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Old 11-16-2010, 09:53 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,420 times
Reputation: 10
Default Relocating to LA. Looking for safe neighborhood to raise kids+decent commute

Hello everybody. I got offered a job in Hollywood and my wife got offered a job in Long Beach. We are having a difficult time deciding where we should live. We have 2 young children so a safe neighborhood with an excellent school system is a top priority. Also, a decent commute, although highly unusual around LA, would be nice. Several cities we are considering are Cerritos, Culver City, Long Beach, Torrance.

Looking to rent a house or condo and hoping to spend no more than $3,000/month.

Any help would be appreciated!

Thanks
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Old 11-17-2010, 09:26 AM
 
Location: SLC, UT, Ketchum, ID, Southern Cal.
3,162 posts, read 4,443,538 times
Reputation: 1527
Couple things here.

1) there are few "excellent" school systems in LA Metro, public school wise. There are public schools that are better than others, but "excellent" - no.

2) with those employment locations - SOMEONE is going to have to sacrifice - if not both of you.

2a) If it was me, I would recommended El Segundo, and the commute will suck equally for both of you. ES has schools that approach "great", but fall short of "excellent". Its a nice, small community, but more importantly has good access to the Century Freeway (105).

You can also consider Beverly Hills or Santa Monica, but both are busier, and will have a WORSE commute to Long Beach. Culver City (as you mentioned) isn't a bad idea, but I can't speak to the schools. I don't think they're what you're looking for. Same goes for Torrence.
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Old 11-18-2010, 09:29 AM
 
531 posts, read 1,042,067 times
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If safety is your top priority, Mission Viejo is the safest city in the Southland. The safest city in the LA Basin is Torrance (according to the FBI city rankings). The safest single neighborhoods in the city of LA are Century City, Bel Air, and the Pacific Palisades.

If school districts are your priority, Tustin Unified is probably the best in the Southland. The best overall school district in the LA Basin is probably Torrance (ranking by high school graduation rate), but that doesn't mean that all the schools in Torrance are good. Beverly Hills School District spends the most per student of all the school districts in LA County.

If the shortest compromise commute for the two of you is the top priority: the shortest commute to both Hollywood and Long Beach is the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles.
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Old 11-18-2010, 09:49 AM
 
Location: LA
6,183 posts, read 11,608,640 times
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if your job offer is in hollywood proper, then you'll have the option of commuting to work via metro. that may or may not open up different options for you depending on whether you're open to this or not. as for schools, all the areas you mentoined have some very good schools. however, the thing about the LA area is that are plenty of great elementary schools, but things start deteriorate at the middle school level, though there are some very goog high schools in the cities you mentioned. since your kids appear to be quite young according to your post, i think you won't have much trouble finding a good elementary school for them.
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Old 11-20-2010, 12:28 AM
 
Location: LB/OC for now...
5,112 posts, read 11,794,084 times
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Look next door to Long Beach in Los Alamitos/Rossmoor. 2nd highest rated school district in Orange County and a 5 minute drive to LB. LB has light rail that can take you in to LA for the Hollywood job
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Old 11-24-2010, 11:00 AM
 
5 posts, read 8,529 times
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Culver City schools are quite good, since they are not LAUSD. But check the area of Culver City and find out which school you'd be zoned for, because they vary wildly....
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Old 11-24-2010, 09:18 PM
 
Location: Earth
11,945 posts, read 13,033,145 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musarion View Post
Culver City schools are quite good, since they are not LAUSD. But check the area of Culver City and find out which school you'd be zoned for, because they vary wildly....
CC only has one high school and one middle school which are both decent to good, not great (which they used to be). Although compared to LAUSD schools they'd seem fantastic by comparison.
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Old 11-27-2010, 02:08 PM
 
Location: Westminster, CO
136 posts, read 118,322 times
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Multiple sacrifices WILL have to be made!!!!!! I am not mad but just wanted to bold that to show VERY heavy emphasis. I would look at other areas like Santa Clarita or Valencia.
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Old 11-27-2010, 03:27 PM
 
2,626 posts, read 2,672,871 times
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That's the problem with LA - you can't have it all! This is like a logic puzzle. You want four things: A decent public school for your kids, a living situation that fits your price range, a reasonable commute for you, and a reasonable commute for your wife. unfortunately your job and your wife's job are nowhere near each other. So at least one of you is going to have to have a very tough commute and another could have a decent one...

I would say avoid the central areas of LA like Culver City. It's more pricy, I think culver city public schools are absolutely terrible (do you really think Culver is better than Hamilton?). Also, Culver City is not that convenient for either of your workplaces. Both of you will have bad commutes. Torrance is kinda close to your wife's work but not that close during rush hour, schools are debatable, and the cost of living is higher than it should be.

So might as well work in favor of your kids and your wife and live in the Long Beach/OC area. Cerritos, long beach, someone else said los alamitos are fine enough. The closer you are to orange county the better the schools will be for your kids, but the worse your wife's commute and possible more rent. Your commute won't be fun however.
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Old 11-27-2010, 03:58 PM
 
Location: Earth
11,945 posts, read 13,033,145 times
Reputation: 4053
Quote:
Originally Posted by disgruntled la native View Post
That's the problem with LA - you can't have it all! This is like a logic puzzle. You want four things: A decent public school for your kids, a living situation that fits your price range, a reasonable commute for you, and a reasonable commute for your wife. unfortunately your job and your wife's job are nowhere near each other. So at least one of you is going to have to have a very tough commute and another could have a decent one...

I would say avoid the central areas of LA like Culver City. It's more pricy, I think culver city public schools are absolutely terrible (do you really think Culver is better than Hamilton?).
Easily.
Hamilton was a horrible and dangerous school even in MY day. It was the FIRST LAUSD westside school to go bad.
Sending kids there would be a form of child abuse.
If I had kids I'd send them to Culver (and have friends who did and do - Culver gets an 8.0 from GreatSchools) but would never send them to Hamilton, Fairfax, etc.
I don't think anyone would argue with Culver being better than LAUSD comprehensives. (Including all the kids living within the Hamilton area who go to Culver) While not what it used to be it is not "absolutely terrible". It's fair to say Culver City schools aren't at the level of those of Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Burbank (recently voted the best school district in California), El Segundo, Calabasas, etc. but they're decent to good.
I used to live in Palms at one point, and if I had teenage kids I would NEVER have lived there because of Hamilton.
(I'm not just saying this because I normally rep CC. There are plenty of areas of L.A. I like which have LAUSD schools that are awful. I praise Los Feliz and Silver Lake a lot but Marshall is a crappy school....Likewise, I've praised Fairfax, WeHo, Hancock Park, and the Miracle Mile but Fairfax is a very crappy school. A RE broker friend of mine even said that if it wasn't for Fairfax High those areas would all be considered family-friendly again like they were 30 years ago. )


Quote:
Also, Culver City is not that convenient for either of your workplaces.
True.

Quote:
Both of you will have bad commutes. Torrance is kinda close to your wife's work but not that close during rush hour, schools are debatable, and the cost of living is higher than it should be.
Torrance schools are good, however parts of Torrance are in LAUSD and thus have terrible schools.

Pretty much anywhere that's not LAUSD will be better than anywhere that's LAUSD with a few exceptions like Pasadena and also some areas where you'd expect the schools to be awful.

Quote:
So might as well work in favor of your kids and your wife and live in the Long Beach/OC area. Cerritos, long beach, someone else said los alamitos are fine enough. The closer you are to orange county the better the schools will be for your kids
Compton's close to OC, you think the schools are better there than any place previously mentioned?
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