Sunday, March 8, 2015

House Hunting: Gangsta's Paradise

One of the very first homes we toured was a Ryan Homes community in Capitol Heights, MD. They're building Schubert models, which have 2,522 square feet and 3 bedrooms for about $310,000. There is just nothing not to like about the design of these homes -- they are stunning.

The Pros:
  • Tons of space
  • Lots of natural light
  • Inexpensive for the area
  • Close to the metro stop
  • Close to downtown DC
  • Planned community park across the street
The Cons:
  • Crime.
  • Crime.
  • Crime.
In the end, this is what made our decision for us, from Trulia's crime mapping tool:

Especially in the winter when the days are short, I need to make sure that I can safely walk from the Metro stop to the house alone, and I didn't feel confident I could do that in this neighborhood. The community doesn't have a walking path to the Metro, it's just regular sidewalks, not all of which are adequately lit. Safety was my biggest concern with this community.

The other thing about this community is that there are zero amenities. It has a Safeway right down the street, surrounded by various check cashing places. Further east towards the Beltway, it has a Home Depot and Bed Bath and Beyond. We also did a casual Yelp search to see what kind of restaurants are around, and they're mostly chicken joints. We're dog owners, and right now there are no nice green spaces or parks to enjoy. The county has said they plan to put a park in, but it's not guaranteed, and there's also no timeline for completion.


  1. We checked out the Capitol Heights community too to make sure we really liked Greenbelt. it just didn't feel as safe or comfortable for us either.

  2. We looked at this community also and even though the house was nice we felt exactly the same.