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Renters’ Guide to Laurel, MD
The city of Laurel is in Prince George’s County, MD, nestled halfway between Washington, D.C. and Baltimore on the Patuxent River. The city lies 120 miles southwest of Philadelphia, 20 miles northeast of Washington, D.C, and just 21 miles southwest of Baltimore.
The city of Laurel was originally a mill town in the early 1800s, but after the arrival of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, the city expanded into what it’s most well-known for today, being a small, upscale commuter town for workers in both Washington, D.C. and Baltimore.
The weather in Laurel is very typical of Central Maryland, as its humid subtropical climate gives residents warm summers and mild winters with a high amount of annual precipitation.
Cost of Living in Laurel, MD
Public transportation in Laurel includes two MARC train stations on the Camden Line that go to both Baltimore and D.C. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority also provides a Metrobus service that includes four lines into Laurel, and the Howard Transit bus service is also available for residents. A one-way pass typically costs around $1.75-$2.00 to get into the city from Laurel.
A night out here can be a little on the pricey side, but isn’t too extravagant. Dinner for two at a mid-range restaurant in Laurel costs between $35 and $85, with the average meal costing about $60.
Average utility costs in Laurel are also very typical for Prince George’s County, as residents can expect to pay about $128 a month in a one-bedroom apartment for items such as electricity, heating, and water.
Average Rent in Laurel, MD
- Laurel, MD Average Rental Price, February 2020 $1,571 /mo
Laurel, MD Apartment Rent Ranges
- > $2,0009%
Laurel, MD Rent Trends
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Living in Laurel, MD
There are many pros to living in Laurel, the best of which is how close it is to several major cities. Both Baltimore and Washington, D.C. are accessible via public transport and are each only at about a 30-minute distance, while Philadelphia isn’t too much further and can be reached by car in about two-and-a-half hours.
One of the few cons to living in Laurel is that with the close proximity to Washington, D.C. comes the congestion and traffic that the city is known for. Although—being a bit out of the city—the traffic is much more manageable here than in or around the Downtown area, and the city of Laurel has a nice suburban feel.
Things to do in Laurel
There are plenty of fun things to do in Laurel, whether it’s learning more about the area’s interesting history, seeing a show at the Venus Theatre, or checking out some of the best restaurants in Laurel like Mission BBQ or Mid Atlantic Seafood.
There are no shortage of places to shop in Laurel either, and the area has several shopping malls. Some of the best places to shop in Laurel include the Laurel Shopping Center, Laurel Lake Center, and the Town Center Laurel, all with top-notch shopping, dining, and entertainment options.
For those looking for something to do with kids in Laurel, the Laurel Mill Playhouse and Montpelier Arts Center are all great spots to go with plenty of family-friendly activities. There are plenty of parks here as well, perfect for those looking for some recreational options or for something to do in Laurel without spending money, including Fairland Regional Park and Granville Gude Park. Both feature a wide range of recreational options, and Granville Gude Park is the home to an outdoor series every Friday night throughout the summer, featuring concerts, movies, and lakeside entertainment.
Sports fans in Laurel are really in luck, as the city is a short ride from both Baltimore and Washington, D.C., where residents can see the Washington Nationals or Baltimore Orioles of the MLB, Washington Wizards of the NBA, Washington Redskins or Baltimore Ravens of the NFL, and DC United of the MLS.
Employment and Economy
There are plenty of jobs in Laurel, and the Department of Defense is one of the area’s biggest employers. The Fort Meade Army Base, the National Security Agency, and Johns Hopkins University's Applied Physics Lab are all located in Laurel. Other major areas of employment in Laurel include Verizon, Johns Hopkins University, and Giant Food Inc.
Education in Laurel
The city of Laurel is served by the Prince George’s County Public School District. Notable public schools include Laurel Elementary School, Scotchtown Hills Elementary School, Dwight. D. Eisenhower Middle School, Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School, and Laurel High School. Notable private schools in Laurel include Faith Baptist Christian School, Laurel Baptist Academy, and St. Vincent Pallotti High School.
There are also options for higher education available to Laurel residents, as both Prince George’s Community College and Howard Community College share a campus in the city, called the Laurel College Center.
Tips for Renting in Laurel
The rights of renters in Laurel are very typical of most US renters’ rights, and are governed by Maryland state law. However, there are a few tips for renting in Laurel that residents should know. In Maryland, the security deposit cannot exceed two months’ rent, and if overcharged, the tenant can collect up to three times the charged amount plus legal fees. Maryland residents also must be given 30-days’ notice to leave the premises if the landlord is ending the lease early for any reason.
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