Tips: How to Find an Apartment in Los Angeles
If you’ve ever seen the video for Guns n’ Roses classic song “Welcome To The Jungle” you know it kicks off with Axl Rose arriving by bus in Los Angeles from small-town Indiana. Axl wrote the song thinking “if someone wants to come to town and find something, here you can find whatever you want.” You know…opportunity, friends, a band…and of course an apartment! You don’t want to get off that bus and not have a nice roof over your head. So here are some tips for the musician — or anyone for that matter — who wants to find the right apartment in Los Angeles:
Ask Your School
Students should really check in with your new school to see if they have Housing Options on their website like LAMA does. If the school is not going to help you get acclimated to LA you might be suspicious about how helpful they will be with the rest of your education. This will always be the best place to check because they will know housing options that are closer to the school. Even if you aren’t here for school, using a college’s housing page can have some good advice for anybody moving here.
Use Social Media
You got your admission letter to LAMA and know you are going to need to start thinking about finding a place to live in LA. Get the word out to your “network”! Post on Facebook, send out a Tweet and ask your friends for advice. Let them know when you will be moving and seek advice from anyone looking for a roommate, or anybody who has any leads on a good place to live. LA is one of those cities with high turnover. People are moving in and out of places all the time. Even if you don’t think you have any friends in LA one of your friends might know people with just the right place for you.
Search Out Craigslist
Craigslist has become the go-to place online for classified ads, especially for finding an apartment or roommate. You can either pick Apts/Housing which is for your own apartment or rooms/shared which is to find a roommate. The shared rooms section always has more bang for your buck if you don’t mind sharing. If you budget $1200 a month for your own place , $1200 spent on a share will be infinitely bigger and more spacious – but you will have to share with another human being! As usual, heed the warnings from Craigslist which can be a hotbed of scams and fraud. Make sure to bring a friend anytime you visit an apartment or potential roommate and use your best judgement come decision time.
Join Westside Rentals
Westside Rentals has been around a long time — you can trust the service to provide you with suggestions for housing in LA. The catch is that you have to pay a fee (around $60) for access to their listings but it does away with the scams and fraud associated with Craiglist because everyone involved is verified by Westside Rentals. They also have many listings that never show up on Craigslist.
Let’s hope you are blasting “Welcome To The Jungle” in your new apartment and not in your earbuds as you stumble around the streets without a place to live! The key for housing is to relax and take your time. Don’t rush into anything that does not feel right. Also know that apartment dwellers have some of the best consumer rights out of any segment. If your apartment does anything short of what was advertised the law will always side with you. Good luck with your search!