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Old 03-25-2016, 09:05 PM
 
11 posts, read 13,318 times
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Hi,

My husband and I are looking to buy a 2 bedroom condo in the LA area. We will be working at Cedars Sinai. We are new to the area, and I was hoping to get some advice on safe areas close to the hospital. Our intention is to live in the condo for 1-2 years, and then turn it into a rental property.

I have done some research and so far I am looking at the Westwood area as the proximity to UCLA makes it a good area for a rental (students looking for housing). I've also heard that some parts of West Hollywood are safe. However I would like to look into other areas nearby that have condo/apartments for sale. Our budget is 500-800k.

What other neighborhoods would you guys suggest? Any advice would be really appreciated!
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Old 03-26-2016, 10:22 AM
 
601 posts, read 552,042 times
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The entire surrounding area is very safe. you'll be fine. Don't know how much that budget would get you, though.
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Old 03-26-2016, 03:03 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,436 posts, read 1,330,896 times
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Yeah, the entire area surrounding Cedars Sinai is very desirable real estate and very safe. Does not get much nicer in LA as a matter of fact. Westwood and West Hollywood are both nice and safe.
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Old 03-26-2016, 03:38 PM
jw2
 
2,028 posts, read 2,487,721 times
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A few years ago, I was shopping for rental properties in LA County in 2 areas, downtown LA and the area you are looking. I ended up narrowing in on the Fairfax area. I got a real good vibe of the people and the rents ratios were good. I ended up passing on all of LA County for different reasons (too hard for me to get to) and I have to tell you, I am real sorry I did.

Today, I would look near (walking distance) the future metro stops at Wilshire/LaCienga, Wilshire/Fairfax, or Wilshire/LaBrea.

I am not all that enamored on student housing, been there done that. Lots of turnover and lots of "issues". No one comes in qualified so everyone is with a cosigner. These days I don't do cosigners so I am out of that market. I would rather tenants that are past their first apartment on their own. I would rather young professionals that have something to lose if the tenancy doesn't go well. However, if you buy on the purple line (Wilshire) it will go to UCLA so it can cater to UCLA students if that is the market you want.
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Old 03-28-2016, 11:07 PM
 
11 posts, read 13,318 times
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Thank you all, for your advice! We are willing to drive up to 45 minutes in rush hour traffic. I know traffic is terrible in that area but would Culver City/Palms, Santa Monica or Studio City be realistic in terms of drive time? Would you consider these areas to be safe?


Quote:
Originally Posted by jw2 View Post
A few years ago, I was shopping for rental properties in LA County in 2 areas, downtown LA and the area you are looking. I ended up narrowing in on the Fairfax area. I got a real good vibe of the people and the rents ratios were good. I ended up passing on all of LA County for different reasons (too hard for me to get to) and I have to tell you, I am real sorry I did.

Today, I would look near (walking distance) the future metro stops at Wilshire/LaCienga, Wilshire/Fairfax, or Wilshire/LaBrea.

I am not all that enamored on student housing, been there done that. Lots of turnover and lots of "issues". No one comes in qualified so everyone is with a cosigner. These days I don't do cosigners so I am out of that market. I would rather tenants that are past their first apartment on their own. I would rather young professionals that have something to lose if the tenancy doesn't go well. However, if you buy on the purple line (Wilshire) it will go to UCLA so it can cater to UCLA students if that is the market you want.
I had no idea about the future metro stops, thank you for mentioning it! We are not set on student housing as a rental market, I agree that young professionals make for more stable renters. I just assumed that the Westwood area would attract lots of renters but I am hoping all of the neighborhoods I am looking at would be easy to rent out.

Since you said that LA County was hard for you to get to, what methods did you use to do your research since you weren't physically in the area?
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Old 03-29-2016, 06:28 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,436 posts, read 1,330,896 times
Reputation: 2735
Quote:
Originally Posted by guess567 View Post
Thank you all, for your advice! We are willing to drive up to 45 minutes in rush hour traffic. I know traffic is terrible in that area but would Culver City/Palms, Santa Monica or Studio City be realistic in terms of drive time? Would you consider these areas to be safe?

I had no idea about the future metro stops, thank you for mentioning it! We are not set on student housing as a rental market, I agree that young professionals make for more stable renters. I just assumed that the Westwood area would attract lots of renters but I am hoping all of the neighborhoods I am looking at would be easy to rent out.

Since you said that LA County was hard for you to get to, what methods did you use to do your research since you weren't physically in the area?
Santa Monica, Culver City, Palms and Studio City are all safe areas. Drive times will vary greatly depending on the time of the day. By LA standards none of those areas would be "bad" commutes. Santa Monica and Studio City are further away than Culver City and Palms. If you were leaving downtown Santa Monica at 5am you could get from downtown S.M. to Cedars Sinai in 15 minutes. If you left at 8am I would "guestimate" 40 minutes.

There are no subway or light rail stops that currently go near Cedars Sinai. The "purple line" (subway) is currently getting extended down Wilshire but it will be years until it is completed (and would still not get you all the way to your work). But it is a consideration if you are thinking long-term rental of your unit. Culver City currently has the Expo Line (light rail) which gives access to Downtown LA and Santa Monica (when Phase 2 opens in a few months) but it won't get you to Cedars Sinai.

Everyone has their preferences but if it were me my top choices would be:
-Miracle Mile and Fairfax districts (both very close to Cedar Sinai and nice walkable neighborhoods by LA standards. Also potential to be close to future purple line).
-and Culver City (walkable downtown area and has Expo line and is not too far from Cedar Sinai).

Nothing wrong with any of the areas you've identified but proximity is a big deal to me.

Last edited by Astral_Weeks; 03-29-2016 at 06:40 AM..
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Old 03-29-2016, 09:33 AM
jw2
 
2,028 posts, read 2,487,721 times
Reputation: 3345
Quote:
Originally Posted by guess567 View Post
Thank you all, for your advice! We are willing to drive up to 45 minutes in rush hour traffic. I know traffic is terrible in that area but would Culver City/Palms, Santa Monica or Studio City be realistic in terms of drive time? Would you consider these areas to be safe?




I had no idea about the future metro stops, thank you for mentioning it! We are not set on student housing as a rental market, I agree that young professionals make for more stable renters. I just assumed that the Westwood area would attract lots of renters but I am hoping all of the neighborhoods I am looking at would be easy to rent out.

Since you said that LA County was hard for you to get to, what methods did you use to do your research since you weren't physically in the area?
What I would do is jump on an Amtrak with my bike down to Union Station and spend a couple of days just visiting neighborhoods. I would do this on weekends and during the week. As an example, I would spend all day at the Farmer's Market (THE Farmer's Market at Fairfax) and just people watch. I would park my bike and walk among the people on Wilshire or La Cienaga. On Rodeo Drive or up Wiltern. In residential areas or commercial areas. If they were walking their dog, I would ask about their dog. If not, I would pretend I was lost and ask directions or just talk about the weather. I did this from Santa Monica to Downtown. From Hollywood to the west side.

Prior to each trip, I would arm myself with a few listings in my target area for the trip. I didn't have an LA agent as I didn't feel that would be fair to him as I wasn't really committed to the market. I was just kicking the tires. So, it was a lot of ride-bys and open houses.
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Old 03-29-2016, 11:24 AM
 
4,212 posts, read 6,367,679 times
Reputation: 2630
Beverly Grove. You can walk to Cedars .
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Old 04-30-2016, 01:06 PM
 
11 posts, read 13,318 times
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Thank you all for your advice!
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Old 05-14-2016, 12:23 PM
 
Location: Hawthorne, CA
30 posts, read 17,661 times
Reputation: 16
Based on your budget, you should be able to find a place that meets your needs. The LA area can be hit or miss, even within the same city (or a couple blocks down the street). It is very important that you drive the area to make sure it fits what you are looking for.
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