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Old 01-19-2010, 03:34 AM
 
Location: Norridge, IL
12 posts, read 21,942 times
Reputation: 13

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I am possibly relocating to the NoVA area in the very near term, and am looking at settling at least initally in the Manassas area. (My job would be in the L'Enfant area of DC and the VRE seems to present an ideal solution to commuting, and the rental housing prices in the Manassas area seemed to be the least crippling for what we would need (due to family size a 3 bedroom/2 full bath townhome, preferrably one with a den and/or recreation room) until we are able to buy and establish a more permanent domicile.)

I was hoping that the kind folks around here would be willing to answer some questions for me, some specific, others general.

1) I had been looking at the rental townhomes (our preference) in and around the Liberia Road/Stonewall Road area (specifically Piney Point and Whispering Glen), however, a multiplicity of posts on this forum have been raising red flags; is this area as dangerous/crime-ridden/overcrowded as some posts have implied/stated, or would it be worth at least looking at on a case-by-case basis if I do indeed relocate?

2) Looking at other areas in Manassas, roughly how much additional time would living in the Bull Run area of Prince William County (Sudley Manor/Ashton Drive area specifically) add to the commute to the VRE station in downtown Manassas on an typical morning (6AM ish)?

3) Is the area mentioned in 2) substantially safer/less overcrowded than the area I referenced in 1)?

3) Also referencing that Bull Run area; the area roughly bounded by Sudley Manor Drive-Ashton Avenue-Wellington Avenue appears on Google maps satellite to contain a rather large stone quarry. How much dust does this facility typically generate/how large of an area does it typically affect? (my wife has asthma issues so fine particulate matter in the air is a concern)

4) How much of a concern is flooding (including basement flooding) in and around the Manassas area? (I've looked at the floodplain maps, but what's the "ground truth"?)

5) How restrictive are the local HOA agreements on the keeping of pets? I have seen a number of TH's that according to the online listings allow pets with deposits, but subsequent research has uncovered that at least one I have found restricts the number of pets to two; we have three (spayed/neutered shelter rescued) cats. (No, getting rid of one is *not* an option ) Is restrictive language such as this typical in HOA's in this area?

I thank y'all fine folks for your answers and assistance in advance.

CT
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:11 AM
 
509 posts, read 855,464 times
Reputation: 279
I used to live in Point of Woods and moved out a year and a half ago but still rent out my townhouse there (well, probably will put it up for sale as the current lease is running out at the end of the month, and I've about had enough of being a landlord even though my house is managed by a property management company - still have had issues such as tenant not paying rent for 2 months at a time, etc.). My townhouse is on Shady Grove Circle.

It is definitely a case by case situation - look at the neighbors and the street. It is not like it has been sometimes portrayed in this forum as crime infested, drugs, etc. However, it certainly has some problems, however crime is everywhere. I would say that some areas up closer to I-66 might be better, but I suspect every townhome community has its problems.

For me, the big issues were more late at night at Stonewall Park behind my townhouse. Although for the last few years i lived next to an overcrowded townhouse with 10 or more people in it. Fortunately after I left, that townhouse was sold (went to foreclosure) in July of 2009 and that problem has gone away. That is why I say on a case by case basis, as there are some overcrowded townhouses that generate lots of noise and trash.

I don't think that quarry makes any noticeable noise even in the neighborhoods off of Sudley Road closer to I-66. As to dust, I don't know about closer to I-66 - but I never noticed anything like that down in Point of Woods.

As to commute time, from neighborhoods closer to I-66 to VRE (which is indeed a very good option to get to DC from Manassas) at 6 AM I would guess it might take 15 to 20 minutes to get to the VRE station. Point of Woods is obviously closer, and maybe only 10 minutes to get to the downtown Manassas station or even really the airport station is not much further. I commuted to Reston, so only took the VRE on a few occaisions when i had to go to DC during the week. However, certainly much better than driving to the Vienna Metro!
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:12 AM
 
509 posts, read 855,464 times
Reputation: 279
There is no restriction on # of pets in Point of Woods by the HOA. Of course, properties for rent can have restrictions on numbers of pets, I suppose, or no pets at all, obviously. In my case I had a dog so I allowed pets in the house by the tenant who rented from me this past year.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:13 AM
 
509 posts, read 855,464 times
Reputation: 279
I forgot to mention, I never had any flooding problems. It is probably again highly dependent where a particular house is located.
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Old 01-19-2010, 06:35 AM
 
Location: Virginia-Shenandoah Valley
6,587 posts, read 10,900,305 times
Reputation: 5608
See below.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ctactual View Post
I am possibly relocating to the NoVA area in the very near term, and am looking at settling at least initally in the Manassas area. (My job would be in the L'Enfant area of DC and the VRE seems to present an ideal solution to commuting, and the rental housing prices in the Manassas area seemed to be the least crippling for what we would need (due to family size a 3 bedroom/2 full bath townhome, preferrably one with a den and/or recreation room) until we are able to buy and establish a more permanent domicile.)

I was hoping that the kind folks around here would be willing to answer some questions for me, some specific, others general.

1) I had been looking at the rental townhomes (our preference) in and around the Liberia Road/Stonewall Road area (specifically Piney Point and Whispering Glen), however, a multiplicity of posts on this forum have been raising red flags; is this area as dangerous/crime-ridden/overcrowded as some posts have implied/stated, or would it be worth at least looking at on a case-by-case basis if I do indeed relocate?

If it were me I'd stay away from the Stonewall Road area. Older townhomes and the neighborhood has seen more than it's fair share of problems. Plenty of good people still live there though.

2) Looking at other areas in Manassas, roughly how much additional time would living in the Bull Run area of Prince William County (Sudley Manor/Ashton Drive area specifically) add to the commute to the VRE station in downtown Manassas on an typical morning (6AM ish)?

10 minutes top. It's probably closer than the Stonewall Rd community. You also have the VRE at Manassas Airport.

3) Is the area mentioned in 2) substantially safer/less overcrowded than the area I referenced in 1)?

A little. But keep in mind that whenever you get townhomes you also get many rentals. With rentals come people who could care less about the community. This of course is not meant to imply all are bad but you'll have some issues no matter where you settle. If schools are important to you then the schools in the Sudley Manor area may not be the best.

3) Also referencing that Bull Run area; the area roughly bounded by Sudley Manor Drive-Ashton Avenue-Wellington Avenue appears on Google maps satellite to contain a rather large stone quarry. How much dust does this facility typically generate/how large of an area does it typically affect? (my wife has asthma issues so fine particulate matter in the air is a concern)

The quarry will not be a problem. Never has been an issue.

4) How much of a concern is flooding (including basement flooding) in and around the Manassas area? (I've looked at the floodplain maps, but what's the "ground truth"?)

Again, not an issue. It used to be in the Loch Lomond area but repairs seems to have taken care of this issue.

5) How restrictive are the local HOA agreements on the keeping of pets? I have seen a number of TH's that according to the online listings allow pets with deposits, but subsequent research has uncovered that at least one I have found restricts the number of pets to two; we have three (spayed/neutered shelter rescued) cats. (No, getting rid of one is *not* an option ) Is restrictive language such as this typical in HOA's in this area?

Can't answer this.

I thank y'all fine folks for your answers and assistance in advance.

CT
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:02 AM
 
Location: Norridge, IL
12 posts, read 21,942 times
Reputation: 13
Many thanks for the replies already received!

Good to know about the quarry; that opens up a few options.

My main reason for potentially preferring to commute from the downtown Manassas station is that if I miss the last VRE train out (I don't see this as likely but again, all theoretical at this point), I would have the potential of taking the Metro out to W. Falls Church station and catching the late Manassas Metro Connector PRTC bus which stops at said station to get my car. Not necessarily the preferred option, but a safety valve/second option seems to me a wise thing to have!

Schools not a pressing concern (yet); at the point it will be (~2 years) will be the point I feel comfortable about moving into something more permanent, and it gives us time to take the "temperature" of the area and decide where we want to be. Would love to take advantage of the potential in the NoVA market now, but my better half is reticent until we see how the job goes.

Please keep the replies coming; I value the local knowledge on these issues!
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Old 01-21-2010, 08:21 AM
 
173 posts, read 502,158 times
Reputation: 93
VRE has a deal where if a family emergency comes up or if you otherwise miss the last train or something, they will give you a free taxi ride to your car (or something to that effect...don't remember all the exact details, but I'm sure it's on their website).

If, then, the Broad Run VRE station isn't out of the question, I'd look at townhouse rentals in the Bristow area...
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Old 01-21-2010, 08:25 AM
 
173 posts, read 502,158 times
Reputation: 93
Here it is -- VRE's Guaranteed Ride Home program:

Guaranteed Ride Home
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Old 01-21-2010, 11:21 PM
 
Location: Norridge, IL
12 posts, read 21,942 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by mominbristow View Post
VRE has a deal where if a family
If, then, the Broad Run VRE station isn't out of the question, I'd look at townhouse rentals in the Bristow area...

Thanks for the heads-up on the ride program, mominbristow; I'll keep that in mind. I looked at the Bristow area, but didn't see anything that was fitting my criteria in my (limiting) price range.
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Old 01-22-2010, 04:48 AM
 
509 posts, read 855,464 times
Reputation: 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by ctactual View Post
Thanks for the heads-up on the ride program, mominbristow; I'll keep that in mind. I looked at the Bristow area, but didn't see anything that was fitting my criteria in my (limiting) price range.
Rental prices will be higher in Bristow/Gainesville than Manassas, just as property values are higher there. Sounds like perhaps Manassas off of Sudley Road near to I-66 may be the best choice for you - if you don't feel comfortable renting in the Point of Woods area or other areas closer or within the Manassas city limits.
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