Relocating To Washington DC – 5 Steps to Make it EASY!

In the past few months I’ve had many lovely people like yourself who are researching in preparation for a move to the DC Area. Having been through many appointments and showings with those who are relocating, I’ve zeroed in on the main questions or hurdles people face when making plans. Stick around till the end so I can share info about the Relocation Guide I’ve written for you.

1. Learn the Options

Because the metro area is comprised of two different states (Maryland and Virginia) and Washington DC which isn’t a state but might be one day, there is a lot of choice here. I dive into this in other videos, but income taxes, property taxes, commutes, public transportation, schools and crime are all different no matter which area you choose. I have videos covering all of these topics because they are so important for navigating life here.

2. Prioritize Your Must-Have List for Your New Home

Duh Melissa. I know. But once we have this list tightened up we can figure out if the focus of your search will be DC, Maryland or Virginia. Some things to consider, and things I love to ask: What is your lifestyle like now? Do you like that or do you want a change? I met with a few different people living in New York City in the past few weeks. They are all tired of the rat race, the hours it takes to commute to work, the prices and the crime.

What if you don’t come from a hectic place like New York though and it’s not as clear cut what you’re looking for?

Decide how important things like commute time, schools, taxes, and green space are. This will dictate where we focus our search. For information on Maryland vs Virginia taxes, I go through this in depth so definitely consult those videos to find out more about income taxes, property taxes and the state where you pay a surprise personal property tax.

3. Consider a Short Term Rental

Uh, Melissa, aren’t you a Realtor and don’t you SELL property? Yes, I do. But I hate to see someone come here and buy a home in an area that isn’t right for them. It’s better to get into a 3 or 6 month rental so you can get your boots on the ground and see the different areas. Actually living here and seeing it from this vantage point is much easier than trying to sum it up in a weekend visit. I advise people to live as close to work as possible to minimize their commute, with the least expensive rent they can find. Then use the time in their rental to learn about the other areas and options available to them.

4. Store Your Stuff

You don’t need to bring everything. If you’re moving from a long distance, then consider a pod, put most of your home in storage, and have the pod stored somewhat local. You don’t want to store it super close to the metro area, but 1-2 hours away should get your things into the region without breaking the bank. Once you buy the home, you can summon your pod!

5. Immerse Yourself in the Nation’s Capital

The traffic is bad, the cost of living is high, we get a lot of tourists, there’s more to life here than the government but people love to discuss politics incessantly, many museums are free, Marylanders don’t know how to drive but they do know their seafood and the weekend getaways within 2-3 hours of DC are the best of anywhere I’ve ever lived.

I hope my take on how to relocate here was at least a little helpful. I’ve got a Relocation Guide that includes a lot more information that I’m happy to share. Please shoot me an email at and I will be happy to send that over.