City vs. Suburbia – Something to Contemplate?

My husband and I have lived in our Dupont Circle condo for 8 years.  Nearly an eternity!  For those unfamiliar, Dupont is a lively area of Washington, DC that is filled with restaurants, bars, shops and a wide range of lively and engaged people.  It is handy to the metro system but you could even walk downtown or to the White House in 20 minutes or so.  We absolutely love it here.

For some time though, we’ve been thinking of how great it would be to have a bigger yard, driveway and a little more space.  Also, sometimes it just seems like it would be nice to be in a slower paced neighborhood.  So today we met with a Realtor for the first time to check out homes in Northern Virginia.  They are all within 20 miles of downtown so we could easily drive in for dinner with friends, but far enough away that we would go from being amongst young, mostly childless professionals to folks in the other various stages of life.

Our first day out was rainy and a bit dreary so perhaps not the best day to judge things, but our Realtor seems patient enough and is happy to expand our search by duration and distance.  We’ll see how we feel after another few trips with her.  In any case, it would definitely a big life change for us, so we’re definitely not in any rush.  I’ll definitely share any interesting insights into the area or the process as we go along.



4 responses to “City vs. Suburbia – Something to Contemplate?

  1. Always a hard decision – they both have pros and cons – make a list! Good luck!

    • Thanks for your thoughts – it is a tough decision for so many reasons! It reminds you to appreciate the moment a little more and enjoy your time in any situation!

  2. As long as you love where you are, don’t move.

    In my book, there are only two places to live. The classic urban city because it’s close to work, has public transit, walkable neighbourhoods that keep you in shape and plenty of services and entertainment opportunities.

    Then there’s rural life. Actual countryside, not just some subdivision that backs onto a farmer’s field. Those farms are going to subdivision soon anyway. I’m talking about farms for as far as the eyes can see at least 30 minutes from anything larger than a small town. Rural life has peace & quiet, fresh air and -unlike quasi-rural areas about to be overtaken by subdivisions full of other people leaving cities, they will keep their charm. Many people who leave cities for satellite towns find their quality of life degrades as more people do exactly what they did. Don’t fall into that trap.

    Suburban life is the worst. It’s the classic false promise. It was meant to combine the best of both worlds but, more often, it tends to combine the worst of both worlds. The crowding of the urban combines with the isolating effects of the rural. Unless you live to shop at malls and big box stores and love driving your car in heavy traffic, suburban life has little to offer you other than a longer daily commute.

    I’ve enjoyed living in both urban and rural, but I’d rather put a bullet in my brain than “live” in suburbia.

    • You are right – I’ve always seen it exactly as you’ve described (rural or urban but no suburban) but it is hard to keep from buckling under the pressure when moving to the burbs is apparently the natural next step and there are, of course, some less than wonderful things about living downtown (parking… well, can’t think of much else.)

      Thanks for the feedback at this very precarious time;)… Will let you know what we decide…

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