Making the Leap from Westchester to Washington DC

Sep 11, 2019

Melanie Nefzger and her family make the leap from Larchmont to Chevy Chase

Melanie Nefzger was already living in the suburbs when she got in touch with Suburban Jungle. “We weren’t new to the suburbs,” she explains, “but we were new to the DC suburbs.”

When Melanie connected with Suburban Jungle in February 2018, the family was living in Larchmont in Westchester, New York—but they were moving to the DC suburbs after her husband’s work relocation.

“They didn’t know the area and they needed to make a move,” Suburban Jungle Strategist Sarah Fraidin Roggie explains. “But they were also going to be exploring a lot from a distance.”

After connecting with Melanie and her husband, Sarah set to work putting together a list of towns in-sync with their wants, needs and lifestyle.

“They wanted walkability, lots of young families, and top-rated schools for their kids,” now two and four, Sarah says. But that was just the beginning. “We talked about things like preschools, camps, childcare, dentists, roofers, apple-picking, urgent care, cleaning services, pumpkin farms—so much!” Sarah adds, “before we even talked bedrooms and bathrooms.”

Very quickly, the pieces started to come together and the family refined their list, exploring communities in-person, online, and through both Sarah and their Suburban Jungle real estate agents.

“Melanie and her family loved living in Larchmont,” Sarah says, “so that was actually a real challenge—there’s nowhere in the DC suburbs exactly like Larchmont. So we really dug in and talked about what they loved about their life in Westchester. That helped us find communities where they could replicate the experience, at least to some extent.”

After exploring lots of different communities, they discovered Chevy Chase, and knew they’d found the right community to call home. They visited a few times and did “Facetime tours” to narrow down the neighborhoods and, in July 2018, they made the move.

“The Suburban Jungle team was amazing!” Melanie says. “They helped us not only find the right town but, later, the right real estate agent and the right home, which made our move as easy as possible.”

While amazing take-out isn’t as easy to come by in Chevy Chase as it was in Westchester, Melanie says, their transition to the DC suburbs has been relatively seamless. “We love our neighbors, and we love that the girls have a quiet street to run around and play.” To families making a move, Melanie’s advice is simple: rank what’s important outside of the house, and visit communities that align.

“Dining was important to us, as well as walkability,” she says. “We didn’t realize what life would be like with limited dining options until we explored those towns. So be sure to do that—and be sure to explore the kids’ activities before committing to a town.”

There are hundreds of towns to choose from. How do you figure it all out? You simply don’t… without getting a Suburban Jungle Strategist to help you through it all. Schedule here for your strategy session with our innovative suburbs strategy team. All services are completely free.

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