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Old 12-07-2010, 04:10 AM
 
3 posts, read 3,634 times
Reputation: 10

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This Wednesday-Friday, I'm visiting New Orleans for the first time. Long story short, I've scoured the Internet and have found a lot of conflicting information about what's good and what's bad (especially when it comes to apartments.com reviews and the e-mails I have received back from some of the staff seems a bit underwhelming and inattentive).

Here's the rundown on who I am and hopefully someone can give me some real insight:

- Single white male, 26, no kids, no pets, KY native and lifelong resident (so far) ... above-average frugality (try to save as much money as possible, in fact I consciously try to control my standard of living)

- Relocating from: Louisville, East End (renting with Camden Properties, a corporate renter who sadly lacks a NOLA presence or I'd trust to stay with them and gladly transfer ... I live ~10-15 minutes from the downtown area in a suburban sprawl area where it's quiet/safe, fairly walkable with grocery stores and such nearby, no extra charge for parking, buffered from party scene but it's close enough if I want to dabble in it, etc. I really try to avoid the downtown area in Louisville at all costs if I can help it because I hate toll parking and congestion.)

- Prospective NOLA Employer: Tulane University (downtown office, literally
across the street from LA Superdome ... the role I'll be filling has been pitched to me as involved "substantial travel" which ordinarily I don't mind, but since I'm coming from a city where you can get anywhere in about 15 minutes, is there something about the NOLA commute that makes it particularly painful like lots of stop/go traffic, congestion all over, rough weather conditions frequently, roads often in poor condition, etc.? The recruiters with whom I've spoken seem to carry themselves with a subtext about the travel aspect as if it's been a routine dealbreaker for so many people ... but that's just my vibe.

-How much I'm willing to spend on housing: Pay $750 for 875 sqft now ... even with a pay raise seeing prices like $850, $900, or even $1000 for a 550 sqft studio with little parking is a bit intimidating ... should I just get over that if I'm going to relocate and, if so, where to? The only thing I've seen is The Georgian (uptown) and Woodward Apartments (Warehouse District).

-How long of a commute you're willing to tolerate: I'm used to 15 minutes. I'd almost prefer a rental spot with around 800 sqft for ~$800/mo with free parking within 10 minutes of the LA Superdome, or maybe even within a half-mile's walking distance, but little break-in threat, weather threat, and loud partying at all hours ... but maybe that's impractical in the NOLA environment?

- Preferred neighborhood: Corporate/suburban gets a bad wrap sometimes for being bland but I honestly don't mind my old "fortress of solitude." That's the East End in Louisville and I chose that over the Highlands here, which seems like it's more like an older version of NOLA's Warehouse District (very colorful, quirky, trendy, "weird")

- Important community amenities: Low crime (I've accidentally left my keys in the door overnight at my current residence without problems at all), neighbors who are quiet more often than loud, abundant free parking, won't come home from work with water damage on everything, 24-hour grocery stores nearby, washer/dryer included wherever I rent (big deal!), enclosed balcony big enough for a hammock (not major but this has been a nice stress reliever for me here in Louisville), a 24/7 Snap Fitness nearby would be great as well.

Other stuff:
- What's the vibe in the area regarding Tulane Athletics? Do people talk about it? Here in Louisville, it's Cardinals and (sadly) Kentucky ... college sports 24/7. No pro teams whatsoever. Do the locals or at least local alumni still feel connected to Tulane enough to attend events frequently, donate, etc. Just trying to understand the existing culture here now...
- Has anyone else here lived in an area their entire lives and left for a job in NOLA? I have no friends, family, or even pets in NOLA right now. So, basically, I need friends. :-) How hard is that? Is there a social website of some sort that allows local young people to learn about local happenings, view profiles of other local people to make friends, etc.? Louisville has LouisvilleMojo.com, for example, and while it's a little shady, I'm hoping NOLA has something to help me break into the scene or at least learn about what makes the average resident tick.
- Since I will need to travel substantially for my job, would it be wise to invest in a covered garage regardless of where I live?
- Any weird quirks about local companies with whom people frequently do business - utilities, etc.? For example, does a company monopolize Internet connections for all practical purposes and charge some exorbitant fee to get it going or keep it going, etc.
- "Parrish" is just another word for "county," right? :-)
- What else should I look at before I leap? Does renter's and car insurance leap dramatically for NOLA residents relative to other spots in America? A pay raise isn't much use if relocation expenses and the cost of living change negates most of it.

Any and all insight is very appreciated. You'll be helping out a very confused young person with a penchant for giving back ...
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Old 12-07-2010, 09:12 AM
 
1,347 posts, read 2,048,305 times
Reputation: 945
1. Dont rent an apartment...there arent many here and what is here isn't good. Just go look at craigslist and rent half a shotgun or something comparable

2. No one cares about Tulane athetics generally. It is too bad...I'm a Tulane alum but its all LSU all the time.

3. Parish=county, yes.

4. There are no covered garages, and you will park on the street.

5. best gym around will be for you...the Reily Center on campus. I think its $130 for 4 months for staff

6. And yes I have left an area and come to NOLA. And yes I've had a hard time meeting friends. :/
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:13 AM
 
65 posts, read 138,845 times
Reputation: 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prytania View Post
1. Dont rent an apartment...there arent many here and what is here isn't good. Just go look at craigslist and rent half a shotgun or something comparable

Agreed. Also, you may want to get a shotgun if you a living downtown/uptown, just as an insurance policy. I'm not being sarcastic, it makes me feel better to pack heat at my house (considering I don't have kids).

2. No one cares about Tulane athetics generally. It is too bad...I'm a Tulane alum but its all LSU all the time.

This is very sad. It made me sick how the state basically crapped on UNO to support LSU. Being a Tulane fan, I am not a fan of the "Elle eshoo Tahgahs" (as so many pronounce it). Don't even get me started on the mentally psychotic Les Miles or the incident I had at an LSU game when I was a child (7 years old) wearing Tulane apparel ... it involved cursing and beer being dumped on me while being surrounded by a few 20-30 year old men. Hostile fans.

3. Parish=county, yes.

4. There are no covered garages, and you will park on the street.

Get locking lug nuts. I've had my tires/rims stolen twice when I used to live uptown. But you don't have to worry if you don't have nice tires. Also get an alarm system. I don't want to scare you, but that is the reality of living in most any urban area.

5. best gym around will be for you...the Reily Center on campus. I think its $130 for 4 months for staff

Excellent gym. I really miss going there.

6. And yes I have left an area and come to NOLA. And yes I've had a hard time meeting friends. :/
New Orleans is truly a unique city whose good qualities outweigh the bad IMO.
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Old 12-07-2010, 01:46 PM
 
3 posts, read 3,634 times
Reputation: 10
Thank you so much! In the past I've avoided Craigslist but the prices and pictures posted on there look totally reasonable and really quaint. I never would've looked to those without your help. As far as a hard time finding friends, why don't you e-mail at [email]ironsam96@live.com[/email] so I can find out more about your experience and -- who knows! -- if I move there, maybe we'll end up being best buds!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prytania View Post
1. Dont rent an apartment...there arent many here and what is here isn't good. Just go look at craigslist and rent half a shotgun or something comparable

2. No one cares about Tulane athetics generally. It is too bad...I'm a Tulane alum but its all LSU all the time.

3. Parish=county, yes.

4. There are no covered garages, and you will park on the street.

5. best gym around will be for you...the Reily Center on campus. I think its $130 for 4 months for staff

6. And yes I have left an area and come to NOLA. And yes I've had a hard time meeting friends. :/
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Old 12-07-2010, 03:12 PM
 
1,347 posts, read 2,048,305 times
Reputation: 945
I found my last place by accident...
You do need to have help in selecting a place if you aren't coming here to see it before hand.

My place is a dump however its in a really good neighborhood...so for the most part I can't complain.
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Old 12-07-2010, 05:07 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,865 posts, read 57,901,167 times
Reputation: 19182
Many landlords will not advertise b/c they don't want to deal with tons of calls from looky-loos. They put up a sign out front. Drive around in areas you would like and see what duplexes, garage apts., etc. are available.

generally, rents in N.O. are comparably higher than other cities due to lack of stock after Katrina. It's getting better but still not good.

When you say 'travel" do you mean fly out? The airport is out in Kenner. If you are driving around, You could live closer to work. You certainly won't want to walk in the heat/humidity of a great part of the year. If you have to fly, consider living in Metairie - generally safe and half-way between work and the airport.
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Old 12-07-2010, 07:49 PM
 
3 posts, read 3,634 times
Reputation: 10
SouthernBelle: I doubt I'll do much flying. It'll probably be most commute by driving. I've never experienced the "heat of the summer" in the South as I've only been down to Florida/Birmingham in November-January for football games and whatnot. Little concerned about that, too. I hate having drastically more questions than answers.
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,865 posts, read 57,901,167 times
Reputation: 19182
When it's 90 degrees and 90% humidity, you won't want to walk anywhere except from your air-conditioned car to your air-conditioned office.
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Old 12-08-2010, 08:34 AM
 
Location: Da Parish
1,127 posts, read 4,611,088 times
Reputation: 998
I always thought that this place would be kind of cool to try, (ESPLANADE AT CITY PARK Rentals in New Orleans, LA[id]/26527/), that is if I were young and single. I love the location, Bayou St. John, City Park, those nice cafe's and the small market on Esplanade Ave. I'm just throwing it out there, it looks like you can get a 730sf 1br/1bath for $925.
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