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Old 11-21-2010, 09:17 PM
 
17 posts, read 36,046 times
Reputation: 12

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Hi all,

I posted a few months back for the first time. I live in Los Feliz (LA) and work in Santa Ana - Main St. exit off the 5. The first few days of commuting weren't bad, but after that all bets were off and I've learned that you all were right, it really can take more than 2 hours to drive one way during rush hour. I've learned my lesson and now I'm determined to live within 30 minutes of work. I just want to make sure I pick the right location.

Commuting time to work is key, as is safety, as I'm a single female. I drove around Old Town Orange and it was cute, but I didn't see many rentals. On Craigslist I just keep seeing the same few buildings over and over and they're in areas that people on other threads have suggested staying away from. It seems like if people are renting their granny apts they're not listing them on Craigslist, and I don't know if I have the time or patience to go over there more than once and drive around looking for signs.

Although I wanted to stay in north OC to be closer to LA, I've decided after reading these boards that Costa Mesa might be ok, specifically the South Coast Metro area. Anyone know what the commute would be like taking surface streets the whole way, say down Bristol?

I was also seriously considering Long Beach, but after having driven the 605-22 and 405-22 through Long Beach on the way to SA, I've ran into way too much traffic on too many occasions. At this point I don't want to have even a 45 minute drive to work, I'd like it to be a half hour at most.

So I've narrowed it down to South Coast Metro and Orange. I think Fullerton is ok but it looks like I'd be fighting traffic on the 57, and that's something I'd definitely like to avoid. It seems like it's impossible to avoid freeway traffic, which is why I'm trying to stay somewhere commutable via local streets.

Thanks in advance for any feedback! My budget is around $1400 for a 1BR, no dogs or kids to worry about . I could possibly go up to $1500 but would prefer not to, and of course, wouldn't mind going lower.
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Old 11-21-2010, 09:38 PM
 
11,715 posts, read 37,440,269 times
Reputation: 7535
If I remember your original thread, you work right down the street from my wife. We live in Costa Mesa by South Coast Plaza and she takes Bristol to work. It takes her about 15 minutes in the morning and 20 minutes in the evening. She starts work at 7am so I'm sure its a little worse if you start later. Costa Mesa is full of renters so you shouldn't have a problem finding something within your budget.
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Old 11-22-2010, 09:25 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
28,928 posts, read 68,925,621 times
Reputation: 35347
I would keep looking in Old town. It is not easy. It is a great place ot live and very popular, plus you have college kids taking up a lot of the cheap rentals. However they are out there. Good places sometimes do not even advertise, they put up a sign ad osmeone rents it right away. You have to drive around a lot. I am fairly certain that there are openings in some of the aparments above the stored in the old town shopping district, but those are cheap and not so nice and it can be a noisey place to live. I have some friends who live in one of those apartments and while not luxury living by any means, they are very happy there. (but thay are young, broke, and therefore not terribly picky).


Also look around Floral Park in Santa Ana. Not many rentals there either, but they pop up from time to time. Really close to work for you there.


South coast metro is a pretty good choice too. It will be miserable from now until Christmas, but generally is is on ok commute. There are a lot of neat things to do in that area too. Great freeway access as well, but it is a very busy freeway area.

You could also look in those apartments or condos accorss the street from Mainplace mall. (Corner of Main Street and Memory lane). I am nto sure if any of them are being rented. However you can walk to some decent places (Mainplace mall, McCormick & Schmitts, Barnes & Noble Bookstore, Pat & Oscars, that all too prevelant coffee shop, and Santiago Park). A little further down main there are some more apartments just behind the shopping complex with verizon and Starbucks (oops I mentioned the unmentionable).
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Old 11-22-2010, 12:45 PM
 
Location: 'Murica
1,302 posts, read 2,573,715 times
Reputation: 823
where along Main Street is your workplace? The south end is very close to the South Coast Metro area of Costa Mesa, and the north end runs right through the city of Orange. There are plenty of nice apartments in both areas (near Main/Sunflower in Costa Mesa and near Chapman/fwy-5 in Orange, in addition to a few on Main/MacArthur in Santa Ana)

If your workplace is in the southern part of town, then you might also consider a few places near Main/Jamboree in Irvine. Most of them are a little pricey, though.
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Old 11-23-2010, 12:11 AM
 
17 posts, read 36,046 times
Reputation: 12
Thanks for all your replies.

Vinsanity, my work is near Main Street and Civic Center Drive.

My main concern with Costa Mesa was making sure that the surface street commute wouldn't be more than 20-25 minutes. With Orange, I like what I saw of Old Town but I don't have time to keep visiting and driving around, I need to move sooner rather than later so I can stop commuting. I did see that large complex in Orange near Main Place. The website makes it look nice, and it seems in the upper range of rent for that area, $1450+ for a 1BR.

How would downtown Fullerton be commute wise? I looked at some apartments on Chapman in the downtown area which I liked, but I was concerned about taking the 91-57-5 since I'd be going with traffic. Someone told me it wouldn't take more than 20-25 minutes, but I'm worried it would be longer with all those freeways.
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Old 11-23-2010, 10:26 AM
 
Location: 'Murica
1,302 posts, read 2,573,715 times
Reputation: 823
In that case, I'd look at the two apartments on Chapman right off the 5 freeway. Allure and Renaissance. I'm not very familiar with Old Town Orange, but that does seem like a good area too.
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Old 11-23-2010, 10:52 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
28,928 posts, read 68,925,621 times
Reputation: 35347
The commute from Fullerton will usually be less than half an hour. Sometimes it will take much longer.

The problem in this area is that the further you drive, the more opportunities you have to get stuck due to accidents, weather, stupidity, etc. You just never know. The second worst freeway traffic jam I was ever in was caused by a nice looking young gal in shorts and a bikini top changing the tire on her jeep. Nearly every guy, old or young, swerved over to ask her if they could help. She was obviously competent to change the tire herself and kept waving people off, however depite this, the next guy felt it necessary to slow down swerve over and ask whether she needed his help instead of the last 250 people who offered. Mostly I think they wanted a chance to slow down and look at her. Or maybe they wanted to be able to talk to a pretty girl that day. We men can be wierd sometimes.

The point is that all kinds of wierd things can make a commute go from a few minutes to an hour, or hours. With a long commute (like to LA) you will encounter some wierd problem as much as every week, or even several times a week. The shorter your commute is, the less likely that you will encounter some wierd thing.

If this is a long term thing, keep in mind that if they ever build and fill One Broadway Plaza, traffic in mid town Santa Ana will be impossible during rush hours. You just will not be able to get through. Since it will probably never get built, nor filled if it is built, it may not be a problem, but it could make any commute for you horrible.
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Old 11-23-2010, 01:04 PM
 
17 posts, read 36,046 times
Reputation: 12
Point taken regarding freeways and the probability of weather or accidents causing delays. That's exactly what I'm afraid of re: Fullerton although I really like this one building there that has a good rate right now. I'm surprised at just how much rents go up and down by the day in the larger complexes. It's also been noted here before but the reviews on apartmentratings.com are so polarized.

Vinsanity, thanks for Allure and Renaissance suggestions. Reviews on Allure especially are harsh on apartmentratings but I know I need to take everything with a grain of salt. I'm probably going to end up in a big complex in either Orange or Costa Mesa. Next step will be to go and actually check some of these places out. I'll be in Orange County for at least a year.
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Old 11-23-2010, 01:50 PM
 
103 posts, read 206,464 times
Reputation: 12
Sorry for the second post. Look at the one under this one, I hate when something is posted and you do not know if it is their or not.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sglen View Post
Hi all,

I posted a few months back for the first time. I live in Los Feliz (LA) and work in Santa Ana - Main St. exit off the 5. The first few days of commuting weren't bad, but after that all bets were off and I've learned that you all were right, it really can take more than 2 hours to drive one way during rush hour. I've learned my lesson and now I'm determined to live within 30 minutes of work. I just want to make sure I pick the right location.

Commuting time to work is key, as is safety, as I'm a single female. I drove around Old Town Orange and it was cute, but I didn't see many rentals. On Craigslist I just keep seeing the same few buildings over and over and they're in areas that people on other threads have suggested staying away from. It seems like if people are renting their granny apts they're not listing them on Craigslist, and I don't know if I have the time or patience to go over there more than once and drive around looking for signs.

Although I wanted to stay in north OC to be closer to LA, I've decided after reading these boards that Costa Mesa might be ok, specifically the South Coast Metro area. Anyone know what the commute would be like taking surface streets the whole way, say down Bristol?

I was also seriously considering Long Beach, but after having driven the 605-22 and 405-22 through Long Beach on the way to SA, I've ran into way too much traffic on too many occasions. At this point I don't want to have even a 45 minute drive to work, I'd like it to be a half hour at most.

So I've narrowed it down to South Coast Metro and Orange. I think Fullerton is ok but it looks like I'd be fighting traffic on the 57, and that's something I'd definitely like to avoid. It seems like it's impossible to avoid freeway traffic, which is why I'm trying to stay somewhere commutable via local streets.

Thanks in advance for any feedback! My budget is around $1400 for a 1BR, no dogs or kids to worry about . I could possibly go up to $1500 but would prefer not to, and of course, wouldn't mind going lower.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-23-2010, 01:51 PM
 
103 posts, read 206,464 times
Reputation: 12
Check out this website for new apartment complex:

Find an Apartment - Avalon Communities Apartment Finder

I'm not living in California, but how ever I found this apartment building complex in the area your looking to stay at, also it h
as the amount of money for rent that your looking to spent and also to be safe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sglen View Post
Hi all,

I posted a few months back for the first time. I live in Los Feliz (LA) and work in Santa Ana - Main St. exit off the 5. The first few days of commuting weren't bad, but after that all bets were off and I've learned that you all were right, it really can take more than 2 hours to drive one way during rush hour. I've learned my lesson and now I'm determined to live within 30 minutes of work. I just want to make sure I pick the right location.

Commuting time to work is key, as is safety, as I'm a single female. I drove around Old Town Orange and it was cute, but I didn't see many rentals. On Craigslist I just keep seeing the same few buildings over and over and they're in areas that people on other threads have suggested staying away from. It seems like if people are renting their granny apts they're not listing them on Craigslist, and I don't know if I have the time or patience to go over there more than once and drive around looking for signs.

Although I wanted to stay in north OC to be closer to LA, I've decided after reading these boards that Costa Mesa might be ok, specifically the South Coast Metro area. Anyone know what the commute would be like taking surface streets the whole way, say down Bristol?

I was also seriously considering Long Beach, but after having driven the 605-22 and 405-22 through Long Beach on the way to SA, I've ran into way too much traffic on too many occasions. At this point I don't want to have even a 45 minute drive to work, I'd like it to be a half hour at most.

So I've narrowed it down to South Coast Metro and Orange. I think Fullerton is ok but it looks like I'd be fighting traffic on the 57, and that's something I'd definitely like to avoid. It seems like it's impossible to avoid freeway traffic, which is why I'm trying to stay somewhere commutable via local streets.

Thanks in advance for any feedback! My budget is around $1400 for a 1BR, no dogs or kids to worry about . I could possibly go up to $1500 but would prefer not to, and of course, wouldn't mind going lower.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
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