, there was nothing for sale in downtown Charleston less than $250,000 except for one 450 square foot house. Not a typo - it was a former freeman's cottage with three rooms (in not the nicest area either and they still wanted $160K for it).

    That was a tangent, though. I like Atlanta, but I think it intially would be a hard transition to live there after living in a smaller city like Charleston. The traffic in Atlanta is prety bad. However, Atlanta has a lot to offer in terms of shopping, cultural events, etc.

  6. #6
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    That is my area of town, so feel free to ask any questions. I'm assuming your husband is looking at Piedmont Hospital? If it is Northside or St. Josephs than you really want to be looking more at Sandy Springs. Real estate is incredibly expensive in town -- moreso if you want to live in a good public school district. There are three "top" public (Atlanta Public School system) elementary schools -- Warren T. Jackson, Morris Brandon and Sarah Smith and you pay a real premium to live in any of these districts, and most people that live in those districts choose to use the public elementary schools then go on to the top private schools for middle school and high school. There are a couple of other public schools that are starting to turn around but aren't really at the level of those three. There are several excellent private schools as well -- Christ the King is the big Catholic school if you are interested in that and also Holy Spirit. I can give you lots of other school info if you want (my kids go to one of the public schools I mentioned). There are lots of nice older neighborhoods, houses do tend to be a bit smaller but have lots of charm and it is very "neighborhoody", and there are plenty of newer in-fill type developments where they have torn down older homes to build new ones. You get a larger house this way but a much smaller lot. Property taxes are very high, as are water bills as there is a huge sewer problem here that is being repaired under court order, so you need to consider that when thinking about costs. There are several nice parks --wherever you live there should be one nearby. It is a little hard to suggest specific neighborhoods without knowing whether you want to be able to use public schools, want an older or newer house, price range, etc., but if you felt comfortable pm'ing me some or all of that information I would be happy to give you more. We love living in Atlanta -- I am from a very small town, and DH is from Nashville (originally from Charleston, though) and with both think that it is so neighborhood-oriented that even though it has a lot of big-city amenities it also has a lot of the small-town things too (I always run into people I know at the grocery store, etc.). The public libraries are quite good and have nice children's programs. There isn't much of a parks and rec department that I am aware of but there are plenty of private programs providing every kind of children's and family activity you could want. There is a very nice and new YMCA in Buckhead too. Nannies (like anywhere) are best found through word of mouth but there are some good referral agencies too. If you want preschool that can be a bit tricky as you have to apply usually in October to get a spot (and it can still be difficult to get in).
    Trying to see if I answered all of your questions -- there are some excellent yoga studios -- I like the Pierce Program which is in Virginia Highlands (about 10 minutes away).

    SOrry for going on so long but it sounds like you are looking right in my area -- would love to help however I can as I remember how difficult it was moving.

    Claire

  7. #7
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    claire i will pm you when i have a sec this weekend - i think it is northside hospital - whichever one has 18000 deliveries a year. (my little hospital has 1200 so i can't even imagine 18000!) thanks! my dh mentioned sandy springs i think.
    angela - mom of abby age 2, miles born 4-18-05;physician; yoga enthusiast; amateur cook

  8. #8
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    Angela, definitely PM me. I live closer to Piedmont Hospital which is big but not huge, but if it is 18000 deliveries a year then it is definitely Northside -- I think they deliver more babies there than almost anywhere else. Sandy Springs is a great area and gives you the flexibility to be out of the really expensive areas and still "in-town" or you can bite the bullet on housing costs and take advantage of the excellent public elementary schools in Buckhead. It is still quite close to me and I am quite familiar with the area so hopefully can be of some help. Take my kids to the pediatrician right next door!

    Claire

  9. #9
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    Northside Hospital is where nearly all Atlanta babies are born. I've been operated on in their Women's Center, and it's fantastic. Northside is bordered by St. Joseph's (Catholic) hospital, famous for its cardiology department, and the former Scottish Rite Children's Hospital, now Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

    As mentioned previously the term "Buckhead" encompasses a considerable area, even larger when taking into account the rather broad definition employed by real estate agents. The Buckhead area is in Fulton County; other nearby neighborhoods (Dunwoody and my home of Brookhaven) are in Dekalb. Dekalb County has markedly lower property taxes than Fulton, and anything inside the City of Atlanta will have ghastly water & sewer bills. Sandy Springs is now splitting off of Fulton County and will become its own city. Taxation and services (police, sanitation, etc.) are as yet undetermined.

    One thing that has gone unmentioned this far is the crime problem in the "entertainment district" of Buckhead. There is a popular area on Peachtree Street, Bolling Way, Pharr Road, and parts of East Paces Ferry that has more bars than you can imagine. Over the past few years it has also been the scene of a considerable amount of property and violent crime. It's possible to live in other parts of Buckhead and be far enough away from the bar area to be safe.

    The buzzwords for the Northside Hospital area include: Nancy Creek (a very nice neighborhood, quite close to Marist, the big Catholic school), Perimeter Mall, Mount Vernon, Ashford-Dunwoody, and Glen Ridge.

    Feel free to PM me if you have any questions! You may also want to check in on the Atlanta paper, www.ajc.com.
    "Why should you go to jail for a crime someone else noticed?" - attorney Bob Loblaw, Arrested Development

    "Spend time with your kids so we don't have to" - Florida Dept. of Juvenile Justice bumper sticker

    www.nostinkycheese.blogspot.com

  10. #10
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    Keep in mind that the WORST traffic in Atlanta by far -- which is saying a lot -- is in that north corridor above Buckhead. I'm from Atlanta originally, most of my family still lives there, and we're southsiders. I know people who would almost rather saw off a finger than try to drive in that part of town. I love Atlanta, but if I were to move back there is no way I'd live up there. :P

  11. #11
    Angela,

    I live within 15 minutes of Northside Hospital and had both of my children there. I had a great experience with both of my births there. It's a great hospital for having a baby IMO.

    I think Dunwoody or Sandy Springs would be as close or closer than Buckhead. Dunwoody is in Dekalb Co and there are two elementary schools which are very, very good (Austin & Vanderlyn). Sandy Springs is in Fulton, but as stefania4 mentioned it has broken away to become a city. The transition should be implemented by December 1.

    In Dunwoody/Sandy Springs, you can buy what is called a 5, 4 & a door (5 windows on top floor, 4 on main level and front door) for about $400 - $500 k. Generally lot size is about a 1/2 acre. Certainly you can spend a lot more on new construction which is primarily cluster homes and they are generally in the $800+ range.

    Regarding Preschools, DS1 attends preschool at a church based program. To get in registration is in Jan, but you have to be a church member to be elgible for early registration. There are a lot of preschools ran by churches here. Some are more difficult to get into than others.

    Marist is the primary Catholic high school that people I know send their kids too. It's very competitive from a sports and academic standpoint. I know several people who send their young children to Holy Spirit or Our Lady of Assumption.

    Moms Groups. The area I live in is really a bunch of young families. The initial residents of this area are downsizing their homes and young families are buying them. I have a ton of young mom friends who I have made through my church, breastfeeding group, and the swim/tennis club.

    Nannies/babysitters. I have found a couple of great ones through my church nursery. I think most people find nannies through word of mouth although there are several agencies you can use.

    Really from the Northside Hospital area you can find anything you are looking for within a short drive. Traffic can be difficult so really think about where you are working before you buy your house unless you want to spend a lot of time on the highway. My DH has a 20 minute commute to work that is a counter commute. Going the opposite direction it would be 45 minutes.

    There are some great parks nearby. Whole Foods/Harry's. Several Yoga places. Terrific Food. I rarely have to go further than 15 minutes (without traffic) from where I live to find anything I'm looking for.

    Feel free to PM me if you have any more questions.

    Cheryl

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by funniegrrl
    Keep in mind that the WORST traffic in Atlanta by far -- which is saying a lot -- is in that north corridor above Buckhead. I'm from Atlanta originally, most of my family still lives there, and we're southsiders. I know people who would almost rather saw off a finger than try to drive in that part of town. I love Atlanta, but if I were to move back there is no way I'd live up there. :P
    Amen to that. It's known as "the 400 corridor" and it's absolutely awful in both directions, all times of day. If you find something that's "right off of Abernathy" turn heel and run - the traffic is ungodly.
    "Why should you go to jail for a crime someone else noticed?" - attorney Bob Loblaw, Arrested Development

    "Spend time with your kids so we don't have to" - Florida Dept. of Juvenile Justice bumper sticker

    www.nostinkycheese.blogspot.com

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by stefania4
    Amen to that. It's known as "the 400 corridor" and it's absolutely awful in both directions, all times of day. If you find something that's "right off of Abernathy" turn heel and run - the traffic is ungodly.
    I think the traffic on the Northside isn't quite as bad if you live around there, as you tend to know the back ways around. I certainly try to avoid the perimeter (I285) or any of the major surface streets in the area at rush hour, but I drive a lot with 2 kids and a DH who doesn't drive at all (so I have to take him to work, any business meetings, and frequent dr appointments which are often in the Northside Hospital area) and I don't feel like I spend an ungodly amount of time sitting in traffic -- I have learned to plan ahead, check for delays before leaving, and learn all the alternate routes in case I need them. Maybe it is all a matter of perspective, as to me it is inconceivable to live in the suburbs and drive to downtown everyday. I do think, though, that when you are looking at houses you want to think about how you would get to work, schools, the grocery, etc. without having to always go on the major streets.

    Austin and Vanderlyn are excellent schools. For comparable houses in the Sarah Smith or Jackson districts (which are also not too far from Northside, but maybe a little farther -- both encompass part of the Chastain park area which is lovely) you would probably be looking a closer to $800,000 - $1 million, and that would be for an older house which would probably be in fairly good condition but could still benefit from a little updating.

    One thing about Atlanta -- everybody definitely has strong opinions about where it it is "best" to live (in-town or suburbs, midtown or buckhead, northside or southside, etc.). I think the nice thing is that there is something for just about everyone so you will find something that suits your needs no matter what they are.

    Claire

  14. #14
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    If your husband is at Northside, then Sandy Springs or Dunwoody would be good. The public schools are all good in that area. I live in Dekalb County - Tucker, Northlake area, in the Lakeside High School school district (one of the best in the state & actually in the country). Great elementary schools, too. It's not too far from Northside - you'd have to get on 285 for a bit (or could take back roads). The Lakeside High area is great - close to Emory University, close to all major interstates, close to Buckhead, Virginia Highlands (awesome, trendy area), Midtown & Dunwoody. Very central location. If you have a choice between Fulton County and Dekalb County, property taxes are cheaper in Dekalb and the schools on the North side are all very good. I would NOT live anywhere that I had to get on 400 to get to work (you couldn't pay me enough). Stay away from Cobb County, Gwinnett County, & Forsyth County. There's lots of nice, newer homes there, but traffic would be horrendous to get to Northside. Traffic in Atlanta is horrible, so I would definitely try to live as close to his work as possible. Feel free to PM me. I love Atlanta, but am definitely aware of the pros & cons of different areas (all IMHO, of course!).

  15. #15
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    my husband heard about the lower taxes in dekalb co so he is interested in that area. dunwoody sounds good as does this area around lakeside high? i would be looking for a house around 3500 sq feet; i don't care so much if it is new or older but i am NOT good at home repairs and neither is my husband.
    here in charleston most of the newer subdivisions have pools etc and i would be interested in a place like that.
    my dream house would have a mil suite or guesthouse that my inlaws could use oh and an awesome kitchen! and a whirlpool tub in the master bath!
    i guess i should poking around for listings on the inernet to get an idea.
    fwiw i also like areas where all the trees are older and not new subdivisions where they have all been taken down.
    i haven't had time to pm anyone yet but when i have time to think of what i want to ask i will prob pm all y'all atlantans!thanks so much for the info!
    angela - mom of abby age 2, miles born 4-18-05;physician; yoga enthusiast; amateur cook

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by angelamaria
    fwiw i also like areas where all the trees are older and not new subdivisions where they have all been taken down.
    You'll want to check out Dunwoody then. There are some lovely houses in Dunwoody albeit very expensive.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by angelamaria
    fwiw i also like areas where all the trees are older and not new subdivisions where they have all been taken down.
    I think most of the areas we are talking about have a lot of trees. If you go further out up 400, 75 or 85 you tend to get into the areas where they have just totally wiped out everything to put in brand new subdivisions with no trees. Of course, with as many thunderstorms as we have been having lately I have been hating all the trees as I feel like I am spending every day picking up branches from the yard, and in-town all the power lines are above ground so we lose power a fair amount.

    Claire

  18. #18
    I am in the Northlake area and I do love it here. It's very convenient to downtown, midtown & Buckhead. And it's not as congested (traffic wise) as some other intown areas. Although it has gotten worse over the past several years. I personally wouldn't call it convenient to Northside Hospital. It should be, from a distance perspective, but the traffice between here and there is intense!!! I worked over in that general area on a temporary assignment a while ago and that daily drive was miserable. I always went on back roads because I really detest that top end of 285, but that didn't make it much easier. I would definately look for something in the Dunwoody area if I were going to be working at Northside. I always tell people that the key to living in Atlanta is that you must live close to where you work. Good luck. Atlanta really is a fun place to live. You just have to learn to deal with the traffic. Of course, I love Charleston too. I would be sad to leave there. I always am when I visit.

  19. #19

    Nanny Agency

    I used to be a Nanny and now I work for the agency. PM if you would like more info! We primarily work with college educated Nannies...most are former teachers or have education backgrounds! I actually used to Nanny about 5 minutes from Northside so I'm familiar with that area! Also, our ped is over there and we love her..it's North Atlanta Pediatrics. There are some great parks over in that area...Blackburn, Chastain, a really good one on Glenridge Dr. but the name has slipped my mind.

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