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Old 05-21-2009, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Sterling, VA
1,059 posts, read 2,629,817 times
Reputation: 613

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In a more helpful vein, FL teacher, Virginia does have some programs for people whose income is below the median for Loudoun County. Go to VHDA.com for loan programs available with income limitations, also Loudoun has an affordable dwelling program with an income ceiling depending on the size of your family. Go to Housing for more info. You'll love Loudoun County and if I can help you in any way please PM me.
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Old 05-22-2009, 02:25 PM
 
60 posts, read 103,179 times
Reputation: 62
Smile The convenience of Sterling is a Real Plus!

We've lived in Sterling for over 5 years and we like having so many quality retail and grocery stores so close by. Due to the foreclosures here, single family houses (Not to mention townhouses) are more affordable than they have been in years!

There are some very nice parks and recreation areas very close by (Algonkian, Claude Moore, Great Falls), and DC is only 20 miles away for weekend sightseeing. As for diversity, there's plenty of it here. My neighbors come from all walks of life and occupations (blue collar, white collar, native-born white, Latino, Asian, even Russian, French, and Scandinavian!)

Best of luck to you whatever you choose
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Old 05-23-2009, 11:02 PM
 
Location: Northern VA
512 posts, read 634,261 times
Reputation: 621
Quote:
Originally Posted by FL teacher View Post
I found Columbia a little difficult to navigate, but I guess that is because of the "village" concept...hopefully that would be easier to figure out if we actually lived there.

Thanks for the replies so far.
I lived in Columbia for two years (2004-2006) and yes, navigating can be a bit difficult at first. With the village concept there are numerous cul de sacs and dead end neighborhood streets. It doesn't take long to get used to (a good map or gps really helps).

The biggest down side to Columbia is the cost of living -- housing, groceries, taxes, and gas were all on the high side. I worked at Fort Meade, so we used the commissary and post gas stations most of the time. We chose Columbia primarily for the schools.

The schools are definitely a plus. It is a very large school system (7 or 8 high schools with 1-2000 students each). Some of the schools were known for particular specialties (arts, science, etc.).

Another big plus for Columbia is the active population. There are miles and miles of well-maintained jogging / biking trails throughout the villages. Columbia also runs three or four gyms/fitness centers as well as numerous parks, swimming pools and tennis courts (and I think two golf courses). Of course, all that comes at a cost.

All in all Columbia was a wonderful place to live.

DJP
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Old 05-26-2009, 07:05 AM
 
34 posts, read 91,797 times
Reputation: 23
Thanks for all the great advice! I guess we will be happier in either place.
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