What You Should Know Before Moving to DC from SoCal

Washington, D.C. is attracting more than just politicians and government staff. The city is filled to the brim with culture and history that is not only appealing to Americans but international visitors as well. While DC is famous for its vibrant tourism industry, more and more people are calling it home. 

The city population is expected to increase by 47 percent by 2045. If you are considering moving to D.C. from SoCal, here are a couple of things you need to know before you settle in the nation’s capital.

Brutal Traffic

D.C. residents without cars depend on Uber (or a similar service), taxis, streetcar, buses, and Metro. If you intend on driving around your way through D.C., prepare for some severe traffic. Living in a suburban apartment or home is less expensive, but the driving commute may take a toll on your nerves and time. 

Different Taxation

As you prepare to view The Gantry luxury apartments in DC, you should know that the area runs on a taxation system that adds to the cost of living. For starters, sales tax is 5.75 percent, but a few purchases like alcohol for consumption off-premises get taxed a higher rate of 10 percent, just like takeout orders and restaurant meals. Hotel tax is about 14.5 percent, garage parking is 18 percent, and there is an estate tax.

Conservative Dressing

The government’s influence on the city is apparent as the dress code is conservative and formal. Even those that are not in the government have adopted the same dress style and most probably shop in the same areas for their work area. 

Unless you are working at a tech start-up or similar firm with a casual dress code, you will find yourself blending into the commuter crowd. Bonus tip, when you attend an interview within the D.C. area, it is safer to dress formally.

You Must Love Brunch

People living in apartments like Vintage apartments in Pleasanton or neighborhoods with a significant concentration of young residents have at their disposal plenty of brunch places. And these spots have long lines during the weekends. 

Once you have set your heart on having a specific brunch selection, make reservations, get there early, and be patient. Other huge meal and entertainment deals in D.C. are small food servings and happy hours!

More than Government

While Washington, D.C.  hosts the federal government and the government employs thousands of people, this is not the only employer in town. The city boasts of a knowledge economy that is bringing in educated, young professionals from all over the country. 

If you are considering moving to DC from SoCal, but not keen on a government job or anything in the orbit of the government, you are in good hands. D.C. is home to a vibrant private sector that offers plenty of opportunities for anyone not interested in working for the government or a non-profit, think tank or lobbying firm.

Plenty of Free Museums

You will be paying a lot in the form of sales tax in D.C., but you will never spend a single dime when visiting its world-famous museums. Not all museums in the city are, but most are. Free museums are a significant advantage not only for yourself but also for visiting relatives and friends from out of town. 


At the same time, be aware that you will be drawn into the fight for D.C. statehood after you move into Washington, D.C. A few residents claim that the odds of D.C becoming the 51st state in the United States are better than ever today.

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