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Old 09-28-2007, 12:10 PM
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I am planning on moving to the DC area in January. I have friends who live in the district and in Va and each loves where they live. I really like being centrally located and using public transportation, but I think it might be cheaper in Va. I will also be working in Va (just outside DC). Can anyone give me a basic breakdown of the differences in costs (car insurance, parking, taxes, rent, and/or other costs to consider).

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Old 09-28-2007, 12:47 PM
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Taxes and insurance are both higher in the District than in VA. For the most part, parking is more scarce and/or more expensive in the District than in VA. Rents vary by neighborhood in both places.

Other costs might include the cost of not trying to minimize one's commute. If you are working in VA, you may well want to live in VA. Either way, the most common mistake that people make in relocating into the area isn't that they end up with lousy schools or in a high-crime area...it's that they leave themselves with a horrible commute that drives them first to drink, and then to posting in the I Can't Take It Anymore thread. Don't make that same mistake...
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Old 09-28-2007, 07:55 PM
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What saganista said. I would add only that there are many charming and unique neighborhoods in DC (Georgetown, Capitol Hill, Dupont Circle, Cleveland Park, for example) that, apart from Old Town Alexandria, really don't exist in Virginia, so a lot depends upon what you're looking for in a place to live. If you want the cheapest, safest, most convenient apartment, you're probably better off sticking to Virginia locations near your workplace. It's also much easier to deal with the local government (car registration, etc.) in Virginia, and Virginia has much better public services such as libraries, parks, pools, etc.
If you're considering graduate school in the near future, living in Virginia for 12 months would qualify you for in-state tuition at George Mason, U-Va, Va-Tech or other universities.
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