5 realities for young families looking to move to Northern Virginia

5 realities for young families looking to move to Northern Virginia – words Al Woods

Natural beauty. Close proximity to the country’s capital. History galore.

For those interested in moving to the likes of Fairfax or Arlington County, there’s certainly a lot to look forward to, isn’t there?

Northern Virginia is often cited as a great place to settle down for a reason. That being said, there might be more to the region than meets the eye if you haven’t done your homework.

So, what should those on the fence about moving to Northern Virginia keep in the back of your mind? We’ve got five takeaways based on local life that we think you should know to help manage your expectations before you make your big move.


Northern Virginia is Not DC

Ask any local: comparing the likes of Northern Virginia and DC are like comparing apples and oranges. The hustle and bustle of DC is a far cry from the quiet, slower day-to-day life of those living in more rural areas. That said, many living in Fairfax or Arlington oftentimes find themselves making the commute to the capital either for work or play.

The beauty of DC is that you get all of the benefits of a major metro area coupled with some fascinating history. The area is obviously known for the political sphere, but also boasts a thriving foodie scene.

Seriously, the city has everything regardless of what you might need. In addition to an Uber on every corner, you can find a dog-walker in DC in addition to consulates and other one-of-a-kind services for busy city-dwellers. Although some might rag on DC, it’s status as an active metro area is undeniable.

There’s No Shortage of Things to Do

Whether you’re trekking into DC or just staying at home, there’s always something going on during any given week that’s tailored toward families. Northern Virginia is famous for its slew of shopping malls in addition to tons of nearby historical parks. Of course, history buffs could spend weeks exploring the various Smithsonian museums.

And for mom and dad, the area’s wineries are a real treat for those looking to mix some serious wine-tasting with breathtaking views.

You Get What You Pay For

Let’s talk about the elephant in the room: yes, Northern Virginia has a relatively high cost of living.

However, consider that you’ll likely pay lower income taxes versus neighbors in Maryland or DC. Also, that high cost of living comes with safety, security and opportunities for both yourself and your family. Northern Virginia’s booming tech and security industries represent a modern sort of gold rush, while Fairfax County’s top-tier school system speaks for itself.

Don’t Be Surprised to Talk Politics

Not to get political ourselves, but simply bear in mind that yes, the region is a hotbed for political discussion and you shouldn’t be shocked when the topic comes up.

Close proximity to DC coupled with Virginia’s current status as a swing state means that both locals and national media alike are constantly putting the area under the microscope politically. This might not bother you, but it’s just something to keep in mind.

Be Prepared for Traffic

Finally, consider that traffic jams in Northern Virginia are part of day-to-day life if you’re commuting to DC.

While slow, country roads aren’t uncommon in Virginia proper, don’t expect to get from Point A to Point B too quickly when traveling to the city. The good news is that local counties have acknowledged the problem time and time again, so hopefully a fix will come sooner rather than later.

Chances are that you and your family will fall in love with Virginia given its wealth of things to do see; however, these pointers are important for those who might be up in the air. Regardless, the area is worth your attention as either a tourist or permanent resident: why not strive to see Northern Virginia for yourself next time you’re free for a trip?

5 realities for young families looking to move to Northern Virginia – words Al Woods


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