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Old 03-25-2015, 12:09 PM
 
22 posts, read 35,427 times
Reputation: 34

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Female in my early 30s, no kids, and I've lived in Mount Vernon for the past year and a half. I like the neighborhood but don't like my specific apartment, so I'm trying to move in May. My price range is under $1200/month.

In considering where to live, I'm looking at Hampden (closest to where I have a PT job) and Federal Hill (because I like the architecture of the neighborhood, the feel of having water nearby, and the easy access to downtown/95).

I'm aware of the pros and cons of both neighborhoods, but in a fairly shallow sense. Hampden, I like the quieter feel of the residential part and I like the kind of funky vibe of the commercial strip. But it feels detached from the rest of the city, and it's harder to travel out of (I go to DC often). I also worry about it being a deeply local place while I'm a transplant. Federal Hill, I listed the pros above -- I've seen a lot of cool housing options there -- but I'm aware of the "frat boy" and/or snobby reputation and it doesn't appeal to me.

The third option on the table is staying in Mount Vernon. I've been relatively satisfied with the neighborhood but I've found a lot of the housing options (really rundown, old buildings) pretty grim. I also wish some of those vacant commercial spaces would fill up so there'd be more activity in places beyond Charles Street.

If anyone has any comments or suggestions, I'd love to hear them. Would also love suggestions for ways to find rentals beyond Craigslist.
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Old 03-25-2015, 02:20 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,494 posts, read 62,136,122 times
Reputation: 32163
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokeDC View Post
I'm looking at Hampden (closest to where I have a PT job)
I'm aware of the pros and cons of both neighborhoods, but in a fairly shallow sense.

If anyone has any comments or suggestions...
For a year or two of renting... I'd suggest going with the job.
Buying would raise a whole host of other concerns (for both).

Cut down on commute time/cost.
Take the train downtown
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Old 03-25-2015, 02:40 PM
 
Location: Patterson Park, Baltimore
934 posts, read 782,079 times
Reputation: 597
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokeDC View Post
but I'm aware of the "frat boy" and/or snobby reputation and it doesn't appeal to me.
I'd stay away from Fed Hill for this reason. I'm in my mid-20s (what is supposed to be the prime age for Federal Hill) and even I find the bros there obnoxious. I definitely enjoy visiting, walking around, and going out there for a meal or drinks once in awhile, but I don't think I would live there.

I wouldn't worry about Hampden being too "deeply local." It's close enough to the Hopkins Homewood campus that there are plenty of transplants there. I'm a graduate student at Hopkins (med campus though, not Homewood) and I know plenty of grad students that live in Hampden who take the Hopkins shuttle to commute to the med campus. Plus I know of some Hopkins faculty that live in that neighborhood as well.

That said, like you said, it kind of depends on the vibe you want. Mount Vernon is definitely more in the center of things and has more "hustle and bustle," so to speak. More diverse dining and nightlife options and more convenient access to public transit/major thoroughfares. Hampden is definitely quieter, more residential, and more off the beaten path; it definitely has an artsy/hipster vibe.

You're right that Mount Vernon has a lot of old brownstones that are falling apart, but there are a lot of newer apartment complexes popping up there all the time that could possibly work for you. In Hampden, your options are probably going to be more restricted to rowhomes (which most of the time would probably exceed your budget) or rooms being rented out in rowhomes.

Good luck!
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Old 03-25-2015, 04:36 PM
 
22 posts, read 35,427 times
Reputation: 34
Thanks for the replies.

@designer_genes, I'm definitely having trouble finding apartments in Hampden, since it is so rowhouse-oriented. At my age I'm over living with a group of random roommates. I've been considering renting a rowhouse on my own and finding one roommate to fill a spare room, but I don't know. I'd prefer a 1-BR apartment and it appears they're scarce.

Anyone got any tips on that?

And it's a shame Federal Hill has the "bro" rep because I do love the looks/feel of the area otherwise. And there's some cool little carriage houses and such within my price range.
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Old 03-26-2015, 05:50 AM
 
Location: East Coast
866 posts, read 2,306,676 times
Reputation: 542
In Federal Hill proper (the streets closest to Federal Hill Park), there might be less of a bro feel. Another alternative is Locust Point. It might be a little cheaper there, it's still close to water, and it's very close to I-95.

You could also look for rentals in Medfield and Remington, neighborhoods that border Hampden.
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Old 03-26-2015, 06:04 AM
 
5,292 posts, read 5,603,729 times
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"I also worry about it being a deeply local place while I'm a transplant..."

*"Deeply local?!" That is a new one. I like that.





Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokeDC View Post
Female in my early 30s, no kids, and I've lived in Mount Vernon for the past year and a half. I like the neighborhood but don't like my specific apartment, so I'm trying to move in May. My price range is under $1200/month.

In considering where to live, I'm looking at Hampden (closest to where I have a PT job) and Federal Hill (because I like the architecture of the neighborhood, the feel of having water nearby, and the easy access to downtown/95).

I'm aware of the pros and cons of both neighborhoods, but in a fairly shallow sense. Hampden, I like the quieter feel of the residential part and I like the kind of funky vibe of the commercial strip. But it feels detached from the rest of the city, and it's harder to travel out of (I go to DC often). I also worry about it being a deeply local place while I'm a transplant. Federal Hill, I listed the pros above -- I've seen a lot of cool housing options there -- but I'm aware of the "frat boy" and/or snobby reputation and it doesn't appeal to me.

The third option on the table is staying in Mount Vernon. I've been relatively satisfied with the neighborhood but I've found a lot of the housing options (really rundown, old buildings) pretty grim. I also wish some of those vacant commercial spaces would fill up so there'd be more activity in places beyond Charles Street.

If anyone has any comments or suggestions, I'd love to hear them. Would also love suggestions for ways to find rentals beyond Craigslist.
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Old 03-26-2015, 06:07 AM
 
5,292 posts, read 5,603,729 times
Reputation: 1127
Question? What is a bro reputation, and how does this correlate with Federal Hill? Are you talking about "frat boy" antics and behavior?
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Old 03-26-2015, 08:14 AM
 
Location: Baltimore
2,331 posts, read 1,522,352 times
Reputation: 715
Good luck parking in Federal Hill, what a nightmare. Hampden is a hipster center that is near Druid Hill Park. Mount Vernon is beautiful if you can land in the right spot. I would choose Mount Vernon.
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Old 03-26-2015, 09:45 AM
 
Location: Patterson Park, Baltimore
934 posts, read 782,079 times
Reputation: 597
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokeDC View Post
Thanks for the replies.

@designer_genes, I'm definitely having trouble finding apartments in Hampden, since it is so rowhouse-oriented. At my age I'm over living with a group of random roommates. I've been considering renting a rowhouse on my own and finding one roommate to fill a spare room, but I don't know. I'd prefer a 1-BR apartment and it appears they're scarce.

Anyone got any tips on that?

And it's a shame Federal Hill has the "bro" rep because I do love the looks/feel of the area otherwise. And there's some cool little carriage houses and such within my price range.
Yeah, I can imagine that your ideal housing situation would be hard to come by in Hampden. I live in a rowhome with one roommate (one of my classmates) and for what it's worth, I love it. But, my roommate and I are very close and knew each other before we ended up in the same program, so I got lucky in that regard. But, I love rowhouse living and if you really like Hampden I think getting a rowhouse and trying to find a roommate may be a viable option. Apartments feel so cookie-cutter to me most of the time and I love that my house has character.

Regarding Fed Hill, I agree that it's a shame because the area is truly lovely. I guess whether Fed Hill would actually work for you in practice depends a lot on how often you like to go out and about. Because if you enjoy getting some drinks with friends/colleagues every once in awhile, the college-like atmosphere of the bars and restaurants in the area may irk you. But, if you keep to yourself and don't go out a ton, the bros may be easy to ignore. I don't know for sure because I don't live there, but those are just my thoughts.

Personally, I think your best option may be just to relocate within Mount Vernon since you know you like the neighborhood and I definitely think there are less run-down options there that could work for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Infinite_heights77 View Post
Question? What is a bro reputation, and how does this correlate with Federal Hill? Are you talking about "frat boy" antics and behavior?
Yes, the frat boy antics and behavior are mostly what I'm talking about when I refer to the "bros" in Fed Hill. Drunk white college (and 20-somethings who act like they're still in college) frat boys.
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Old 03-26-2015, 10:11 AM
 
Location: Fed Hill
252 posts, read 344,175 times
Reputation: 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by designer_genes View Post
Yeah, I can imagine that your ideal housing situation would be hard to come by in Hampden. I live in a rowhome with one roommate (one of my classmates) and for what it's worth, I love it. But, my roommate and I are very close and knew each other before we ended up in the same program, so I got lucky in that regard. But, I love rowhouse living and if you really like Hampden I think getting a rowhouse and trying to find a roommate may be a viable option. Apartments feel so cookie-cutter to me most of the time and I love that my house has character.

Regarding Fed Hill, I agree that it's a shame because the area is truly lovely. I guess whether Fed Hill would actually work for you in practice depends a lot on how often you like to go out and about. Because if you enjoy getting some drinks with friends/colleagues every once in awhile, the college-like atmosphere of the bars and restaurants in the area may irk you. But, if you keep to yourself and don't go out a ton, the bros may be easy to ignore. I don't know for sure because I don't live there, but those are just my thoughts.

Personally, I think your best option may be just to relocate within Mount Vernon since you know you like the neighborhood and I definitely think there are less run-down options there that could work for you.



Yes, the frat boy antics and behavior are mostly what I'm talking about when I refer to the "bros" in Fed Hill. Drunk white college (and 20-somethings who act like they're still in college) frat boys.
In my opinion, if you don't go to a few select bars, you won't run into that behavior nearly as much. Plenty of other great bars around.
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