Washington, DC Summer Housing GuideWritten by Ashley Mosley
With its perfect blend of tree-lined streets, colorful row homes and bustling city-life, Washington, DC is an amazing place to spend the summer. Whether you prefer 24-hour Internet cafes and dog parks or boutique stores and fresh farmers markets, DC has a lot to offer a newcomer.
Despite all of its glory, living in DC can be expensive. The recent influx of young professionals to the city has caused rents to escalate, which makes finding affordable housing difficult and competitive. With monthly rent averaging around $1000, we created this Summer Housing Guide so that you will have a leg up in your search.
While the list below contains descriptions of DC’s most popular neighborhoods, sites like Craigslist, PadMapper and Yelp are still the best ways to search for housing and read reviews about different neighborhoods.
Walking Score: 81
Duke Ellington and Jesse Jackson once called this neighborhood home. Young professionals, working class families and Howard University students and professors make up this neighborhood. LeDroit Park boasts a community-sponsored co-op garden and the kind of small cafes and convenient stores “where everybody knows your name.” Students choosing to live here will be no more than a 5 minute walk to the local buses and a 10-15 minute walk to the metro and U Street nightlife.
Walking Score: 83
Weekend: Bring your headphones
This is probably the only neighborhood in DC where you can buy a bagel, a burrito and a bloody mary at 6am! CH has plenty of restaurants, internet cafes, dog parks,sports clubs, grocery stores, bodegas and it even has a Target. What doesn’t it have? Parking. The upside is that you can catch a cab from this area to any place in the city for under $12. We promise, you’ll want to go Vegan after a cupcake from Sticky Fingers.
Walking Score: 98
Weekend: No inside voices needed here
Modern meets contemporary in this artsy hub of the city. With its French-inspired architecture, fountains and fresh bakeries, choosing to live here will almost feel like you’re in Paris -- until you look up and see the National Monument. Even though there’s plenty of public transit in this area, you’ll never want to leave this neighborhood on the weekend because it has everything you need: froyo, yoga, a farmers market, bars and plenty of bookstores. Less than 10 blocks from the White House, those choosing to live in DP should be prepared to fork over a pretty penny for rent. Tip for grabbing brunch at Kramerworks? Ask them to seat you at the bar.
Walking Score: 90
Weekend: Who needs sleep?
This is the kind of neighborhood where you can buy a piercing and a jumbo slice of pizza all in one sitting. There’s no shortage of dive bars, wi-fi or panhandling here. Searching for food around these parts is like a trip to the United Nations, everything is represented – from authentic empanadas and gyros to injera bread and baklava (and for reasonable prices). Bus lines are located on every other corner, but you’re in for a 15-minute walk to the nearest metro. If you like to party, then welcome home!
Walking Score: 89
Weekend: Did the Hoyas win or lose?
If you consider yourself a “bro”, prefer the collars on your shirts flipped up and take pride inyour 3-letter sorority/fraternity, then there’s no place like Georgetown. Full of high-end stores, restaurants, spas, small dogs and pedestrians, Georgetown is the neighborhood that people take visitors when they want to prove the city’s got class. With all of its bells and whistles, the public transportation in this area sucks: there’s no metro line and only a few bus routes to bustle people in and out. But don’t worry, Georgetown is the kind of neighborhood where friends are more than happy to visit you. After bruschetta and brunch, make sure you check out Blues Alley nightclub – where legendary performers like Sade and Bebe King have graced the stage.
Weekend: Did you hear that pin drop?
Those serious about politics need only apply to live here. Affectionately known as “the Hill,” most of DC’s major politicos call this neighborhood home. During the day it’s bustling with lawmakers and Congressional aides and on the weekends you’ll find families with young kids hanging out in the park or folks running the steps of the Capitol Building. Eastern Market is a must-visit and the perfect way to blow a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.
Walking Score: 91
Weekend: Is there a protest?
Foggy Bottom is home to the lawmakers and the lobbyist (and George Washington University). Living here will provide students with the most accessibility to some of DC’s most prized locales like the National Monument, the White House and cool neighborhoods like DuPont Circle and Georgetown. Apartments are expensive and they go fast, so if you want to take up residence here then you should start searching early. This neighborhood has all the trimmings of an upscale area: Whole Foods, Burberry and bistros. Since you’ll be sharing the block with the World Bank, be prepared for lots of protests. Otherwise, this is a great part of town with easy access to public transportation. Make sure to stop by Founding Farmers for brunch – you can thank us later.