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Old 01-16-2011, 03:32 AM
1 posts, read 2,879 times
Reputation: 13


Hey all,

Another newbie looking for info on moving to LA to live the dream
I am a 22 yo female student from Paris, France, and I just landed a three-month internship in LA starting in March. I've been to LA a couple times before, but only in passing, so now I'm looking for advice on housing!

My workplace is located in Mid-Wilshire (it's actually on Wilshire Blvd, zip code 90036). What are some good neighborhood options for living, with decent commute, safety, and amenities (I only need a grocery store, really)? I saw in some other threads that Mid-Wilshire itself was being suggested, as well as Koreatown.

Since I am only staying three months, I doubt I'll be getting a car, so would have to rely on public transportation and/or getting a bike (I've done Paris traffic, I think I can survive anywhere!). I am also looking at the possibility of getting a motorcycle (I mean why not go for the complete Western US cliche right?), in which case I could afford to live a bit further from work, but I have to see whether I'd be able to get a Cali license, which is subject to visa restrictions.

I am looking to spend as little as possible on housing (will be renting a room). I really don't care that much about it since it's only for three months. I just want to be in a reasonably nice and safe location (but I don't mind living in a duller/grittier part of the city if it means cheaper housing, as long as it's not crime-ridden. I'm ok with living a bit dangerously ), fairly close to work, and as a bonus not too far from hipper/trendier areas, with bars and restaurants.
Is that asking too much? Is $500-600 enough of a monthly housing budget?

(Also, if any of you are riders, feel free to chip in on pros/cons and monthly budget estimates. I'm looking at smaller bikes, 250 cc's, and have yet to take a look at gas and insurance costs.)

Thanks loads!
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Old 02-01-2011, 05:35 AM
20 posts, read 35,200 times
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Default cheap housing in Santa Monica ?

you could check yahoo answers it has some interesting stuff on it but I don't think 500 or 600 will do it . Count on a minimum of 1200 for something decent . I don't know but I know LA is very expensive
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Old 02-01-2011, 09:02 AM
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If you can ride the streets of Paris, then you will have no problem dealing with LA traffic! You will find gasoline to be much cheaper than what you pay there even with current price increases. You can probably find a decent deal on a smaller bike in Craigslist and then resell it before you leave. Don't forget to bring your helmet as California law requires them them for motorcycles etc. and is just plain good sense anyway - I ride and have always worn a helmet even before the law required it. I'm not certain how insurance/license would work out for you on a temporary visa. Check the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) website and if possible you may just want to call them. In order to get a motorcycle license or endoresment you would have to take a written and driving exam so if there is an alternative, such as a temporary license (and I have no idea of that's possible in your situation) you would want to pursue that. Insurance should not be prohibitive if you buy a small motorcycle or scooter especially if you just get liability insurance as California law requires. Collision and comprehensive coverage (for collision, theft, fire etc.) would run you a bit more.
Given the budget you have realistically you would be looking at renting a room. Again, you can check Craigslist but obviously you have be extremely cautious when checking them out. I have attached a link to a website with listing for Hostels in LA that you may want to check out if that is of any interest to you: http://www.hostels.com/los-angeles/usa
I hope this is of some use to you and enjoy your stay! Oh, just as an aside, if you like movies I strongly suggest The Vista Theater which is on the eastern edge of Hollywood. It's great old style theater (but with a modern sound system etc. and seating to die for) and the prices are right; $6.50 for a matinee and $9.50 for the later shows. Most other theaters charge far more so you save a few bucks and if the movie warrants it, the manager dresses up as a character and is just plain fun. The address is 4473 Sunset Drive Los Angeles 90027. Look them up on Yelp.com, there are pictures and reviews. Good luck!
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Old 02-01-2011, 12:44 PM
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For three months you only need an efficiency, although cooking might be a problem. $500-$600 is a little low. It can be done more easily for $700-$750/$800.

Still, we're only talking about three months. It takes three months for me just to settle in. I'd consider renting a room in a furnished house. You don't want to buy a bed, table, desk, etc. You might find something in your budget. It does take more diligence to find a home-share but from the location of your internship it's easier to get around on transit.

I'd stick to around Mid-Wilshire but you could probably range as far as Culver City and still have a comfortable commute.

ETA: Re-reading the OP, I apologize. You're already considering a house-share so I'm not offering any new information. There are houses in Arlington Heights with younger people. Look into Mid-Wilshire first. Then check house-shares going west. Finally try north to Echo Park and Hollywood. The commute's not too hard. It gets more spotty going south from Mid-Wilshire, but you might find something cool (albeit grittier).

Last edited by Bunjee; 02-01-2011 at 01:10 PM..
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