Do you love living in the Washington, DC area? Let’s celebrate the city and suburbs, from the historic landmarks and hallowed ground to the hip and happening scene.
Good Areas to Live in DC?
August 2, 2010 at 3:17 pm #107045
#1 question for new gov’t employees moving to DC is where to live.I always tell people you choose between
-Location (in DC and/or close to Metro)-Safety (or at least perceived safety)
-Cost-Size of place-Privacy (Do you have roommates)Decide what you are willing to give up and I’ll tell you where to live.
August 2, 2010 at 3:17 pm #107073
For example, in DC I lived in a house near Stadium Armory.
Location – B+ close to metro, in City, 20 minute walk to bars
Safety – D true or not, it’s perceived as low
Cost – A
Size of Place – B+ ok size
Privacy – C (2 roommates)
August 3, 2010 at 1:40 pm #107071
I mean I’m in the District all the time and love all the stuff it has but I live in VA right on the Orange because it’s much easier to find better deals on C and D in your list.
August 12, 2010 at 3:14 pm #107069
Agreed. I live in Petworth/Columbia Heights, my assessment is
-Location: A-, I can get to work and most anywhere I want to go in 15 minutes on my bike. It would be nice to be a bit closer to a metro station though.
-Safety (or at least perceived safety): C, like Steve said, true or not, I’d say most people perceive the area as somewhat shady, even if the worst thing that’s happened to me or any of my roommates is a stolen bike seat
-Cost: B-, I probably pay a little more than most in my neighborhood, but it’s still cheaper than other more desirable DC neighborhoods, and honestly, not much cheaper than places in NoVa or MoCo (esp if you take into account the additional commuting time).
-Size of place: A
-Privacy: C (2 roommates)
The only thing I would add to the list is schools, for people that have kids. I have no idea what they are like in my neighborhood, but I know that I live across the street from the preschool Fenty’s kids went to…not sure how much something that that would cost though??
August 12, 2010 at 5:52 pm #107067
I was staying with my brother and his family in Stafford, VA, for almost 9 months, while we sold our house in El Paso, TX. My family and I will finally all be moved into our new home in Stafford by the end of the month!
I’m 43, my wife runs the household, and my sons are 10 and 13, so all of the DC nightlife stuff doesn’t really appeal to us. My wife will be the one hauling the boys around most of the time, so we wanted someplace where traffic isn’t too bad, the schools are good, and the neighborhood is safe.
We’re moving into a beautiful, 4,200 sq ft home (built in 2007), and the payment is about the same as what we’d pay for a nice 3 bedroom apartment in Alexandria. It’s about 4 miles from the VRE (Virginia Rail Express), where parking is free, I ride a comfortable train for an hour, and then walk a few blocks to my office.
Location: A- because I do spend an hour on the train… but I read, work on my laptop, or sleep, so it’s not a stressful commute. The area itself is beautiful, not very congested, and within 30 minutes of Fredericksburg, or north to Potomac Mills for even more shopping.
Safety: A+ because the crime rate is extremely low and the neighbors I’ve met so far are very friendly. (My brother lives nearby and they rarely lock their doors!)
Cost: A+ compared to the surrounding areas. Can’t get much more for your money in these parts!
Size of Place: A++ because I don’t currently own enough furniture for all of the rooms! Huge deck, covered patio, 2-car attached garage, finished basement, etc. I’m lovin’ it!
Privacy: C… because there’s only so much privacy to be had when you have a 10 year old and a 13 year old running around the house! 🙂
August 12, 2010 at 6:12 pm #107065
I live in a condo in Rockville, MD and am very happy there.
Location: A We’re six blocks from the Metro station and a few minutes walk from the nice little downtown shopping area, with great restaurants, a movie theatre, AND a library!
Safety: B+ It’s definitely better than most places actually in DC. There’s an occasional car broken into, but overall not too much crime.
Cost: B- Downtown Rockville can be a little pricey, but it’s not too bad, considering the convenience.
Size of Place: B+ My hubby and I (plus our dog) don’t need too much space, but I wouldn’t mind going a tiny bit bigger!
Privacy: A- We don’t have roommates, but we have in the past had some ridiculously loud neighbors. Thankfully, most of our current neighbors are pretty quiet.
August 13, 2010 at 1:28 am #107063
I forgot to add another factor that is pretty key:
Quality of schools (not important to all but super key for those with kids)
August 13, 2010 at 2:14 am #107061
August 13, 2010 at 11:25 am #107059
I live in 16th Street Heights and love it. We’re about halfway between Adams Morgan/Columbia Heights and downtown Silver Spring…right on a bus line and about 2 miles from either the green/yellow or red Metros. It’s very green with lots of yards and you can get lots of space for a reasonable cost. There are some good schools in the area, especially if you add in the charters (my daughter walks to middle school at Washington Latin). Great parks and pools, pretty safe, good community feeling, and right by Rock Creek Park. Petworth is similar, if you want to go a little cheaper and further east.
August 13, 2010 at 1:05 pm #107057
Sounds like a hidden gem. What’s the name of the area?
I love those oasis in the middle of city that still have a lot of tress, sidewalks, etc
August 13, 2010 at 3:10 pm #107055
You have put your finger on the tradeoffs, especially size, location and cost. There are so many options and what used to be considered too far away twenty years ago is now considered a reasonable commute.
August 13, 2010 at 3:12 pm #107053
The Washington Post publishes crime statistics each week by neighborhood, with a list of incidents by type including the block where it occurred. This would be an objective way to answer your question on crime in the potential neighborhood.
January 13, 2011 at 4:01 pm #107051
I live in Woodrige/Brookland area of DC – single family home with a huge yard, quiet street & great neighbors, but unfortunately not as many amenities as you get in NW. Metro (red line) about 2 miles. Several buses will take you there. I work in Arlington and my morning drive takes me about 30 min – not too bad.
January 14, 2011 at 8:03 pm #107049
I live in the Trinidad area of DC. It has a bad rap but it is not as bad as they make it out. There is a lot of development in the area and I’m only about a 5 min bike ride from H st. H St will become the most eclectic street in Washington, DC in a couple of years. Currently you have mussel restaurant Granville Moore’s (owner beat Bobby Flay in mussel contest), H st. Country Club (bar with indoor putt putt), H st. Theater Company, Joy of Motions dance studio, Rock and Roll hotel (indie concert hall and bar) and SOVA (a 2 story coffee and wine cafe) all on the same block. H St. about 2 yrs away from completing DC’s first street trolley. If you want to cash in on the H. St.’s development you have two options: live on the Capital Hill side where the prices are high or live on the Trinidad side where the prices are really low.
Living in Trinidad
-Location – A+ I can see the Capital from my condo, and it’s only a 20min bike ride to work.
-Safety – C- there has been some shootings here in the pass. The neighborhood gets better every year because of new residences and police efficiency. The good thing is the neighborhood association is strong, and the police are responsive and engaged. Raccoons are a big issue.
-Cost – A you can get a 2 bedroom condo for $175,000. And 3 bedroom Townhome for $300,000.
-Size of place – B – it depends on where you live. they have some really nice size homes that could rival Georgetown, but some of the condos aren’t up to snuff. They try to cram too many people in a building not made for such occupancy.
-Privacy – C – for me, because of the condo I live in I can hear my neighbors too well.
My estimate is that in 3 to 4 years Trinidad will be the next Columbia Heights… there is 360 degrees of development going on…did I mention they’re building a Wal-Mart 4 blocks away.
January 20, 2011 at 7:50 pm #107047
Another vote for Rockville, MD!
Location: A I live in the Kings Farm community – just a couple blocks from the Shady Grove metro stop, a block away from Safeway and other convenient shops/restaurants, and I love it here!
Safety: B The community is well lit, friendly, and clean. Very unscary. 🙂 However, I have heard gunshots in the distance before, and I wouldn’t want to walk to or from the metro after dark alone.
Cost/Size: B Rent is a bit higher than I would like – but it’s fabulous for our 3-story 3 bedroom townhouse. Honestly, I’m paying about $200/month more than I was for my 1 bedroom apartment in downtown Silver Spring. Plus, I have access to a gym, pool, jacuzzi, and other amenities less than a block away!
Privacy: B Generally, the neighborhood is quiet and unintrusive. I almost wish I knew my neighbors better than I do! However, sharing a wall with neighbors occasionally leads to some noise annoyances. 🙂
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