DC Real Estate

“Hey Melissa, you’re going to think this is crazy, but I had an idea…”

Ooh ooh! Let me guess! You want to buy a house out in the middle of nowhere… because now that you’re working from home, and you can homeschool your kids, you can pretty much go anywhere, right?

The change has been swift. I have to be honest, I’m sort of stumped. Were there really so many people out there who despised the race in which they were rattin’ that they decided to move away? Like, far away?

Shoot, we used to joke that moving out 66 in Virginia or up 270 in Maryland was far, but people are leaving the area – in mass amounts. Check out this blurb from our weekly email from the girls elementary school:


Last winter, there were some really heated meetings about overcrowding and children being admitted out of boundary. Now we’re at 80% capacity.

Never have we seen such a flight from cities than during the “white flight” in the 1960’s.

What happens when people’s employers call them back?

What happens when people’s employers say, “Wait a minute, if you’re going to live in rural New Hampshire at a fraction of the cost of living you had to maintain to live here to commute to our office, then we’re not paying you the same thing anymore.”

Or will the employers keep salaries the same and happily cut their overhead by slashing their office leases?

The run-up of the housing market since the recovery from 2007 has been steady and swift. We were pretty much owed a recession in the new decade. There was no sign it was coming though. Then Covid hit. And for a few weeks I thought, “Okay, here it is. It’s not exactly a result of the customary ebbs and flows of the market and economy, but here’s our recession.”

Except, not really. With a decent amount of the work force still unemployed (BLS is reporting 7.9% for Sept,) houses are flying off the market at such a clip that someone in our company posted this in our internal group:


It’s not another region but still. Wheaton? The world has gone mad, I’m sure of it.

Right now there are incredible “deals” to be found on condos. I realize that the condo isn’t the optimal living set up for those who want to avoid exposure to Covid but there’s going to be a vaccine. And once that vaccine arrives, I’m not sure what will happen to everyone who escaped to the burbs or even further but we’ll still be here. I’ll help everyone sell. And I will help them move back.

We still believe in cities. From the first 25 years of my life in NY till now, for Real Estate Dad’s early life in Baltimore, we still wholeheartedly believe in cities. I see the appeal of small town life for my girls. But, it’s important to us to raise girls who are not only compassionate for animals but compassionate for others, who have street smarts and who don’t live in a bubble of wealth or perceived security. That stuff just isn’t learned in small towns.

I’m still being the mother I want them to have. I’m trying to keep things as normal as possible for them.

I also know that this too shall pass.