Home Buying in 20001>Question Details

Christine Mo…, Home Buyer in Tampa, FL

After yrs of renting I am looking to buy a townhouse/condo to call my own. Which areas would you suggest I start looking to get the most for my money?

Asked by Christine Moore, Tampa, FL Sat Sep 8, 2012

Pet friendly, close to metro, young professional

Help the community by answering this question:


Akil Walker’s answer
Hi Christine,

there are a lot of great areas in DC and surronding DC. A lot will depend on how much you would like to spend on a home, accessibility to public transportation etc. Most condos have a pretty good size condo fee on top of your mortgage payment so take that into account as welll.

feel free to contact me if you have any questions. i know buying a home can be very cumbersome and exciting all in one.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 10, 2012
Hi Christine, Those of us who have lived and worked here for years just love it and think this area, compared with the rest of the country, can really give you a lot for your money. You've asked a subjective question which can be interpreted a couple of different ways. There's certainly still money to be made in real estate in the metro area or do you mean liveability at an affordable price? Get feedback from a lot of agents. There's plenty of statistics to plow through but if you're going to own it and live in it it's going to be an emotional decision as well.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 6, 2013
Hi Christine,
Arlington, VA would be a good place to look. So are Silver Spring, MD, and the Shaw & Southwest/waterfront neighborhoods of DC. There are others too. Broadly speaking DC real estate has held its value better than any other market in the country.
How do you define "most"?
It depends on your budget and where your commute takes you. Generally properties close to Metro, while a bit more expensive tend to be better investments.
It also depends on your lifestyle, what do you like to do?
I can be more helpful, if you'll provide more info
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 24, 2012
Hi Christine,

It's all going to depend on what your comfort zone is. You will most likely find lots of townhouses and condos for very reasonable prices, including short sales and foreclosures, that would give you a great return on your investment, as well as those that will be on the higher side with little to no equity in them. For example, here in the metro DC area, I know of locations where I can find 2BR condos for under $50,000 in short sales that would start at about $30,000 equity in them after purchase, as well as those under $80,000 in standard sales. They are in great areas for investment properties and a new home owner may not mind living in them for a few years and then turning them into a rental property themselves. I've done this myself.

Then there are the more desirable areas that are closer to metro stops, closer to desirable school districts,slightly better commute, and other things that new home owners also find desirable, but for that desirability you would look at raising the purchase price by double and triple the amounts of the first ones, and those are just the condo prices.

My best advice is to interview a few agents you find interesting and pick one you like. Also, just because an agent may be new doesn't mean they don't know what they are doing. They tend to be hungrier than more experienced agents and will take the time with you to get what you really want.

Good luck! If you need a referral for a terrific agent in the Tampa area, I'd be happy to send you a name.

Kelly Putz
Realtor® - DC/MD/VA
Keller Williams McLean
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 10, 2012
Hi Christine,

I am happy to help. I can suggest several areas to start looking where you could get the most for your money, yet still be close to a Metro, and in neighborhoods that would be desirable to a young professional.
Give me a call or shoot me an email and we can talk about what you want and need in a townhome/condo.
Jason Skipworth
DC Living Real Estate, LLC
202-302-4938 (c)
202-446-2937 (efax)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 10, 2012
Hi Christine. Happy Sunday to you. Just do a search on google and type in the search engine "BUY A HOME IN WASHINGTON DC". You should be able to find some good real estate agents from that search. Good luck to you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 9, 2012
A deceptively simple question, but not one with a simple answer. I think that depends upon how you define the word "most".
Are you asking, where can I get the most square footage for my money? Or, where will I have the best resale value for my money? Or, where will my monthly expenses be the lowest?
This all depends upon your goals, both short term and long term.
And that depends upon your current and future plans. To answer accurately and completely, you have to factor in things such as your salary, your career goals, your location, your health, your social life.
What are your goals?
Where are you now, where will you be in 5 years, and where do you want to be in 10, 15, 20?
How much do you make, how much do you owe, how much do you save?
Where do you work, where do you play, where do you relax?
How mobile are you? Do you own a car? Do you like to drive?
As I said, a decptively easy question.
But, you're in luck; most REALTORS can help you with your selection. They can help you decide on the best possible purchase, if, indeed, a purchase is right for you at this time.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 9, 2012
Hi Christine

Right now is a great time to buy with mortgage rates so low, you can find a place and get equity pretty quickly. As for neighborhoods, it really depends on your budget and what you are looking for. Do you want an urban neighborhood, that has a lot going on, has the metro, etc? Then someplace like the Penn Quarter, Dupont, U St would work. If you want someplace that has more single family homes neighborhoods like Woodley, Van Ness, Forest Hills, up by American University, Tenleytown would be good areas to start.

Please feel free to be in touch if you need more assistance.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 9, 2012
Hello Christine,

Congratulations on taking the step from renting to buying. Why pay your landlord's mortgage when you can be paying your own. There are many great areas of the city but the first step should probably be to get pre-qualified by a loan officer so you know realistically what you can afford. That will help drive the area of the city where you can afford to purchase. Then it is just a question of preference. If you contact me at waynej@kw.com or 202-494-0714, I would be glad to suggest some great lenders and help you narrow down your preferences. I would welcome the opportunity to help you in any way I can.

All the best,

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 9, 2012
Hi Christine,
I would start with these questions: where do you work and which neighborhoods do you like? Understand your budget and prioritues, and learn the price points for different communities will certainly help. Dupont Circle, Ligan Circle, Chinatown and downtown are all great if you like the city feel. Arlington, VA is wonderful too and a parking space is typically included in the price if you buy a newer condo in Arlington. Suggest that you work with a professional who has a broad view of different neighborhoods to help narrow down the search for you based on your needs and requirements.

Michael Huang, real estate broker and buyer specialist
Kirin Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 9, 2012
Hey Christine,

Buying vs. Renting is an excellent choice. I can help you get the most for your money. Inbox me your budget and I will send you the options that are available in DC. We can go check some places out this week.

Talk to you soon,

Ericka S. Black, Realtor
Central Properties, LLC
(202) 670-6677
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 8, 2012
Hi Christine,

I would suggest looking around Woodley Park, Cleveland Park or Columbia Heights areas. They are all near a red line metro and you can find condos that are reasonably priced.

If you have any more questions or would like help with your home search, please don't hesitate to contact me!

Meegan Tiffany
Long and Foster Realtors
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 8, 2012
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