Looking to buy a home in Capitol Hill

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Topic: Looking to buy a home in Capitol Hill

Life and Society January 10, 2013 at 2:58 pm

Looking to buy a home in Capitol Hill

My fiance and I are looking to buy a home and we both really love the Capitol Hill area.  Neither of us have lived in that part of town though and are unsure where the boundaries are, which areas are nice, which we should stay away from, etc.  I know the homes closer to Stadium Armory are a little more affordable, but I’ve heard mixed reviews of the area.  Can anyone comment on the Capitol Hill area?  Which areas are nice?  Are there any areas that should be avoided?  Thanks.

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My girlfriend and I bought in Capitol Hill 2 years ago, but we saw hundreds of houses all over the Hill before finally settling on one. We ended up in what I think is the absolute best part of Capitol Hill (right next to Eastern Market) but of course we had to pay more and trade off some space for the privilege. My girlfriend and realtor are both kind of snobby and didn’t want to see anything east of 15th Street, but I don’t think that area is truly any worse in terms of crime and you do get more house for the money. I’d look at some houses in that area to get a feel for whether you and your fiance feel comfortable there. The neighborhoods around Lincoln and Stanton Parks are wonderful if you don’t mind a quieter area with a longer walk to the metro. If you’re looking for a good investment you might be able to find something up near H Street, although I don’t think that housing stock is quite the deal it used to be. The southernmost part of the Hill, near M Street, might be a good place to buy too; it’s only a matter of time before Barracks Row south of the freeway gets fleshed out with more restaurants and retail. The western part of the Hill, say from 1st-6th Street, is ridiculously expensive and is not worth it in my opinion. The only area I might avoid is right around Potomac Ave because there are some housing projects and abandoned buildings there and it feels sketchy at night. But really you can’t go wrong with any part of Capitol Hill. 

I can only comment about my neighborhood, and I love it! My husband and I just bought a rowhouse one block from H St, and despite any negative comments you may see on here, it really is a great neighborhood. You can walk to restaurants and nightlife, our neighbors are friendly, street parking is easy (as long as it’s not Friday or Saturday after 6pm, then it can be an issue), and the bus makes it pretty accessible to the rest of the city (as well as Bikeshare!).
When we initially started our home search, we had a boundary of Florida Ave on the north side. But honestly everything is changing so quickly, so this may no longer be the case. I can’t say enough positive things about our realtor, Jennifer Myers, and her office is now located conveniently on H St! Good luck!

I live one block from the Stadium Armory Metro, and agree with the first commenter. while it is quickly becoming far from a good “investment” as i’ve seen prices skyrocket, it is more bang for your buck and i feel very safe there. i also agree that i prefer the area around stadium/armory to potomac ave metro, although having the harris teeter there is nice. eastern market is the prime location, but the prices start to go up. i don’t think you can go wrong on the SE side at all, and on the NE side if you are ok being further from the metro, has some lovely areas near H street and up towards trinidad that my friends all love. good luck!

My husband and I used to live in the 1-6th Street side and moved east of Eastern Market about a year and a half ago.  We worked with Steve Hagedorn of Coldwell Banker (he himself lives on the Hill at 9th and C, SE) — he was great!  I totally agree that the area near Eastern Market has a much different feel than the west side — much more like a neighborhood where people know and talk to their neighbors.  Can’t say enough good things about living on the Hill — good luck!!

After living in the Logan Circle/U Street neighborhood for nearly a decade, my husband and I bought a house on the Hill this past year and couldn’t be happier. We renovated a row house between Lincoln Park and H Street and, while definitely quieter than we are used to, we absolutely love it there. We don’t own a car and find it no problem to walk to either Union Station or Eastern Market metro stations or taking the bus, even with our infant. My only complaint is that it is not very easy to get a taxi in our immediate area. The sense of community is wonderful and the residents are friendly (they say hello instead of looking down as you pass!). We are really excited to be raising our little one on the Hill.

Like the previous poster, my husband and I bought a house on the Hill this past year after living in the U Street neighborhood and we couldn’t be happier.  Our house is between Stanton Park and Lincoln park, with H Street about five blocks to the north and Eastern Market about 6 blocks to the south.  Also like the previous poster, it is much quieter than we’re used to but we actually love that-we can even hear crickets when we walk the dog!  And despite the quieter hood, we’re still able to walk to H St., Eastern Market, Barracks Row, and all the bars, restaurants, and shops along Mass Ave and Pennsylvania.  Getting a taxi around Lincoln park can be a challenge but we’ve become huge fans of Uber.  The Hill has a great sense of community, is family oriented, and super dog-friendly.  We love our new neighborhood (near Lincoln Park) and highly recommend it but I don’t think you can go wrong anywhere on the Hill.  Good luck in your home search!!!

I’ve lived two blocks east of the Potomac Ave. Metro for six years, and it seems exceptionally safe. But I am from DC, so, like my neighbors who have been in this particular neighborhood for 25+ years, the change has been so drastic, that maybe we forget it’s not perfect. However, we do have the best ANC rep of all time, Brian Flahaven. He works tirelessly and endlessly to improve the quality of life in our ANC.
I’m a young woman, and I walk home from the Potomac Ave. Metro after 11 p.m./midnight at least once a week, and I always feel safe. I mean, I’m aware and all, but I know my beat police officer and lieutenant, and many of the neighbors on the way. A little more than half the neighbors on my block gather on each other’s porches almost every night in the summer, so the drug dealers stay away. Plus lots of people work from home, so everything’s looked after during the day.

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