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Old 11-26-2017, 05:11 AM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,090 posts, read 18,624,496 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
In all truth, this question is, as of now, a hypothetical question, but the answers may be useful in 5-ish years from now, if not less, so I'm asking to keep it in mind as I consider my options for the future.
Since the densely populated parts of Maryland have expensive housing relative to working-class paychecks, I hope you consider other parts of the country as well. It would be hard to pay a mortgage on one paycheck if you are staying home with future children.

For example, parts Oregon can be liberal and still affordable. The Midwest also has affordable housing compared to paychecks.
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Old 11-27-2017, 11:34 AM
 
90 posts, read 65,890 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
Some personal criteria to help you answer (other counties/areas are acceptable if you think it overall qualifies).
-fair amount of ethnic diversity. Enough white people so that I wouldn't stick out as "that white lady" and enough non-whites so that people don't think of my husband as "that Asian dude" (half Asian and 1/4 Latino). Bonus points of there's a strong Latino community, because his family are native Spanish speakers, so our children will know it as well. I should say that my husband isn't as sensitive about racial representation as I am for him (and for our future children), so while I would prefer what's described above, a mainly white area that has most or all of the below would suffice as well.

-isn't sketchy. I know "sketchy" is subjective, so here's the rule of thumb: if you don't feel OK about a woman you care about walking around there alone at night, it's sketchy. If there's statistically low violent crime to speak of but a fair amount of theft and/or property damage, then it's "mildly sketchy". A place that's statistically low in all crime aspects is "safe" or "not sketchy". I know this is making things more black/white then they probably should be, but at least this way there's less confusion and debate of meaning in the comments, and you're free to elaborate as you like.

-I should mention that decent schools aren't a high priority, because I intend to have any children of mine home schooled.

-A place where 2 working class adults living together (60-80k combined gross income) can reasonably expect to afford a home 2-3 bedroom home.

-A strong liberal/Democrat community (ah yes, dreaded politics! I understand Frederick had a higher % that voted for Trump than the other 2 mentioned, but I assume the Southern area to have a relatively high amount of liberals since it borders MoCo, hence it gets thrown in).

-I would prefer not to stray too far from the BWI area.
The three counties mentioned are pretty far apart geographically, but let us know how much of a priority the location is. Catonsville was mentioned, which is a short drive to BWI and a cute town. Check out 144 by Bill's Music on a Saturday for the downtown vibe. I think Frederick city is underrated; you can't really go wrong with most of town. The state fair is quite an "American" experience. IMO, a decent amount of diversity in Frederick as far as Latinos (not as much as places like Takoma Park, but still a good amount compared to surrounding regions). Urbana is basically Montgomery County, and somewhat sterile-looking (if I could afford the new constructions and worked nearby, I'd probably want to live there, though!). Howard County is $$$$$, but has great amenities and a blend of natural landscapes with more dense areas and conveniences. Elkridge, North Laurel, and Savage are probably best bang for your buck in Howard County (as are parts of Columbia). Just know that Maryland traffic is like other major metro areas in that rush hour can triple the commute time compared to say, a Sunday morning.
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Old 11-30-2017, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Maryland not Murlin
8,185 posts, read 21,745,007 times
Reputation: 6116
Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
Some personal criteria to help you answer (other counties/areas are acceptable if you think it overall qualifies).
-fair amount of ethnic diversity. Enough white people so that I wouldn't stick out as "that white lady" and enough non-whites so that people don't think of my husband as "that Asian dude" (half Asian and 1/4 Latino). Bonus points of there's a strong Latino community, because his family are native Spanish speakers, so our children will know it as well. I should say that my husband isn't as sensitive about racial representation as I am for him (and for our future children), so while I would prefer what's described above, a mainly white area that has most or all of the below would suffice as well.

-isn't sketchy. I know "sketchy" is subjective, so here's the rule of thumb: if you don't feel OK about a woman you care about walking around there alone at night, it's sketchy. If there's statistically low violent crime to speak of but a fair amount of theft and/or property damage, then it's "mildly sketchy". A place that's statistically low in all crime aspects is "safe" or "not sketchy". I know this is making things more black/white then they probably should be, but at least this way there's less confusion and debate of meaning in the comments, and you're free to elaborate as you like.

-I should mention that decent schools aren't a high priority, because I intend to have any children of mine home schooled.

-A place where 2 working class adults living together (60-80k combined gross income) can reasonably expect to afford a home 2-3 bedroom home.

-A strong liberal/Democrat community (ah yes, dreaded politics! I understand Frederick had a higher % that voted for Trump than the other 2 mentioned, but I assume the Southern area to have a relatively high amount of liberals since it borders MoCo, hence it gets thrown in).

-I would prefer not to stray too far from the BWI area.
I live in Columbia (Howard County), it's not that expensive compared to other parts of HoCo. Ironically, the more rural you get in HoCo the more expensive it becomes. The multi-million dollar homes in HoCo all seem smack dab in farm country. With that, outside of Columbia, HoCo is fairly Red and for some reason people's lives around here are so exciting that all they care to talk about is politics and sports. I am not joking about this. I will say that even if you are a Liberal most Conservatives will still be rather cordial, in company.

I would not suggest Elkridge if you want to avoid sketchy. In five year's time it might be improved, though. Ellicott City and Catonsville might suit your bill.

For Democrat, any "big" city and Montgomery County in general will do. For Liberal, I dunno. People in Maryland seem to equate Liberal with Dem even though most true Liberals are Independents. I don't even think that a Maryland Liberal would even know what a real Liberal is all about. Maryland was settled by English royalty and most it seems, whether Dem or Rep, black or white, seem to have that same sense of royal entitlement.

For Hispanic, Columbia and Baltimore are both growing in populations as well as DC area suburbs. This is a new phenomenon in Maryland. Despite what that some posters may claim Maryland is being invaded my Mexico keep in mind that the Hispanic population in Maryland is still rather low and lower than in other States except for maybe Maine and Montana.

For ethnic diversity in general, Maryland is about 40% white and 40% black. The next highest group would be Asian with Korean making up near 100%.

Maryland is rather expensive. For that combined combined income and other things you mention to desire, Frederick is likely your best bet.
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Old 12-04-2017, 05:49 PM
 
170 posts, read 84,564 times
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AA all he way!
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Old 12-06-2017, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,705 posts, read 18,498,983 times
Reputation: 5415
I don't understand why anybody would want to live in Frederick. It's basically like taking a typical red state midwestern suburb and sticking it 30 miles from DC (about 2 hours in typical traffic). There is nothing there but chains and strip malls and it's still pretty expensive for what you are getting.

Go with AA or Howard.
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Old 12-06-2017, 12:06 PM
 
Location: Cumberland
4,562 posts, read 7,621,816 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
I don't understand why anybody would want to live in Frederick. It's basically like taking a typical red state midwestern suburb and sticking it 30 miles from DC (about 2 hours in typical traffic). There is nothing there but chains and strip malls and it's still pretty expensive for what you are getting.

Go with AA or Howard.
Downtown Frederick is an intact early-mid 19th century town with a ton of charm, lots of stuff to do, and a very nice aesthetic.

The Catoctin Mtns run through the county, creating a situation where you can live 10 minutes from mountain hiking trails, the suburban strip mall stuff, and downtown Frederick.

Because of the mountains, the city and most of the county has more dramatic viewscapes than the flatish counties of Howard and AA.

I find it much less generic suburban than Howard or AA (excepting Annapolis) for these reasons.
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Old 12-07-2017, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
4,936 posts, read 3,134,066 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westsideboy View Post
Downtown Frederick is an intact early-mid 19th century town with a ton of charm, lots of stuff to do, and a very nice aesthetic.

The Catoctin Mtns run through the county, creating a situation where you can live 10 minutes from mountain hiking trails, the suburban strip mall stuff, and downtown Frederick.

Because of the mountains, the city and most of the county has more dramatic viewscapes than the flatish counties of Howard and AA.

I find it much less generic suburban than Howard or AA (excepting Annapolis) for these reasons.

Each of the counties mentioned by the OP has charming old historic towns. In Frederick County, it's Frederick. In Howard County, it's Ellicott City. And in Anne Arundel County, it's Annapolis. Perhaps not coincidentally, all three of those places just so happen to be the county seats of their respective counties.
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Old 12-07-2017, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
4,936 posts, read 3,134,066 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
-fair amount of ethnic diversity. Enough white people so that I wouldn't stick out as "that white lady" and enough non-whites so that people don't think of my husband as "that Asian dude" (half Asian and 1/4 Latino). Bonus points of there's a strong Latino community, because his family are native Spanish speakers, so our children will know it as well. I should say that my husband isn't as sensitive about racial representation as I am for him (and for our future children), so while I would prefer what's described above, a mainly white area that has most or all of the below would suffice as well.
All three counties mentioned (Howard, Anne Arundel, Frederick) are majority white but have noticeable Asian and Latino populations. In Howard, Latinos tend to be concentrated in East Columbia and along the U.S. 1 corridor from Elkridge through Jessup and down to Laurel. I'm not as familiar with the other two counties, but I believe the strongest concentrations of Latinos are to be found in Annapolis (Anne Arundel) and Frederick (the city). The largest Asian population in these three counties is in Howard, especially Ellicott City.


Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
-isn't sketchy. I know "sketchy" is subjective, so here's the rule of thumb: if you don't feel OK about a woman you care about walking around there alone at night, it's sketchy. If there's statistically low violent crime to speak of but a fair amount of theft and/or property damage, then it's "mildly sketchy". A place that's statistically low in all crime aspects is "safe" or "not sketchy". I know this is making things more black/white then they probably should be, but at least this way there's less confusion and debate of meaning in the comments, and you're free to elaborate as you like.
All three of these counties have a handful of sketchy areas, but are predominantly non-sketchy. Unfortunately, the lower in price you go, the more likely you're going to find sketchiness. Violent crime is low in pretty much all of Howard County and most of the other two as well. In Anne Arundel, the places to avoid are the housing projects that are concentrated near Forest Drive in Annapolis. (The weird thing is, you can't actually see them from Forest Drive itself; but they're there, tucked away behind it.) I'm not sure about Frederick, though I don't believe they have a major problem with violent crime, even in the poorer parts of Frederick city.


Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
-I should mention that decent schools aren't a high priority, because I intend to have any children of mine home schooled.
Though, it still can't hurt to keep it in mind. After all, your homeschooling plans may end up changing for one reason or another. Also, there is often a correlation between the quality of the schools and other quality-of-life issues, including crime and sketchiness.


Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
-A place where 2 working class adults living together (60-80k combined gross income) can reasonably expect to afford a home 2-3 bedroom home.
As a broad-based generalization, price-wise, Howard > Anne Arundel > Frederick. In Howard, your best bet is going to be along the U.S. 1 corridor, which is dominated by townhouses. (You didn't say if you'd be OK with a townhouse or if you want single-family.) In Anne Arundel, stay away from the shores of the Chesapeake Bay or of any of the rivers. In Frederick, I would guess that parts of Frederick city are going to have the prices you're looking for.


Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
-A strong liberal/Democrat community (ah yes, dreaded politics! I understand Frederick had a higher % that voted for Trump than the other 2 mentioned, but I assume the Southern area to have a relatively high amount of liberals since it borders MoCo, hence it gets thrown in).
Howard is probably the most liberal of the bunch, followed by Anne Arundel. Frederick is somewhat more conservative. None of them can hold a candle to Montgomery or Prince George's or Baltimore City in terms of liberalism. For whatever reason, the Route 100 corridor through northeastern Howard and northern Anne Arundel tends to be a little more conservative than the surrounding areas.


Quote:
Originally Posted by YKhtwdy View Post
-I would prefer not to stray too far from the BWI area.
BWI Airport is located in northern Anne Arundel. Keep in mind that Anne Arundel is a lot longer than it it wide, so the southern portion of the country is a good distance away from the airport. BWI is easily reached from Howard, especially the eastern part. Frederick is quite a bit farther away from it.
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