Moving to Washington DC | City Guides | Long Distance USA Movers

Moving to Washington DC – Here Are the Things to Know About

The US capital is probably one of the most famous cities in the States, the place where its main institutions such as the White House, Capitol Building, and the Supreme Court are located. It’s no wonder you are thinking about hiring a long-distance moving company and moving to Washington, DC. There are thousands of people who share your thoughts, so join the crowd.

Washington, DC - Monuments reflecting at twilight overlay
Washington, DC monuments

This city is not just about politics – there’s so much more, like its monuments, memorials, excellent food, wine, friendly people, and beautiful neighborhoods. If you visited this beautiful metropolis as a tourist, maybe you learned some of the fun facts about it. Did you know that there are underground tunnels beneath the Capitol? Or that the world’s largest library is here? Once you decide that you’ll be moving across the country and relocating to Washington DC, you’ll be able to enjoy all of its history whenever you want.

Is It Expensive to Live in DC? The Cost of Living You Can Expect

Are you asking yourself how much money should I save to move out of state? Taking into account that this is the capital of the US, you pretty much have your answer. We are sorry to be the ones sharing the bad news, but this is one expensive metropolis. The average cost of living in Washington DC for a four-person family is around $4,000 on a monthly basis, not including the rent. It is a lot, we know. But, on the brighter side, it’s still less than the cost of living in New York.

How Much Is the Renting in Washington, DC

Before you start thinking about what will be your first apartment essentials, you should be aware that you will pay around $3,300 monthly for a one-bedroom flat Downtown. If you go a bit further, the rent goes down, and you can expect to pay around $2,000 for the same sized place. The good news about this metropolis is that even though the rents are high, you won’t pay too much for the utilities – the basic ones are around $140 for a month. Before you start the whole moving cross country operation, check the options available for you and your family and the size of the apartment you can rent. If you’re planning to rent with someone you don’t know, prepare the questions to ask potential roommates, and if you’re starting a life with your significant other, get to know some of the tips for moving in together. Making your new apartment shopping list together will soon make you feel like you’re home.

What Salary Do You Need to Live in Washington, DC?

This is probably the most important piece of information you will need when moving interstate. The minimum for food per day is around $20, which equals to about $600 per month. Still, this is the minimum. You cannot always be on the edge of existence and save every dollar to buy less expensive products. You’ll probably eat out sometimes, maybe even in some of the best restaurants in Washington DC. You can expect to pay around $20 in a less expensive place, whereas a top-notch restaurant can charge up to $75 per meal.

As for the other costs, when the rent, utilities, and everything else adds up, you will need around $143,000 per year to live comfortably when you relocate to Washington DC.

Washington DC overlay
Prepare for a costly life if you plan on relocating to Washington DC

Make Sure You’ve Found Work in One of the Best Local or International Companies Before Moving to Washington DC

Unless you’re moving for a job, you might want to save some money before you start from scratch in your chosen city. Even though there is a vast number of opportunities, sometimes you have to wait a bit until you find a job. You need to think ahead and to check out the job market before you relocate to Washington DC. According to the Washington Post, there are 152 companies here that got the highest ratings from employees. Some of them are:

  • Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr
  • Century 21 New Millennium
  • Great American Restaurants
  • Hitt Contracting
  • Tenable
  • Appian Corp.
  • Goodwin House.
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Moving to Washington DC Without a Job – How to Find One Quick?

Having in mind the costly living here, even if you have a big stash of money with you, you should look for work right away. The best way is to try at companies with a large number of employees. Some of them are the US Department of Veteran Affairs, Department of Homeland Security, US Postal Service, American Red Cross, and other national companies. Also, start networking as soon as possible when looking for work, especially if you are moving from a small town to a big city.

Inside of an office overlay
Moving cross country is a serious venture, and it's good to be situated

Best Neighborhoods to Live in Washington

One of the crucial things to consider when planning your relocation is where exactly you’ll live once you reach the US capital. Luckily, there are plenty of amazing Washington DC neighborhoods. Depending on particular needs and expectations, people pick different places to call home. To help you find your perfect area in DC, we suggest the following places to choose from:

  • Georgetown – This is one of the most charming neighborhoods, and it’s located west of the downtown area. You’ll be close to the center if that’s important for you because of work or something else. This is an excellent choice for those who love spending time in a park or any other green space, as there are plenty of such spaces in Georgetown. This is also a bike-friendly neighborhood. People are warm and welcoming, so you will feel like a local before you know it, and you won’t have to worry about how to meet your neighbors.
  • Dupont Circle – If you imagine yourself living in an urban neighborhood that’s still pedestrian and dog-friendly, look no further than Dupont Circle. Options that this neighborhood offers are great if you are moving with dogs or looking for a high-quality school. Here is Ross Elementary School, and it is one of the main reasons why families pick this particular DC area. There are many exciting things to do in Dupont Circle, including a vibrant nightlife. You can go to theaters, enjoy your free time in beautiful parks, or go to Rock Creek Park to take part in a variety of activities. You’ll blend in and become a local in a jiffy with no worries about how to adjust to a new town.
  • Foggy Bottom – This is the right choice for you if you want peace and tranquility. No travel guide will lead you to Foggy Bottom if you are looking for buzzing nightlife, but you still won’t be bored. In case you want a peaceful district to raise your kids there, this is the place. Foggy Bottom still offers a variety of things to do, such as hiking, horseback riding, riding a bike, as well as tasting delicious local dishes. The subjective feeling will be like you’re moving to a small town, and yet, you will be so close to the capital of the nation.

Check out this video to learn more about recommended city neighborhoods here:

Traffic in Washington – How Brutal Is It?

If you plan on hiring long-distance movers and shipping your vehicle to your future home, you should be prepared for some serious traffic jams. The frustration levels can skyrocket when you are stuck in a crowded street with automobiles all around you.

However, there are other commuting options, such as public transportation, and the metro lines are excellent. So excellent actually that many residents prefer taking a metro to driving a car. After a month spent here, you will figure out what works best for you. Find a commuting solution that suits you and navigate around the city with a minimum amount of stress.

Moving Around the City Full of Tourists From All Around the World

Large crowds are a feature of living in DC. As you already know, this city is an important historical hub, and many tourists from all around the world visit the capital every year. This can get on your nerves sometimes. Nonetheless, it does give a feeling of a place that never sleeps. You will feel less lonely with so many people around you, and it might help you to overcome the fear of moving.

The Golden Washington Rule – Walk Left, Stand Right

Has anyone told you about the sacred rule of Washington DC? It’s always like this – walk left, stand right. Escalator queues can sometimes be very long. Since this is an urban place where people are always in a rush, you will want to move right to let the others pass. Don’t stand in the way of busy commuters. One day, you will become just like them.

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Traffic might be one of the bad sides when relocating to Washington DC

What Should I Know Before Moving to Washington DC?

There are more important facts you should know, so take a look if you’re interested in some moving to Washington DC advice:

  • This is an amazing city for families – If you have to choose a big city as your family home, then the good news is that the capital has low crime rates – your kids will be safer here than in any other metropolis. And you can easily find some of the best places to live in Washington DC. There are a lot of kindergartens, and the Washington DC public schools are some of the top ones in the states. Whether your kids have to attend a high school or they are getting ready to start college, they will find the best options in DC.
  • The residents of DC have to pay federal income taxes and also a progressive District Income Tax ranging from 4% to 8.95%. The good news is that property taxes are quite low, with an average rate of 0.56%.
  • This city has two distinct seasons – humid summer and mild winter. If it snows more than a few inches, get ready for a total collapse and metro delays. The steamy air is not the most pleasant during the hot July days, but you do get used to it eventually, and the same applies to the big amount of rain that falls during the year. You will enjoy the spring and fall even if you originally come from a different climate.
  • You have probably heard about DC’s cherry blossoms. This is something spectacular, indeed. There is the annual festival in celebration of Yoshino trees – always a cause for a big outdoor party in DC. This is a time when you can expect crowded streets and masses of people everywhere, sometimes more than 1.5 million visitors.

Easy Commute to a Weekend Getaway to Maryland or any of the nearby states

If you are looking for getaway options, just go to Baltimore or Richmond. You can also check out wineries in Virginia, go hiking in West Virginia, or head to Delaware and its beaches. There are so many choices – it is up to you to decide what suits you best. Even if you choose to stay in town, you can find many amazing public parks and picnic places to visit.

Breathe in All That History Around You

For all those who love history, life in DC will be amazing for sure. Some of the major social movements took place here, and the capital played an important role in the civil rights movement’s history. It is also important to stress out its role in the labor and the women’s suffrage movements.

Another amazing thing is that you won’t pay a dime to visit a world-class museum in DC. Most of the museums here are free – take advantage of this offer! In this artistic US center, you will also get to attend regular exhibitions, film screenings and enjoy free tours in many museums.

Washington monument overlay
It is no wonder you're planning cross country moving to this place

Let’s Finalize – Is Washington DC a Good Place to Live?

Whether or not you should relocate to Washington DC depends on your preferences, reasons to move, and expectations. We didn’t want to give you any false information about interstate moving to the capital, so what you’ve read here is what you’ll get.

Before you finalize your decision and figure out how to move, know that relocating to Washington DC and living here will be different from the place you originally grew up in. Even if you come from a huge place like NYC, the capital will give you a different life perspective. Don’t forget that organizing the relocation process and learning how to pack your apartment shouldn’t be done in a hurry – start the arrangements ahead of the schedule. It’s a good idea to ask professional cross country movers to guide you through this intricate process and to share some moving to Washington DC advice. If you are moving for the first time, take into account the budget for the relocation. You will be overwhelmed with the tiresome packing process, the endless search for the right moving supplies, and the company that offers the best long-distance moving services, so don’t waste your time. Make your ultimate checklist for moving to a new state and just dive into your new adventure of moving to Washington, DC. Being prepared on time will help you avoid anxiety about moving to another state.

Anastasia Hill

Apart from being the next fashion icon, Anastasia is also a freelance writer and expert on moving (and packing clothes).

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