6 Things You Have to Know Before Moving to Atlanta
Have you decided to relocate, and moving to Atlanta sounds like an exciting option? We can confirm that it is. You probably knew that this place is the birthplace of Coca-Cola, but did you know that it’s also the home of the world’s busiest airport? Besides, ATL is the only city in North America that has been burnt to the ground and rebuilt – that’s why the city symbol is a phoenix. The City in a Forest is home to history, culture, and so much more. If you wish to find out what it’s like to live in ATL, check out our guide, and be prepared.
Before relocating to ATL research the city
What’s Living in ATL Like?
Well, it’s like living in the largest and most populous city in Georgia, with a metro area that counts 5.9 million people and a booming economy with a GDP of nearly $400 billion. It covers 135 square miles, and it had once been populated by Cherokee and Creek Indians before becoming a major transportation and commercial hub of the “New South” in the 19th century. In the past century, it evolved into a center of the emerging civil rights movement, led by one of its most famous residents – Dr. Martin Luther King.
As for the geography, it’s in a perfect position – only a three-hour flight from many major American cities and at the intersection of more than a few major US highways. The climate is humid subtropical, with more or less defined seasons. Winters are mild and short, while summers can be hot and wet. Today, there are almost half a million people from various backgrounds in the city proper. More than 50% are Black, or African Americans, about 40% are white, and the rest belong are Asians and other racial groups.
Now that we’ve gone over the basic facts about the Georgia capital, it’s time to move on to the six things you need to know before moving there that might end up as your reasons to move.
#1 Is ATL Expensive? A Short Guide to the Cost of Living
First of all, if you plan on moving to a big city, you should know how much money you need for everyday things. That is why we did a quick research on the cost of living in Atlanta for you. We gathered the info from the Best Places website, which has data on the cost of living in many cities and neighborhoods. It shows that the prices in A-Town are a bit below the US average. As expected, it’s one of the pricier cities in the state of Georgia, but groceries, health care, and goods and services are cheaper than the American average.
Based on data from Numbeo, a website that compares the costs of living, a family of four will spend around $3,500 for a month without rent. Single-person costs are $975 monthly, excluding rent. When comparing A-Town to Charlotte, NC, a city of similar size and importance, only consumer and restaurant prices were higher in Charlotte. The rent, groceries, and local purchasing power are higher in ATL.
But keep in mind that the people of A-Town also have good salaries so that they can afford the somewhat pricey living. There are a lot of job opportunities as well since the job market is pretty developed. We recommend you to try to find a job before moving to another state. The median household income is around $65,000, which is higher than the national median.
Meet Atlanta’s Tax System
Georgia is known as a tax-friendly state. Based on the data from five months ago from the Kiplinger’s tax map, the rate is bound to drop even further, from 6% to 5.5%. There are no inheritance and estate taxes; the average combined rate of sales tax is 7.33%, and the local authorities can tax grocery food sales even though the state doesn’t. Vehicle taxes are 7% at registration, and people who live in Georgia have to pay approximately $1,000 in taxes per $100,000 of assessed home value.
Turn on the calculator and check if you are going to be able to pay for all the expenses waiting for you.
Other highly rated communities in ATL, but with slightly lower grades than the ones above, are:
Where to Rent the Best Apartments?
If you’re looking to rent a spot or move into a smaller home, know that the usual price for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center is around $1,600, and for the same sized place outside of the center, you’ll pay about $600 less. For a bigger residence, let’s say a three-bedroom flat in the center, it will cost you $2,800 and as much as $1k less if you rent outside of the center.
Having the price in mind, the leading and most affordable neighborhoods you can check out for renting would be the following:
According to the residents, ATL is a lovely place to live in
#3 You Can Find Work in Many Companies
Before changing the address, it’s good to know that Atlanta’s metropolitan economy is the tenth-largest in the country and among the top twenty in the world. It has the third-largest concentration of companies from the prestigious Fortune 500 list, with the headquarters of corporations like Coca Cola, UPS, and Home Depot located right there. It’s also where the media houses like CNN – Cable News Network and TBS – Turner Broadcasting System are.
Besides working for the previously mentioned corporate giants, there are many other job opportunities depending on your skills and aspirations – you can find a job at Habitat For Humanity, Delta Air Lines, Chick-fil-A, or with one of the many other employers that are drawn to the city by its well-educated workforce. The average salary here is almost $4,700 after taxes, and the state is proud to call itself the economic engine of Southeast America.
It would be a good idea to start applying for jobs before you come to the Georgia capital
MARTA is Atlanta’s rapid transit rail system that serves and connects almost every part of the city, while, Streetcar operates on a 2.7-mile route from the convention and entertainment district to the Sweet Auburn area.
The so-called City in a Forest is also highly walkable and you can take a stroll or ride a bike anywhere you want. That’s also a healthier way of commuting since traffic jams are not an unknown phenomenon here. This place is also home to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the world’s busiest airport serving about 110 million passengers a year.
How Much Do You Need to Pay to Get Around This City?
Based on the data from Numbeo, the regular price of a monthly pass is $95, and a one-way ticket is $2.5. Gasoline is $2.65 per gallon, and if you want to call a cab, the start will cost you $3.75. One mile of the ride would be around $1.4.
MARTA is the eighth busiest subway system in the US
#5 What Are the Finest Restaurants?
People from ATL are known for having a love for a good bite and many excellent Atlanta eateries prove that. There is a vast number of restaurants, and the choices are limitless, no matter if you are moving during the holidays or any other time of the year there will always be places where you can grab a bite. ATL was even named one of the top foodie cities in the country by WalletHub. Here you will find different places where you can celebrate moving in together with your significant other, getting a promotion, or having a birthday party. Must-eats in this place (according to TripAdvisor) are specialties from the following restaurants:
Aviva by Kameel
Eight Sushi Lounge
Herban Fix – Vegan Kitchen
La Grotta Ristorante Italiano
The Capital Grille
Atlanta’s food scene is best known for fried chicken, barbecue, waffles, sweet potato pie, and pimento cheese. Now that’s proper comfort food for avoiding relocation depression. Once you unpack after the move, you’ll surely have some tasty bites, we guarantee, but have in mind that it might be pricey in upscale restaurants. For example, a three-course meal for two people in a mid-range restaurant is around $50.
Living in this city will mean that you'll always be able to find something good to eat
#6 What Can You Do for Fun?
Attractions, things to do, and places to visit are numerous in ATL, both for kids and adults. But we’ll make no difference based on age because we’re sure that we all know people who are over thirty and who still love and enjoy Disneyland and zoos.
When you move to ATL, you’ll never be bored. For your kid or the kid in you, go and visit Legoland in Buckhead, where you can see a model of ATL and surrounding landmarks made entirely of Legos. The same neighborhood is home to Atlanta History Center, where history, knowledge, and adventure intertwine on a 33-acre space. Going to the Zoo and Aquarium is always a fun way to spend your weekend, while the Center for Puppetry Arts in Midtown offers amazing shows if you’re into this kind of art.
If you love outdoor activities, we have some fantastic news – hiking, biking, recreation, and sports are all available at the remarkable Stone Mountain Park and Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area.
A large number of tourists and visitors come each year to see all of these astonishing parks, museums and sculptures.