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Old 06-23-2008, 12:43 PM
11 posts, read 33,933 times
Reputation: 11


Hey everyone, I'm a single, 25 year old male from DC relocating for a new job in the area. This forum has had some really helpful info and I'm fairly sure Royal Oak or at least the surrounding towns would be best for me.

Does anyone have advice on the best and worst apartment complexes around? I was interested in Urbane until a thread here indicated that they're managed pretty poorly. I've also been hearing about both Amber companies, one "good" and the other "bad," but I've not been able to sort out which is which. Any thoughts?

I'm also open to renting a private flat or duplex. With a lot of mixed reviews on complexes, would that be the best idea? I had a good time in Ann Arbor while a grad student there but unfortunately it's too far now from my job in Grosse Pointe.

Thanks for any input!
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Old 06-24-2008, 10:54 AM
33 posts, read 137,811 times
Reputation: 17
Default I'd give Urbane another look...

Hey there,

I'd definitely keep Urbane in mind. I live in the Washington location and love it. Mostly small studios but a few one-bedrooms as well. I think they're currently sold out, but they have another building on Center that may have more units.

I couldn't disagree more with the complaints re Urbane management (my impression are that most come from one person who had some heating issues last winter). They're a growing company and had some growing pains a couple years ago, but I've had very good luck with the managment. Example: my parking pass wasn't working and I emailed them about it... got a reply the same day -- on a Sunday! Same day repair with a clogged sink.

One cool thing is that they don't require security deposits. I do think they're a little pricier than some other options -- but you get a much cooler apartment. (There's a lot of beige boriness in the area...)

Good luck!
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Old 06-25-2008, 05:15 AM
11 posts, read 33,933 times
Reputation: 11
Thanks, bem629, I'll definitely keep them in mind then. It's difficult to get a read on apartments through ratings sites when people have had all kinds of experiences.

Are there any other complexes to include on my short list? I'll be visiting soon but don't want to get burned from an otherwise normal looking place.

Also, what's the vibe of surrounding towns? Clawson, Berkley, Huntington Woods? Thanks again!
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Old 06-25-2008, 08:50 AM
123 posts, read 451,973 times
Reputation: 35
I think that you would like Royal Oak better then those other cities. There is more to do and younger crowd I feel. I am not sure how far GP is cause I am direction clueless but why not live there? I have never even been to GP so am not sure if there is a reason. I would look on craigslist. I know I always respond with that but when I was moving out of state it helped me do a lot of the foot work so to speak.
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Old 06-25-2008, 10:47 AM
Location: Burbs of Detroit
16 posts, read 33,787 times
Reputation: 10
I rented from the Amber (brown logo, not the green logo ) at the 13 mile/woodward/coolidge area and thought they did pretty good. The apartments backed up to the Beaumont Hospital parking lot so our lot got a lot of wind, which in turn meant much icier in the winter. One hand written letter and there was plenty of salt out the rest of the winter. The only downfall was that I was right above the laundry room. I thought it was just the laundry room for just our building (8 units) but quickly learned that it was for the WHOLE COMPLEX and the wood floors did nothing to keep the noise down...but thats just my specific unit I was in. I think the company was OK. Urbane is neat looking and we looked at a few of their places. Aside from the price per sq foot, what turned us away was the listing saying "Stainless steel appliances and cupboards" and when we got there, the old cupboards were painted with metallic silver paint

Royal oak is a nice area but very "trendy" if you're looking for anything within walking distance to Main Street be prepared to pay. If Main Street isn't your main attraction but you like the area I would also consider Berkley (lived there personally for 5 years) and Clawson. Huntington Woods is nice but fairly pricey from what I recall, not really a downtown area either so you'll be going to Ferndale, Royal Oak or Berkley for bars/food. Ferndale is also towards the trendy side but has some nice bars/restaurants "downtown" but there area has its good and bad spots. Maybe bad isn't the word, but one area will be kept up really nice and then another block or two over its like the Beverly Hill Billies (without oil money).
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Old 06-30-2008, 09:33 AM
11 posts, read 33,933 times
Reputation: 11
Thanks, guys, I think I'm getting a good idea of where I should be looking...any other apt. complex experiences, like Rochester House or Philamer?

...as an aside, how would you compare St. Clair Shores with the Royal Oak/Berkley area? My job is in GP Woods and with gas prices hitting the roof I'm starting to flirt with areas a little closer, even if not ideal.
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