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Moving to Washington, D.C.: Pros and Cons

Moving to Washington, D.C.: Pros and Cons.
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It’s hard not to think about politics if you’re considering moving to Washington, D.C.

Not only is this city the political capital of America, but it is also an international metropolis, a picturesque tourist destination, and a cosmopolitan center that retains a neighborly small-town ambiance.

In addition, Washington D.C is also a city that is growing rapidly, attracting young, educated people from across the country and the world.

We completely understand why you would want to move to Washington, D.C – keep reading to learn what kind of life you could live in the nation’s capital!


  • Employment Opportunities Plenty of opportunities and open jobs. The current unemployment rate in the District of Columbia is 6.9%
  • Green Spaces – D.C. offers you a lot of beautiful green spaces, parks, and recreational spots.
  • Great Schools – Washington, D.C. is filled with fantastic schooling options. Public, private, and international schools and universities are all located in this bustling city.
  • Wonderful Leisure Activities – D.C. is a hub for millions of tourists each year. 
  • Popular Restaurants –  As far as the restaurant scene goes, the district offers cuisines from all over the world
  • Location – The location of Washington, D.C. is great for those living in one of the many nearby suburbs. 
  • Cultural and Ethnic Diversity – The city has large ethnic neighborhoods that offer residents a taste of “the old country.”





Employment Opportunities

As far as jobs go, a career in politics is at the forefront of Washington, D.C’s job market. That said, there are also many other great professions and career opportunities for new residents of the nation’s capital.

D.C. is home to four companies on the Fortune 500 list, including Fannie Mae, Danaher, Carlyle Group, and FTI Consulting. The city is home to 176 foreign embassies as well as the headquarters of many international organizations, trade unions, non-profit organizations, lobbying groups, and professional organizations. The surrounding areas of Virginia and Maryland also house major companies, all within easy commuting distance. The current unemployment rate in the District of Columbia is 6.9%, which is a decrease by 1.2 percentage points from the revised July 2020 rate of 8.1%.

Beautiful Green Spaces

For those who would love to be away from the busy city life and visit beautiful parks and nature, Washington D.C. is the city for you, with many breathtaking parks and gardens for everyone to enjoy. 

The cherry blossoms are without a doubt the most exciting bloom of spring in Washington, D.C. The National Cherry Blossom Festival, which takes place from March 20 – April 12, features the whole District blanketed in pink by the blossoms. The U.S. National Arboretum has one of North America’s largest collections of bonsai trees and miles of trails make this a perfect scenic hike. Rock Creek Park is home to native species such as snapping turtles. This natural oasis is filled with plenty of things to do. Hirshhorn Museums Sculpture Garden is a zen treasure in the middle of the National Mall. You can visit and admire 60 contemporary and modern art sculptures. There are many parks for families and couples to enjoy, such as Meridian Hill Park, Lincoln Park on Capitol Hill, and Kenilworth Park & Aquatic Gardens.

If you’re a fan of beautiful gardens with many different kinds of flowers and trees, you can choose from Dumbarton’s Garden, Tudor Place Historic House & Garden, U.S. Botanic Garden, and many more.


Home of Washington Nationals. Washington stadium.
Home of Washington Nationals

The sports scene is among the top activities of things to enjoy in Washington, D.C. With major teams in almost every sport, you will always have many options for enjoying a game with family and friends. The district is home to the Nationals, who won the World Series in 2019, beating the Houston Astros and becoming the MLB champions. 

The district is also home to the Washington Capitals, the NHL team that won the famous Stanley Cup in 2018. The NBA team the Wizards and the NFL Redskins also call Washington, D.C their home.

Leisure Activities

D.C. is a hub for millions of tourists each year. The unique history paired with the beautiful scenery attracts visitors from near and far.  There is always something happening here! Weekends are filled with festivals, exhibitions, fairs, concerts, and a myriad of other events. Plus, the entrance to national museums is free; anyone can have a great experience visiting interesting and engaging with exhibits year-round. 

Furthermore, the central position of the city is extremely suitable for residents to enjoy weekend getaways. Options include nearby Virginia wineries, Delaware’s spectacular beaches, or Baltimore’s impressive aquarium. The list of entertainment options is endless. There is no excuse for being bored when you live in Washington, D.C.!


As far as the restaurant scene goes, the district offers cuisines from all over the world. Some of the best pizza places, Ethiopian, Modern Indian, Thai, Japanese, Balkan, and Vietnamese places can be found in Washington, D.C. From the classiest restaurants, there are also hundreds of local food trucks that wander the town. It would take you years to taste all that D.C. has to offer!

If you’ve never had a chance to try different cuisine, then Washington, D.C is the town for you! Explore and indulge in some yummy meals.

Great schools

Education is important, and there is no place better for that than the capital of the United States. Washington, D.C. is filled with fantastic schooling options. Public, private, and international schools, as well as universities, are all located in this bustling city. It’s no wonder that D.C. offers some of the best education in the whole country, and it’s a terrific place to live for many students, pupils, and young professionals.

Here is a list of some of the best schools in Washington, D.C. 



Impressive Diversity in DC

The location of Washington, D.C. is great for those living in one of the many nearby suburbs. Three major airports are in close proximity, so everything is very well connected. There is Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Baltimore International Airport, and Dulles Airport in Virginia. Another great thing about D.C. is the proximity to the beach. You will need to drive only two to three hours to reach some of D.C.’s most beautiful beaches. Everything is well connected by public transport, a huge plus for anyone thinking about relocating to Washington, D.C.

Cultural and Ethnic Diversity

The district is a veritable melting pot of different cultures, orientations, and communities. D.C. prides itself on offering a welcoming environment, which is why people from all over the globe choose Washington, D.C. to be their new home. The city has large ethnic neighborhoods that offer residents a taste of “the old country.”

These neighborhoods offer cuisine, music, and entertainment from countries such as China, Ethiopia, Italy, and many more. Additionally, over 10% of Washington, D.C. residents identify as LGBTQ+ members; this city has the highest number of same-sex couple households.

Washington, D.C. is famous for its cultural diversity and inclusivity. It’s not just a political center; it has evolved into much more than that. The population is well-organized and tolerant. Differences in minorities are largely respected and valued. America’s capital is a community that nurtures and respects different cultures and nationalities.

D.C. and Maryland were ranked amongst the most diverse places in the country. The region has become more diverse and vibrant than ever before. Most communities are friendly and welcoming, creating a safe space for all cultures and nationalities.

According to the statistical atlas, these are the percentages of the total population of Virginia and the Washington area.


The High Cost of Living

The amazing things pros of living in Washington, D.C., unfortunately, come with a price. According to’s data, Washington is the 3rd most expensive city in North America. D.C. can be quite pricey, but it’s good to remember that a high cost of living doesn’t mean affordable options aren’t available.

According to data USA, these are the news numbers based on statistics done in 2020.

  • Population: 701,974
  • Poverty rate: 15.5%
  • Median household income: $90,842
  • Median property value: $618,100
  • Employed population: 382,108

Terrible Traffic

The majority of traffic problems in Washington, D.C. are caused due to the ongoing construction of the Purple Line metro. The city is working to resolve the problems, but until then, traffic in Washington, D.C. can be quite frustrating. 

Rush hour is no joke in D.C. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) statistics show a positive increase in residents commuting by public transportation, but it’s not nearly enough. Many residents’ number one complaint is the heavy traffic.

Property Problems

In a city teeming with entertainment, one must expect some trade-offs. The city can easily become overcrowded at times. Residents and tourists often flock to the same areas and businesses have had to evolve to cater to large groups of people.

Demanding Work Environment

It can be hard not to become a true workaholic in the nation’s capital city. Many people come to D.C. for work, which means that competition is tough. Many D.C. residents even put some personal relationships at risk because of their current job. You have to be on top of your game if you want to succeed in a city such as Washington, D.C.

Wealth Inequality

Income inequality is easily visible in Washington, D.C.This city represents a mix of high-profile people and those trying to make ends meet, often working more than one job. The poverty rate is also high, which means that almost every fourth resident lives below the poverty line. There is an enormous division between the rich and the poor.

When you live in a big, metropolitan city, income inequality is quite common. Arguably, this can be one of the biggest cons of living in Washington, D.C. The city is filled with high-profile people, but at the same time with those who are forced to work two jobs at the same time.

Too Many Tourists

Washington, D.C. is often swarmed with tons of tourists. When you are a regular resident of Capitol Hill, this can be a slight problem. Tourists invade D.C. almost every summer season, and distracted tourists can often congest the sidewalks. Tourists sometimes slow things down, but they have become an integral part of this populous city.

Why should you move to Washington, D.C.?

Is Washington, D.C., an excellent place to live? The answer is – it depends. Is it your cup of tea or not?

Hopefully, this article has provided food for thought regarding understanding life in Washington, D.C. We recommend creating your own needs list and seeing where the U.S. capital stands regarding your priorities. Many are choosing to move this year, and Washington is one of the best places to start fresh!

Things to Know Before Moving to Washington, D.C

D.C. isn’t just an acronym for the District of Columbia; it stands for the beating heart of the nation. 
Read on to discover what you should know before moving to D.C.

1. The Cost of Living Is High

Is it really expensive to live in Washington, D.C.? The short answer – yes, it can be. However, you will also have many incredible opportunities.

Well, this is something we all expected. Still, many people are surprised with prices in this bustling metropolis.

The cost of living in Washington, D.C., comes with a steep price tag. With its affluent population and skyrocketing housing expenses, the city can be financially daunting for many. 

According to Numbeo, a consumer prices database, renting a one-bedroom apartment in the city center of D.C. costs up to $2,275.

2. History is Everywhere

The history of Washington, D.C., is incredible! This may sound expected and well-known, but take my word for it: It’s an entirely different experience when you’re there, visiting all those historical sites and landmarks in person. Nothing can fully prepare you for it! Everywhere you look, you’ll spot an iconic place with many generational stories to tell.

Some of the most famous historical sites in Washington, D.C. include:

  • The White House
  • The Lincoln Memorial
  • The Washington Monument
  • The Jefferson Memorial
  • The National Mall
  • The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial

3. Weather Whiplash

Living in the DMV area can bring several surprises. In the heart of the nation’s capital, where power meets politics, the weather dances to its own rhythm. Washington, D.C., a city of historical significance, experiences a climate as dynamic as the decisions made within its hallowed halls.

As cherry blossoms paint the city in delicate shades of pink, spring in D.C. unveils its soft side. March ushers in a cool breeze with temperatures around 50°F (10°C), slowly evolving into the warmer embrace of May.

The city’s political heat finds its match in the scorching summer sun. Average temperatures soar between 80°F (26°C) and 90°F (32°C), punctuated by those occasional sweltering days that make you grateful for air-conditioned corridors.

Autumn paints the city in shades of gold and red as the heat of summer mellows into a crisp, refreshing breeze. When those days come around in the capital, you can tell it’s time to bring out your most eerie and captivating decorations and enjoy the Halloween spirit.

When winter descends upon the District, politics and power give way to a different chill. December through February sees temperatures hover between 32°F (0°C) and 45°F (7°C). The occasional snowfall drapes the city in a quiet elegance, contrasting the hustle and bustle of its political core.

Life in Washington, D.C., can be as unpredictable as the weather, but that’s where the enchantment resides!

4. Cherry Blossom Magic

As I wandered through the enchanting streets of Washington, D.C., there was an almost tangible sense of anticipation.

The city, usually draped in the seriousness of politics and bureaucracy, was about to reveal its softer, more poetic side. It was that time of year when Cherry Blossom Magic descended upon the nation’s capital.

What is unique about D.C. cherry blossoms?

The Washington, D.C. cherry blossoms are notable for their historical significance and breathtaking beauty. These cherry blossoms, gifted to the United States by Japan in 1912, symbolize the enduring friendship between the two nations.

Jefferson Memorial in Spring
Jefferson Memorial in Spring

5. Free Museums in D.C.

Did you know that some of the most popular and prominent museums in D.C. are free? Here are a few you should check out:

6. D.C. is Perfect for Millennials

As a ’95 baby, I’ve often pondered which cultural generation I belong to. Some call us Generation Z, which might hit the nail on the head.

A Millennial is anyone born between 1980 and 1995, so I may identify as one too. When it comes to generations and culture, before you dive right into the heart of the nation, you need to know that this city is a millennial’s dream come true.

It offers many opportunities, allowing you to build your career and climb the ladder, all while diving headfirst into the city’s nightlife. You can explore iconic bars and restaurants, and when you need a little peace and quiet, many well-manicured parks are right at your fingertips. It’s the perfect balance for those wanting to conquer the world while savoring life’s finer moments.

Welcome to the city that never sleeps – it’s not just a place; it’s an experience.

7. D.C.'s Traffic and Routes

If you’re relocating to D.C. from an area where public transportation wasn’t widely used, navigating the Metro system might initially appear unfamiliar or daunting. 

Nonetheless, it’s an exceptionally convenient and straightforward mode of transportation. Its noteworthy cleanliness and safety set it apart from many other train systems nationwide.

D.C. also has one of the highest taxi-to-person ratios in the country, with over 6,000 taxis available. The easiest way to hail one is using the D.C. Taxi Rider app for iPhone or Android. If you’re a bike rider, the city has over 3,000 bicycles in its Capital Bikeshare Program.

What time is D.C. traffic the worst?

Well, that can depend on several factors. Rush hour in D.C. typically extends from around 6:00 to 9:00 a.m. and from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. It’s advisable to avoid I-95 and I-70 during these peak traffic times.

Moving around the city can be slow due to the large population, resulting in heavy traffic for cars and pedestrians. If you’re not accustomed to the hustle and bustle of a big city, be prepared to leave for your destination much earlier than usual. If you own a car, remember that parking fees can be quite a nuisance, particularly when you need to use your vehicle more regularly.

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