i'm in the search of a home. i was focused on condos in dc but after looking at a few i'm certain that a townhome is for me. so with that

Asked by Ulysses Garrett, Washington, DC Tue Nov 15, 2011

being said would silver spring, laurel or bowie be great areas for me? any help would be appreciated.

Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:


BJ Matson, Agent, Potomac, MD
Tue Nov 15, 2011
Hi Ulysses
Silver Spring, Laurel, and Bowie are all great areas. ALL still in good proximity to D.C., but more affordable so you'll get more home for your money. I work these areas on a daily basis and would love the opportunity to help you find a townhome that meets your needs & is within budget.

You can learn more about these areas AND me at the below website. Depending on your criteria, I can send you homes accordingly. I look forward to working with you!

BJ Matson
Remax Town Center
2 votes
brent mendel…, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, Bethesda, MD
Tue Nov 15, 2011

The first step is to be pre-approved for a mortgage. This involved a review of your credit, income and assets.
The most important question I have for you is "what payment are you comfortable with for a monthly mortgage payment"? All loan officers will have more questions but to me we figure out the answer to the above and structure everything else around that. Then you get a pre approval letter from me and then we go get you a realtor who knows the Silver Spring market very well. I know excellent realtors in the areas you wish to live and would be happy to recommend names to you. We also have first time buyer programs available for you. For more information and to get pre-approved please contact me and we can begin the process. One last thing. I think you should Google my name and any loan officer and realtor that you may consider using. You'll see many things not just what they want you to see. Like this site. http://reviewbrentmendelson.blogspot.com/

Brent Mendelson
Senior Loan Officer
Monarch Mortgage
600 Jefferson Plaza, Suite 400
Rockville, MD 20852
240-403-1970 Direct
301-412-0259 Cell
1 vote
Dianka Murphy, Agent, Washington, DC
Tue Nov 15, 2011
Hi Ulysses,

All areas you mentioned have great options in terms of townhomes. I'd be glad to help you find your new home. Please feel free to contact me so that we can get started. BTW, I'm licensed in both DC and Maryland, so should you change your mind, we can always check out condos in DC!

You can learn more about me at http://www.diankamurphy.com.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Dianka Murphy, MBA
Keller Williams Preferred Properties
Web Reference:  http://www.findmdhouses.com
1 vote
Jeff Escher, Agent, Rockville, MD
Tue Nov 15, 2011
I find many buyers choose Silver Spring, Takoma Park, and Hyattsville/College Park as an alternative to DC. Laurel and Bowie are further out, which brings about traffic/commuting issues. If you need to go downtown - or need to be close to a metro - they might not be as good options for you.
1 vote
Lisa Scott, Agent, Bowie, MD
Tue Nov 15, 2011
Mr. Garrett,
The decision on where to purchase a home is a very personal one and one that you really have to make for yourself. An area that's great to one may be terrible to another. I would suggest that you visit the areas you're considering and talk to people you know who live there about their experience. Also, you might make a list of the things that are important to you in a location, such as commuting routes, public transportaion, shopping and restaurants, schools, property taxes, etc., and see how each area stacks up against those criteria. Good luck in your home search.

Lisa Miller Scott
Sellstate Dominion Realty
1 vote
Samson Doyle, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, Columbia, MD
Tue Nov 15, 2011

I think buying in Silver Spring or Even Pg County has its perks for first time home buyers. There is a program out there for 1st time home buyers that helps a client recieve up to 5% of the sales price in down-payment and closing cost help.

See link below to be connected to the program.

Feel free to call at 443-864-2391 with any questions you have.
1 vote
Marty Hosking, Agent, Omaha, NE
Tue Nov 15, 2011
Dear Townhouse buyer---I've had a lot of experience with them in Montgomery County. I can tell you that it is a great way to 1. Get a place like a house without all the hassles, 2. get financing for it easier than most condos 3. there are a lot of them on the market now---best prices in years and 4. If you should decide to keep it and buy something else down the road, they make excellent rentals. BONUS: They are earth-friendly: You are economizing with housing density ---more walkability (usually), more in-fill (usually) and, in my opinion, more future friendly for many reasons as compared to McMansions. Let me know how I can help!
0 votes
John Young, Agent, Silver Spring, MD
Tue Nov 15, 2011
One very important thing to consider that my colleagues have not mentioned are taxes in PG county vs. Montgomery/Howard/Anne Arundel counties. Taxes in PG county are ridiculous and generally run about 1.5x what taxes are in Montgomery County. As an example, a $250,000 townhouse in PG county (Bowie, Laurel, etc.) would have taxes close to $4,000/year which is insane. This will tack over $300/month onto your mortgage payment. A similarly priced townhouse in Anne Arundel or Montgomery county will be closer to $2500/year--about $200/month which is much more reasonable. I wouldn't be so fast to jump in the car with an agent that wants to show you properties in Bowie, Laurel, etc. before sitting down and putting pen to paper with an agent that knows the difference in what you will pay per month in the various areas. Some agents only work in PG county and that's the only area they know so they can't give you an honest appraisal of the entire area. By the way...the city of Laurel is spread over 3 counties--PG, Howard and Anne Arundel so you can still find a nice place in Laurel and avoid the high taxes of PG county.

I know this area very well and can take you to see some incredible places for the money. I also am a 5-star rated agent on Zillow (see here: http://www.zillow.com/profile/metrodcexpert)

Read what my clients are saying about me and give me a call. I'll be happy to help you find the very best property for the price in the areas you like.

John Young
Realtor® - Licensed in MD, DC & VA
RE/MAX Realty Services
4825 Bethesda Avenue, Suite 200
Bethesda, MD 20814
Cell: 301-370-4757 (the best number to reach me at)
Office: 301-652-0400
0 votes
Terence Mich…, , Bethesda, MD
Tue Nov 15, 2011
The community that you choose will depend on many personal factors. Laurel, Bowie and Silver Spring differ in what they may offer you. The Maryland suburbs offer many possiblilities. A preliminary discussion about your likes and dislikes along with your experience looking at DC condos along with previewing the communities and available townhomes will help you make the best choice as to what is your best fit.

Getting preapproved for a mortgage is an important first step, however, the lender, settlement company, home inspector, Realtor, etc all must work in concert to make your homebuying experience favorable. Since your buyer's agent is the main player in that homebuying team, interview and select a great buyer's agent first.

I'd like to interview for that position. I've been helping area homebuyers for more than 33 years now. The time we spend discussing the process and possibilities will be of great benefit to you, whether or not you decide to work with me and I decide to work for you. Of course, our initial consultation is without cost or obligation on your part.

If you'd like to talk, preview and evaluate, contact me at your convenience.
0 votes
Search Advice
Ask our community a question
Home Buying in Silver Spring Zip Codes

Email me when…

Learn more