So, you’re thinking about moving to Montgomery County, Maryland, but you’re still not sure where exactly you want to live. You’ve done your research, you’ve Googled it, you’ve looked at all the articles and top 10 lists, and you’ve even asked questions in all the Facebook groups. So you think you have all the information you need to make that decision, right?
Well, do you really? I mean, who wrote all those articles? Who made those top 10 lists? Do they actually live here?
So today, we’re going to go through both. We’ll take Niche.com’s 2023 list of the best places to live in Montgomery County, Maryland, and then I’ll give you my 20-second opinion of each one based on my experience of living and working here.
And if you’re new to my Website, I’m a realtor. I’ve been a realtor for the last 20 years in Montgomery County, Maryland, D.C., and Northern Virginia. But I also grew up here, and I’m now raising my family here. So I think I’m a pretty good resource for you.
Let’s get started! Let’s dive right in! To keep me out of real estate jail, we’re going to take the list from Niche.com so you can’t blame me for putting one place in front of the other. They base their rankings on a comprehensive assessment of the overall livability of an area. They take into account several key factors of a location, including the quality of local schools, crime rates, housing trends, employment statistics, and access to amenities.
In an attempt to measure the overall quality of an area, they get their data from the Department of Education, the U.S. Census, and the FBI. If you want more details, I’ll put a link below so you can check it out. So let’s start with number 10 and work our way up to number one.
Olney, Maryland is located in Montgomery County with a population of approximately 37,000 people. Olney is about 31 miles southwest of Baltimore and about 19 miles north of Washington, D.C. Living in Olney has a suburban small town feel without being too far away from some big cities.
You have a strong sense of community in Olney and they have several different events throughout the year that support the local businesses as well as their fire department and police. There are tons of things to do in Olney ranging from local breweries and wineries to several super cute parks like Cherrywood Park and Olney Square Neighborhood Park. You also have the African-American Museum and Park that features Oakley Cabin, which was inhabited until 1976 and now serves as a living history museum.
The bottom line is Olney is more affordable than Potomac or Bethesda and it’s really great if you have two members of the household, one working in Baltimore and one working in D.C., because it is kind of in the middle. Although to be perfectly honest, it will take you about 45 minutes to an hour to get to either one and it could be longer during rush hour.
Niche.com gave Olney an A+ rating with A’s for public schools, good for families, and diversity. The median home value according to Niche.com is \$551,300, the median rent is \$2,084, and the median household income is \$161,065.
Trevilla is located in Montgomery County and is known for its luxury homes and large lots. The population of Trevilla is around 11,300 people. It’s located right next to Potomac, but honestly, those of us who live here kind of consider Trevilla a part of Potomac.
The feeling in Trevilla is more rural, as it’s not super close to any public restaurants and shops. If you’re looking for a lot of greenery and private driveways, then Trevilla is a great choice. But homes are very expensive in Trevilla, with the median price point being around \$1.4 million.
The public schools in Trevilla are very highly rated. As of today, the high schools are either Winston Churchill or Thomas Wooten, but always check with MCPS before buying.
The closest shopping and restaurants would probably be Potomac Village, which will take you about 10 to 12 minutes. Or, if you went north, you have Trevilla Shopping Center, also another 10 to 12 minutes away.
Niche.com gave Trevilla an A+ rating, with A’s for public schools, outdoor activities, health and fitness, and good for families. The median home value according to niche.com is \$1,103,400, the median rent is \$3,129, and the median household income is \$238,194. But like I said earlier, I think the median price is more like \$1.4 million.
The bottom line is that the main con about living in Trevilla, besides being so expensive, is that you don’t really have any access to a lot of public transportation. There’s no Metro nearby and the bus stops are far few between. So just keep that in mind. But if you want privacy and a lot of greenery, Trevilla is a great choice.
8. Four Corners
Four Corners is a suburb of Washington, DC with a population of approximately 8,200 people. It is actually a subdivision of Silver Spring, Maryland, and is very sought-after because it is super close to Downtown Silver Spring and Forest Glen Metro. This makes it a great choice for commuters to Washington, DC.
Four Corners has tree-lined streets, summer block parties, and a real sense of community. It is also more affordable than Bethesda or Chevy Chase without being too far from DC. Niche.com gives Four Corners an A+ rating, with A’s for public schools, housing, good for families, jobs, outdoor activities, diversity, and health and fitness.
The median home value according to niche.com is \$521,700, the median rent is \$2,422, and the median household income is \$168,393.
The bottom line is that if you want to live close to DC but you still want to be in Maryland and you don’t mind older neighborhoods, Four Corners is a great bet.
Rockville is located in Montgomery County, Maryland, with a population of approximately 68,000 people. It is about 20 miles north of Washington, D.C. Rockville is known for its high quality of life, excellent schools, and diverse community.
The city features a vibrant downtown area called Rockville Town Square, with numerous shops and restaurants, an ice skating rink, and a movie theater. Rockville also has several Metro stops, including Rockville Metro Station and Twinbrook.
The city is home to several important government agencies and businesses, including the headquarters of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the Lockheed Martin Corporation. Rockville was ranked number eight for diversity by WalletHub among 501 cities nationwide.
Niche gives Rockville an A+ ranking, with A’s for public schools, good for families, nightlife, diversity, health and fitness, and outdoor activities. The median home value according to Niche is \$554,800, the median rent is \$1,994, and the median household income is \$116,031.
The bottom line is that Rockville is a great place to live. It has something to offer everyone, from families to young professionals. The location is stellar, as you’re right in the middle of D.C., Bethesda, Potomac, and Gaithersburg. You really can’t beat the location as far as accessibility.
Potomac is a suburb of Washington, DC, about 14 miles northwest of the city. It has a population of approximately 47,000 people. Potomac is known for its large, luxurious homes, picturesque landscapes, and high standard of living. The community features a mix of old and newer homes, with the older homes being restored and renovated. Potomac is surrounded by natural beauty, with several parks and nature reserves close by, including:
- The C&O Canal National Historical Park
- Great Falls Park
- The Billy Goat Trail
- Glenstone Museum
As far as amenities go, Potomac has Potomac Village shopping center, with many different restaurants to choose from, grocery stores, gourmet stores, and two gas stations. You basically have everything you need at Potomac Village. But if that’s not enough, you also have Park Potomac, which is only 10 minutes away, with another Harris Teeter, more restaurants, and a cute little putting green.
Niche.com gives Potomac an A+ rating, with A’s for public schools, good for families, outdoor activities, and health and fitness. The median home value according to Niche.com is \$937,000, the median rent is \$2,340, and the median household income is \$198,870.
I do think that the median price point is closer to \$1.2 million from my experience working and selling here. But the bottom line is, Potomac is absolutely beautiful. I grew up here, and there’s just something about driving through the streets of Potomac that just calms the soul. It’s just so, so pretty. Also, the schools are very highly rated, and they always seem to have at least one team that’s super competitive, which makes for a lot of fun for those Friday Night Football nights or a weekend lacrosse game.
Bethesda is a suburb of Washington, DC, located in Montgomery County. It has a population of approximately 66,000 people. Bethesda is known for its cute downtown area with shops and restaurants, as well as its three Metro stops that make commuting to DC easy. The houses in Bethesda are a mix of old and new, and the lots tend to be on the smaller side. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Walter Reed Medical Center are also located in Bethesda.
Niche.com gives Bethesda an A+ grade, with A’s for public schools, good for families, outdoor activities, nightlife, commute, and health and fitness. The median home value according to Niche is \$958,400, the median rent is \$2,208, and the median household income is \$107,8370.
I think the median price is really closer to \$1.3 million dollars in Bethesda, but it is an amazing place to live. It is super close to DC and Northern Virginia, so it really makes everything very accessible. However, it is expensive, especially if you want a bigger backyard and a two-car garage.
4. Chevy Chase
Chevy Chase is a small town in Montgomery County, Maryland, with a population of just around 10,000 people. It offers a charming and sophisticated lifestyle for those who value convenience, luxury, and community. Chevy Chase is one of the more expensive suburbs of DC, where you’ll find a nice mix of older stately homes with an influx of new construction.
Depending on where you live in Chevy Chase, you may be able to walk to the commercial area or if you’re in a more suburban part of it, you’ll see a lot of greenery and rolling hills. Chevy Chase also borders DC, so it’s a really easy commute into the city. There is no Metro in Chevy Chase, Maryland, but there is one in Chevy Chase, DC, which is literally right across the street if you cross the border.
Niche.com gave Chevy Chase an A+ grade, with A’s for public schools, good for families, jobs, outdoor activities, nightlife, commute, and health and fitness. The median home value according to Niche.com is \$999,200, the median rent is \$2,361, and the median household income is \$207,971.
I disagree with Niche about the median price point, as I think it’s closer to \$1.3 million. The bottom line is that Chevy Chase is an older, established neighborhood, but I think it has a little more character than Bethesda. You also border DC, so you’re right across the street from a lot of different restaurants and shops.
3. South Kensington
South Kensington is a small town in Montgomery County, Maryland, with a population of just around 9,000 people. It is an older suburb and offers its residents a mix of Victorian homes, historic buildings, and new construction. You also have Antique Row and the old train station with the oldest children’s library in the state, which first appeared in 1893. There is an amazing farmers market in Kensington, as well as rows of local shops. There is a great sense of community in Kensington, and its residents have a lot of pride of ownership.
Niche.com gave South Kensington an A+ grade, with A’s for public schools, good for families, jobs, outdoor activities, nightlife, and health and fitness. The median home value according to Niche.com is \$806,700, the median rent is \$2,447, and the median household income is \$197,500. However, newer construction in South Kensington can run up to \$1.5 to 2 million dollars.
The bottom line is that South Kensington has a lot of charm and character with a real small-town feel to it. It is a great place to live if you are looking for a safe, family-friendly community with excellent schools and easy access to Washington, DC.
2. North Potomac
North Potomac is a census-designated place (CDP) in Montgomery County, Maryland, with a population of around 25,000 people. It is located between Gaithersburg and Potomac, and is about a 40-minute ride outside of DC. North Potomac is a great choice for people who want a more suburban feel without still being too far from the city. The home values in North Potomac are better than its neighbor Potomac because it is a little further out.
The area is home to several parks and recreational areas, including the 28-acre Defeated Mill Park, which features athletic fields, playgrounds, and nature trails. You’re also really close to the Catlin Square shopping center, which has a Whole Foods, tons of shops and restaurants, and a movie theater.
Niche.com gave North Potomac an A+ grade, with As for public schools, good for families, jobs, outdoor activities, diversity, and health and fitness. The median home value according to Niche.com is \$686,800, the median rent is \$2,323, and the median household income is \$174,591 dollars. But just FYI, the bigger homes in North Potomac will range between \$850,000 and \$1.3 million.
The bottom line is that North Potomac has great value for the money. You’re still not too far from Bethesda and DC, and you get a bigger house, most likely with a two-car garage and a backyard. In North Potomac, you get a lot of bang for your buck.
1. North Bethesda
According to Niche.com, the best place to live in Montgomery County for 2023 is North Bethesda. North Bethesda is located in Montgomery County, Maryland, with a population of approximately 50,000 people. It is a more urban area than North Potomac, and is a great gateway if you are moving out of the city but still don’t want to be too far.
As far as things to do, you will not be disappointed in North Bethesda. Strathmore Mansion showcases different artists throughout their art galleries, and the Strathmore Music Center has amazing concerts all year round. You also have Pike and Rose and Pinstripes, a super fun bowling alley where you can also get some cocktails.
You have access to several Metros in North Bethesda, including North Bethesda Metro stop, Twin Brook Metro, and Grosvenor Strathmore Metro. The commute into DC will take about 20 to 25 minutes depending on the time of day, but you can always take the Metro.
Niche.com gave North Bethesda an A+ grade, with As for public schools, good for families, nightlife, outdoor activities, diversity, commute, and health and fitness. The median home value according to Niche.com is \$596,100, the median rent is \$2,013, and the median household income is \$120,261. Single family homes in North Bethesda are more in the \$900,000 to \$1.3 million range.
If you are interested in North Bethesda, I Wrote an entire Article dedicated to it last week. Pros and Cons of Living in North Bethesda.
That rounds up the top 10 list of the best places to live in Montgomery County, Maryland for 2023 according to Niche.com. Personally, they’re all really great places to live, but they all have their little flavors and idiosyncrasies. If you want to talk to me more about it, just send me a text or an email, set up a Zoom, and we’ll get you started.
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