My husband has just been offered a job in College Park, MD. I'll be moving with my 3 three kids (two in elementary school, one younger) and am looking for some info about neighborhoods and schools and so on.
The biggest city I've lived in is Seattle and it was generally true that closer in town, a lot of the neighborhoods and schools were less desirable and expensive. If you moved further outside of the city you would find better schools, safer neighborhoods, and less expensive housing, you just had to balance the commute length with these factors.
Is this true in the DC area? I realize that College Park is already a little ways outside of the DC. Are the neighborhoods and schools in that area pretty good? I'm trying to decide what cities and neighborhoods I should investigate. We'll probably want a lower cost, 3 bedroom rental for our first year in the area. We haven't yet figured out if we're going to fly out ahead of time to look for housing or if we'll try to arrange something remotely.
Also, it wouldn't hurt to have a few contacts in the area to answer questions. If you're willing to talk with me, please send me a pm with your contact info.