Each of the various neighborhoods of Sandy Springs has a different feel, different attractions and amenities, and (of course) will have a different impact on your wallet. Here's a quick guide to the major 'hoods to help you narrow it down:
Perimeter Center: Centered around the second biggest mall in Georgia and the largest medical center in the state, Perimeter Center is a commercial hub filled with offices, retailers, condos, restaurants, and--last but not least--apartments. With three MARTA (rail system) stations and a number of taxi services, the Perimeter Center is the easiest part of Sandy Springs to navigate without a car. $$$$
Riverside: This neighborhood is located along the Chattahoochee River. As a result, it’s one of the most affluent areas in Metro Atlanta. It’s more dominated by luxurious houses than apartments for rent. $$$$
Downtown: Downtown Sandy Springs will soon see some of the most dramatic effects of the Sandy Springs incorporation. Recently, City Council members approved a plan to renovate the area to the tune of $350,000. The funds will help construct a municipal complex, a street grid pattern, and more. So the area will look more like--you know--downtown. $$$ (This will probably go up soon)
Dunwoody Panhandle: Although the Panhandle still has plenty of opulent homes, Roswell Road offers a diverse spread of apartment complexes. Williamsburg at Dunwoody and the Dunwoody Village offer up plenty of shopping options. $$$
North Springs: If you have made it this far in the guide, you probably get the picture--Sandy Springs is pretty pricey! North Springs still offers plenty of high-priced lavish apartments, however, it also features some of the most affordable rental options in the city. $$
You'll be checking your smartphone's weather app every morning in Sandy Springs, because the weather here turns faster than Atlanta Braves fans. Although the winters aren’t particularly harsh, some of the warmest days don’t fall far from the coldest ones. Also, since the city is not the best at dealing with icy conditions, one solid night of snow can shut down the entire Metro-Atlanta area. Summers live up to the “Hotlanta” moniker, so keep an eye out for local public pools, or make friends who have their own. Although there will be a few days per year where you should avoid the heat altogether, there are also plenty of afternoons with perfect sunbathing conditions.
Due to a sub-par "developing" system, a never ending list of road and construction work, and the distance between some of the more popular parts of the metro area, it helps to have a car that you feel comfortable driving in for long periods of time--and to have your favorite tunes cued up on your smartphone alongside that weather app. Metro Atlanta’s infamous traffic puts the average commute time for workers at an average of 30.6 minutes, according to recent Census data. That’s enough to earn the seventh spot on the list of worst commutes in the country. A 30-minute drive can quickly turn into an hour-long sit in traffic on a bad day, making the comfy car and good tunes extra essential.
Those who don’t mind spending a little extra time in the car will find plenty of things to do. The Georgia Dome, the Georgia Aquarium, and other downtown Atlanta attractions are just over 20 minutes away. A trip to hang out with the hipsters of Little Five Points and East Atlanta will take about 25 minutes. Looking for ethnic food? Take a 15-minute drive over to Buford Highway for a seemingly endless selection of restaurants serving up authentic grub from every corner of the world.