Moving to the Nation’s Capital? Interested in a Two-Bedroom Apartment for $5,650 a Month?

From a Washington Post story by Ellen McCarthy headlined “In Official Washington, Chasten Buttigieg is in a (very) strange land”:

Chasten Buttigieg put on a few pounds during quarantine. So in April, with pandemic restrictions easing and two doses of vaccine safely in his arm, he set about looking for a gym to join in the city where he had relocated after his husband, Pete, became the secretary of transportation.

He found one on Capitol Hill that seemed nice enough, he says, until one of the gym’s personal trainers approached him and explained that he also worked as a lobbyist and that his boss would be upset if he didn’t take the opportunity to ask Chasten to pass along some information to the secretary.

“It was like, ‘Well, can’t go here. Can’t go to the lobbyist gym,’ ” Chasten recalls, rolling his eyes beneath his signature owl-framed glasses.

He’d been warned. Before the Buttigieges moved to Washington, a friend gave them a critical piece of advice about life in the Capitol: “Work is play and play is work.”…

The Buttigieges moved into an 800-square-foot, one-bedroom apartment near Eastern Market. “We couldn’t afford the one-bedroom-plus-den,” Chasten says. They chose the high-end building because of its location and the security it offered — the couple has faced threats and even a break-in back in South Bend. Rent for currently available two-bedrooms start at $5,650, though Chasten says they got their one-bedroom for closer to $3,000 by locking in a long lease that gave them two months rent-free.

“We’re doing fine for ourselves, and [yet] the city is almost unaffordable,” he adds, while driving their Subaru Outback up I-395. “Which tells you how extremely unaffordable it is for many people.” (The transportation secretary’s salary is $221,400.)…

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