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Old 01-23-2008, 02:50 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC
48 posts, read 175,193 times
Reputation: 30

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Hello, all! We've been renting near Meridian Hill/Malcolm X Park in Columbia Heights for almost four years. I work downtown and my other half commutes to Springfield. We are looking to buy a house with an apartment for my grandmother. She wants her own space, including a separate kitchen, and we need a yard area for the dogs. We want to stay in the $350k range, so obviously remaining in CH is out of the question. We're focusing our search on Petworth, Brightwood, Brookland, Michigan Park, Mt. Rainier, etc and have found several potential properties of interest.

Any thoughts on living in these areas, especially with an older relative?

Ideas on which neighborhood will bring the best return? Advice on detached vs. rowhouse when it comes to the resale?
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:37 AM
 
353 posts, read 1,199,001 times
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Used to live in Petworth and wasn't too happy there. The area around Georgia Avenue can be sketchy at times. I currently live in Brookland now. Although there are sketchy places (liquor stores with thugs hanging out in front of them) it's quieter and there are more friendly places there like Cafe Sureia. Plus there are beautiful religious institutions abound with beautiful constructions and flower gardens. Providence Hospital is in Brookland in case your grandma needed care. (There's also the bigger Washington Hospital Center near Michigan Ave. and N. Capitol.)
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Old 01-24-2008, 07:21 PM
 
221 posts, read 862,323 times
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My impression is that most of those areas will be equivalent in the $350K range. At that price point (and needing a house with finished basement and yard) you will probably not be within walking distance of the Petworth or Brookland metro. A bit further out I think of those neighborhoods as quiet, relatively low in crime, but without a lot of amenities. That's not a slam - as I get older they are looking better and better! I concur that Brookland might be the best bet. If your grandmother wants to move around independently, I would look for a spot with easy bus access to a downtown strip. As the previous poster mentioned, Brookland has a downtown with a real coffee shop, hardware store, and at least one restaurant.
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Old 01-25-2008, 11:41 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC
48 posts, read 175,193 times
Reputation: 30
Thanks for the input. We seem to be having better luck with properties in Petworth over Brookland, but some of that is a matter of real estate people getting back with me (which apparently they are slow to do, if they do at all). I like Brookland a lot, and the area around 12th St is cute and convenient. We looked at a place over there (on Irving) a couple of weeks ago, and funny enough, it was one siren after another. Granted it was a Friday, but it was only around 5:30-630pm. For as many times as we've been in Petworth, it's been completely quiet. We're used to living in the city and feel comfortable pretty much everywhere--I just want my grandmother to feel (and be!) safe.

We know we won't be right by a metro, but as long as the bus is nearby, that will do. I'm going to miss the convenience of our current neighborhood and being able to walk everywhere, but if I can get to a bus I'm good. Just so long as we don't have to get a second car.
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Old 01-25-2008, 02:38 PM
 
353 posts, read 1,199,001 times
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Quote:
We know we won't be right by a metro, but as long as the bus is nearby, that will do. I'm going to miss the convenience of our current neighborhood and being able to walk everywhere, but if I can get to a bus I'm good. Just so long as we don't have to get a second car.
The main bus that goes to Ft. Totten Metro and Brookland Metro is the 80 which runs along 12th NE. The 80 also goes down N. Capitol past Union Station, Chinatown, K Street and ends at the Kennedy Center. The R4 runs from Brookland Station to Prince George's County. It runs along Michigan Ave. in Brookland. There's also the E2 which goes from Friendship Heights Station to Ivy City (New York Ave. area). It runs along South Dakota Ave. in Brookland.

As for Petworth, it now has a Silver Spring Express bus that only stops at certain stops. It runs along Georgia Ave. Also, there's the 70/71 bus that runs along Georgia. It goes from Silver Spring to SW near the Waterfront. I've only been on the 70/71 a few times, and it's always crowded and uncomfortable. Even if it has the accordion-style extension on it, it still gets to standing room only.
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Old 01-29-2008, 10:44 AM
 
22 posts, read 90,842 times
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If you're willing to do a little work on the house, there are many options exactly in your price range with 3 bedrooms above and a private apartment below. If I'm allowed to suggest a particular address, look at the properties currently for sale on Keefer St or Warder St NW. These are on the borders of Columbia Hts/Petworth/Parkview and have plenty of space, plus near the other items already mentioned: H2,3,4 bus, Georgia Ave bus, WHC, and the convenience of the Columbia Hts DCUSA shopping area. I don't know the Brookland area as well, but I know people seem very happy there as well. You could say it's a little more "established"
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Old 01-29-2008, 07:00 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC
48 posts, read 175,193 times
Reputation: 30
Thanks, guys and gals! I'm sort of in the transportation field, so very familiar with transit options and bus lines. Take the 14th buses every day (and quite familiar with SRO!). Yes, I've looked at some specific properties on Keefer and Warder. The key factor for us is an appropriate place for my grandmother--the rest of the house we're willing to work on, but not a shell or extreme fixer.

Talking with the finance people, we're expanding the price range a bit, but of course want to keep it as low as possible. Just want to make sure we're getting in the right neighborhood for my grandmother, reasonable access to what we're used to, and good on the resale. I'm about to take a new job, working at 14th and K, so that's the orange and blue lines and 14th St buses, but really, my grandmother is paramount in the decision.

Any thoughts on NW (Petworth) vs. NE (Brookland) re the neighborhoods and resale values in five years or so?
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