Don't overlook these hidden gem cities with a high quality of life

steppinthrax

Active Member
If I may ...


And you know these things you mention, as fact? Maybe you haven't even been in morning traffic with those coming down from Frederick, or the towns in between, going to the Washington area on 270 that highly contributes to the local traffic jamming? Jammed up for miles and miles.
I'm sure that making $100K helps to sooth the ouch from the $20 one-way travel on that crowed metro ride as well.

Sure, ass/ume away. But you'd be incorrect. You must be a wanna be physic for your skills at it suck.
If you wake up at 4 or 5 then there's very little traffic. When I lived in Baltimore I woke up around 430, hit 895 to 295. Little to no traffic. In addition I use 100K because it's roughly what I started at when I moved here. Last year I made more than double that.
 
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steppinthrax

Active Member
There is not a one-way Metro fare anywhere in the system that is $20.
I think I said somewhere in here that they probably don't use the metro. Or maybe once or twice in their life. I rode it everyday for a yr. I ride it every once and a while nowadays and it's generally better than driving/parking in the city.

I would also say many are not aware of the transit subsidy offered by the fed gov (I believe 200+ a mo) that covers all of this. Even private sectors within the DC tend to offer subsidies for their employees. But then working in DC takes certain skills, which I'm also safe to assume many on this thread don't have.
 

officeguy

Well-Known Member
I agree that Largo is the odd bunch in the group. However, it's proximity to DC (21 miles off your commute) and access to Largo town center metro makes it competitive. It's geographically right up against 495 with direct access to 495 via White House Road or 214 (along Harry S Truman Dr). I did a quick check via Redfin and while the houses that are available are "small" (https://www.redfin.com/city/24173/MD/Largo ). The one's sold within the past 3 months (3500 - 4000 sq ft) are certainly cheaper than Calvert. Those that don't have kids or young couples with OPEN MINDS will find this area attractive.
NOTHING in PG county is a 'hidden gem'. And there is nothing 'hidden' about Bethesda. Its one of the most expensive towns in the state. For hahas I looked at the listings for other states I am familar with and they are equally ridiculous. For CT they listed 'Greenwich' as a 'hidden gem'. Greenwich, the most expensive town in the state, where NYC investment bankers own their multi-million mansions. There is nothing hidden about it.

Now I do have to give them one thing, Sitka, AK is in fact hidden. You have to take the Alaska Ferry or a plane to get there and a good part of the year its inaccessible due to rough weather and high instrument minimums. In Montana, they simply list all the cities except for Billings.

These 'rankings' are all generated the same way: Someone creates a model, e.g. 'livability score', divides the score by the median house price, multiplies it with the price of rice in china and lists some towns. Some of them just randomly pick zip codes out of a hat. Nobody actually looks at the output of the algorithm to verify that it makes sense. Last time around 'Lexington Park' was the hot place to retire in Maryland. Who knew ?
 
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steppinthrax

Active Member
NOTHING in PG county is a 'hidden gem'. And there is nothing 'hidden' about Bethesda. Its one of the most expensive towns in the state. For hahas I looked at the listings for other states I am familiar with and they are equally ridiculous. For CT they listed 'Greenwich' as a 'hidden gem'. Greenwich, the most expensive town in the state, where NYC investment bankers own their multi-million mansions. There is nothing hidden about it.

Now I do have to give them one thing, Sitka, AK is in fact hidden. You have to take the Alaska Ferry or a plane to get there and a good part of the year its inaccessible due to rough weather and high instrument minimums. In Montana, they simply list all the cities except for Billings.

These 'rankings' are all generated the same way: Someone creates a model, e.g. 'livability score', divides the score by the median house price, multiplies it with the price of rice in china and lists some towns. Some of them just randomly pick zip codes out of a hat. Nobody actually looks at the output of the algorithm to verify that it makes sense. Last time around 'Lexington Park' was the hot place to retire in Maryland. Who knew ?
Did you actually think when they said "hidden gem" that they were literally meaning a "hidden city", as if no one knows it exists. :killingme

It's called a "expression" or a "figure of speech". It's done to both emphasize on an "overlooked" city to consider based on their proprietary ranking system. They looked at cities between 10K - 75K pop, medium house price and Livability Score. The Livability score came from AreaVibes. Attached is an image of Huntingtown, MD. They looked at specifically at Amenities, Cost of Living, Crime, Employment etc... As you can see the score of Huntingtown is lower than any on their "hidden gem" list. In addition the pop of Huntingtown dosen't make their cut. Other areas of Calvert have similar livability scores.

Most of you are simply upset because the cities picked are wealthy (i.e. Bethesda) and/or diverse, in comparison where the most of you live.
 

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officeguy

Well-Known Member
Did you actually think when they said "hidden gem" that they were literally meaning a "hidden city", as if no one knows it exists. :killingme
Ah no. As in 'cities nobody talks about but that are in fact really really good'.

None of the locations they cite in their garbage clickbait article qualify. Bethesda is anything but overlooked as a good place to live and Largo is a shithole.
For ND they chose Williston. If you know anything about the state, Williston is an oil boomtown on the frozen prairie, hours from the next air-carrier airport. It's all roughnecks, 'man-camps', booze, drugs and whores. The traffic is tanker trucks, sand-trucks and heavy equipment. The locals who can afford it (and most now can) have moved their families to other parts of the state and just go back a few days at a time to work. A 'hidden gem' alright.
 

SamSpade

Well-Known Member
I see Largo has all those things.

Idiot.
Yeah, I was very surprised to see Largo on the list - it's one of the places in PG outside the Beltway I wouldn't be caught DEAD in.
Because the chances of that are pretty good - one of my best friends lived there when he first arrived in Maryland.
Suffice it to say, the crime-ridden neighborhood he moved TO, in Upper Marlboro was actually a step UP.

And I can see the sense for some of those towns - Bethesda is rich. Like, very rich. Ditto Severna Park, the rich suburb of Annapolis.
Ellicott City - parts of it - have some real old town America charm, especially if you don't live in the flood kill zone the downtown is.
Think - Solomon's Island, but with more shops and much older but well kept buildings.

Can't really say much for Belair. Can't figure the reason for that. My sister used to live in Aberdeen in a community where nearly everyone had a boat docked outside their door - Aberdeen is not far away, but neither of them would I claim was "close" to Baltimore (about 30 miles).

I'd probably suggest LOTS of other cities that I think are more "livable". A lot of towns on the Eastern Shore would easily qualify, in my opinion. Kind of a fan of Chestertown. I have no idea what the metric is.
 

SamSpade

Well-Known Member
These 'rankings' are all generated the same way: Someone creates a model......
And that's it, in a nutshell - what are the chances that the writer(s) or creators of the model EVER set foot in any of these places?

To find these “hidden gems” in every state, GOBankingRates analyzed cities with a population between 10,000 and 75,000, according to data sourced from AreaVibes. If there were too few cities within the state that met this criterion, the population requirement was relaxed to include cities with a population of over 5,000. The study also looked at the median list price of homes within the area. States are listed in alphabetical order, with the five hidden gem cities in each state ranked in order of highest livability score. The livability score for each city is out of 100 and based on amenities, cost of living, crime, employment, housing, schools and weather. For states where multiple cities had the same livability score as the fifth hidden gem, all tied cities were included.

So - there you have it. That's how a shithole like Largo can make the list. I browsed the list, noting towns I've either LIVED IN, have relatives who live there or spent any time in it. What a load of crap.
 

spr1975wshs

Mostly settled in...
PREMO Member
Nebraska - Papillion - Median list price: $329,200 - Livability score: 88

We lived there while at Offutt AFB from late 86 - early 92.
Had a 3 bedroom raised ranch on a 3/10 acre lot. 1/3 of the basement was a 2-car garage, the rest was unfinished, used it for storage, laundry and workroom. Bought it new for $89,000. It last sold in 2017 for $201,100, many upgrades later. We got $94,000 in late October 1997.

Many more new subdivisions since then, with bigger homes.
 

officeguy

Well-Known Member
And that's it, in a nutshell - what are the chances that the writer(s) or creators of the model EVER set foot in any of these places?
They don't. This is all abstract data mining using proxies that are meaningless. You could live 10 miles from the Mayo clinic and this clickbait algorithm would ding your town for 'poor healthcare' because the per capita number of docs is low and average healthcare charges are high.

Anyone who considers Williston,ND a 'gem' must like hookers, blow and traffic congestion.
 
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