Generally a nice place. Older than a few buildings, so no in-unit washer and dryers, and the windows are just single pane so you'll hear your neighbors if they're on their balconies. That being said, the people in the leasing office are great, maintenance is responsive, the concierge staff is by and large fantastic (a couple of absolutely outstanding people, with the rest being professional at least), the building is in a good location and well maintained, and there are quite a few amenities such as a great gym, billiards room, pool and deck, et cetera.
AVOID THIS PLACE AS MUCH AS YOU CAN!!! Living here was a nightmare to me, I'm happy that I have left this apartment and found a place that's cheap and friendly. Below are a few facts about this apartment: 1. The staff are very rude, impatient and have attitude problem. Every time when you talk to the lady in the leasing office she's rude and tries to insult you! The small black girl in the front desk who has strong accent is very unfriendly almost every time when you try to pick up your packages. You just don't know why many of the staff behave so strange, seems like they have been tortured too much by their boss and think you own them a lot or what ... 2. Everything in the apartment is old and unreliable. The microwave oven was broken two weeks after we moved in, we talked to them several times and they replaced it reluctantly. We have to ask them to come to our apartment to fix the refrigerator every two weeks because it will stop working every two weeks, as this happened quite a few times and we could not bare it any more we asked for a replacement and they replaced the broken one with something that's even older and dirty and smelly... The AC makes annoying noises like whistles and they told us we have to turn the wind speed to the lowest level then we figured out the best way is to turn the AC off completely and never use AC in our apartment... The door of a closet fell off one year after we lived here... 3. There are leakage everywhere, I don't know how many holes they have drew on the walls on the floor that we live, but there are at least three big holes in our apartment as they were trying to identify the sources of leakages... 4. The basement parking garage is flooding now and then, I was quite worried that my car and so many cars of others would drown someday, and I don't have to worry about this any more since I've moved out 5. As mentioned by others, we also see bugs in our apartment for a few times 6. The rent is way too high, if you're looking for an apartment at Crystal City, see Crystal House, Crystal Plaza, Crystal Tower, and so many others before you make your decision to live here.
While I cannot speak for the place as a whole, one particular Staffer, Belinda, was extremely helpful and took her time to properly explain things, and help myself and my roommates out greatly in our search for a place. Due outside to circumstances, we decided not to rent at Buchanan, but I would encourage anyone looking for a place to contact Belinda. The world needs more people like her.
I've just left the Buchanan and will really miss the place. The staff were all fantastic, decent people who actually care that you have a good experience. Overall, the service and maintenance personnel did their jobs, and did them right. So, why did I leave? First off, its a relatively old building. Cosmetically, it looks good, but the aging infrastructure is a serious limiter on your overall experience there. Because the plumbing won't support every unit having its own; the washers and dryers are shared communal units that you have to pay for using a card. Basically, its like being in college... having to run down the hall because you forgot that you left your laundry in the machine and hoping no one dumped it on the floor. The washers and dryers are pretty old, and break down frequently. Unfortunately, they are priced like they are brand new industrial units. Currently the price is two dollars per load, and that is a 40% increase over what it was in 2008, when the washers are three years older... The fire alarm goes off very frequently late at night. This is not the building's fault, but they have a linked fire system with the restaurants below them... so every time someone at Chili's touches off a grease fire when they are trying to clean the grills at the end of their shift,... you end up outside with everyone else shivering in the cold while the fire department takes 20 minutes to clear the building. It happens waaay too often, and leads to a not so good experience for residents. The building's management company at some point made a deal with local universities to be contracted housing for undergraduate students. Expect that a significant portion of your neighbors will be college kids who (noisily) party on weeknights, walk to and from the laundry room in boxers and no shirt, occasionally puke in the hallways, and occasionally punch holes in the hallway walls. This is all perfectly normal behavior for dorms, but I didn't sign up to live in one. Overall, a good deal for the area, but no what you are getting into. I'll really miss the staff, they work very hard on a tight budget to keep an aging building functioning, but without a major renovation, this building will continue on a downhill slide no matter how hard the staff works.
The apartments are fair. But the overall service, and quality of the building is horrible. I moved in because it sounded like a good deal. Huge "luxury" apartment for a decent price. It is all a bunch of lies. Poor Service, Poor living environment. The management will Nickel and Dime you for every little thing. I paid a huge amenities fee but they still want me to pay more for the pool. You need to pay to have guests in the pool. Not worth it. Do not move in here.