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Old 08-16-2017, 09:10 AM
 
86 posts, read 77,664 times
Reputation: 27

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Hello,

Currently having thoughts about moving from our small townhouse in Fairfax County to either a larger townhouse or SFH in the Bristow area. Looking for a nice family friendly neighborhood with a sense of community and neighborly gatherings for bbq's in the Summer. Spending several hundred thousand dollars on an old, junky house in Fairfax County only to have to spend tens of the thousands more to upgrade it is just simply tough to swallow.

We are the typical family of four with two young children entering elementary school. One family member will commute into DC but only 2-3 times per week with telework the other days. DC commute would likely be via driving to Broad Run VRE station and then taking the train into the city.

Anyone else in the same or similar situation? I'd welcome any (constructive) thoughts.

Thanks!
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Old 08-16-2017, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Manassas, VA
34 posts, read 27,561 times
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I commute via VRE 4ish days a week from Broad Run. It's quite pleasant and reliable, so long as you accept the time suck - but it's vastly better than driving, you can read, work, watch Netflix, etc. No comments on subdivision life, I live more rural. Bristow has all the essentials (multiple grocers, restaurants, service businesses) close by. Manassas is easily accessible, and Gainesville relatively so. Lots of growth going on and the expected resulting traffic and roadwork, so be aware.
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Old 08-16-2017, 10:34 AM
 
86 posts, read 77,664 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chazas View Post
I commute via VRE 4ish days a week from Broad Run. It's quite pleasant and reliable, so long as you accept the time suck - but it's vastly better than driving, you can read, work, watch Netflix, etc. No comments on subdivision life, I live more rural. Bristow has all the essentials (multiple grocers, restaurants, service businesses) close by. Manassas is easily accessible, and Gainesville relatively so. Lots of growth going on and the expected resulting traffic and roadwork, so be aware.
Thanks for the reply! I currently use the VRE (occasionally also use metro bus to metro rail) and I have experienced how comfortable the ride is compared with other modes of transportation. A move further West would extend my commute by probably about 30-40 mins but for a newer, larger house in a nice community, it might be worth it.
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Old 08-18-2017, 05:21 AM
 
69 posts, read 49,332 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Germany2DC View Post
Thanks for the reply! I currently use the VRE (occasionally also use metro bus to metro rail) and I have experienced how comfortable the ride is compared with other modes of transportation. A move further West would extend my commute by probably about 30-40 mins but for a newer, larger house in a nice community, it might be worth it.
I know someone who was doing Manassas to the Pentagon. Thought it was great for 3 months before he hated how much time he was losing. He can work somewhat off hours, so he started driving, but if he doesn't get out by 3:30 he is screwed on the drive home.

With that said, I also know people who have done it for years and don't mind it. I guess it is all about your tolerance for it.

Personally I was tempted by the allure of the homes for the money in that area, and I already have a fairly lengthy commute, but I just had a hard time wrapping my head around an hour plus everyday.

After looking at houses in Gainesville/Bristow for a while, I really wasn't that impressed by them either. A lot of cookie cutter houses on tiny lots with no privacy. The homes from the "boom" in the mid 00's are just hitting the right age where they look worn out/dated inside unless the owner was proactive on updates. Most of them will need a new roof soon. Those costs could easily derail the relative "cheap" price of buying the place. The only homes I really liked were in a couple developments outside Warrenton, but that commute is just awful. 30 minutes just to get to the VRE station.
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Old 08-26-2017, 09:03 AM
 
Location: Northern VA
1 posts, read 749 times
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VRE is a great option and there are some great communities in Bristow including New Bristow Village, avendale, Braemar, Victory Lakes and more. I'd be happy to go into further detail if you'd like. Clean, rather easy to get around and great schools. My husband commutes to D.C. Via VRE and loves it. Much better than sitting in traffic.
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Old 08-26-2017, 09:31 AM
 
Location: Virginia-Shenandoah Valley
6,547 posts, read 10,817,943 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Germany2DC View Post
Thanks for the reply! I currently use the VRE (occasionally also use metro bus to metro rail) and I have experienced how comfortable the ride is compared with other modes of transportation. A move further West would extend my commute by probably about 30-40 mins but for a newer, larger house in a nice community, it might be worth it.
I've watched Bristow grow from a farming community to one bustling with many subdivisions. I worked for the county until retiring in 09 and watched the building. They seemed to do a very good job in the lay out of the communities and you have plenty of pretty much whatever you need close by. You're close to I 66 if you want a getaway in the mountains or elsewhere. I wanted out of NOVA after living there since 73 so we moved to Shenandoah Valley but I have many friends in the Bristow area and all seem happy with living there.
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Old 08-26-2017, 10:33 AM
 
1,966 posts, read 1,153,376 times
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Communities laid out well, commuter roads not. The crisis hit that area hard, as it was a product of the boom from the last decade, and many were 100K+ underwater, before they even moved in. Many have ridden it out for 10 years, just waiting to break even to move. At 10 years, there is absolutely no guarantee that those homes would need less maintenance than 1950s and 60s homes in FFX.
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Old 08-26-2017, 10:47 AM
 
5,070 posts, read 8,604,955 times
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I can't imagine voluntarily commuting into DC two or three times per week from Bristow. It's easy enough to psych yourself up for longer commutes for a while, but speaking from experience sooner or later it becomes a time/soul suck.
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Old 08-26-2017, 03:03 PM
 
Location: Virginia-Shenandoah Valley
6,547 posts, read 10,817,943 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JD984 View Post
I can't imagine voluntarily commuting into DC two or three times per week from Bristow. It's easy enough to psych yourself up for longer commutes for a while, but speaking from experience sooner or later it becomes a time/soul suck.
Many thousands do it in the Metro area and have for more years than I've been here.
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Old 08-27-2017, 01:05 PM
 
5,070 posts, read 8,604,955 times
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Originally Posted by Bigfoot424 View Post
Many thousands do it in the Metro area and have for more years than I've been here.
Most of the housing in Bristow seems to have been built in the last 15-20 years, and you've been around a while, so maybe yes/maybe no.

In any event, I'm not trying to make anyone without other choices feel bad about their decision. Suggest OP do the commute to/from DC during rush hour after Labor Day (when traffic returns to its usual state) a few times and ask himself whether it's really something he sees himself comfortably doing 2-3 times per week for potentially many years.
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