The Myth: You’ll benefit if the landlord lives on the property.
The Truth: This city is known for its sweet guesthouses, and proximity to your landlord can mean, in the best of situations, good upkeep and prompt maintenance. But if your idea of fun includes blasting Skrillex at 1 a.m., brace yourself for a knock on the door. Also, some on-site owners are looking for more than a check on the first of the month (read: a caretaker or a new best friend). Prepare to set some boundaries.
The Myth: The more amenities an apartment has, the better.
The truth: If you’re new to town, it can seem as if landing the perfect digs will determine your future. Don’t be seduced by the kidney-shaped pool (you’ll never stick a toe in it), the basement gym (it has only one elliptical), or the yard for a future dog (if you ever, like, get one). Make a list of realistic must-haves (on-site laundry, covered parking, even a doorman) and stick to it. Your bank account will thank you later.
The Myth: Location, location, location.
The truth: If you work in Pasadena, it makes sense to live there, too. But beware of aspirational location lust, by which we mean: “If I live next to Griffith Park, I’ll hike every morning” or “If I move to Venice, I’ll finally pick up surfing.” That’s a little like saying “If I buy a laptop, I’ll write a blockbuster screenplay.” All of those things are possible, but hard work—not your address—will make them happen. The beach is rad, bro. But drive to Zuma on the weekends instead.
Not sure what neighborhood is right for you? Let us help you narrow it down:
IF YOU’RE SINGLE
$1,950 for 1 BR
IF YOU HAVE CHILDREN
$2,400 for 2 BR
IF YOU MISS NEW YORK CITY
$1,450 for 1 BR
IF YOU WANT A ROOMMATE
Does anyone want a roommate? Yes, if it let’s you afford downtown Santa Monica.
$4,290 for 2 BR
IF YOU WANT TO WALK TO A COFFEE SHOP
$2,650 for 1 BR; $3,700 for 2 BR
IF YOU WANT TO JOG AROUND A LAKE
$,1,160 for 1 BR
IF YOU CRAVE THE SALT AIR
$2,490 for 1 BR
$2,810 for 1 BR
IF YOU (STILL) HAVE A MAN BUN
$1,880 for 1 BR
IF YOU LIKE RUNNING INTO CELEBRITIES WHILE WALKING A DOG
Hollywood Hills West
$1,820 for 1 BR
IF YOU’RE A CULTURE VULTURE