U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Maryland
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 12-20-2011, 10:55 AM
 
3 posts, read 13,631 times
Reputation: 14

Advertisements

Hi, I am young, single professional looking to purchase my first home. I'm looking at townhomes in the Columbia/Ellicott City/Elkridge area. I have been out with my realtor a few times but haven't found what I am looking for yet. I would like to spend no more than $325k.

What are some of better neighborhoods called? What are the better school districts?

I do a lot of biking/running/triathlons in the Howard Co area but it is hard to know about the neighborhoods. Most of the people I see in the area are also running or on their bikes. I am moving from Northern Baltimore Co.

Thanks for any help.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 12-20-2011, 08:27 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
7,117 posts, read 7,090,217 times
Reputation: 2910
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajillity81 View Post
What are some of better neighborhoods called? What are the better school districts?
It's a generalization, but I looked at townhouses on Realtor.com, and noticed that Elkridge schools get better average ratings from GreatSchools (8-10), then Ellicott City(7-10). Columbia elementary schools got only average ratings. But then the houses in Columbia are older, and perhaps the more affluent families live in the newer housing in Elkridge or Columbia.

On the other hand, I think Columbia has better amenities in terms of trails, pools and sports facilities. For specific neighborhood comments, you could search the forum for better opinions. I haven't been in Columbia in a while.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-21-2011, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Ellicott City MD
2,248 posts, read 5,876,456 times
Reputation: 1750
Look at Dorsey Hall / Dorsey Search and at neighborhoods in River Hill (not sure what townhouses are there).

Columbia is way too big to make generalizations about the schools; there are multiple elementary schools in Columbia rated 10 on greatschools (my kids attend one even though we have an EC address). I'm not sure where the PP looked, but the ratings for Elkridge also go lower than stated. You really have to take the schools in Howard County one school at a time. Also, don't assume the closest school is the assigned school; check the address on the hcpss.org website to find out what schools are assigned to an address.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-21-2011, 11:55 AM
 
262 posts, read 623,868 times
Reputation: 82
Quote:
It's a generalization, but I looked at townhouses on Realtor.com, and noticed that Elkridge schools get better average ratings from GreatSchools (8-10), then Ellicott City(7-10)...
I looked at GreatSchools and got the opposite result. LOL. EC has a lot of 10's and Elkridge was lower. At any rate, for a price of 325k, you will probably be looking at older townhomes anywhere in the county. Clarksville and Marriottsville will probably be too high. The border area of Elkridge/EC has some very good schools and neighborhoods. Elkridge schools are fine, but the closer you are to Rt 1, there will be more of a mix and the test scores won't be as high. And as J_Lurk said, the Dorsey Hall area is very stable and a nice family community with quite a few older townhomes on Columbia Rd near the village center. It's also close to Centennial Park and has a wonderful elementary school. Further south in Columbia, the Kings Contrivance area has a lot of townhomes and is also a nice family area. There are a lot of other areas in Columbia, but I'm not as familiar with the townhomes.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-21-2011, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
7,117 posts, read 7,090,217 times
Reputation: 2910
I noticed the OP said he/she was single, so I was curious why looking at school quality was essential. I assumed the OP did not have children yet, but was thinking about it. In that case, it would be 5 to 6 years before any child was old enough for school. Things can change a lot in that time. I was just giving a broad brush on the schools based on the few TH's I saw in that price range.

If I were the OP, I would choose a community based on my current needs, which included training for a triathalon. So based on that, I suggested Columbia as having the best sports facilities including indoor pools. If anyone know of communities in Elkridge or Ellicott City which have indoor pools, please chime in.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-21-2011, 04:31 PM
 
262 posts, read 623,868 times
Reputation: 82
Quote:
If anyone know of communities in Elkridge or Ellicott City which have indoor pools, please chime in.
Lots of non-Columbia residents use the Columbia athletic facilities. Plus, there is the newly remodeled YMCA in EC. And people everywhere go to Life Time Fitness in Columbia.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-21-2011, 05:33 PM
 
Location: Sherwood
5,160 posts, read 7,437,929 times
Reputation: 4615
OMG can you FedEx me some of the money you're planning to waste...sorry spend...on a townhouse. At any rate, I think Elkridge looks sorta like a dump, but I've only been to the area around route 1. I accidentally got lost and found a trailer park, which is not an indication of dumpiness...but nevertheless. I am still shocked as all get out to discover Howard County is still so expensive.

But it is close to DC, and the schools are Excellent, and I suspect you earn more than I do (150K+) per year, otherwise, you wouldn't be willing to spend so much on a TOWNHOUSE. WTF I am so sick of MD...ridiculously overpriced. The people I have met in Eldridge seem OK, and if you are looking for the panache of Howard County, then go for it. But I personally am cheap and I would only spend that much on a SFH...I like Ellicott City better because of the Korean groceries and the Historic Ellicott City, which is cute. Columbia is OK and you can get decent Indian food. IMO they're all pretty much the same. Personally unless you're drowning in money, why not drive around the area and search outside hte box for good school systems where you can save a little $$. Thirty years is a long commitment...but I guess if you buy in an "in demand" area, you should be able to resell the place easily if needed...I personally wouldn't risk it...but what do I know.

Sheesh...I am going to look on Realtor.com in those areas so I can get a good chuckle. OMO you are looking for good schools, too so I suspect you're planning to have kids or already have them. How on earth can you afford kids paying so much for housing?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-22-2011, 02:22 PM
 
3 posts, read 13,631 times
Reputation: 14
goldenage, i am single but i am also looking at school districts for resale value. this isn't the home I am going to be in forever so resale is also important.

thank you to everyone for some of the insight.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-22-2011, 02:35 PM
 
3 posts, read 13,631 times
Reputation: 14
I am not interested in being judged on how I chose to spend my money. I came to this site to look for information. I am interested in moving into the Howard Co area, specifically Columbia/Ellicott City/Elkridge and was looking for what some of the the better neighborhoods to move into. Like stay away from X but Y is ok or Z is fantastic. I have found out some information from other sites, but I have never been attacked like this before. Send money my way, schools aren't important if you are single, etc.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-22-2011, 03:28 PM
 
Location: Sherwood
5,160 posts, read 7,437,929 times
Reputation: 4615
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajillity81 View Post
I am not interested in being judged on how I chose to spend my money. I came to this site to look for information. I am interested in moving into the Howard Co area, specifically Columbia/Ellicott City/Elkridge and was looking for what some of the the better neighborhoods to move into. Like stay away from X but Y is ok or Z is fantastic. I have found out some information from other sites, but I have never been attacked like this before. Send money my way, schools aren't important if you are single, etc.
Oooh. Welcome to CD.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2011 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Maryland
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top