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Old 12-08-2007, 04:21 AM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
10 posts, read 19,102 times
Reputation: 10

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I'm getting ready to retire and considering Northern VA because two of my children live there, and I like the idea of all the cultural opportunities there are in the area. VT, I'm not on quite the stringent budget you are (and I applaud you for your comments), but also don't want to blow away all of my savings in one year in VA. Perhaps you have some advice to offer, areas to suggest, etc that will help me. I've just begun to look, I'm considering Fairfax and Old Alexandria, want to be close to public transportation, and live in a community where I can get to know folks.

I know people (including my kids) who live in the Northern VA area, and they don't fit the profile Scranton offers. I think NVA is culture shock to those of us from the PA coal regions.
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Old 12-08-2007, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,782,683 times
Reputation: 18989
"I'm sorry if I offended anyone with that stereotype, but I just assumed that Northern Virginia was likewise a "rat race" type of an area, but I guess apperances can indeed be deceiving."

I'm not offended... but it is obvious that you've made a series of judgements based on DRIVING THROUGH an area rather than living there. Sorta like the people who drive through Scranton and judge it to be a dirty, run down heap (because all that drivers see are the trashy places right next to the Penn. Turnpike).

You have shown us that Scranton has many parks and architectural delights that a person driving on the PA Turnpike doesn't see. And there are many aspects to Loudoun County that you did not see.

FWIW, my neighbors are not anything like the people you describe. And I think you know from the many posts I have made that I'm not either. I'm sure you can find plenty of materialistic fools--they're everywhere, even in Scranton. But IMO most of the people here aren't that shallow.
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Old 10-22-2008, 09:27 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
993 posts, read 2,188,612 times
Reputation: 308
Default NOVA! Yeah

Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvinDogs74 View Post
I totally agree here. I've lived in this sorry area for a little over two years now and cannot wait to get the H E double hockeysticks out of here.
I am sorry that you are not enjoying living in Northern Virginia, but did you do any research on what the cost of living is there? I lived there for 26 years, besides my 4 years of college in Harrisonburg, VA. Believe me I know how I tough it is there. I lived with my parents 3 years after graduating to save money. A cost-living calculator might have given you the information you needed to maybe reconsider coming here. I know you came here because of your bf and now fiancee, but sometimes you have to look at the finances as well. Good luck. I recently moved to San Antonio from NOVA. Yup drove across the whole southeast U.S. Sure glad I am came here, cause now I can live on my own, where with a college degree in NOVA it is possible but difficult.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvinDogs74 View Post
$978 for a one bedroom apartment (937 sq feet IIRC). Half a mill for a two bedroom.
Are you comparing apartments and condos here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvinDogs74 View Post
Compared to where we want to move (where its $400/mth for 3br), this area is ridiculous.
How is the job market where you want to move? How is crime and weather at those prices?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvinDogs74 View Post
I don't care how much you will be paid, this is such a highly priced and taxed area its pathetic. the traffic is horrendous as well, so many self involved people here who don't know how to drive its idiotic.
I will give you credit for the bad drivers, especially Marylanders, but if you do get paid enough it does make things easier, you would be surprised


Quote:
Originally Posted by flyhigh View Post
I'm getting ready to retire and considering Northern VA because two of my children live there, and I like the idea of all the cultural opportunities there are in the area. VT, I'm not on quite the stringent budget you are (and I applaud you for your comments), but also don't want to blow away all of my savings in one year in VA. Perhaps you have some advice to offer, areas to suggest, etc that will help me. I've just begun to look, I'm considering Fairfax and Old Alexandria, want to be close to public transportation, and live in a community where I can get to know folks.

I know people (including my kids) who live in the Northern VA area, and they don't fit the profile Scranton offers. I think NVA is culture shock to those of us from the PA regions.
Honestly unless you have a military retirement, or a huge nest egg, I would consider other places to retire. How about Gettysburg? My grandparents used to live there, and were only an hour and a half away. NOVA area is only beneficial if you can make good money, and benefit from the strong economy and job market there. If you can't, move elsewhere. That is what I had to do. Moved to Texas to a lower cost of living and got a raise. Good luck
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Old 10-22-2008, 02:08 PM
 
Location: Falls Church, VA
722 posts, read 1,752,398 times
Reputation: 316
Well, I can't speak for anyone else, but my husband's industry only exists in the D.C. metro area. We relocated here because this is where he could get a job in his field. And that's not uncommon, considering there's only one federal government - and our Congresscritters are irrelevant; they're only a VERY small portion of those who work either in or with the government.

That said, yeah, even if you *have* to be here to work in your field, it still has its drawbacks. Houses are expensive - too expensive, really, unless you want to live waaaaay out in the exurbs and commute 3 hours a day. But we get around that by renting. I don't know why it's considered some kind of moral failing to rent, but it sure helps us pay the bills. We're not sweating this housing bust, either. We would like to buy someday, sure, but we don't consider it an imperative. It's one of the tradeoffs we made when we moved here.

We lived in Lincoln, Nebraska for a couple of years, and we bought a beautiful 3 bedroom house in a wonderful neighborhood for $200K. Traffic was a non-issue, too. But you know, we were still happy to give all that up when we moved to NoVa. We're not "in love" with NoVa, but we like it better than the Midwest. A lot better. Even though our money doesn't go as far and traffic is worse. Why? Diversity, first of all. Cultural opportunities (there is something GREAT to be said for having a real city right next door). A younger, more vibrant population. More employment opportunities (even if you're not here for government, it's nice to have a choice between dozens of world-class companies).

We manage to do it with one small six year old car, too. My husband takes Metro to work in the winter, and he bikes in the summer. Systems like Metro are not an option at all outside of big cities. There's no one way to make your life in NoVa, any more than anywhere else. Living here doesn't doom you to sitting in traffic all day or working 100 hours a week or chasing material goods. Life is what you make of it.

All this said, NoVa probably isn't our forever home, assuming my husband is able to change industries down the road. Our family likes to walk, and outside of North Arlington (which I adore, but is too expensive even for renters), NoVa isn't very walkable. But I can see why someone would settle here.
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Old 10-24-2010, 08:56 PM
 
1 posts, read 1,811 times
Reputation: 10
I live in Ashburn, which is in Eastern Loudoun County. It sounds to me like people who don't actually live here have made assumptions without talking to anyone who actually does live here. A couple of years ago, I got a Cocker Spaniel from a rescue organization. When I talked to him, he didn't understand anything I said. A friend suggested I try speaking to him in other languages to see if perhaps he just didn't understand English. I live on a street with 98 townhomes. I walked the dog around the entire street. I asked the people to talk to him in their native language. They said "sit" in German, Spanish, Arabic, Farsi, Hindi, Italian, and Mandarin. He didn't sit even once. Turns out he had just never been talked to very much. However, it seems to me like my street has a great deal of diversity. Oh yeah- there's a 1996 Geo Prism and a 2001 Chevy Tracker in my driveway. No Lexus here!
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Old 10-25-2010, 12:47 AM
 
413 posts, read 1,042,837 times
Reputation: 126
Unless you have an ascetic lifestyle we're all part of the "rat race". Who here actually does something they TRULY love?
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Old 10-25-2010, 01:59 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 27,023,055 times
Reputation: 6824
Quote:
Originally Posted by payroll View Post
the housing market on the bubble.
Oh, for those good ol' bubble days.
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Old 10-25-2010, 06:58 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,837,713 times
Reputation: 42860
Quote:
Originally Posted by RestonRunner86 View Post
I don't think having a husband and wife each working two jobs in order to upkeep their lifestyles while neglecting to spend time with their children is a good example of "utopia" at all! People probably equate Loudoun County as being the "perfect escape to DC's problems." However, if segregating yourselves by social status so that your children never get to experience diversity until it smacks them in the face when they head back to DC at age 22 for a job interview is a good example of "protecting our children", then I'm glad I grew up in a lower-middle-class neighborhood!
Just a few factual errors here: Nobody I know works two jobs. I have a part time job, my husband has a full time job. There are numerous adults around during the day. Every other house in my neighborhood has a stay-at-home parent not to mention the parents who work from home.

Also, as has been discussed repeatedly, the Nova suburbs are extremely diverse. My kids experienced plenty of diversity growing up here, and when the time came to go on a job interview they did not need to head into DC. They headed down the street to the Reston/Herndon Tech corridor.

But hey other than that this is a factual portrayal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RestonRunner86 View Post
How can you truly be happy working 70-hour workweeks and commuting 90 minutes one way each day to upkeep your lifestyles?
My job is right here in Loudoun. It's so close I could walk to work (if I had time for a long walk).

Quote:
Originally Posted by RestonRunner86 View Post
I suspect the Scranton-NYC commute issue is similar to the Leesburg-DC commute issue---You're spending WAY too much time away from your families! Growing up, a child cares MORE about the affection they receive from their parents, not about which German car adorns your four-car garage!
Nothing wrong with German cars, but FWIW, I don't happen to own one. I don't have a 4-car garage, either. I don't have a long commute. I'm very active with my kids' organizations, and see plenty of other parents at all the games and rehearsals. Other than that, you've described me and my neighbors perfectly (not).

Nice dramatic speech, but it doesn't apply to most of the people I know out here. (Especially the bit about the sex parties... or did someone just forget to mail me my sex party invitation???? Rats, I need to go check the mail box! )
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Old 10-25-2010, 07:26 AM
 
Location: Gainesville, VA
1,261 posts, read 5,044,629 times
Reputation: 719
*Scratches head* Is this thread really from FOUR YEARS ago?
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Old 10-25-2010, 07:31 AM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,782,683 times
Reputation: 18989
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caladium View Post
Nice dramatic speech, but it doesn't apply to most of the people I know out here. (Especially the bit about the sex parties... or did someone just forget to mail me my sex party invitation???? Rats, I need to go check the mail box! )
LOL I haven't been invited to any sex parties, either. Obviously I'm joining the wrong meet-up groups!
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