Where to rent while attending Cal State LA?
May 1, 2008 12:27 PM   Subscribe

Where should (or shouldn't) I rent a room, while attending CSU Los Angeles? I don't live in LA and am unfamiliar with the area. I have absolutely no idea what places I should be going for, and which neighborhoods to avoid.

I'll be looking for rooms through Craigslist and similar, in the $600 price range. It takes me 3 hours to drive to Los Angeles and check out the places on my own, which makes it really inconvenient for me to show up at the potential place only to discover that the walls are riddled with bullets.

Do let me know which places are desirable (quiet enough for studying), and which places I should avoid. Thanks!
posted by Xere to Grab Bag (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Highland Park.
posted by seldomfun at 12:47 PM on May 1, 2008

I would imagine that once you have a potential location to investigage, the stret view in Google Maps would be a great way to do a virtual walk around the neighborhood.
posted by jaimev at 1:33 PM on May 1, 2008

K-Town is really popular with a lot of my friends. I live in Palms and have for about ten years. I love it there. Highland Park is a good suggestion as is Silverlake.
posted by skewedoracle at 1:43 PM on May 1, 2008

Check out Alhambra and Monterey Park. Both cities are really close to CSULA and have great chinese food.
posted by albolin at 2:11 PM on May 1, 2008

I'll vote Glendale. Been here 7 years or so, no bars on windows, quiet, ducks in the swimming pool, frequented markets will just "drop the change and gimme a $20". Close to the 2 and the 134 and the 5, Pasadena/Eagle Rock on one side, Burbank on the other, 20 minute commute to downtown passing through Silverlake, Echo Park, and close enough to K-Town.

I have a sneaky suspicion that Russian/Armenian mob might run the place, but it's nice and I feel safe walking around at 3am... For quiet... when the neighbor girls moved in and started yelling and fighting every night there was a line at the door of the apartment manager complaining. The loudest things here are an occasional Saturday birthday party next door, kids in the pool, quacking ducks, and near a hospital so lot's of sirens now and then.
posted by zengargoyle at 2:30 PM on May 1, 2008

All suggestions are great except Palms is too far (off the 405 - tough drive) and Koreatown is also too far, being in the Wilshire District. Except there is a part near the 101 and I guess it wouldn't be too bad. But it can take 1/2 an hour or more to go from that to Cal State LA. Out of what everyone said, Highland Park is the coolest and best. There aren't very many good places right by the school. It is located in East LA, and is also right by the freeway and government facilities.
posted by ASterling at 4:40 PM on May 1, 2008

Alhambra has some really nice parts, though it is not at all hip like some of the suggestions upstream. And you would be very close to school. You could also shoot up to the foothills, Sierra Madre, Arcadia and vicinity, if you wanted a small town experience.

As for quiet places, it really depends on the specific living situation you find.

In general, you will find that mainly Asian neighborhoods (Alhambra, Monterey Park, Koreatown) will be quieter than mainly Chicano neighborhoods (Highland Park, El Monte), if only because of the cultural differences in how public outdoor space is used. Weekend-long salsa parties can really grate if you're living next to one, especially when it gets too hot to keep the windows shut.
posted by Scram at 11:05 PM on May 1, 2008

El Sereno is a nice neighborhood near CSULA that can be less expensive than S.Pasadena & Alhambra but close enough to both of those to enjoy their resources (it has a few of its own too, of course).
posted by PY at 1:11 AM on May 2, 2008

I'd describe El Sereno as a pretty tough neighborhood, though the Route 66 vistas along Huntington are not to be missed.
posted by Scram at 11:09 AM on May 2, 2008

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