Friday, March 6, 2015

The House Hunt Process, Part II

Once we had our wish list in hand, we started looking in earnest and visiting lots of houses. Although we did research on our own, we were glad to have a realtor with us: she brought us to communities we hadn't considered, and also pointed out potential flaws. We had a budget of $350,000, although we saw several places that cost a little more in the hopes that there was possibility for negotiating down.

Here are just some of the houses we visited, mapped out relative to the Metro system lines. Although we do own a car, being close to public transit was really important to us since that's what we use to get to work in downtown Washington every day. In a perfect world, we'd love to be closer to downtown, but wallet-wise, our budget wouldn't have put us in neighborhoods or spaces that made us happy.

We really liked several of the neighborhoods we saw, but virtually all of them had things we'd need to change - nasty carpeting, bizarre kitchens, doll sized sinks, etc. Carpeting and sinks are cosmetic fixes, but when the places are already at the top of the budget, who can afford the fixes?

If you're unfamiliar with the DC metro area you might wonder, as we did, how the townhouse in the Greenbelt area (yellow marker on the map) could be so affordable relative to the rest of the places we saw. The short answer is that Montgomery County is, by and large, more thoroughly developed than Prince George's County. Another significant factor is that the Montgomery County school system is leaps and bounds better than PG County, as you can gather from this WaPo article.


Post a Comment