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Old 11th May 2006
  #61
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max cooper's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RKrizman

I also think the whole Music-Connection/Hollywood/musician/networking thing is way overrated. You want to transcend that milieu as soon as possible. If you have to go to Hollywood for some reason, let the reason be important enough that you don't mind driving there. Otherwise, stay west of the 405 and nurture your own scene.
Absoruckinglutely!

Let those poor bastards fight it out over Thursday nite gigs at the Diaper Room.

I always preferred Hollywood because I like it as a city. Always inspires me. I lived in various parts, including Laurel Canyon, which I liked a lot, but I'm one of those people who gets a nosebleed if I get much further West than La Cienega.

But it doesn't take long to figure out if you're a Hollywood person or a West LA person or a Valley person or a desert rat (just don't get too close!)

BTW, your first place doesn't have to be your permanent residence.

Last edited by max cooper; 11th May 2006 at 01:00 AM..
Old 11th May 2006
  #62
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picksail's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTR
For apartment living, you should stay in a nice part of town, like West Hollywood, Santa Monica, parts of Venice or Marina Del Rey area. The rent will be steep, though.

If you want to purchase a house, then you should look in surrounding neighborhoods. We live in Mid City (below Mid-Wilshire) above the 10 Highway. Thank god we bought 4 years ago.

I would stay away from the Valley unless you have a permanent gig there-- NBC, WB, etc. The commute over the hill fmo the Valley is absolutely brutal. It is easier to commute into the Valley than to live in it.

I would look at the Zip Codes 90016 and 90019 if you want to find an affordable home, but each neighborhodd from block to block varies. These are the only affordable areas that are convenient to all parts of LA. That is why it is officially called Mid-City. Koreatown is an alternative to look for a house.

I actually like living in Mid City better than West Hollywood because my commute to Sony in Culver City is about 6 minutes. I can get to the Whiskey or the Rainbow Bar and Grille in 11 minutes, and the beach in 15.

And the buds out here are great- the ones I have met.
Sounds like we are in the same area with the same commute.
Old 11th May 2006
  #63
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allaccess's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by superburtm
where the hell are you living?? You are paying more than I pay on my mortgage in Burbank.
That makes me want to move back to the sticks... Another buddy of mine bought a house WITH A STUDIO IN THE GARAGE for under 200k 8 years ago. Added and added. and I still pay more in rent than he does in mortage. You have to make 7 figures to actually buy anything unless you've been here a while... I'm in silverlake and have a great place, but man it's some cake...

Ryan Hewitt
Old 12th May 2006
  #64
Here for the gear
 

Whoever posted about commuting to the Valley being much easier than living there is absolutely spot on. My gig is in Studio City, it takes me 15 minutes to commute over the hill each way. If I was going the opposite way it would easily take 45!
Old 12th May 2006
  #65
Gear Addict
 
usamike's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Judson
Whoever posted about commuting to the Valley being much easier than living there is absolutely spot on. My gig is in Studio City, it takes me 15 minutes to commute over the hill each way. If I was going the opposite way it would easily take 45!
But if you live AND work in Studio City, there's no commute. Life is good.
Old 12th May 2006
  #66
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superburtm's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by usamike
But if you live AND work in Studio City, there's no commute. Life is good.

exactly that was my point too..
Old 12th May 2006
  #67
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David Lee's Avatar
 

hey! santa monica slutz...!

rent is steep, i feel we got a great deal for $1600 on 4th street between Montana and Wilshire. 2 bdrm 2 full bath..

i'm exactly .9 miles from work, my girl is about 2 miles..

commute is a bitch!
Old 18th May 2006
  #68
Gear Nut
 
foxonestudios's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazzpunk
I'd say if you can afford anything out here you'll have a solid investment as prices just keep going up and up.'
be careful of thinking this...housing is cyclical, i should know, i'm a real estate developer by day (i love it, it helps fund my sluttiness)...according to more than a few research firms, housing is going to be going down again...

http://www.realestateconsulting.com/...statistics.htm has some cool stats, notice LA's pricing is at the top of its barometer.

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine...5/b3979601.htm is another great article to read if you think that housing is an investment...it is in the SUPER long term and can be in the short term, but think of it like the dotcom boom & bust of '99 & '00

stay slutty
Old 18th May 2006
  #69
Lives for gear
 
theblotted's Avatar
 

just wanted to say another big thanks to all of you contributing.

i'm learning lots even without even being in LA. i really feel more prepared every time i come back reading this thread.

Slutz forever.
Old 18th May 2006
  #70
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chrispick's Avatar
 

I get the impression that some people who live in the Santa Monica / Venice area think LA life begins and ends there. That area's cool, but one one of many cool So. Cal. areas. This "west of the 405" concept is nonsense.

LA is a sprawling cluster of cities and communities, big and small. There are all kinds of living environs. Honestly and unfortunately, you can't get a very good feel from soliciting poster opinions. I tell people moving here to pick a place that's cheap and safe, then give themselves six months to a year to get a "lay of the land," then choose an area that suits them.

That said, some firsthand opinions:

I lived in Toluca Lake which is very close to Hollywood, Burbank and Studio City. It's a great area. And I've worked in Hollywood and Santa Monica among other areas.

I now live in Pasadena and prefer it to all of the above. The San Gabriel Valley is as workable a living area as the San Fernando Valley. I favor it, in fact.

One thing to consider: You can likely get more apartment-to-the-dollar the farther you are from "the action."

Good luck.
Old 18th May 2006
  #71
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theblotted's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispick
Good luck.
thanks for the insights, chrispick.

i do understand about taking these opinions with a grain of salt. that's why i'm getting a general feel for what ppl have to say first, then i'll come out within the next few month to actually look around in person, find a temporary abode for half year ~ a year to really familiarize myself with LA.

my friend/roommate-to-be is already out there as we speak, and doing some first-hand scoping; so at least we're doing our homework.

the worst is if we get there last minute to find ourselves in the midst of bad environment/neighborhood.. and we're doing our best to prepare beforehand. you are very right about accessibility to better places away from "action".. like any major cities, guess is all about the balancing act (commute, etc.)
Old 18th May 2006
  #72
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RKrizman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispick
I get the impression that some people who live in the Santa Monica / Venice area think LA life begins and ends there. That area's cool, but one one of many cool So. Cal. areas. This "west of the 405" concept is nonsense.
That's very true--I'm sure growing up in Kansas has a lot to do with my attraction to the beach areas now. There are lots of great pockets. Pasadena is definitely cool. Even living up in the hills of Hollywood or West Hollywood can give you those moments when you walk outside, breath the night blooming jasmine and see the whole lit up L.A. basin laid out before you. Lots of romance in that, and action-accessible.

Aside from its natural assets, the chief value of Santa Monica is its excellent school system, which means you don't have to shell out for private school. However, this has driven up property values accordingly, and is not a factor if you don't have kids. There is pretty strict rent control, which means you can possibly get a cheaper apt, but finding them is the problem. Look for someone who already has one and is looking for a roomate.

One other reason that people in Venice/Santa Monica feel insular is that the north/south 405 freeway can be like the old Berlin wall--just impossible to get across in the mornings or evenings. Take that into account.

-R
Old 18th May 2006
  #73
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chrispick's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RKrizman
That's very true--I'm sure growing up in Kansas has a lot to do with my attraction to the beach areas now. There are lots of great pockets. Pasadena is definitely cool. Even living up in the hills of Hollywood or West Hollywood can give you those moments when you walk outside, breath the night blooming jasmine and see the whole lit up L.A. basin laid out before you. Lots of romance in that, and action-accessible.
I hear you. Don't get me wrong; I like Santa Monica a lot. I grew up in Northern Indiana, so the urban beach vibe has a lot of appeal.

Quote:
One other reason that people in Venice/Santa Monica feel insular is that the north/south 405 freeway can be like the old Berlin wall--just impossible to get across in the mornings or evenings.
Agreed. In fact, evening 405 traffic often kicks in as early as 3:30pm.

Sucks.

Certainly, one the first big acclimations you have to make when moving to LA is travel time. It's one of the negative trade-offs. But, I think the benefits outweight the deficits (and I'm a guy who thought he'd hate the "plastic west."). Never underestimate the power of morning sunshine.
Old 18th May 2006
  #74
Gear Maniac
 
David Lee's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispick
I get the impression that some people who live in the Santa Monica / Venice area think LA life begins and ends there. That area's cool, but one one of many cool So. Cal. areas. This "west of the 405" concept is nonsense.
You're right. However, I have spent plenty of time in the surrounding regions and have decided that if i was not on the westside, I would be in Los Feliz. Such a beautiful area.

This is half joking, half true, but my mantra has been "i don't go west of Lincoln Blvd if at all possible"

At the risk of stating what has been stated before in this post. I have found, through experience, that when choosing a place in this town, getting as close to where you will be driving the most [work] is the most important thing. You will lower your stress and increase the amount of livable hours outside of your car. Not to mention gas, wear and tear, etc.
Old 18th May 2006
  #75
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theblotted's Avatar
 

the couple times i visited, i really enjoyed the Santa Monica area. i also like Pasadena as well, as my Aunt lived in South Pasadena in the past (she's in Altadena now).

i think the warmth and sun sold me right away.

btw chrispick, where of Northern Indiana were you? i graduated from Purdue, and i knew tons of region rats. in fact, my buddy i'm moving in with grew up in Valpo.

when you guys say 405 is the wall.. does it mean to avoid driving ON it, or across it (say if i wanna commute from Santa Monica to Hollywood)?

also, anybody wanna comment on Culver City? when i'm doing searches on housing, a lot of'em show up here..
Old 18th May 2006
  #76
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Kestral's Avatar
 

Wow, I just checked the Music Instruments section on the LA Craigslist. Good thing I don't live there. $850 for a Wurlitzer 200A? $350 for that sweet looking Harpsichord? Neves and Ureis and Neumanns for way cheaper than on eBay AND I get to check it out to make sure everything is 100%? Good thing indeed. Check out Toronto's Craigslist for Music Instruments. 99% cheapo prosumer crap and then the 1% that's any decent, they want way higher than eBay prices. Stupid Toronto people.
Old 18th May 2006
  #77
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chrispick's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblotted
btw chrispick, where of Northern Indiana were you? i graduated from Purdue, and i knew tons of region rats. in fact, my buddy i'm moving in with grew up in Valpo.
Grew up in South Bend. Undergrad at IU. Lived in Indy for a few years.

Quote:
when you guys say 405 is the wall.. does it mean to avoid driving ON it, or across it (say if i wanna commute from Santa Monica to Hollywood)?
It's just a slow-moving, congested freeway most of the time. As such, it's often an inconvenience worth avoiding. But, everyone has to deal with it at one time or another because it connects the west side with the SF valley, both of which home the big entertainment media companies. You can use surface street to traverse much of that area, but, as surface streets, they're not really set up for fast, direct travel.
Old 18th May 2006
  #78
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theblotted's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispick
Grew up in South Bend. Undergrad at IU. Lived in Indy for a few years.
that's cool. i been there a few times cuz some old friends were from SBI also. i really dug Gyro King.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispick
It's just a slow-moving, congested freeway most of the time. As such, it's often an inconvenience worth avoiding. But, everyone has to deal with it at one time or another because it connects the west side with the SF valley, both of which home the big entertainment media companies. You can use surface street to traverse much of that area, but, as surace streets, they're not really set up for fast, direct travel.
yeah, i figured that much about the freeway.. but what i meant was, if it's okay to drive thru it perpendicular by taking smaller streets.. cuz if no and if i should choose to live in west side, the drive into Beverly/Hollywood would be painful.
Old 18th May 2006
  #79
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chrispick's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblotted
i really dug Gyro King.
Gyro King. Hilarious. Very South Bend. Ethnic grub with a midwest working class vibe and waterbed store marketing mentality. It's got that Chicago rim, heart-attack-with-sauce thing going for it.
Old 18th May 2006
  #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theblotted
...

also, anybody wanna comment on Culver City? when i'm doing searches on housing, a lot of'em show up here..
Culver City's great!

Rents are a little less than surrounding nice areas, schools are better, crime is 30% less. If the listings you are seeing are in the Fox Hills (near Green Valley Circle) neighborhood, you'd better check it out first - it's safe, but nothing but condos, condos, and condos...nothing you can walk to or from. CC is a small town of 40,000 surrounded by Los Angeles with a growing arts community, access to all areas, etc.

Take this from someone who grew up in Northern Indiana - Michigan City - and lived for nearly ten years in Boston - Back Bay, Symphony Road , Beacon Hill, Allston, Central Square, Arlington Heights...and I will never move back to somewhere it snows
Old 18th May 2006
  #81
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RKrizman's Avatar
 

[QUOTE=theblotted


yeah, i figured that much about the freeway.. but what i meant was, if it's okay to drive thru it perpendicular by taking smaller streets.. cuz if no and if i should choose to live in west side, the drive into Beverly/Hollywood would be painful.[/QUOTE]

It's getting across the 405 freeway which is a hassle, especially in the evenings going west to east for some reason. There are only select streets that cross it (actually, go underneath). From Santa Monica there's always a hassle on Sunset, Wilshire and Santa Monica Blvd. When I lived in Venice I could get across using Venice blvd. with less problem.

When I used to commute from Studio City to Venice and back I just figured it was a great time to stay current with the radio and check out mixes on my car system.

-R
Old 19th May 2006
  #82
Gear Addict
 

i'm renting out a room in redondo beach for 1k... basically u get half the house. 2 bd + quasi mix room, working on treatment as we speak..

ocean and city views, etc... hate finding roommates lol, my buddy just got xferred to baltimore :(
Old 19th May 2006
  #83
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max cooper's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblotted

also, anybody wanna comment on Culver City? when i'm doing searches on housing, a lot of'em show up here..
Culver City is where Sony Studios is (which used to be David O. Selznick Studios back in the heyday of Alfred Hitchcock).

I'd live in Culver City. I used to work at Davis and Dean Factor's Smashbox Studios over by Rodeo/Higuera St. (not to be confused with Rodeo Dr.)

If you are careful, you can find some nice little pockets between Venice Bl, National Blvd, Culver Blvd and Jefferson Blvd.

Also, I shoulda said it before, but Glendale can be a good place to look if you're considering the Los Feliz/Silverlake/Echo Park deal.
Old 19th May 2006
  #84
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theblotted's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispick
Gyro King. Hilarious. Very South Bend. Ethnic grub with a midwest working class vibe and waterbed store marketing mentality. It's got that Chicago rim, heart-attack-with-sauce thing going for it.
yeah, i had a few heart attacks eating that creamy sauce, lol. all world taste tho.

Quote:
Originally Posted by seriousfun
Take this from someone who grew up in Northern Indiana - Michigan City - and lived for nearly ten years in Boston - Back Bay, Symphony Road , Beacon Hill, Allston, Central Square, Arlington Heights...and I will never move back to somewhere it snows
man, lotsa hoosiers here. i can understand why you won't wanna go back.. Michigan City's got some cold ass wind coming from the lake! haha.. brings me back to some good times up North in Ogden Dunes, Portage, La Porte, etc..

funnily, i'm living on Westland Ave (down the street from Symphony) in Beantown now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zkaudio
i'm renting out a room in redondo beach for 1k... basically u get half the house. 2 bd + quasi mix room, working on treatment as we speak..
how is the redondo area?

====================

thanks for the Culver City comments. i'll add that to the list. my friend and i have boiled down to looking for places towards west, closer to Wilshire Blvd.. but keeping our eys open tho!
Old 19th May 2006
  #85
Gear Addict
 

redondo is cool, but good lord, worst drive ever if you work in hollywood area... Just getting to the freeway from here is a drag. Once you're here though, it's great. Good restaurants, lots of ladies, pet friendly, etc.
Old 19th May 2006
  #86
Gear Maniac
 
David Lee's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblotted


how is the redondo area?
Redondo is pretty nice, but as was stated, can be a PITA to get in and out of sometimes. You definetly won't have to leave the area for local entertainment, food, shopping, etc...

it's part of the "southbay" redondo, manhattan beach, hermosa beach. which is generally cool.
Old 19th May 2006
  #87
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RKrizman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblotted
funnily, i'm living on Westland Ave (down the street from Symphony) in Beantown now.
I used to live in a basement apt on Westland ave.

Bro', you're gonna love California.

-R
Old 19th May 2006
  #88
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I hate Culver City but maybe that's because me and my girl got mugged and had a gun pointed in our face coming out of a store. Luckily a cop car drove down the street at that very moment and the dirtbag ran for it. Scary **** though.
Old 19th May 2006
  #89
Gear Maniac
 
sharky's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by max cooper
as in many high-density cities, the neighborhood can change drastically in a couple of blocks.

For example; if you're on Sixth Street near Rossmore (which is the South end of Vine St.) you're in a really good neighborhood; big expensive houses. Not sketchy in the least. but if you go just a couple of blocks East, by the time you get to Wilton Place and Sixth, you're in some of the worst neighborhood around.

Western Ave. and Franklin Ave. is also an area where stuff changes really quickly. If you go North towards Los Feliz, the neighborhood gets nice quickly, but if you go South on Western, you'd better be packing heat, and I'm really not kidding. Western Ave. and Hollywood Blvd. (where the old Hollywood Billiards and legendary rehearsal space used to be) is the border of Crips and White Fence. The Crips used to deal out of the stair corridor in the rehearsal bldg. The White Fence are the real problem. When I first got my rehearsal space there, a couple of White Fence hoods had set a kid on fire and tossed him off the roof. The two gangs have a lot of friction between them. Basically, the Crips are the good guys and the WF are the bad guys.

The neighborhood bordered by Wilshire Blvd, La Brea, Third St. and Farmer's Market (now the Grove shopping center) was where a lot of people from out of town first landed in Hollywood. Lately that 'hood has slid a bit. People getting attacked, etc. La Brea is a conduit from bad neighborhoods, and it brings a lot of bad elements into Hollywood on weekends.

I think a better place to start is the neighborhood bordered by Beverly Blvd, Fairfax Ave, Melrose Ave, and La Brea. The East end of that is mostly houses; Jewish families, so it's clean and crime is pretty damn low, but the West end of that area has a lot of nicer old apartments. Lots of production people live in that area. That puts you close to a lot of stuff.

I'd say to avoid the apartments between Sunset Blvd, Santa Monica Blvd, Fairfax Ave and La Brea Ave. You can find some decent stuff in there, but you're getting into Pawnshop land. Not as good IMHO.

If you're careful, you can look South of Wilshire, but you gotta keep your eyes open. I've seen some really nice places there, though. Check from Fairfax to La Brea. It's starting to feel the upswing and rents are already going up.

If I dissed anyone's 'hood in there, sorry. These are gross generalizations.
Hands down the best little guide for ANYBODY moving into Los Angeles for the 1st time. This is the type of post that makes boards like this such a great resource.

Accurate, specific and infinitely helpful.
Old 19th May 2006
  #90
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vernier's Avatar
Brings back memories, lots of the places mentioned were my old stomping grounds.
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