Bethesda Md is a great place to live filled with really interesting people and lots of amazing opportunities. But if you’re thinking of moving here, it’s important to know not only how great it is, but also the negative things about living in Bethesda.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to convince you to stay away from Bethesda, but to be fair, it’s not for everyone, and I would want someone to tell me the good, the bad, and the ugly before I moved there.
If you appreciate this kind of candor, do me a favor and hit the like button, I know it sounds cheesy, but it really helps me out so thank you for doing that and let’s get to the reasons you may NOT want to move to Bethesda.
Let’s dive right in
1- Expensive. Now, I don’t think that’s a surprise if you watch my videos, but did you know that For a million dollars you may not get a garage or backyard. In fact, take a look at this house. It just sold in Bethesda for $1,030,000. It has around 1,200 sq ft and a super small lot. No garage, barely a backyard. BUT- it’s an excellent location in Bethesda and actually was listed for $925,000 and sold for over 100k more! Yes, in today’s market with these high interest rates.
If you go 15 minutes north, to Rockville, you will get a lot more for your money.
As far as taxes are concerned, Bethesda is in Montgomery County and the tax rate tends to be higher than the other counties- not all of them, but most. https://www.marylandtaxes.gov/individual/credits-deductions/local-countytax-rates.php Obviously, this is dependent on how much money you make, but in general, the income tax rate will be higher. In addition the property taxes in Bethesda are going up as of 2024. This is for all of Montgomery County where Bethesda is located.
2- You will pay more if you live in Bethesda- Gas, contractors, food, shopping. Example- gas today in Bethesda cost approx $3.80 a gallon for regular gas. I actually saw one Exxon that had regular gas at $4.80 a gallon in Bethesda. Drive 15-20 minutes to some parts of Rockville or Silver Spring and you can find gas for $3.20 a gallon. That cost adds up so if you are thinking of moving here and want to save some money, it’s worth the drive.
3- Very Crowded- a lot of people want to live in Bethesda. Between all that Bethesda has to offer, shops, restaurants, metro, Suburban hospital, NIH, Walter Reed- it is very sought after. So if you are looking for space and big lots, without paying upwards of several million dollars, you may want to move further north or east. There is just not a lot of space to build on. One of the new construction developments in Bethesda is called Amalyn- I have a video on it if you are interested- and the homes are beautiful but the lots are super small.
4- A lot of Country Clubs!
In Bethesda MD, you have at least 6 country clubs which is a lot for a smaller area. Some of them include, Congressional, Bethesda, Kenwood, Burning Tree, Chevy Chase, Columbia – a few of them are in Chevy Chase which is right next to Bethesda so they attract the same people. These clubs are great for golf, tennis and swimming but they are super expensive. These clubs are private and you need to be invited and approved before you can join. I don’t know the actual pricing of the different clubs, but I’ve heard they can cost anywhere from $100,000-$300,000 to join and then the monthly dues run from $1400-$2000.
Now, there are a lot of neighborhood community pools and tennis so don’t think you HAVE to join a country club, but I did want to point it out because if you are moving here, you will def hear about them.
5- Summers are terrible – very hot and humid. Spring allergies.
6- Traffic and traffic cameras. I’ve mentioned this in my other Maryland videos but it’s worth repeating. Traffic and parking is really bad in Bethesda. And there are speed and stop light cameras everywhere. And parking cops. It’s really impressive actually. (but you have metro)
7- Very competitive – a lot of job opportunities. Like I mentioned earlier when telling you how crowded it is, there are a lot of excellent places to work such as the NIH, Suburban Hospital, Walter Reed, Marriott headquarters as well as so many retail jobs. You also have easy access to all of the DC jobs since Bethesda borders DC.
8- Tics/Deer- driving and Lyme