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Advice for living in DC

245

Replies to: Advice for living in DC

  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 76,168 Senior Member
    We have young urban dweller relatives who live IN DC. They happen to live in DuPont Circle...where really, you can walk to a LOT, and the metro is there as well. It’s expensive.

    It sounds like the OPs folks lived in NYC...and if that is the case, and they like urban living, living in DC will likely make them happier than living in the burbs. But they have to be able to afford it.

  • az1001az1001 Registered User Posts: 58 Junior Member
    I have recent experience with both places. Good news is that as compared to NYC, apartments in WDC are in greater supply and about 30 % less expensive. Great time of year to be looking. They will have no trouble picking up something they like starting Feb 1st. With the common sense of anyone accustomed to city living , dangerous areas should not be a problem.

    Agree with locating the nearest metro stop to son's work on a map and then living along that line or a line with one connection. If they have the freedom to live anywhere, would consider avoiding bus commutes altogether due to traffic.

    Agree with poster above who mentioned Clarendon as a great area to live - due to numerous restaurants and atmosphere. Georgetown, while fun and beautiful , can be more expensive due to the presence of students taking up many rentals. Also, some people don't realize that Georgetown does not have a metro stop and depending where you are in Georgetown the walk to the nearest metro (Foggy Bottom or Roslyn) can be as much as 20 minutes.

    I can't recommend websites for apartment rentals but Clarendon (for example) has many large apartment buildings with onsite leasing offices . I'm sure it exists, but I also haven't seen the "brokers fee" in WDC that is ubiquitous in NYC.
  • CountingDownCountingDown Registered User Posts: 13,408 Senior Member
    Living in MD and working in VA is challenging. Even taking Metro, it's a significant haul. We've been at the end of the Red Line (Shady Grove) since 1990. OTOH, there are a lot of new apartments going up near the station if they wind up working near Red Line stations.

    Clarendon/Arlington is hot, hot, hot, and very expensive -- for that area, the rents may look NYC-like. If I were a 20-something, I'd probably head to that side of the bridge and go for someplace where I could at least have an easy hop on the Metro to that area. The area around the Navy Yard and Nats Park has been developing rapidly -- might be a bit cheaper than the Chinatown area. Parking is a pain, but if they had a car in NYC they know that.

    Tenleytown/AU/Friendship Heights stations are still in DC (Red Line), but is less tightly packed. Lots of places to eat within walking distance.

  • jonrijonri Registered User Posts: 7,389 Senior Member
    I'd start with https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neighborhoods_in_Washington,_D.C. Click through on the neighborhood names and read the entries, especially "Description." Then go to something like apartments.com to get a sense of rents.

    In general, rents are lower in DC than in NYC--at least lower than in Manhattan.

  • shellfellshellfell Registered User Posts: 3,241 Senior Member
    We just moved to Arlington 3 months ago. We looked for someplace along the Metro routes to maximize our public transportation options. Clarendon is definitely hopping with lots of restaurant options, shops, WF and TJ, but it is expensive (and not where we live). I can't speak to what commuting is like since we're retired and not often using public transportation at its busiest times.

    S2 lives in Glover Park in DC (just north of Georgetown). I don't know that that location would work for them since bus is the only option and commuting to Arlington might be more time consuming.
  • OnwardOnward Registered User Posts: 2,964 Senior Member
    Thanks all. The job is in Crystal City, Arlington, right off the Crystal City Yellow Line stop. They aren't interested in suburban life so much, though appreciate all the tips RE Virginia. As for price, they are looking to spend around $2,000 a month for a one bedroom, but are flexible on price.

    Any thoughts on finding an apartment in their price range in Columbia Heights, Adams Morgan, Shaw, U Street Corridor, DuPont Circle, Logan Circle, Chinatown, H Street Corridor, Foggy Bottom, Waterfront and Cleveland Park? Those are neighborhoods they'd mentioned.
  • smdur1970smdur1970 Registered User Posts: 945 Member
    If they look at Arlington, note that Ballston is just south of Clarendon, on a subway line, and many apartments and other living choices. Very millennial. DD moved their from Silver Spring MD earlier this year and loves it.
  • jonrijonri Registered User Posts: 7,389 Senior Member
  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 76,168 Senior Member
    Maybe prices have gone down...but our relative spent $1200 a month to rent a bedroom in a shared place in DuPont Circle.

    DC experts...where will $2000 a month get a nice one bedroom place?
  • downtoearthdowntoearth Registered User Posts: 3,388 Senior Member
    My D rents for that Thumper around American University.
  • MarianMarian Registered User Posts: 13,241 Senior Member
    My daughter lived in DC for 3 years, in the Cleveland Park neighborhood, and thought it was fine. But she worked in DC, not Arlington. Cleveland Park (and DuPont Circle and Woodley Park) are a long way from Arlington, and the commute by Metro involves changing trains, which lengthens the time considerably.

    The studio apartment she rented now goes for $1600 a month.

    One thing about living in DC: You had better like jury duty. You're going to be called every 2 years, and no power on earth will get you out of it. My daughter was called for grand jury duty -- which lasts for 5 solid weeks -- with 2 extra days later on. Talk about disrupting your job!
  • nw2thisnw2this Registered User Posts: 2,633 Senior Member
    I'll add Capital Hill as another option.
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 36,904 Senior Member
    My D and her H are shopping for a condo or townhouse in the DC area right now. Their real estate agent says prices are jumping in the Crystal City area due to the Amazon announcent. They are looking more in the Silver Springs (MD, near Red Line), so that is not as impacted. But real estate prices are still high. They rent in North Bethesda now, but were near Woodly Park for several years.

    Is his job location known? Is it near one of the metro lines? Just wondering if he plans to commute on the metro, that could affect their choice of which line they want to live near. Of course you can transfer, but it adds time to the commute.
  • Bromfield2Bromfield2 Registered User Posts: 3,534 Senior Member
    My daughter and husband lived in the Logan Circle area when they were in grad school—D at Georgetown McDonough and SIL at Johns Hopkins SAIS. They had an apartment in a renovated row house. Both of them walked to class—plus there was a metro nearby. There were shops and also a grocery store on 14th Street, which was a few blocks from their place. They sold their car before starting grad school, so parking wasn’t an issue. They both finished school in 2014 and left DC. This fall, they went back to DC for a friend’s wedding and stopped by their old neighborhood. They were surprised at how it had really taken off—many more restaurants, bars, stores, etc. They had a sublet and paid $1800 for a one-bedroom apartment.
  • 1214mom1214mom Registered User Posts: 4,580 Senior Member
    I just went through finding an apartment for my son. He wound up in Clarendon, less than a 5 minute walk to metro, but he’s paying quite a bit.
    We looked at a place in NoMa, but the area was just to sketchy for me. I asked a security guy (someone with a gun standing outside a building - he may have actually been a federal police guy) near metro if he would let my son, who was standing next to me, live in that area, and he said NO, and proceeded to tell us about people being shot, robbed, etc. I suspect in a couple of years that will be a nice area, but not now (can I mention a SMALL 2 br apt was going for $2800).
    We focused on the Arlington area close to DC and the NW area near metro (WOODLEY Park, etc.).
    I lived in Silver Spring for years, but moved over a decade ago. I do know real estate prices there went way up over the last several years, especially walking distance to metro. Someone I know lived there only a couple of years, and their house increased in value from about $400K to over 700K or so.
    I now live way out in the MD suburbs, but feel free to PM me if I can help.
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