Bethesda has a Walk Score of 97, prompting WalkScore.com to name it a “Walker’s Paradise,” which means that daily errands don’t require a car. The city also has good transit and is very bikeable. Altogether, it’s a good choice if you don’t have an interest in owning and maintaining a car for any reason.
Many people in walkable cities like Bethesda have chosen to forego car ownership. Why? Here are the most common reasons.
Walking is good for your savings account
Saving money is a big motivator for many who choose to live car-free. According to AAA, the average cost of owning a vehicle is around $10,728 per year. That includes monthly payments, gas, insurance, registration fees, and maintenance. For luxury vehicles that cost is even higher—and even low-maintenance all-electric vehicles come with a high sticker price. If you live in a walkable neighborhood and don’t need a car, that’s almost $11,000 back in your pocket.
If walking isn’t an option, Bethesda’s many public transportation options are cheaper than car ownership and maintenance. If you do want to keep a car, it’s still beneficial to live in a walker-friendly neighborhood because it means all your amenities are nearby. That way, you’ll save big on gas, maintenance, and insurance by keeping your mileage low.
Walking is good for the planet
Walking and using public transportation aren’t just good for your wallet; they’re also good for the Earth. “Collectively, cars and trucks account for nearly one-fifth of all US emissions, emitting around 24 pounds of carbon dioxide and other global-warming gases for every gallon of gas” according to UCS. Even electric vehicles aren’t in the clear. While their carbon footprints are significantly smaller over their lifespans, electricity grids in the US are still largely powered by fossil fuels—which means if you’re driving electric, you’re likely still using fossil fuel.
Walking instead of driving translates to a massive reduction in your personal carbon footprint. Can’t cut out driving entirely? Try cutting back by 10%. If every American drove 10% less, that would remove “roughly 110 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, or the same as taking about 28 coal-fired power plants offline for a year.” Living in a walkable neighborhood makes it easy to drive less, with stores, restaurants, and everything else you need right nearby. For more tips on reducing the environmental footprint of driving, check out these tips.
Walking is good for your body
Another benefit of living in a walkable neighborhood is how easy it is to fit exercise into your day. According to the Mayo Clinic, walking provides a variety of health benefits and can help you:
- Maintain a healthy weight and lose body fat
- Prevent or manage various conditions, including heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, cancer and type 2 diabetes
- Improve cardiovascular fitness
- Strengthen your bones and muscles
- Improve muscle endurance
- Increase energy levels
- Improve your mood, cognition, memory and sleep
- Improve your balance and coordination
- Strengthen immune system
- Reduce stress and tension
You get more benefits the faster, farther, and more frequently you walk. Luckily, living in a walkable neighborhood makes that easy.
Looking to reap the benefits of living in a walkable neighborhood?
Check out these seven homes in Bethesda with Walk Scores of 93 or higher—available now!
1. 4808 Moorland Ln #1004, Bethesda, MD 20814 - $525,000
2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 877 square feet
Walk score: 96
Situated between Bethesda Row and Woodmont Triangle, the home is surrounded by world class dining, upscale boutiques, nightlife, and right by Marriott’s new headquarters! One block from Bethesda Metro.
Listed by: Leyla Torres • RE/MAX Town Center, Xavier Torres • RE/MAX Town Center
Bright MLS #MDMC2065600
2. 4405 Elm St, Chevy Chase, MD 20815 - $1,200,000
4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,388 square feet
Walk score: 93
Just steps away from downtown Bethesda and Bethesda Metro!
Listed by: Jim Roy • LuxManor Real Estate, Inc
Bright MLS #MDMC2054146
3. 5010 Edgemoor Ln, Bethesda, MD 20814 - $3,490,000
5 bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms, 5,420 square feet
Walk score: 96
Totally unique opportunity to live just a few blocks from Bethesda Metro & all that downtown Bethesda has to offer, while also being tucked into a surprisingly quiet spot.
Listed by: Amanda Lasko • Redfin Corp
Bright MLS #MDMC2063498
4. 4960 Fairmont Ave #1004, Bethesda, MD 20814 - $659,000
1 bedroom, 1.5 bathrooms, 739 square feet
Walk score: 96
Walker’s Paradise, just steps from the Bethesda Metro and all of the restaurants and shopping downtown Bethesda has to offer.
Listed by: Kelly Basheer Garrett • TTR Sotheby's International Realty
Bright MLS #MDMC2062574
5. 7500 Woodmont Ave Unit S520, Bethesda, MD 20814 - $410,000
1 bed, 1 bath, 721 square feet
Walk score: 98
The Chase at Bethesda offers the best amenities in downtown Bethesda. Two tennis courts, pool, hot tub, office center, library as well as a concierge and 24 hour front desk. Located directly across from the Bethesda Metro. An easy walk to all the restaurants and shopping Bethesda offers.
Listed by: Don McGlynn • Compass
Bright MLS #MDMC2066236
6. 4901 Hampden Ln #701, Bethesda, MD 20814 - $3,495,000
3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 2,676 square feet
Walk score: 98
The Lauren is an exquisite luxury boutique building built for the most discerning buyer. Located at the corner of Hampden Lane and Montgomery Avenue, the location is uncommonly quiet, while still being in the most desirable part of downtown Bethesda.
Listed by: Kara Sheehan • Washington Fine Properties, LLC
Bright MLS #MDMC2064638
7. 4819 Wellington Dr, Chevy Chase, MD 20815 - $2,995,000
5 bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms, 4,464 square feet
Walk score: 95
In the heart of Bethesda! Shops, restaurants, and all neighborhood conveniences are steps from the front door.
Listed by: Lauren Davis • TTR Sotheby's International Realty
Bright MLS #MDMC2061694
Ready to find your own home in a walkable neighborhood?
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