The sector of the market most affected by the economy is the 1st time buyer market. For the Intown neighborhoods, this means the ever-expanding parameters of East Atlanta, outer limits of Decatur, and the Tri-Cities area. East Atlanta borders are now commonly expanded to include streets such as Rollingwood and Braeburn. There are updated/renovated ranches and 40’s bungalows listed in the $130,000s whereas they had previously been selling for mid $150,000s and up. The Tri-Cities area includes East Point, Historic College Park, and Hapeville. This is where the best values are, in my opinion.
As these areas suffer due to the decreasing number of 1st time home buyers, there are a growing number of homes available for rent. Rent less than a mortgage for $130,000. In the Tri Cities area 2 bedroom/1 bath homes are renting for $850/mo whereas 3bedroom/1-2 bath homes can fetch $1,000-$1,100/mo. To rent in the East Atlanta area, you are looking at min of $1200/mo rent in most cases.
Yes, I may be tooting my own horn, so to speak, as I have lived in East Point for 12 years. I have found the community to be slowly but surely blossoming with newcomers from ‘intown’ neighborhoods, further south, and out of state. There are a wide array of housing choices ranging from 1920 bungalows and 1940 bungalows to 1950s/60s ranches, cape cods, and traditionals. There is even ‘new’ construction scattered about. You can purchase a good size home for under $200,000!! The prices are very competitive with other markets, and in many cases can beat other areas.
So, if it is time to move and you are looking for a home close to MARTA, downtown, and highways with friendly neighbors, in an intown area of diversity, give the Tri-Cities area a try. Even if you are renting, you may find you like it enough to stay even after you can afford more.