Why I Love Living in Atlanta
The Weather - You can throw away those snow shovels! Our average high temperature in January is 52 degrees, and in February 54 degrees. We may get an inch of snow which turns into a day off of school and work for most people. The magic really starts around the middle to end of March when the temps starts to warm up and you can use the term "Spring is in the air" for several months.
Cost of Housing - There are multiple neighborhoods, housing styles and price ranges with Zillow stating the median house price in Metro Atlanta is $182,700. The common thread amongst all areas in Georgia is that the property taxes tend to be a heck of a lot less than what is paid in Northern states. I left Northern New Jersey and property taxes of $14,200 a year behind and traded it in for a bigger and newer home in a swim/tennis community. My property taxes are now $3,600 a year and believe it or not, many here still consider that too high! As a rule of thumb, home prices and property taxes tend to be lower the farther outside of the city of Atlanta you get.
Opportunities - Commerce in Metro Atlanta is growing at a furious rate. We are already home to some of the biggest companies in the world such as Home Depot, UPS, Porsche, Mercedes Benz and many more. Just recently, we're being considered as one of the top 3 locations for Amazon's new HQ2. In addition, we are now referred to as "Hollywood South" with more than $9.5 billion being generated from the film industry with big hits being filmed here such as the Walking Dead, Stranger Things and the Marvel franchises just to name a few. And let's not forget about technology. Atlanta was named by Forbes magazine as one of the top 5 Tech meccas in the United States with a particular mention to the city of Alpharetta which is considered the "Technology City of the South" because of the 600+ IT companies calling it home.
Thriving Communities - One thing that becomes apparent to many of my clients who have relocated here is the difference in how our cities and communities are operated. Many places such as Alpharetta, Suwanee, Roswell, Duluth and Woodstock have transformed their downtown areas into community playgrounds where festivals and free concerts are provided to residents throughout the year. There is never a weekend where one has to wonder what to do - the biggest problem is usually deciding on what to choose!
Southern Hospitality - Ok, so many of you may be thinking that the term "Southern Hospitality" is a bit hokey. Well, I can tell you first hand that it isn't. Without a doubt, people are just generally more pleasant here and for someone like me who grew up in an area where "Southern Hospitality" didn't exist, it actually starts to rub off on you and you find yourself being friendlier. It's nice not having to be on guard all of the time.
Outdoor Adventure - Do you like hiking in the mountains and discovering waterfalls? How about playing in clean lakes where you can boat, jetski or just lay on the beach all day enjoying that beautiful weather I already told you about? Well, Georgia has plenty of activities like this to offer. You might say these activities don't replace the ocean beaches many of us grew up with in the Northeast and you're right, they don't. But approximately 4 hours East of us are the fabulous beaches of South Carolina and 5 hours South of us are the bright blue, warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico in Florida. Having frequented both of these beach areas many times while living here, I haven't found myself missing the Jersey Shore, Long Island or the beaches of DelMarVa at all.
Our Airport - Not very exciting to discuss but great to have when you find yourself wanting to take that trip and you only need to drive 40 minutes or hop onto MARTA which takes you directly into the airport. We are consistently labled as the busiest airport in the U.S. and that is because of the amount of flights we have flying in domestically and internationally. This is another reason why so many companies have considered us an ideal location to do business from.
Professional and College Sports - We have the good fortune of having a professional baseball team (Atlanta Braves), football team (Atlanta Falcons) and soccer team (Atlanta United). Most recently, these teams and their fans have the added benefit of experiencing them play in the newest and most state of the art stadiums in the U.S. Let's not forget mentioning what is the most important sport for many Southerners and that's college football - as of this writing, the Georgia Bulldogs are currently ranked #1 in the SEC. Go Dawgs! We also enjoy events such as the TOUR Championship at East Lake Golf Club, the Masters Tournament in Augusta, the Petit Lemans at Road Atlanta and the BBT Atlanta Open tennis tournament held in Midtown Atlanta.
The Food Scene - My favorite topic and the one I hear much about from Northerners who have relocated to Atlanta. Yes, it is harder to find a good bagel, authentic New York pizza and a great bakery in Metro Atlanta. The key word is harder, not impossible. In fact, I've found places just as good if not better than some of the establishments I went to in New Jeresy. But, here's the question I always ask when this topic comes up - were you really going to make your decision to move based on pizza and bagels? Besides the great barbecue, sweet tea and biscuits that can be found throughout Georgia, Metro Atlanta has one of the best restaurant and bar scenes in the country. Whether you're looking for authentic Vietnamese food on Buford Highway, high end steaks and seafood in Buckhead or a craft cocktail in Downtown Decatur, Metro Atlanta leaves little to be desired when it comes to eating out.