Moving to Los Angeles? 10 Things to Consider

Moving to Los Angeles

Moving to Los Angeles? 10 Things to Consider

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On America’s west coast lies a magical place where hustlers live on street tacos and eventually make it in film, sports, and music. We’re talking about Los Angeles, home to 18 million people in its greater area, and 4 million right in LA. Moving to Los Angeles is still a popular decision.

The city will always have a draw for young adults looking for their big break. Unlike New York, Boston, or even Chicago, where professionals go to jumpstart their careers in finance and law, people move to LA to pursue a dream (though great jobs in every sector abound as well). And certainly, everyone expects the lifestyle to be full of trips to the beach, eclectic food and people, and a whole lot of sun. Here are 10 things to consider before moving to Los Angeles.

Neighborhood Matters

neighborhood map los angeles
Like most big cities, every part of town has its own flavor and style. This is particularly true for Los Angeles, where the personality of a neighborhood can shift just by crossing a street. When you’re thinking about moving to Los Angeles, this is both good and bad. Chances are you can find a place that fits your tastes like a glove. On the other hand, the number of choices can be overwhelming. Here’s one attempt at mapping the neighborhoods of LA. This may be more beneficial once you’ve narrowed down a few apartments and want to learn about each location.

Obviously, housing in Los Angeles is expensive, especially if you want your own place. Living with roommates will cut costs. Another helpful tip is to move in the wintertime. Prices of Los Angeles rentals actually decrease during this office season and can save you money long run.

Traffic is a Monster

This should come as no surprise. LA traffic is notoriously busy and slow, pretty much at all times of the day. INRIX, the creator of the global traffic index, says that LA has the fifth worst traffic in the United States, and drivers spend an average of 128 hours a year in traffic. For comparison, the top four were Boston, Washington D.C., Chicago, and New York City.

Understandably, then, traffic should play a role in where you chose to live. Prices may be higher next to the beach, downtown, and in the northern hills. If you chose an hour commute, you may want to die after a few months. Moving to Los Angeles goes better when you find a place close to your work so you can spend more time enjoying the city instead of the road.

You Don’t Need a Car

Los Angeles streetIf you do get lucky and live close to work, you may be able to get around without a car. Public transit works well and any people ride electric scooters or take a Lyft or Uber to get around. If you’re single, chances are a roommate has a car. That will be enough to get you to the beach or grocery store when needed.

Unfortunately, Los Angeles isn’t that bikeable of a city, nor is walking a great substitute for good wheels. However, this too will depend on your neighborhood. If you live and work downtown, everything is very walkable and bikeable. Walkscore.com can help you judge a neighborhood before you arrive. If you have a car and are moving to Los Angeles, plan to bring it. Otherwise, wait until you arrive to judge its necessity.

The Food, even Healthy Food, Abounds

If an active lifestyle is important to you, you’ll find a lot of company in Los Angeles. Niche ranked nine Los Angeles suburbs and surrounding areas in their top 25 healthiest cities including Torrence, Burbank, Pasadena, and Orange.

One downside to healthy living in LA, is that  a lot of the health-related aspects to LA stem from the vanity of Hollywood. Los Angeles is one of the cities with the most plastic surgeons per people. There are also stories of weird and wacky health phases and cult-like followings that come out of LA. Buyer beware.

Hollywood

View from Hollywood Los AngelesSure, Hollywood is a little vain… but it’s a ton of fun. You never know when you might see a star at a coffee shop or at an event. If you’re really star struck, you can check out the Hollywood Walk of Fame or even just drive around the neighborhoods of Beverly Hills. There is no shortage of touristy Hollywood activities.

Entertainment in Los Angeles spans beyond the film industry, however. LA is home to great comedy clubs, interesting theatres, and is a must stop location for music tours. You’ll always have access to the best in entertainment.

Sports

Bleacher Report ranked Los Angeles as the second best sports city in the United States, coming behind only Boston (but who likes the Patriots anyway?). Just in terms of teams, LA has two baseball teams, the Angels and the Dodgers, two basketball teams, the Lakers and Clippers, two football teams, the Rams and the Chargers, two hockey teams, the Ducks and the Kings, and two soccer teams, the Galaxy and Los Angeles FC. Add all the college teams and semi-pro leagues, and your sports heaven just got better. In short, you’ll never run out of games to attend.

Art

For those with a more refined palate, moving to Los Angeles means access to some of the best art museums on the West Coast. Atop the list is the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Getty Center, a sprawling hilltop garden and architecturally impressive designed edifice containing a large collection of Ancient Greek and Roman architecture.

If modern art fits your fancy more than the ancient art, you’ll find plenty of contemporary galleries and museums. Here’s a list of some of the up and coming galleries in Los Angeles to check out on a spare evening.

Best Beaches in Los Angeles

Beaches in Los AngelesThe beaches in Los Angeles are kind of like the neighborhoods – everyone is different and has something unique to offer. Want to people watch or play some basketball and volleyball? Head to Venice Beach. In the mood for surfing? Try Malibu Surfrider Beach. Need a romantic, rugged beach to walk on at sunset? Look no further than El Matador Beach. Of course, there are a dozen beaches in between and hundreds more up and down the coast.

Inland activities

While the beaches are the main natural attraction in Los Angeles, if you’re moving there, also expect to get in on some awesome nature inland from the coast. One of the most well known is Griffith Park just north of downtown and in between Glendale and West Hollywood. Enjoy trails, an observatory, theatre, and dozens of other attractions in this 4000+ acre green space. Further outside the city is the Angeles Forest which features waterfalls and hikes around the hills.

Moving to Los Angeles Alone

Moving to Los Angeles alone can at first seem intimidating. It’s a massive city with a lot of glamour. On the other hand, it could be some of the rough areas of Los Angeles that have you questioning. Either way, moving to Los Angeles can still be a great decision.

First, you’ll find a common piece of advice about Los Angeles on Reddit threads and other forums. That is, coming to appreciate LA takes time. As a tourist, it’s easy to love the art, culture, beaches, and laid back vibe. While those things won’t go away, they may become less exciting over time. You’ll find other reasons to love LA, but those might take time. The size of the city can be overwhelming, and because of that, it might take a while to find friends you like, restaurants that make you feel at home, and a routine that works for you. Especially if you move from a small town or even the East Coast, LA will feel like a different world.

Self Storage in Los Angeles

If you are moving then you should seriously consider self storage. It could take a while to find the perfect neighborhood in a day, week, month, or year. You’ll want to arrange for a cheap self storage unit that can protect your belongings while you continue your search for home.

You need something flexible, cheap, and in a convenient location—you need Neighbor Storage. Neighbor’s got you covered with their self storage platform. The prices below speak for themselves.

Unit Size Traditional Self Storage Facility Price Neighbor’s Average Price
5 x 5 $120 $30
5 x 10 $150 $45
10 x 10 $200 $110
10 x 15 $240 $130
10 x 20 $350 $160
10 x 20+ $400 $200

Average Price of Storage in Los Angeles:

We’ve listed out all the unit sizes you could possibly imagine. You won’t need anything bigger than a 10 x 20 storage unit unless you are trying to store an RV, in which case you should really be looking at Neighbor’s website for a space to save you money. The traditional self storage unit prices are almost double every time for every size of storage unit available. Neighbor provides storage at affordable costs, secure locations, and has on demand units so you can get a unit anytime, every time. Find cheap Los Angeles self storage or rent out your extra space on Neighbor.

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Author: Miles Farnsworth

Miles is the content marketing manager at Neighbor. When he's not writing, he enjoys backpacking, snowshoeing, reading, and thrift shopping.

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