High rise buildings and slow southern cooking are just two of the polarities that make Atlanta, Georgia a culturally unique city. Lovingly nicknamed "Hotlanta", the city certainly is a hot spot for international business and travel, arts and music, and a laid back attitude sprinkled with lulling southern drawls.
If you need help making the final decision to move down to the A, use the information and tips in the following guide to help you. You can also get a free moving quote right here at Movers.com.
Welcome to Hotlanta - literally. The city is known for hot humid summers characteristic of a humid subtropical climate. July is typically the hottest month of the year, with temperatures in the 90's, but approaching 100 degrees occasionally. Atlanta has higher elevation than most eastern and southern states, giving the city a more controlled climate.
Suburb temperatures can be slightly cooler throughout the year, and overnight freezing happens approximately 40 days annually throughout the entire city. Light snow is also common during winter months.
You'll surround yourself in culture if you choose to live in proximity to Midtown Atlanta, as it is right by the Woodruff Arts Center, the High Museum of Art, the Center for Puppetry Arts, and it is also the second largest business district in Atlanta. The AT&T Midtown Center was a landmark in the area in the early 1980s, around the time high-rise condos started becoming part of the landscape, like 1010 Midtown. The residential area mainly surrounds Piedmont Park.
For added history and culture, try Ansley Park, with upscale yet quaint homes and plenty of sidewalks, the area has been named one of America's Top 10 Neighborhoods to live in by the American Planning Association in 2011. Locals rave about the shopping and Ansley Golf Club, and say it is a beautiful place to raise children.
If your heart beats for effervescent city life, give Downtown Atlanta a whirl. This historic business district of Atlanta is bursting with condos and lofts in tandem with government facilities, convention centers, retail stores and recreational parks.
Registering Your Car
As a new Georgia resident, you will have 30 days to register your car in the state. You will need your driver's license, proof of insurance, proof of residency, a completed Certificate of Inspection, a completed Title/Tag Application, and proof of passed vehicle emissions inspection (if applicable).
You'll need to apply for a Georgia driver's license within 30 days of residency, prior to registering your vehicle. You can do this at any customer service center, and most centers in the metro Atlanta area offer appointments to transfer your out-of-state license. As long as your out-of-state license is current and surrendered at the time of your appointment, you will not have to take any written exam.
Atlanta Public Schools serves Atlanta for public education, enrolling over 55,000 students. There are also many private schools in the Atlanta area, many of them operated by the Archdiocese of Atlanta.
And if you've come to Atlanta to pursue higher education, you've come to the right place. An epicenter for colleges and universities, Atlanta has over 30 distinguished institutions to choose from. Georgia Institute of Technology is consistently ranked high for public universities in the nation, and Georgia State University is a large contributor to the economy of the city.
Other schools include: Emory University, Clark Atlanta University, Savannah College of Art and Design, Spelman College and Morehouse College.
The Atlanta Metro area is the eighth largest economy in the country, with over $300 billion wrapped up in it. A large portion of this economy is comprised of corporate operations and a large amount of Fortune 500 companies. The workforce is also high educated, with close to half of the adults in the city having a college degree. Logistics is also a major contributor to the economy in the area.
In light of the recent recession, Atlanta's job market isn't as booming as in earlier years, but is projected to pick back up by the beginning of 2014 with almost 50,000 new jobs in various sectors. According to a recent CBS report, the Atlanta metro area's unemployment rate went down to 9 percent due to fewer lay-offs in manufacturing, construction and trade.
Some of the top companies for employment in 2012 in Atlanta were: Edge Solutions, Bluefin Payment Systems and Valuation Management Group. The average salary is approximately $50,000.
Living Costs in the City
Based on where you'll be moving from, the overall cost of living in Atlanta is about 6 percent below the national average - with higher costs coming from entertainment expenses. The median sales price for houses in the city is approximately $185,000, but prices can increase up to $500,000 or more. The average one-bedroom apartment will cost approximately $800 per month.
Your utility costs will vary depending on what company you choose, but high bills in summer months can be close to $400 for a single-family home. According to locals, the water and sewage bills in the area are particularly high - mainly to help pay for old sewage system repairs and reduce pollution. The city was on built on a water source that has the ability to sustain it, so the water must be imported from elsewhere, resulting in a higher bill.
Atlanta Moving Resources
Moving and storage companies are ready and equipped to help you with your move to Atlanta, whether you're moving from out of state or from another county in Georgia. Make sure you get estimates from multiple moving services before you commit to hiring any (at least three estimates). Check back to our guides for tips on how to choose your moving service wisely with important questions to ask, differentiating between types of estimates, and mistakes to avoid. Visit the following pages at Movers.com to get quotes for the following services:
For the commuter, you'll find Atlanta has a network of subway systems and buses. The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority provides the public transportation in the area, with its subway system being the eighth busiest system in the country, with connecting lines to the city's airport, Downtown, Midtown and Buckhead.
In addition, you'll find shuttle buses in the city that serve some of the universities, as well as the Crescent Train, an Amtrak-serviced train that runs from New York to New Orleans.
With all this public transportation opportunity, personal vehicles are still the most popular mode of transportation here, with a plentiful amount of freeways to serve them. Interstate 20, Interstate 75 and Interstate 85 all cover Atlanta, as well as Interstate 285 (the "Perimeter").
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is the world's busiest airport by passenger and aircraft traffic, with service to over 150 destinations in the US and over 80 international destinations.
Culture & Contemporary Life
In this city, you'll get an assortment of cultures thrown into the "Southern Hospitality" melting pot to get an eclectic fusion of old and new. Enjoy bohemian shops at Little Five Points in the same day you enjoy southern cooking from South City Kitchen by chef Jeffrey Gardner from Chopped.
As a city that supports a thriving art culture, you'll be able to enjoy the Atlanta Contemporary Arts Center, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in Midtown, the historic landmark of Fox Theatre and the most-visited High Museum of Art. Southern rock and country music also became popular by way of Atlanta, with notable bands like the Allman Brothers Band and Lynyrd Skynyrd recording songs paying homage to the city.
Some prevalent tourist spots include the Georgia Aquarium, the World of Coca-Cola tour, the Margaret Mitchell House and Museum (where Gone With the Wind was penned) and the Kendeda Canopy Walk.
Atlanta is also home professional sports teams including: the Atlanta Braves (MLB) at Turner Field, the Atlanta Falcons (NFL) at the Georgia Dome and the Atlanta Hawks (NBA) and the Atlanta Dream (WNBA) at the Philips Arena.
Atlanta Relocation Tips
- For the college student, all professional sports teams in Atlanta have student discounts available for games.
- Traffic and pollution are high in this city - consider a hybrid or diesel engine for a personal vehicle, as it may save you money at the gas pump and help the environment at the same time.
- Try finding a residence as close to your new job as possible, because as mentioned before, traffic is considerable in this big city.