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Monthly Archives: August 2016

Decatur, Georgia – Great Lakes Homes

Grey Shingle Great Lakes Home with Dormer Windows

Decatur, Georgia, located just a few miles east of downtown Atlanta off tree-lined Ponce De Leon Avenue, has many lovely neighborhoods.  One of the most desirable is a small community of older bungalows appropriately named Great Lakes after the famous Great Lakes of the Northeast.

The original Great Lakes were discovered by French explorers in the 1600's.  Decatur's Great Lakes neighborhood was developed between 1913 - 1930's.

​According to Wiki: How to Remember the Five Great Lakes, an easy way to recall the names of the five lakes is to use a handy word association.

  • ​H - Huron
  • O - Ontario
  • M - Michigan
  • E- Erie
  • S - Superior

To remember Great Lakes in Decatur, Georgia, you only have to drive through this delightful area along Superior, Michigan, Erie, and Huron - and think HOMES.

Decatur Homes are well-tended and situated on landscaped lots with sidewalks along the roadway. The main architecture in Great Lakes consist of bungalows, tudors and some newer design homes that seem to fit in seamlessly.  Earlier exterior styles have been retained, but many Great Lakes Homes have been renovated to update older kitchens, or to add additional baths or space.

A close inspection of Great Lakes shows how much pride owners take in their community and their homes.  It is truly a beautiful place to live!

There are many other factors that attact Buyers to Great Lakes as well.  Decatur is considered one of the most "walkable" small cities in the Nation.  It is close to downtown Atlanta, a few miles to Emory University, CDC, and Emory Medical Center, has easy access to an international airport, and enjoys numerous cultural and civic events throughout the year.  Clairemont Elementary is located within the neighborhood on Erie Avenue and is part of the respected Decatur School District.

For Sale in Atlanta – Less Than Usual

Pink hue Atlanta evening skyline

Homes in Druid Hills and near Emory University have seen a decrease in real estate sales in the past several years, although not necessarily a decrease in sales price.  The Atlanta housing inventory is down approximately 12% from last year. 

According to First Multiple Listing Service statistics and to the National Association of Realtors, lack of inventory in some areas of Georgia has led to a decrease in the number of Buyers who are able to find homes in certain areas, like Druid Hills, Virginia Highlands, City of Decatur and other close-in Atlanta neighborhoods.

In talking with colleagues who work in these areas. it appears there are more Buyers who would purchase homes - if they could find one.  A number of Buyers have made multiple offers on homes in their desired area, only to be outbid when multiple offers are presented on the same property.

On properties that are likely to produce multiple offers, some Realtors are requiring strict prerequisites for offers that are presented, such as:

  • ​All Cash offers, which go to the top of the list
  • Quick Closings
  • Shortened Inspection Periods or no Inspection Periods
  • And more rare, no property showing until offer is accepted

High-end properties are not as affected as the middle and lower range, but homes in the $250,000 - $550,000 price range go quickly in Druid Hills, Decatur and other close-in Atlanta areas.

​Sellers may be reluctant to put their current home on the market for fear they will be unable to find another home in a crowded Buyers market.  Their home may sell quickly, but where will they go?

​Buyers who are looking for a home in Decatur and near Emory University may continue to experience competition when making an offer.  Here are some suggestions that may help:

  • ​Be Diligent if you lose one
  • Know there will be other houses coming on the market
  • Be willing to make compromises with the next house
  • Use a Realtor that knows your neighborhod!


Give Back to Your Decatur Community

Decatur couple donating excess

Our church recently decided to sponsor a refugee family in partnership with another local church.  They asked for donations of furniture, lamps, school supplies, bedding, alarm clocks and a number of other household items.

​In thinking about what extra things are cluttering my Atlanta home, I realized that my excess would probably furnish several family homes.

Aside from a semi-annual clearing ​of clothes dropped at the Salvation Army and an occasional bag of books donated to my local Decatur library, that's usually the extent of my annual household donations.  A major clear out is in my future!

​Who could utilize all those extra lampshades and lamps we never use, the paintings and pictures we thought we might hang again, or the duplicate glasses, mugs, and stainless silverware taking up space.  What about those outgrown toys, car seats, an extra table and bookcase, old towels folded away, yarn and fabric never used, baskets gathering dust?

When you are clearing out, here are a few Decatur organizations that could use your donations:

  • The American Kidney Foundation - If you live in Decatur, their trucks will come to your house for pickup.  Call them at 770-609-2200.  They accept furniture, clothing, etc.
  • Decatur Cooperative Ministry - In kind or cash donations - check their website for detailed information about needed items - no clothese but do accept packaged food items.
  • Furniture Bank of Metro Atlanta - 404-356-8630 - can make arrangements for pickup of used furniture
  • Your Local Decatur Veterinarian - Old towels are always a welcome donation.
    • If you are in the process of moving or contemplating a move in the Decatur area, now is an excellent to weed out all those items that could be useful to someone else. It seems we all have too much "stuff"!