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Old 09-06-2014, 07:10 PM   #1
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Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield.

If you are in NoVa on or very near the metro line into D.C. and are heads over heels in love with your town, please tell me why?

Could anyone here speak to about what living is like in Woodbridge or Springfield, VA? I mention these b/c some of our house searches have been focused there. I am not talking about HOA condo living but the community feel of single home dwellings.

Do people tend to be pretty neighborly? Is the building up of properties too insane?

Are there churches you are in love with? I like to drink widely and fellowship with any other believers, but I find that for home church purposes it does not work out that well when you are on really different pages. So a little about my preferences:

I am evangelical with strong charismatic leanings. However, I will not willingly endure any more blame the sick/poor prosperity theology at this point in my life. I am more of a methodist type evangelical than a presbyterian, although I have been in a presb. bible study before. The social side of the gospel is important to me as well, and an embrace of women preaching would be a wonderful but unexpected bonus. As I will get to in a moment, I'd be coming to the area in a particularly vulnerable time and would be desperate for some gracious and compassionate prayerful people in my life who might not be too busy to drop by now and then when I cannot get out. Some Vineyard churches, the ones that are truest to Vineyard roots, are a particularly great fit for me, but there are only two of those that I know of in all of NoVa.

My parents are considering retiring to that area (moving back from Japan--they need to be close to the airport b/c they are still jetsetters). For complicated reasons related to illness, I would be going to live with them. Although they have been to a few parts of NoVa before, they have not yet put boots on the ground in the towns they are most likely to move to. For now, we are just trying to figure out semi-reasonable price & tax areas for getting a fairly sizeable (like 2200) rambler/ranch, but they will have to do a reconnaissance trip.

In my situation, it would be hard for me if everyone is just incessantly whirring by to D.C. without the sense of neighborliness. And my parents are very much hoping for a friendlier-feeling location as well. I have no friends in the area and am currently too weak to be social as the cycles of the illness go.

Fwiw, although I post here often, I'm not a mama. I'm single b/c of the illness, but most of my friends are mamas. A moderator invited me to this site a couple of years ago b/c of my interest in all things green.

TIA!

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Old 09-06-2014, 11:00 PM   #2
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

Traffic is awful. Road rage is epic.

You should really go visit to scope out areas. Best advice: Live as close as you can to where you will work.

20 miles seems close but during rush hour... It could take you 1-1.5 hours to get anywhere.

My husband commuted 31 miles to work from Reston, VA to Calverton, MD and it took him 1.5-2 hours each way.

Rush hour is typically 3:30-7pm and 6-9:30am. There is also a sporadic Saturday rush that clogs up everything.

I lived there most of my 33 years and we just moved away.

Check out city-data.com ... Lots of active forums for specific areas. Woodbridge and Springfield are the bottom edge of NOVA.

Good luck! Hope you can make it work happily!




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Old 09-07-2014, 08:30 PM   #3
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

Thanks, mommyegon.

Some of what you are emphasizing does not apply insofar as my parents will then be retired, and I am medically disabled (I do have my hobby business that I struggle to keep on top of by restocking on my strongest days). My dad would do some consulting work from home that would only require that he can get to a major airport once a month or so.

But you do have me thinking insofar as my parents would hope to have many people visit when they come through Dulles. My parents can do their flying out of Reagan, but most people come in Dulles. If we are on the blue line instead of orange/silver, their visits may not be realistic. Still it is the spot that otherwise making the most sense thus far.

At your suggestion, I've been browsing city-data. Thanks.
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Old 09-07-2014, 09:33 PM   #4
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

I lived in Reston for a while and it had parts that were nice community wise. Cost of living can be higher. We rented from single owners and found good deals. The best areas IMO are between route 7 and Baron Cameron around Reston pkwy (lake Newport/north point/wiehle). Super close to Dulles IAD.

Also Ashburn has a ton of families. It's nice because it's somewhat self contained and you don't have to get into major traffic too often.

Parts of a Sterling are okay.

Hope that helps!!




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Old 09-07-2014, 09:40 PM   #5
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

Reston is just proving too expensive for the house and style we need (we have a long list of particulars between their wanting space and my health needs). But I hadn't even looked at Ashburn and Sterling, since our initial search had been limited to towns on the actual metro lines. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 09-08-2014, 12:41 PM   #6
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

Ashburn is going to get a metro stop soon! Sterling is near the metro stops that are going in at Reston and Tysons. if you're not going to be traveling during rush hour those stops will be easily accessible. Even during rush hour they're accessible. it just takes a really long time to get to then. always plan for at least twice as long. Cheers!


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Old 09-08-2014, 01:02 PM   #7
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

Sterling looks like it is just about located ON the Dulles runway, lol--makes me scared to look there. I did look at properties in the towns and wasn't really finding what we wanted or only with HOAs out your eyeballs or too much acreage (well that was mostly when I expanded my search to Leesburg). From my parents perspective, I think they are going to want to avoid Loudon county b/c it has the highest property tax rates. I think with the HOAs added in they would be in shock. However, it is helpful to converse some and to get a fuller picture of the map. Ty.
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Old 09-08-2014, 07:07 PM   #8
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

Do you have a realtor?? We always used a realtor even for rentals. Maybe rent for a year and scope out the area? That's what we are doing in our new location. We plan on buying early next year.

There are good sized homes in Sterling/Herndon that are affordable but some if the sub-neighborhoods can be seedy. There are nice parts but you need someone who knows what's what. Reston/Vienna are pricey. Hard to even find a condo under $300k. That was our experience.

Centreville is popular for families that can't afford Ashburn homes. But it's kinda out there. You might have luck in Annandale or Alexandria! Arlington riverfront is awesome to visit (astronomical to buy).

If I were to retire up there... Is want to be as close to public transportation as possible as I age.

I might shoot for Falls Church area. Close to everything... Lots of public transport. Fun stuff nearby.

I would get a good realtor... I can PM you the contact info for our realtor up there. He works for Kellar Williams. Has been a realtor for 20 years in that area.





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Old 09-09-2014, 11:58 AM   #9
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

Thanks, again, for your help. As you might imagine, just by browsing online, I've had a number of realtors contact me, but it would be good to have a name for a bit down the road when my parents take their first reconnaissance trip and for when we are actually looking at houses we might be prepared to buy.

My initial Falls Church searches indicated that houses half the size of what we are looking for are $1mill! But I now see that the smallest side of our price range may be attainable if we give up the idea of one story living (I need to be on the main floor, so it would still be a very particular floor plan).
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Old 09-09-2014, 02:32 PM   #10
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Re: Pls tell me what it is like to live in NoVa, especially Woodbridge or Springfield

PM'd you!! :-)


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