A Closer Look At: Bethesda, Maryland

“One of the wealthiest and highest educated communities in the country.”

That’s how Money Magazine described Bethesda when they named it one of the “Best Places to Live” in 2018. Though an honor to be described as such, this pinholes Bethesda into a “wealthy community,” when really, it’s so much more than that. We know at the Estridge Group because we live here, and help our clients buy Bethesda homes every day.

Did you know that Bethesda is an unincorporated community? That means it has no official boundaries. This is kind of the perfect metaphor for what it means to live in Bethesda. Home to government offices, numerous tech, healthcare, and investment companies, the best educated city (of 50,000 people or more) in America (home to 8 Pulitzer Prize winners and several well-known political commentators), and so picturesque it’s been featured in multiple movies and TV shows — when you live in Bethesda, the limits are endless.

There is so much to say about our little town Northwest of D.C., we could write a book. Until then, let this quick breakdown of what Bethesda has to offer suffice.

Bethesda Demographics

As of 2017, the population was 63,200, with a total of 25,273 households (source). The median age is 43.4, with a larger population of females than males (for every 100 females, there were 87.7 males). The owner-occupied housing unit rate is 67.3%. And the median household income is $154,559. The statistic that put Bethesda on the map? The education attainment rate, with 83.7% holding a Bachelor’s Degree.

Bethesda Economy

Bethesda is the home of a handful of important medical institutions, military medical and research institutions, and major companies. Some of those include:

  • The National Institute of Health Main Campus
  • Walter Reed National Military Medical Center
  • Coventry Health Care
  • JBG Smith
  • Lockheed Martin
  • Marriott International
  • NBC Sports Washington

Bethesda Education

We’ve written in the past about the award-winning education that Bethesda offers its community. It is home to ten public primary schools, three public middle schools, and three public high schools including the #1-rated high school in Maryland, Walt Whitman High School (source). In addition, 20 private schools offer a range of specialty or religious education options.

The People Who Live Here

When you’re only 20 miles from the nation’s capital, and home to many top-rated restaurants and art venues, and award-winning schools, you attract some pretty incredible people. From journalists, Wolf Biltzer and Steve Coll, to broadcast journalist Connie Chung, actress and comedian, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, to Ezra Taft Benson, the Secretary of Agriculture under President Eisenhower, and former president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, have all called Bethesda home.

Bethesda Arts & Entertainment

You may think living in a Washington, D.C. suburb would be a “compromise” to the culture of urban living. But that is far from the truth. Art, entertainment, and ethnic food abound. In fact, people come from Washington, D.C. to enjoy performing arts at Bethesda’s world class theater, Strathmore. Their elaborate sculpture gardens and famous music festivals attract people from all over the D.C. Metro (and beyond). The arts don’t end there; Bethesda is also home to the Round House Theater, Imagination Stage, the Bethesda Jazz and Supper Club, and Bethesda’s Art & Entertainment District.