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Old 05-10-2012, 01:54 PM
 
6 posts, read 26,279 times
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My SO and I are looking for a one-bedroom apartment in the fall. Our only requirements are that it's pet-friendly and in a safe area. We're looking for something around $1100 (up to $1300 if utilities are included). We're looking in the following areas: Fairfax (city), Arlington, Alexandria, Burke, and Annandale. We're might also consider Falls Church, Vienna, or Manassas - although I don't know much about these areas (hopefully someone can give me some more details).

We looked at some rent-controlled places, but apparently we're not eligible because we're students? We're "technically" (credit-wise) only part time - plus we both have jobs (not full-time, but rarely do college adjuncts/assistants have "full-time" spots). We'd look into other forms of gov't assistance, but we won't be eligible for some time.

Ideally, we'd like to rent from a private landlord, or a landlord with only a few properties (giant complexes generally suck). Seems like studios and privately owned basements are out, though, since the vast majority aren't couple-friendly.

Additional jobs might be possible in the summer, but not during the school year (due to exclusivity agreements and time-constraints).

Anyway, ideas? (I don't care about living among "poor people" or various minority/immigrant communities, so long as it's generally safe - which pretty much the entirety of NOVA seems to be, aside from a few isolated instances).
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:01 PM
 
Location: Tysons Corner
2,772 posts, read 3,652,227 times
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Look into income properties instead of apartments themselves. You are going to have trouble finding a private owned condos for rent for that range and definitely nothing bigger than that.

I dont think you should cross out basements, some owners are perfectly fine renting a basement to an established couple (its better than renting to some rowdy college kids).

I really gotta get my parents to convert their house in Burke into an income suite. The basement is massive, perfect for a couple, and they never even use it. Newly refinished and everything too. All its missing is the final touches, separation of the egress in the back (sliding door right now but could use a separate entry).
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:20 PM
 
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We looked at an income-based property, but the min. requirement was $36,000. Combined, we make about $26,000 (granted, this will be higher if we can find work in the summer, which we plan to - but we have no way of proving that we'll have this income).
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:23 PM
 
Location: New-Dentist Colony
5,740 posts, read 8,970,580 times
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Pimmitt Hills, western end of Columbia Pike (Falls Church), S. Arlington near Alexandria, Arlandria, Route 1 south of Alexandria in FFX County. Brush up on your Spanish.
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:42 PM
 
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Carlingtonian, both of us are proficient in Spanish, so that shouldn't be a problem. Thank you for the pointers.
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:20 PM
 
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I think most places in Arlington and Alexandria City will not only be outside your budget, they will be a very long commute to GMU. My guess would be you'll have many more choices AND be happier if you try to find something very close to the university.

GMU shows on its site that it has student apartments in your price range.
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:40 PM
 
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ACWhite, I've definately been concerned about the commute, but Fairfax seems prohibitively expensive ($1300+ without utilities). Unfortunately, most of the apartments listed on the GMU website are shares, which is problematic since people *typically* don't want to rent a bedroom to two additional people and a cat.

Having contacted a few people through the student listings, I've also found that many of them are undergrads. We're pretty laid back people and don't care too much if potential roomies drink moderately/partake in light drug use (of the 420 variety), but we really can't afford to be around it constantly (we're just beyond that stage of our lives).

While I intend to keep an eye on the student listings, what about Burke, or Manasses?
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:47 PM
 
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Arlington and Alexandria are going to be MORE expensive, not less, for comparable apartments to those near GMU. This is because AR & AX are closer to DC, so you are competing with people who are commuting to (in many cases well-paid, full-time) jobs there or in DC--or MD.

The GMU website lists non-shared apartments as well as dorm rooms, etc., which says to me that you and your SO could share an apartment WITHOUT more roomies, if you can afford it.

http://housing.gmu.edu/general/areas...tudentapts.asp

If the GMU area is too expensive, then going farther away (than FFX city) from DC, rather than closer, may yield more choices.

Good luck! When I was in grad school, we lived in a rent controlled (but not roach controlled) apt. And that was in a relatively cheap college town rather than an expensive metro area. Many people here probably had a similar experience, so you have our sympathy and best wishes.
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:08 PM
 
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Ah, I see; I was looking at a different list (from my program's page). Thank you, I'll take a look.
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Old 05-10-2012, 06:47 PM
 
43 posts, read 76,514 times
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Glebe House in Alexandria. It's inexpensive, but has received very positive reviews on apartmentratings.com (93%). Their one bedrooms range between $1129-1299 and everything is included. I considered applying for a studio there but found a place before I was able to get in contact with them.

Also, they allow up to two cats with no pet fee.
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