Where to live in/near Washington DC if I'm mostly remote?

I will be working from home 3-4 days a week confirmed so its important that I save on rent.

I don't particularly mind a commute to work and I definitely don't mind having to uber and drive to bars or restaurants once a week. Also my office is in Downtown DC so public transit can take me right there on the days that I do go in.

I already have a car but if I was in downtown DC I would probably sell it/give it to family. If I was outside of DC I would find parking and use it when necessary. Comp all in is approximately 85k including bonus.

Comments (13)

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Aug 5, 2022 - 2:14pm
Stonks1990, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Join us in Arlington, my friend! I love it over here. If you can put up with the insane amount of Deloitte frat boys that waddle down the streets every weekend, then you'll love it. Amazing amount of great restaurants, bars, outdoor spaces, and things to do. Arlington encompasses the O4 corridor - Orange Line Metro has 4 stops here: Ballston, Clarendon, Courthouse & Rosslyn, in that order. You won't ever have to drive to DC if you don't want to, and everything along Fairfax/Wilson/Clarendon Blvd is extremely walkable and put together. I know you're WFH, but DC has some great spots to get into besides work & that extra comfort is nice.

The only thing I'd caution on around here is rent, as it's getting insane. As I said, $85 will be more than enough for you but you won't be able to land any of those sleek 20-30 story buildings on that comp. If you're okay living in an apartment that was built prior to 2010, you'll be alright. Really love it here - less of the political snob you get in DC, but also avoids the endless cycle of suburban cookie-cutter houses I see closer to Fairfax/Loudon. Any other questions feel free to shoot me a PM. 

Aug 5, 2022 - 3:48pm
the_lonely_traveler, what's your opinion? Comment below:

About to get drinks to celebrate getting the offer but I will take you up on that PM afterwards!

Off the top of my head though I gotta ask if by 'old building' you mean a place without AC thats a total dump. Or do you mean the old buildings just tend to be less sleek than a nice city high rise. Coming from college 'old building' still rings in my head as total dump but that could just be where I'm from.

Aug 5, 2022 - 4:48pm
Stonks1990, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Totally feel ya. There are actually plenty of newer apartments that should be in your price range, no shitholes to speak of. Here is an example of something that I found - using 30% rent rule on pre-tax $85k, you'd net around $25K/yr in rent so this $2,010-2,015 for a 1bd in a great area with nice amenities seems sweet. Not sure if you'd want to follow the 30 rule however, there are other options that may get you a little below. 

If you're comparing it to NY or SF, it's damn affordable! DC proper rent prices are also skyrocketing in comparison to a quick hop over the Potomac... Arlington is commonly referred to as the Jersey City of Manhattan. I'll take it though, I love it over here!

Aug 5, 2022 - 3:14pm
shiejs, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Somewhere in VA near a metro stop is definitely the answer.

I found that Dittmar (rentdittmar) had consistently cheaper rents than every other Arlington / Alexandria property owner. I believe they're family owned / don't answer to shareholders or whatever and you can see it in their rents.

During covid I got a 1BR on the 13th floor of one of their properties in Virginia Square (built in 2015 I want to say) for $1300. Couldn't believe the deal I scored. I bet the same unit is $1900 now but that's still relatively cheap for Arlington.

If you stay in one of their older buildings I bet you could get a really great rate

Edit: I just checked and my old unit is $2200, Jesus Christ renting is brutal rn 

Aug 5, 2022 - 3:51pm
the_lonely_traveler, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Thats a great deal and I wouldn't mind paying that at all. Haven't heard of Dittmar but I'll definitely look into it.  Your rent is close to what I just finished paying for my last college apartment (about 1000 per month) which was an absolute shit hole. 

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Aug 5, 2022 - 4:53pm
Stonks1990, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Had a solid experience w/ Dittmar during my time shopping for my latest apartment last year. Ultimately I decided to go w/ Avalon instead, but would also +1 for VA Square. I toured it, solid place. Looked like shit from the outside, but the inside is renovated - pretty common in Arlington, so OP doesn't be turned off by exterior facades. Avalon, Dittmar & Greystar pretty much own the market around there, so if you lease from a big firm you're limited to those three - at least in the Ballston corridor. 

Aug 5, 2022 - 5:58pm
shiejs, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You probably toured "Virginia Square Plaza" rather than "Virginia Square Towers". They're right next to each other but Virginia Square Towers is too new to have been renovated - that's why $1300 felt like such a good deal. 

But yeah I looked at Avalon too, much better location although I didn't really care about that in Mid 2020.

Aug 6, 2022 - 7:40pm
Memberberries, what's your opinion? Comment below:

If you only go into D.C., say, once a week I'd consider something like western Maryland along the MARC. You can train in and be on your laptop working, unlike with the D.C. metro. Rent is way cheaper. Western Maryland is also way more attractive than Virginia or D.C., which are hideous concrete jungles. You don't realize what a dystopian nightmare D.C. and Northern Virginia are until you get out. 

I was living in Clarendon during most of Covid (still own a condo there and rent it out), and I'll be honest--it was painful living in an apartment and working from home at the same time. I had an absolutely gorgeous condo unit that I renovated beautifully, including a 100" projector. And it still sucked being cooped up in an Arlington apartment all day--I grew to hate my condo, and I guarantee there are few, if any, nicer units in the area. Granted, now that coffee shops are open it may not be as painful. Clarendon has insanely hot girls, but on the downside, it has (apparently) equally as attractive men and you are unlikely to land many of those girls due to intense, crazy competition.


  • 1
Aug 6, 2022 - 8:19pm
Fjsjrjdns, what's your opinion? Comment below:

The difference between 3 and 4 days wfh is huge in determining options. If it's truly 1 day in office, you could live as far as Richmond, Delaware, hell, even Philly (a relatively affordable city that is 10x better than DC) and it would be fine. I personally hate DC and the surrounding area, so I would want to be as far away as possible.

Aug 6, 2022 - 11:22pm
10S_Fan, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I would suggest a place in DC or Montgomery County, Md. Many desirable locations off the Red Line (Metro) would include Cleveland Park (DC), Chevy Chase (DC and MD), Bethesda (MD), and Rockville (MD). Many tree-lined streets, various types of housing options, and numerous restaurants. Rents are about $2,000 though.

Aug 14, 2022 - 4:00pm
Isaiah_53_5 💎🙌💎🙌💎, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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