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Old 11-10-2011, 03:12 AM
 
54 posts, read 65,878 times
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I'm moving to Seattle in a few months from the Bay Area. My partner (who is a UW grad student) and are looking for an apartment in the downtown area. Neither of us own a car and I'm looking to find something in the Capitol Hill area where I'll be working. Is it common to use a rental broker in Seattle? Or is it mainly craigslist, word-of-mouth, signs in windows, etc?

We'll be looking for a 1-BR, wood floors, preferably in an older building with some character. Also curious what rents are generally like in that area as far as an average rent.
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Old 11-10-2011, 07:15 AM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
40,146 posts, read 71,800,097 times
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Craigslist and the Seattle Times have listings, but the best deals go quickly with just a sign posted so it helps to be here and drive or walk around. In a really nice building figure $1,200 for a studio, $1,500 for 1 bedroom. You can find something $200-300 less in an older building, or busier street, or closer to the I5 freeway.
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Old 11-10-2011, 10:42 AM
 
Location: Capital Hill
1,600 posts, read 3,012,735 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoBlueInSF View Post
I'm moving to Seattle in a few months from the Bay Area. My partner (who is a UW grad student) and are looking for an apartment in the downtown area. Neither of us own a car and I'm looking to find something in the Capitol Hill area where I'll be working. Is it common to use a rental broker in Seattle? Or is it mainly craigslist, word-of-mouth, signs in windows, etc?

We'll be looking for a 1-BR, wood floors, preferably in an older building with some character. Also curious what rents are generally like in that area as far as an average rent.
Capital Hill apartment rentals will probably be cheaper then San Francisco. Lots of older apartments on Capital Hill as well. In fact that is where most of the older apartments are.
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Old 11-10-2011, 11:35 AM
 
Location: Berlin, Germany
507 posts, read 1,609,808 times
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I live in Capitol Hill and found my place on Craigslist. From when I was looking (one year ago) I would say you can find 1-bed apartments from around $900, get something decent for $1200, I saw a couple of really nice two beds in old buildings for around $1600. This will always include water, sewer and garbage.

There are a lot of buidlings with 'vacancy' signs on the outside, so probably a good method is to just walk around the areas you like and phone some of the numbers on the signs. If the manager lives there as well you might be able to look at the apartment straight away.

My contract is finished now, so I am month to month and I have had a look at a couple of apartments that I've seen when I walked by, it seems to be a better option that Craiglist if you're in the area and have the time to do it that way.

Last edited by SitoUK; 11-10-2011 at 11:51 AM..
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Old 11-10-2011, 03:04 PM
 
54 posts, read 65,878 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SitoUK View Post
I live in Capitol Hill and found my place on Craigslist. From when I was looking (one year ago) I would say you can find 1-bed apartments from around $900, get something decent for $1200, I saw a couple of really nice two beds in old buildings for around $1600. This will always include water, sewer and garbage.

There are a lot of buidlings with 'vacancy' signs on the outside, so probably a good method is to just walk around the areas you like and phone some of the numbers on the signs. If the manager lives there as well you might be able to look at the apartment straight away.

My contract is finished now, so I am month to month and I have had a look at a couple of apartments that I've seen when I walked by, it seems to be a better option that Craiglist if you're in the area and have the time to do it that way.
Thanks - sounds like we might be able to find something decent in a price range not too different from our current place, which we are renting for $1200 (1BR, 1920s era building with wood floors)
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Old 11-10-2011, 03:56 PM
 
Location: Berlin, Germany
507 posts, read 1,609,808 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoBlueInSF View Post
Thanks - sounds like we might be able to find something decent in a price range not too different from our current place, which we are renting for $1200 (1BR, 1920s era building with wood floors)
Yes, that's roughly what we are paying for 1-bed apartment close to Broadway, 1920s as well, wooden floors, very high ceilings. Only downside is that it takes a lot of electricity to heat all the space under those ceilings in winter
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Old 11-11-2011, 11:52 PM
 
54 posts, read 65,878 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SitoUK View Post
Yes, that's roughly what we are paying for 1-bed apartment close to Broadway, 1920s as well, wooden floors, very high ceilings. Only downside is that it takes a lot of electricity to heat all the space under those ceilings in winter
So totally not looking forward to living in cold[er] weather climate and needing to actually use the heat (and the utility bills that go with). Only upside it can't be worse than when I lived in the Northeast and shelled out several hundred dollars a month for heating oil in the winter.
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Old 11-12-2011, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Berlin, Germany
507 posts, read 1,609,808 times
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NO, it's not that bad. Electricity is actually surprisingly cheap here. We have these really inefficient heating fans in the wall, as soon as you turn them off it gets cold again, and I bought a couple of electric radiators extra. When winter was at its worst we had all this stuff on at the same time and I was really worried about the electricity bill but then the highest we ever got was $140 for two months, i.e. 70 per month which is really not a lot, in summer it's maybe $20 per month.

I guess it depends a lot on the building you live in. In many older buildings the landlords have replaced central heating systems with these electric ones when some major upgrade was due. These electric heaters are much cheaper than a new boiler for your central heating system plus the tenants pay themselves through their electricity bill, double win for the landlord.

We also stayed in a more modern building for a while when we first got here, much less heating was needed there as it was much better insulated...but no character to the building at all, so I am happy to pay some extra heating for living in a nice place :-)
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Old 11-12-2011, 02:11 PM
 
Location: Duvall, WA
1,677 posts, read 6,592,633 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoBlueInSF View Post
So totally not looking forward to living in cold[er] weather climate and needing to actually use the heat (and the utility bills that go with). Only upside it can't be worse than when I lived in the Northeast and shelled out several hundred dollars a month for heating oil in the winter.
Electricity isn't too bad in WA. We moved from CA, and we saved a ton on electric bills because there are not a lot of homes with A/C, so there are a lot baseboard heaters. In the summer our electric bills were like $60 and in the winter the most it ever got was about $190 (and we had a 3 story, 1600 square foot town home).

Personally I loved the cooler weather.

V. =)
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Old 11-12-2011, 08:21 PM
 
54 posts, read 65,878 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeronikaW View Post
Electricity isn't too bad in WA. We moved from CA, and we saved a ton on electric bills because there are not a lot of homes with A/C, so there are a lot baseboard heaters. In the summer our electric bills were like $60 and in the winter the most it ever got was about $190 (and we had a 3 story, 1600 square foot town home).

Personally I loved the cooler weather.

V. =)
$190 in winter? Yipes. Most my PGE bill ever hits is about $50 in the winter, and then only for a month or two. Summer closer to $20. Advantage of the inner Bay Area.
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