8 Great ‘Affordable’ Neighborhoods

We’ve rounded up Bethesda-area neighborhoods with nice houses, a strong sense of community, a convenient location—and the relatively low average price of less than $700,000.

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Photo by Michael Ventura

Garrett Park Estates, Kensington

18 Homes sold in 2017
$631,875 Average sale price in 2017
83 Homes sold from 2013-2017
$604,539 Average sale price from 2013-2017

Living in Garrett Park Estates means being close to concerts at Strathmore and having easy access to the Pike District commercial area. The neighborhood is less than a mile from the Grosvenor-Strathmore Metro station and about the same distance in the other direction to the MARC train in Garrett Park. Rockville Pike borders the neighborhood to the west, and Strathmore Avenue is to the south.

While centrally situated for commuters and shoppers, the neighborhood is set apart from the hubbub around it. “Garrett Park Estates is a hidden gem,” says Alana Aschenbach, an agent with Wydler Brothers Real Estate. “The neighborhood is rarely used as a cut-through or shortcut…the traffic in it is usually residents headed in and out.” 

Michele and Jeff Derogatis moved there 12 years ago with their newborn son, Max. “Price was a factor; we had been married just two years,” Michele says. “But honestly, the big thing that drew us here was the sidewalks. It is such a walkable neighborhood. We had a dog and a baby stroller…and being 10 minutes from the Metro was really important to us.”
As their family grew, the Derogatises decided to renovate their rambler rather than relocate. “This place is so special, we didn’t want to leave,” says Michele, 43, whose two boys, now 11 and 13, attend public schools in the Walter Johnson High School cluster. 

Developed in the early 1950s, Garrett Park Estates has about 525 homes—mostly ramblers, split-levels and colonials. Many have been remodeled and expanded; others torn down for new construction. After living in apartments and condos, Raimy Kamons wanted a single-family home with a yard. The 41-year-old attorney says she’s connected with the “3-year-old crowd” in the neighborhood through her young daughter, Elise. “A lot of people hang out in the front, rather than the back, of their houses, and neighbors just walk by and stop and hang out,” she says. “It’s really kid-friendly.”

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