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Old 08-22-2007, 04:20 PM
 
31 posts, read 131,578 times
Reputation: 36

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Howdy, I'm moving from the SF bay area for a job in Rockville. I want to rent for about 2 years until I'm sure the real estate market is done tanking. I seek advice:

The outer Germantown area is a bit cheaper than Rockville, but I could live in Rockville right across the street from my work without having to buy a car. The difference in rent is about $600 / month, which seems extravagant to me. From an environmental and simplicity perspective, I kind of favor paying more and living in town, but its really expensive and I don't know how bad the Germantown commute would be.

My question is, how bad is that 10 mile commute down 270 from exit 16 to exit 8? Google maps says 18 minutes. Can I expect this commute to take more or less than 30 minutes in commute traffic?

Any advice would be appreciated.
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Old 08-22-2007, 04:30 PM
 
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More. Any travel on the I-270 corridor during rush hour should consider at least an hour if not more.
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Old 08-22-2007, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Rockville,MD
102 posts, read 449,331 times
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There is a reason its cheaper...the apts. we live in @1500 for a 2bed/2bath lmk if interested. In Rockville. and they are nice. quiet neighborhood 5-10 min. bus ride to twinbrook station or rockville station. @ 1300 i think for 1bed
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Old 08-22-2007, 08:59 PM
 
551 posts, read 1,786,469 times
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That would be a horrible lengthy commute from outer Germantown. There are affordable apartments around Rockville. If you lived around a metro station you could get to a lot of places without a car. (And good decision not to buy right now, I think the real estate market is still headed south.)
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Old 08-23-2007, 12:38 AM
 
31 posts, read 131,578 times
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Thanks for the feedback everyone. This sort of confirms my gut feeling that is is worth a lot to avoid commuting around there.
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Old 08-28-2007, 03:53 PM
 
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From 16 to 6 can be a nightmare both ways during rush hour.

I understand the wanting to get to know the area before buying but while the market is at rock bottom (or almost) is the time to buy.

There are older condos on College Parkway (Plymouth Gardens), Yale Village (apartments) both just of 355 with easy acces to 270 OR move farther south (Exit 4 area) and commute opposite of traffic.
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Old 08-28-2007, 05:27 PM
 
Location: DC-Baltimore area
265 posts, read 1,008,838 times
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Definitely Rockville over Germantown, I hear bad things about having to commute on 270, unless you can swing an unusual schedule or go against traffic. Also, as you are coming from the Bay Area--you would be markedly closer (e.g., via Metro) to the cultural and other activities that DC and lower Montgomery County have to offer. As another possible option, I don't know what your budget is but quite a few people rent out basement apartments and parts of their homes (try craigslist), often for markedly lower rents. I rented that way my first couple of years in the area, with most of my stuff in storage.
I have lived right on top of my workplace a few times and I prefer not to do that, I felt I never got away from the office.
A lot of apartment companies are renovating up to "luxury" and taking the rent (or price, in condos) way up. There are still some more modest deals to be had on older places but you may not get amenities you are used to or the neighborhood may have some issues. I've found Apartment Ratings - Apartments for Rent with Ratings and Reviews from Actual Renters to be informative. You can search by zip and there are lots of reviews by people who actually live there (and occasional puff pieces by staffs...). You are right that commute issues are huge here.
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Old 08-28-2007, 07:20 PM
 
Location: Crofton, MD
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^ I agree, stick with Rockville.
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Old 08-28-2007, 07:31 PM
 
460 posts, read 1,797,521 times
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Everyone and their mother is coming down 270 from Upper Maryland and the surrounding 4 state area. The log jam starts right before Exit 18 (Rt.27 - Ridge Road) in the clarksburg area. I would go with Rockville for the myriad of reasons listed before me, which are all on point, and for the sheer fact that $600 is money well spent not having to deal with a commute around here. You will easily spend at least 25% of that $600 on gas and the time you will be so frustrated cannot be calculated. The traffic is horrible, horrible.

Also, they will be building an exit or 2 below Exit 18 - off of Rt. 124 - a new community on the right side going south (it's called West End - they are already in construction) - this will eventually lead to the construction of an overpass and an on/off exit ramp to 270 between Rt. 118 and Rt. 124.

(For all those commuters out there already, watch out for that mess!)

Since you are looking to rent for 2 years, this MAY impact you if you are up in Germantown (no idea when that construction will actually start).
I agree with Lady Scarlett though - if you want to buy in Mont. Co, you better do it now before the market starts an upswing. However, being from SF you are used to sky-high prices and if you had a lateral or upwards salary move you may be o.k. . .

Good luck!
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Old 08-30-2007, 02:22 PM
 
240 posts, read 976,159 times
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There are a boatload of foreclosures that haven't hit the MC market yet. I view realtytrac all the time. There are houses in every area of MC. The majority of subprime resets are b/n Oct 07-Feb 08 and that will add more supply to the market. People will need to sell and compete against each other to get out of the market.

Take your time and wait. It will be worth the money. Go to:
thehousingbubbleblog They track the Washington, DC and surrounding market. Last qtr the prices dropped, 7% in the region. There are some areas in DC that the prices have not dropped.
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