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Old 04-02-2017, 04:01 PM
5 posts, read 16,337 times
Reputation: 10


I am going to be moving to the Fort Meade area probably before the end of 2017. I've been doing a lot of research about where to live. I've seen a lot of great things written about Crofton and Odenton. There have been brief mentions about Savage, Gambrills, Millerstown, and Elkridge. I'd love more info about these places. Here's a little bit more about my situation.

*It will be me and my 6th grade daughter to start
*My high school son will join us in 1 year
*My husband won't be able to join us for at least 2 years (long story)
*We are an interracial couple and family
*I don't want to commute more than 30 minutes, that's taking into account traffic

HOUSING NEEDS (in no particular order)
*Rent until the family's together again (at least 2 years)
*Diversity (racial and ethnic)
*Progressive/liberal (e.g., LGBTQ-friendly, interracial couple/family friendly)
*Safe especially since it will only be me and my daughter to start
*Good schools (middle and high)
*Pet friendly (dog and cat)

You probably need to know how much I can afford. That's complicated because we will be paying for 2 homes/utilities, etc for at least 2 years, and I don't know my exact salary yet. I'm hoping no more than $2,000/month in rent.

I know this is a lot. I'll be making some trips up there to get a feel for various areas.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:45 AM
309 posts, read 569,658 times
Reputation: 192
30 minutes from Ft. Meade gives you a lot of options. Generally, the central MD region is diverse but regardless of where you are you will get some stares (I'm sure you are used to that, though).

You are pretty much fine in Anne Arundel County; however I would avoid parts (not all) of Glen Burnie (and anything north of it), Annapolis city, and Severn. Howard county you won't have a problem. Outside of those two counties I would look into Greenbelt and Bowie, but that's only if you can't find anything elsewhere. Greenbelt and Bowie are OK to live in and would be more diverse, but the schools in Prince George's are not nearly as on par with Anne Arundel or Howard.

What I would do is go to greatschools.org, find the schools in Howard and Anne Arundel that are the highest rated and then find homes within those school districts.

Good school districts and expensive properties go hand in hand here. You should be able to find somewhere without too much of an issue, though.
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Old 04-03-2017, 07:21 AM
90 posts, read 65,714 times
Reputation: 54
Fort Meade/NSA folks I know live in North Laurel (Gorman Rd. area), West Laurel (PG county), Beltsville, then West Anne Arundel County (Gambrills, Piney Orchard). Anne Arundel Co. is probably the most conservative (I'll leave specifics in the politics forum) and I used to live in Old Mill area in Millersville, but I think you can find a better fit for your needs. If I'm in your situation, I'm checking areas where I can avoid 295 traffic. Columbia MD I believe at one point had one of the highest % of interracial couples in the country, but the eye test also tells you that it's a super-diverse area. One note is that even if a house looks very close to 95 or 32 on the map, the nearest exit may be a 10 minute drive, so keep this in mind when browsing map-views of rental sites.

The amenities in these areas also vary, so please let us know if you have preferences for shopping, grocery, proximity to recreation/dog parks, etc.
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Old 04-04-2017, 08:27 AM
4,931 posts, read 4,639,782 times
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Originally Posted by tgs_bg View Post
...I would avoid parts (not all) of Glen Burnie (and anything north of it)...

Indeed, there are parts of Glen Burnie to avoid, but most of it is just normal, boring, suburb like most any other. It's not ALL Ritchie Hwy.

Linthicum and Ferndale (both north of Glen Burnie) are worth checking out.
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Old 04-05-2017, 01:49 PM
Location: Howard County, Maryland
1,539 posts, read 1,593,766 times
Reputation: 2426
I think if you start looking at schools, that will help you narrow down where you want to be. So, look into Anne Arundel County Public Schools (feeds towns such as Gambrills, Crofton, Odenton) and Howard County Public Schools (for towns like Elkridge, Columbia, Ellicott City). GreatSchools - Public and Private School Ratings, Reviews and Parent Community is a good resource for looking at data/demographics.
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Old 04-06-2017, 01:03 PM
Location: Annapolis, MD
15 posts, read 14,848 times
Reputation: 23
Crofton/Gambrills/Odenton is the ideal spot for what you want. It is a little busy (and getting busier), also a bit on the expensive side but 100% worth the extra $$ in schools/amenities/location to Ft. Meade.
More specifically a community called Piney Orchard. Similar mix of people, of course a lot of Ft. Meade employees and as you can see from the website amenities galore. Pools, walking trails parks etc.
Also it is such a transient area that rentals pop up all the time so you shouldn't have a hard time finding anything in that range if you are a little flexible!
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Old 04-10-2017, 08:32 PM
5 posts, read 16,337 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks for all the feedback. It's really helpful. What are your thoughts about Savage and Elkridge?

Last edited by Nc2md2017; 04-10-2017 at 08:33 PM.. Reason: misspelled Elkridge
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Old 04-11-2017, 06:51 AM
90 posts, read 65,714 times
Reputation: 54
Savage is a unique town and affordable, with what seems to be older homes when driving through. The "time warp" that it appears to be may fit most people's tastes, but I think it's a quaint area. I remember looking at a townhome in Bowling Brook (N. Laurel), walking distance from Savage, and think I would have been happy if we ended up moving there. Seemed like a good community with lots of folks chatting with neighbors.

Elkridge, like Jessup, can get a bad rap from what goes on along Route 1, but certainly has its desirable neighborhoods. Elkridge sort of bleeds into Columbia along 175, making it convenient for all of the amenities (Dobbin Road area) of Columbia.
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Old 04-11-2017, 06:59 PM
5 posts, read 16,337 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks, MDaaCO
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