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Old 09-27-2011, 01:27 AM
 
8 posts, read 13,462 times
Reputation: 10
Post Should I Move into an Apartment Alone or a Condo/House With Roommates

First post on these boards...I'll try to be descriptive but brief(ish) if that's possible. I had my own one bedroom apartment in Hollywood for about a year and a half. Due to some creepy (and illegal) issues having to do with the apartment manager, I had to move out and find a temporary place fast. I'm currently subletting an apartment with roommates in Beverly Hills - their lease is up November 1st and everyone will be moving out. A high majority of my work and social life is based in Beverly Hills and I'd really like to continue living in the area. West Hollywood and Miracle Mile were both suggested to me but I don't really drink or party so I prefer living in a city that has more of an older crowd. I've lived in Sherman Oaks, I've lived in Hollywood, it's basically BH or bust at this point. The options I'm considering are a) Move back into a one bedroom apartment by myself b) Find a roommate and sign an agreement with someone who is subletting their condo or c) Move into a room in a house where there are already a couple roommates.

If I move into a one bedroom (I have too much stuff for a studio) the price will be hundreds of dollars higher than what I was previously paying. Which bothers me in principle. However, I highly value my privacy which in turn makes me weary of doing the roommate thing for an extended period of time. Based on past experience, best case scenario I have to take certain phone calls outside and my food gets eaten. Worse case scenario my debit card gets stolen and my clothing gets worn/goes missing. I also really like having the option to decorate and furnish a place myself.

The two bedroom condos I've seen are being rented for around the same price as two bedroom apartment yet have more square footage and better amenities. My concerns are a) Finding a compatible roommate and b) Being sure that the owner doesn't decide to enter whenever he pleases (hence the former apartment manager).

There are three houses in the hills of Beverly Hills that are looking for someone to fill a room which would be the most inexpensive option. Besides the concern of having multiple roommates, I'm also aware that I would save travel time if I live in the "flatland".

I'm very torn and have been getting a lot of mixed opinions from friends and family. I'm basically considering cost, privacy within the home, having the option to decorate, and convenience in terms of driving. I'd appreciate (helpful) opinions, I'm sure I could be missing something. I would also love to hear experiences if anyone has subletted a condo, lived in the hills, or negotiated a reasonable price on a one bedroom in BH.
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Old 09-27-2011, 12:55 PM
 
477 posts, read 579,757 times
Reputation: 262
You didnt include any $ figures in your options.

What are you paying now?
What are the rates for 1 bdrms you are looking at in flats of BH?
What are the estimates for renting a room in a home BH/flats?
What are the estimates for living in a apt with roomates BH/flats?

if you fill the $ amounts, you can conclude what its worth to have your own key.
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Old 09-27-2011, 02:49 PM
 
8 posts, read 13,462 times
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The temporary room is $800 a month. I think it's so low because it's a tiny apartment in an old building with no dishwasher, limited closet space, etc.

The only apartment I really liked was $2200 a month but there are 3 or 4 more I still need to look at.

The rooms available in the homes up in the hills range from $1200-1600 a month. One is 100% carpet which isn't great for my allergies and I get the impression that they have a lot of guests who come thru...guests who would be using my bathroom. The second has smokers and I have asthma...if they smoked outside maybe it could work but there's still the likelihood of smoke lingering on their clothes. The third wants someone who is OCD about neatness...I'm clean but not obsessive about it.

I've seen two bedroom condos going from $2500 to $4000 a month. I haven't come across any two bedroom apartments that really fit what I'm looking for. Hardwood floors, closet space, dishwasher, Parking, and secured entry.

Last edited by David Aguilar; 09-27-2011 at 03:55 PM..
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Old 09-27-2011, 03:23 PM
 
95 posts, read 84,282 times
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Depends on what you value more, privacy or money. If money is not an issue, then you have your answer. If it is, then you're going to need a roommate and compromise on something. No one is going to bend to all of your needs and I'm sure they don't all expect you to bend to theirs.
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Old 09-27-2011, 03:55 PM
 
8 posts, read 13,462 times
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I don't think there's such a thing as a perfect roommate situation. However when it comes to my health or my belongings, those aren't areas where I'm willing to bend. And unfortunately it seems to be a challenge to find a roommate who exercises common courtesy. Really basic things like asking before using something that's not theirs (I'd probably say yes anyway but it's the principle), not yelling on the phone at 6am, etc. I'm not a saint but at the very least I'm aware when I'm exercising blatant disregard for someone else. If I found a roommate had a similar mindset I'm sure I'd be a lot more open to the idea. Even though I would be saving a lot of money going the roommate route, I guess I'm not convinced that you can put a price on sanity.
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Old 09-27-2011, 04:14 PM
 
477 posts, read 579,757 times
Reputation: 262
I think you should avoid a roomate and any attached guestroom, house etc unless the guest house has a private entry and private bathroom facility.

I think you may be looking at the wrong beverly hills zip code. You should focus on 90211 which is just South of Wilshire Blvd.

I'd go with either a 1-2 bdrm apartment building 1940s-1970's construction at about $1,500-$1,750 per month. If you cant swing that budget wise, then you will need to go So/East of Beverly Hills or look for a unique opportunity not listed online.

If you get a 2 bdrm, keep open the option to take on a roomate down the road if you want and if you happen to run across someone that you can deal with.

You can find listings on Craigslist, but nothing is better than scouting the streets yourself. Since you currently reside in B.H. you should have no trouble.
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Old 09-27-2011, 06:30 PM
 
8 posts, read 13,462 times
Reputation: 10
I agree, I think that would just be asking for trouble.

I've used Craigslist, Westside Rentals, sublet.com, 4rentinla, etc. and also have been on foot from Doheny to Lasky between Wilshire and Gregory. The apartment I really liked was above Wilshire in the Golden Triangle. I've seen reasonably priced apartments in the 90210 zipcode but further north (3rd, Beverly, etc). I live in 90211 right now close to the West Hollywood border. Amazingly it takes me about 20 minutes to get to church - in Beverly Hills. So I was hoping to be a little closer to the middle of the city if it's possible.

As long as I keep all of my expenses below $5000 a month I'm okay in terms of price. I'm not fond out the idea of spending $2500 per month for rent but technically I suppose I could swing it. My only worry with some of the older buildings is the lack of security. I really like the idea of having a lobby for safety reasons...it scares me to think that someone could just walk up to my front door.

That's a really great idea to get a 2 bedroom and then think about adding a roommate after the fact. Wish I had thought of that
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