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Old 09-29-2014, 08:59 AM
 
45 posts, read 60,150 times
Reputation: 16

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Hello everyone!

I have been "planning" and researching this move for the past 1-2 years, and I am finally making it happen! I will fly out to LA again on Saturday, October 4th and return late on Tuesay, October 7th.

I have been to Los Angeles about 2x/year for the last 5 years so I am very familiar with different areas, but of course, just visiting is a completely different ballgame once you consider actually relocating your life somewhere.

I am coming from Dallas, TX - I am in my 20's, and I will be working at home full time with my job so the "commute" is not a concern for me. I know LA is very "non-dog friendly" at the majority of the buildings, but I will be bringing a small 8 lb Shihtzu with me as well.

I am looking for a studio for a max rent of $1200, or a studio with a max rent of $1300 if all bills are included. I have been checking out Craigslist for months now, and I am thinking about signing up for Westside rentals as well but I haven't heard too many great things about that website.

Some of the areas of interest are: Miracle Mile, Century City, Westwood, Mar Vista, Cheviot Hills, Palms, Culver City, Long Beach (Belmont Heights/Belmont Shores area) and Silverlake possibly.

My interests are pretty basic, but the ocean, hiking, good walking spots, entertainment, etc. I am not interested in bars/clubs, etc.

I have been using crimemapping.com and LA times crime maps as well over the past few months, but please let me know your thoughts on areas to target while visiting again, or if you know of anything in particular. Thanks!
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Old 09-29-2014, 09:17 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
555 posts, read 571,015 times
Reputation: 1169
It sounds like you will only be in town for a short while, but must find a place quickly. Have you considered hiring someone from a real estate office to scout out locations for you based on your criteria ahead of time? Some realtors do this kind of work and can even drive you around to those places while you're in town. Of course, there's a cost to the service, but it could help you find a place in the short amount of time you are in town.
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Old 09-29-2014, 09:40 AM
 
Location: Southern California
4,350 posts, read 4,929,984 times
Reputation: 2129
What do you consider entertainment? Sounds like you should live near a subway or train line.

Mar Vista and Palms doesn't really have much in the retail or stuff to do, that is particular to living there. Their main draw is the convenience factor, easy freeway access or driving against traffic to get to work factor. There are not a lot of places to walk to from most parts of Mar Vista.

The beaches of the south bay are nicer, but you are priced out of Manhattan and probably Hermosa. Which leaves Redondo. Long Beach has much more to do than Redondo, at close to the similar rental prices. People from the south bay generally don't regularly travel out of the south bay, that is unless they go far. 5 hours away at Mammoth Mountain , I'll run into more people from the south bay than LA.

Beaches > Hermosa
Hiking > Santa Monica , Hollywood Hills, Palos Verdes
Ocean launching > Long Beach, Marina Del Rey, Redondo Beach
Dog park > There are about a dozen scatter down the coast line
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Old 09-29-2014, 10:59 AM
 
45 posts, read 60,150 times
Reputation: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by sydlee View Post
It sounds like you will only be in town for a short while, but must find a place quickly. Have you considered hiring someone from a real estate office to scout out locations for you based on your criteria ahead of time? Some realtors do this kind of work and can even drive you around to those places while you're in town. Of course, there's a cost to the service, but it could help you find a place in the short amount of time you are in town.
i haven't considered that option yet because i was hoping 4 days would give me enough time to secure a place. am i hoping for the impossible?
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Old 09-29-2014, 11:01 AM
 
45 posts, read 60,150 times
Reputation: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by thelopez2 View Post
What do you consider entertainment? Sounds like you should live near a subway or train line.

Mar Vista and Palms doesn't really have much in the retail or stuff to do, that is particular to living there. Their main draw is the convenience factor, easy freeway access or driving against traffic to get to work factor. There are not a lot of places to walk to from most parts of Mar Vista.

The beaches of the south bay are nicer, but you are priced out of Manhattan and probably Hermosa. Which leaves Redondo. Long Beach has much more to do than Redondo, at close to the similar rental prices. People from the south bay generally don't regularly travel out of the south bay, that is unless they go far. 5 hours away at Mammoth Mountain , I'll run into more people from the south bay than LA.

Beaches > Hermosa
Hiking > Santa Monica , Hollywood Hills, Palos Verdes
Ocean launching > Long Beach, Marina Del Rey, Redondo Beach
Dog park > There are about a dozen scatter down the coast line
entertainment for me can be movie premiers, TV tapings, six flags, disneyland, runyon canyon, shopping, etc.

of course that is in ALL different places (burbank, studio city, valencia, anaheim) etc. but i would just like to be somewhere pretty centrally located to the beach, burbank, etc. - disclaimer: i hate hollywood/north hollywood, so i do not have a desire to live there; crime rates are out of this world there, too high for me.

safety is my biggest concern at this point which is why i considered miracle mile.

would you go for long beach over redondo beach? if so, why?

thank you for the tips
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Old 09-29-2014, 11:03 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles
221 posts, read 277,775 times
Reputation: 203
A small dog is much easier than a large one, so you won't have as much trouble as I did (I have an 80 pound lab/shep cross).

I used Westside Rentals and was very happy with their service. There are a lot of scams on Craigslist and I found dealing with it a huge waste of my time. I found my current cottage ($1500 one-bedroom, allows dogs) in three days using Westside Rentals and found that I wasn't sifting through tons of scams. I haven't used a realtor to locate a rental, but I would consider it if I only had a week to find a place.

You might also look into the larger apartment companies, such as Equity Apartments, that routinely allows dogs and also has on-site dog parks at many of their facilities. However, I think they might be a bit beyond your price point.

$1200, even for a studio, will be challenging in the beach communities. You might be able to get low-income housing in Santa Monica if you make under around $55K a year (I think it's about that much). I made just over it when I moved to LA and got screwed, and there was no way for me to get anywhere near the beach even for a 400 square foot studio. Long Beach is probably your best bet if you really want to be near the beach because the rent is cheaper.

Depending on where you want to be, you might consider Eastside of LA (if you're looking for city/kind of gritty but really trendy, try HLP and environs, if you are looking for quieter and more established, Pasadena) along the gold line. If you are walking distance to metro, you can get all over LA including Hollywood, DTLA, and soon (next summer, I think) to Santa Monica. Rent is a lot cheaper and you can find guest houses that are even one-bedrooms in that price range. My first place in Eagle Rock was a guest house that was around 700 square feet with a sizeable yard and storage shed, washer/dryer of my own, and allowed dogs and included all utilities for $1400/month).

The closer you are to the beach, the more expensive it will get.

I will add in response to your question: Eagle Rock, Highland Park, the hills surrounding them, and Pasadena are all affordable and safe. But you aren't near the beach. You'd have to drive cross-town (which isn't bad IF it isn't during rush hour, otherwise, it is awful). However, next year the metro will go to the beach and then you have cheap housing + beach in like a 40 min train ride. Mountains are right next to Pasadena and hiking is abundant. There are a number of large regional parks for hiking. If you like wandering around beautiful scenery, there is also the Huntington and the LA Arboretum, which are each about $100/year to get membership for unlimited entry. It's about 15 minutes to DTLA.

If you really want close to the beach, my guess is that you'll need to go to Long Beach to hit your price point.
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Old 09-29-2014, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
555 posts, read 571,015 times
Reputation: 1169
Quote:
Originally Posted by omgitsjhock View Post
i haven't considered that option yet because i was hoping 4 days would give me enough time to secure a place. am i hoping for the impossible?
It's not impossible. But having a realtor who knows LA do the initial scouting for you and take you around to places selected based on your criteria would greatly improve your chances of accomplishing your goal in the allotted time. Either way, good luck and welcome!
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Old 09-29-2014, 01:14 PM
 
45 posts, read 60,150 times
Reputation: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by woodsart View Post
A small dog is much easier than a large one, so you won't have as much trouble as I did (I have an 80 pound lab/shep cross).

I used Westside Rentals and was very happy with their service. There are a lot of scams on Craigslist and I found dealing with it a huge waste of my time. I found my current cottage ($1500 one-bedroom, allows dogs) in three days using Westside Rentals and found that I wasn't sifting through tons of scams. I haven't used a realtor to locate a rental, but I would consider it if I only had a week to find a place.

You might also look into the larger apartment companies, such as Equity Apartments, that routinely allows dogs and also has on-site dog parks at many of their facilities. However, I think they might be a bit beyond your price point.

$1200, even for a studio, will be challenging in the beach communities. You might be able to get low-income housing in Santa Monica if you make under around $55K a year (I think it's about that much). I made just over it when I moved to LA and got screwed, and there was no way for me to get anywhere near the beach even for a 400 square foot studio. Long Beach is probably your best bet if you really want to be near the beach because the rent is cheaper.

Depending on where you want to be, you might consider Eastside of LA (if you're looking for city/kind of gritty but really trendy, try HLP and environs, if you are looking for quieter and more established, Pasadena) along the gold line. If you are walking distance to metro, you can get all over LA including Hollywood, DTLA, and soon (next summer, I think) to Santa Monica. Rent is a lot cheaper and you can find guest houses that are even one-bedrooms in that price range. My first place in Eagle Rock was a guest house that was around 700 square feet with a sizeable yard and storage shed, washer/dryer of my own, and allowed dogs and included all utilities for $1400/month).

The closer you are to the beach, the more expensive it will get.

I will add in response to your question: Eagle Rock, Highland Park, the hills surrounding them, and Pasadena are all affordable and safe. But you aren't near the beach. You'd have to drive cross-town (which isn't bad IF it isn't during rush hour, otherwise, it is awful). However, next year the metro will go to the beach and then you have cheap housing + beach in like a 40 min train ride. Mountains are right next to Pasadena and hiking is abundant. There are a number of large regional parks for hiking. If you like wandering around beautiful scenery, there is also the Huntington and the LA Arboretum, which are each about $100/year to get membership for unlimited entry. It's about 15 minutes to DTLA.

If you really want close to the beach, my guess is that you'll need to go to Long Beach to hit your price point.
thank you! all of that information definitely helped; I will be looking into Westside rentals today then
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Old 09-29-2014, 01:16 PM
 
45 posts, read 60,150 times
Reputation: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by sydlee View Post
It's not impossible. But having a realtor who knows LA do the initial scouting for you and take you around to places selected based on your criteria would greatly improve your chances of accomplishing your goal in the allotted time. Either way, good luck and welcome!
I definitely agree with you, thank you very much!
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Old 09-29-2014, 01:45 PM
 
Location: Downtown SS
88 posts, read 79,544 times
Reputation: 80
While I can't speak to specific locations in the area, I highly recommend Long Beach/Bellmont Shores area. There's tons to do around the downtown LBC area. Bellmont Shores has an awesome Sunday farmers market, there's a great movie theater/shopping center at the marina, beautiful bike paths, walkways along the beach.

I also highly recommend Westside Rentals, although I used it through the military so I didn't have to pay.

I concur that the small dog shouldn't be an issue. Usually up to 20-25 lbs is the standard, with a $200-$400 additional deposit. Some places may also charge an additional monthly pet rent fee of $20-$30, but there are plenty of places that don't.

Long Beach also has a dog beach down toward Bellmont Shores.

Good luck!!
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