Relocating to Atlanta? Here’s What You Need to Know!

Thinking of moving to Atlanta, Georgia? You’re not alone. The city may be rich in history and southern culture, but it has also undergone considerable revitalization since hosting the 1996 Summer Olympics. Atlanta is ranked in the top twenty among world cities and now boasts a booming economy, an expanding job market, and a surprisingly affordable cost of living.

Atlanta apartment rooftop pool
Atlanta at a Glance

With a population of more than 6 million people, Metro Atlanta is the ninth largest metropolitan area in the U.S. The city is home to 16 Fortune 500 companies, including Home Depot, UPS, Delta Airlines, and the Coca-Cola Company. And yet, despite its impressive urban skyline, Atlanta is known for its abundance of trees, which has earned it the nickname of “the city in the forest.” The city is also known as “A-Town” or “the ATL.” Just don’t call it “Hotlanta.” The folks here *really* hate that.

Atlanta apartment living room
Best Places to Live in Atlanta

The most difficult choice you’re going to face when relocating to Atlanta is choosing where you want to live. For a quick rundown of some of the best-known neighborhoods/boroughs, check out our Atlanta Neighborhoods page. And if you need some help finding the perfect apartment in Atlanta, Smart City Locating is here to help.

Q : What do I do if I have to move in and start work by a certain date, but I’m not able to visit Atlanta beforehand?

A : No worries! All of our agents offer video and/or Facetime tours so you can actually see where you’ll be living before signing anything. Leasing a unit sight unseen can be stressful, but we’re here to ease your mind and make it convenient for you. Our locators will send you pictures/videos of the unit (so you can show your best friends and start mapping out your furniture), and if you have specific priorities like the ability to fit your sneaker collection in the closet or whether the unit has a wine cooler, let us know so we can be sure to check it out for you!

Q : I need to move to Atlanta 5 months from now, are you guys able to help?

A : This is a big one. While we can definitely start narrowing down potential neighborhoods and apartments, we won’t truly be able to start the search process until we’re about 60 days away from move in because that’s when we can get accurate info on availability and pricing.

Q : What if I am coming to Atlanta for only one or two days to look at apartments?

A : This is our full time job! If you’re coming in on a Saturday, just let your agent know and we can have updated availability and pricing for you to look over before you come. We love touring out-of-towners because we get to show off how much we love this city. We can show you the different neighborhoods, best bars to meet new people, and definitely our favorite restaurants–we’re all foodies around here!

Q : What neighborhood should I live in?

A : This one is actually tough because there are so many different neighborhoods that we love!! Some of our favorites include Inman Park and Midtown. But ultimately there are a lot of other factors that determine which neighborhood is best for you including your budget, work location, what you like to do for fun, and more! Don’t worry, we’ll be sure to ask you all the right questions to ensure you choose an area you’re confident in.

Q : How do I set up electricity/utilities?

A : All Atlanta properties require Georgia Power. However, our concierge team is here to help with everything else on your move-in checklist, including internet and renters insurance. This is just another free service to thank you for choosing Smart City!

Q : What movers should I use?

A : We always tell people to check Yelp reviews for movers, and your specific agent can give you a couple of potential movers that we’ve had good experiences with in the past!

Q : What are my transportation options?

A : Atlanta’s public transit system, MARTA, has become one of the top 10 transportation agencies in the United States. With over 330 rapid transit rail cars and 550 buses, MARTA can take you pretty much anywhere. We know of plenty of Atlanta apartments that are within walking distance of a MARTA station in case you’re not planning to bring a car.

Q : Are pets allowed?

A : Atlanta is very dog friendly. Almost all of the apartments allow non-aggressive dogs as roommates (with a deposit), and some have dog parks, washing stations, and even small yards. If you have an “aggressive” breed (we use quotations because we know your pit bull is sweet) then your options will be more limited, but still exist. Contact us and we can give you the details on what to expect and the different options.

Q : What do deposits and upfront costs look like for renting in Atlanta?

A : Deposits usually range anywhere from $0-400, sometimes higher if there are credit issues; but no apartment requires first and last months rent, which is awesome! You can also expect to pay an application fee of $25 -$100 and an admin fee of $200-$300. We’re pretty good at finding deals though, so you shouldn’t expect to pay more than $500 for move in costs with good credit.

Q : Fridge, Microwave, Parking?

A : Luckily, refrigerators and microwaves are almost always a sure thing here in Atlanta! Parking is more case by case and relies heavily on location. For example, some apartments on the Beltline or in popular places with limited space, like Midtown, may charge an additional fee for parking. It depends entirely on the property and their policies, so be sure to ask your agent about it.

Q : Do you offer furnished and/or short term leases?

A : At this time, we do not have a partner set up to help with furnishing apartments.

As for short term leases, the minimum lease term we work with is 6 months, but pricing is usually MUCH higher for short term leases–sometimes even double the rate! We always tell people that if they’re planning on moving here for at least a year, it’s worth it to sign a 12 month lease and save the money!

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