There's no "bad side of town" in Lake Ridge. Instead of distinct neighborhoods, the city offers over seventy subdivisions and nine condominium complexes. No matter where you call home in Lake Ridge, you will be pay dues to Lake Ridge Parks and Recreation, the community-wide HOA. They take care of trash, lawn maintenance and even trial building and wildlife preservation. Most of the scattered communities are kid friendly and many sport multiple swimming pools, dog parks and recreational facilities. It's not difficult to find pet-friendly apartments and kid-safe communities within Lake Ridge. $$$$
In order to gain access to any of the many luxury apartments, homes and condos you will need a decent to fantastic credit score. The community can be exclusive and difficult to get in without enough cash or clout, so be prepared to have your credit score scrutinized. Finding a house to rent isn't difficult in Lake Ridge, although it is expensive. First month's rent, deposits and HOA fees combine to do some serious damage to your wallet. It's wise to tack on the price of gas and maintenance if you plan to commute to Washington D.C. by car as well.
Most people living in Lake Ridge do not work close to home. The majority of residents make the commute to nearby Washington, DC. The favorite mode of transportation is the car, but there are a number of rail options from the Virginia Railway Express to Amtrak so there's no need to drive yourself insane on the parking lot that is sometimes called the I-95.
The mandatory membership of Lake Ridge Parks and Recreation pays off in a number of ways. You get a neatly curated lawn, a few brief whining letters every year and beautiful public parks. From hiking, biking and jogging trails to dog parks and public pools, there is a seemingly endless selection of outdoor activities.
There's no need to travel for basic supplies, however, as Lake Ridge offers several shopping centers, restaurants and grocery stores within the massive master-planned development. If you want to flee from the grime and general misery of city life, Lake Ridge is one of your best options.