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Old 11-19-2013, 12:40 AM
 
Location: Santee, CA
4 posts, read 4,613 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi there, I'm looking to move to CC in January with my significant other and 3 cats. I've done the general research, now I need some insider opinions to help me iron out the details. I've never visited CC, but I've been through most of Texas and am a southern CA native. I've heard CC compared to San Diego, is this a reasonable comparison?

I'll be attending grad school at TAMUCC and my SO will be working (still searching--somewhere in the intelligence community, I hope, happy to hear about his job prospects too--entry level with some management experience outside his field, bilingual). I get a decent stipend and SO will be supplementing income one way or the other but we're looking to stay under/around $800/mo for rental with w/d or connections. I'd like to keep my commute less than 20-30 mins, max, too.

But apparently I might as well have an eviction instead of a third cat. We have four years of great rental history (2 together, with our oldest cat), good credit for our age (early-mid 20's) and no kids or evictions or noise complaints. I know it's illegal to discriminate against renters with kids, but I'm hoping some refuges still exist for those without them.

We're horribly boring people who are used to living on a budget and keeping to ourselves (obviously, since we have three cats). We do enjoy fishing, food, computer games, movies and zoos/aquariums. We really just need a bedroom, a bathroom, a washing machine and dryer in a quiet place of our own. It seems like all the large complexes have pretty strict 2 pet limits and a stupid variety of gimmicky amenities we'd probably never use and/or wouldn't be worth using. So (where) does that exist in CC for around $600-$800/mo?

I'd love to rent from a private party, as we had great success with that during our undergrad years, but I'm too wary about scams since we more than likely won't be able to see/visit first. I am considering a short trip out there, but that's probably going to run me ~$1000 which is a pretty huge two day venture. Just want to see if I can figure this out from a distance first.

Thank you in advance for any input!
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Old 11-19-2013, 02:02 AM
 
Location: Santee, CA
4 posts, read 4,613 times
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Complexes on my shortlist to call about cats/W/D availability: The Shores, Harbour Landing, Fairway Apartments, Walnut Ridge, Embassy House, Alameda Apartments, The Palm. Any I should ditch immediately for whatever reasons? Craigslist seems pretty clogged with ALL CAPS MOBILE HOMES and slightly fishy, vague apartment locating services... Do these work at all?
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Old 11-19-2013, 09:12 AM
 
1,003 posts, read 1,576,134 times
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None you should ditch immediately, IMO. The Shores, Alameda, the Palm would be on a good bus route to TAMUCC. Remember that utilities are not included in rent. Expect $100/ month for elec, $25 water, $30 basic internet Time Warner.
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Old 11-19-2013, 04:27 PM
 
Location: Santee, CA
4 posts, read 4,613 times
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I'd like to add Costa Tarragona to my list... Much cheaper than anything else. Kinda far from campus, but those prices...

Thanks for your input and estimates! Pretty much everything is all electric appliances, then? I'm familiar with paying utilities on top of rents, I'm keeping an eye on that with my shopping around, but in general it looks like it's still overall cheaper than my previous location in Arizona. I will have my SO's income to supplement my stipend, I just can't count on how much just yet. Even if it's only an additional $1200/mo, it'll be enough to help us get by. Also prevents me from having to deal with a roommate. I've found the person I want to live with for the rest of my life... I don't intend to live with anyone else ever again!
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Old 11-19-2013, 04:44 PM
 
Location: League City, Texas
2,920 posts, read 5,075,744 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dye4tie View Post
I've heard CC compared to San Diego, is this a reasonable comparison?
No. Although they are both near water.
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Old 11-19-2013, 08:55 PM
 
1,003 posts, read 1,576,134 times
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No, nothing at all alike. San Diego has some military, CC has lots. CC has chemical refineries by the ton. Between the military and the oil refineries the transiency rates are astronomical. When you throw in the snowbirds that come in the winter to vacation for a few months, the rental market gets extremely tight.

For me, I'm not wild for the location of Costa Tarragona. Going through town to get to campus is more trouble than it's worth to me. However you will be closer to the night life downtown, some good in that area, some not so good. I just don't find it a very convenient location for life at TAMUCC. On the other hand I have colleagues that commute from Port Aransas. There are also some home rentals on Padre Island. Again it would be a drive, but you might be able to swing renting a house and not worry too much about the cat situation. My suggestions for renting from a distance is to stay on the ocean side of SPID and south of 286 if you are going to live in CC itself. Also review locations on https://www.crimereports.com/ to get an idea of what's going on in the neighborhood you are considering. There are some really sketchy areas. Also do a google map search and look at the street view to see if it looks like a neighborhood you want to live in. There are some ok areas in Flour Bluff, and some not so ok areas. I don't know enough to give you specifics. But a lot of the military housing is there and it tends to be transient from what I can tell. Not many students live there that I know of.

The other difference I would see between San Diego and CC is that there are not as many things to do in CC. There are enough things to do, especially if you participate in your department activities and enjoy the beach, water sports, etc. But there are not a ton of music venues, museums, cultural venues. Museums are small, we get concert stuff but it's not a lot of current stuff, there are neighborhood ethnic festivals (there's been Greek and Jewish festivals just in the last few weeks) but they are kinda pricy when you're living on a stipend.
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Old 11-20-2013, 03:18 AM
 
Location: Santee, CA
4 posts, read 4,613 times
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I'm not terribly concerned about the stuff to do aspect of things. I fully expect to continue down my path of having very little spending money and free time. My SO and I are quite well versed at keeping ourselves busy at home on a budget.

A shorter commute would obviously be better and I'm usually chronically late anyways. I really like the idea of living along one of the bus routes, 15 minutes ish from the Southside station is reasonable. I'd really prefer not to lie to get my third cat in, even though two are pretty identical looking. I just don't want to be looking over my shoulder all the time and I just can't imagine a way to work that in on the phone that wouldn't reflect poorly on my character. Without living there, it's hard to know if any of the stringent-seeming 2-pet places would look the other way for my third.
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Old 11-20-2013, 11:04 PM
 
Location: Corpus Christi
484 posts, read 1,469,817 times
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dye4tie,

Just a tiny warning.

There is gonna be some friction over cats with rental owners. Multiple cats are almost always more destructive than dogs and babies, most landlords are aware. During the recent housing downturn here I personally visited several houses that were up for repo sale that had had cats. I was thinking to make a quick buck. The banks were trying to give them away. The stench of the spray of cat urine into the drywall destroyed those houses. The cost to remove the cat smell would have been worth half the purchase price. It was awful. I don't know how many cats that person had in the house, but it appeared that they would stand flat footed and **** 4 foot up the wall.

Houses that had originally sold for $150,000 got repo-ed and sold for 43.5-45K

Most landlords don't like cats.
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Old 11-21-2013, 01:16 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
16,784 posts, read 43,763,701 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbtx View Post
dye4tie,

Just a tiny warning.

There is gonna be some friction over cats with rental owners. Multiple cats are almost always more destructive than dogs and babies, most landlords are aware. During the recent housing downturn here I personally visited several houses that were up for repo sale that had had cats. I was thinking to make a quick buck. The banks were trying to give them away. The stench of the spray of cat urine into the drywall destroyed those houses. The cost to remove the cat smell would have been worth half the purchase price. It was awful. I don't know how many cats that person had in the house, but it appeared that they would stand flat footed and **** 4 foot up the wall.

Houses that had originally sold for $150,000 got repo-ed and sold for 43.5-45K

Most landlords don't like cats.
I agree, I'm a landlord and we have had cats, which is why I won't rent to someone who does. Doesn't matter how well behaved you think your cat is. Our last cat was well behaved most of its life, but the last couple of years before it passed, it started peeing and pooping everyplace but its litter box. Nothing we could do made any difference, we just had to constantly keep cleaning up after it immediatly.

I try to keep my rental house in great condition, someplace I would be willing to live. Cats and dogs just make it much harder to do that. Sorry, no pets allowed, and that has never made it difficult for me to find a tenant for my nicely maintained property.
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Old 11-21-2013, 01:45 PM
 
Location: Corpus Christi
484 posts, read 1,469,817 times
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Quote:
I try to keep my rental house in great condition, someplace I would be willing to live. Cats and dogs just make it much harder to do that. Sorry, no pets allowed, and that has never made it difficult for me to find a tenant for my nicely maintained property.
This is a reasonable expectation and you said it, "someplace I would be willing to live". Unfortunately, many renters just don't give a fig about the owner's property. They use it and abuse it, knowing they can walk away losing nothing more than the deposit they paid for move in. The owner has to pay for the repairs which are often many times more than what was earned after expenses from the rent. Being a landlord is a risky business.
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