While not as common, grad students do in fact buy places to live! Describe here experiences you've had with realtors, pricing, financing, neighborhoods, commute times, etc. Anything that might help out first time buyers. Include phone numbers, addresses, or webpages where applicable.
I live in Smyrna, which is a 15-20 minute drive from campus up I-75. I like it here. It's quiet, safe, and still affordable. If you are coming with a spouse/significant other, you'll also find that it's a convenient drive to Perimeter Center (at the intersection of I-285&GA 400), which is where a lot of the office-type jobs are in Atlanta. In general, the traffic is reasonable from Smyrna, which can't be said for a lot of suburbs... If you're interested in knowing more about the house buying process in Atlanta, or are interested in checking out my neighborhood, just shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org ~Erika Shehan
I live in Duluth, which is about 25mi N of campus up I-85. It is a nice suburban area if you have a family, and is growing fast. Decent 2BR houses can be had for $120K or so. If you want to know more about the area or want to buy my house, contact me at email@example.com.
As far as commute time. With light/no traffic I can go from door-to-door in 25 minutes. Between 7-8am and 4-6pm, give or take 30 minutes, it might take an hour. Throw in a wreck somewhere along the way, and it takes about an hour and a half. You just learn to not go in at those times. And believe it or not, spending 45 minutes travelling to get somewhere is not uncommon in Atlanta, no matter where you live.
- Chad Huneycutt
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