Real estate values in North Georgia are relatively high compared to values in similar geographic regions in other states yet the cost of living is from 7 - 9% lower than the U.S. national average. North Georgia’s cities contain beautiful rural areas where population densities may be as low as 800 people per square mile, and the cities offer a wide variety of cultural and recreational activities to residents. Local economies are thriving because North Georgia’s valuable natural resources stimulate tourism and enable a broad diversity of economic opportunity.
There is a significant amount of undeveloped land in North Georgia and more upscale residential developments are anticipated in the future because the demand for high value properties has steadily increased. Most of North Georgia is a buyer’s market where starter homes, single family homes, townhouses, condominiums, lakefront and riverfront estates, and homes in retirement communities are available at affordable prices. The demand for commercial real estate is also high because the economic potential for businesses located near North Georgia’s upper income areas in the cities tends to be highly profitable.
Single family homes
The real estate market for single family homes in North Georgia is characterized by charming, modest houses in quiet and well maintained neighborhoods where prices begin in the low $100,000’s and move up to the multi-million dollar range for palatial homes on estate sized properties. Most cities in North Georgia contain two different types of residential neighborhoods for single family homes. Open road neighborhoods are typically small residential nodes located on main streets within the cities. Subdivision neighborhoods contain as many as several hundred homes in communities that are often located out in the countryside off the main roads.
Master planned communities
Master planned communities have become very popular in North Georgia because they are designed to include golf courses, swimming pools, tennis courts, clubhouses and other special amenities for residents who prefer to have all landscaping and exterior maintenance work performed by the community’s property management service. Master planned communities in North Georgia may consist of detached single family homes, townhouses, condominiums, or a combination of housing types and they are generally located near the cities or in North Georgia’s lake and riverfront vacation areas. Prices in master planned communities range from several hundred thousand dollars for lakefront or riverfront townhouses to several million dollars for estate sized properties with custom built homes.
Mountain, lakefront and riverfront homes
Charming yet modern log cabin style homes, ranch style homes and custom built mansions with breathtaking mountain views are available throughout North Georgia’s mountain region. The areas surrounding Lake Lanier, Lake Chatuge, Lake Allatoona, and along the banks of the Chattahoochee River and the Toccoa River include prime properties that have been developed into resort communities. Prices in these resort areas range from $500,000 for a 2-story condominium with lake and mountain views to $6,799,000 for a 9 bedroom, 9 bathroom custom built estate home on 5.5 acres of land with a heated swimming pool, a gymnasium and a professional theater. Homes that do not have spectacular mountain views but are located in beautiful mountain forests are often priced between $160,000 and $200,000. These properties are typically 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom homes on ½ acre to 1 acre of land.
North Georgia’s new urbanism development concept
21st century architecture features a concept known as new urbanism in which multiple types of development are combined in a concentrated area. Many of North Georgia’s cities have implemented this concept in their historic downtown districts where antebellum homes redolent with Southern history share brick paved sidewalks with cafes, restaurants, clothing boutiques, gift stores, antique stores, art galleries, professional offices and new residential developments. One example of new urbanism development in North Georgia is Crabapple Crossroads in the heart of the historic Crabapple District in Milton. The homes constructed in Crabapple Crossroads are within walking distance of the Shops of Crabapple, the Crabapple Mercantile Exchange includes 23,000 sq. ft. of space for retail stores and restaurants, and the entire development is self-contained in terms of being a center for living and working.