As with any move, planning and researching is essential, if you want to establish yourself well in the place and to actually be better off compared to where you are now. After all, isn’t this one of the reasons why you decided to move to Los Angeles on the first place?
I am not going to lie to you – Los Angeles can be expensive, especially when it comes to renting a place – you might have to stretch your dollar a bit, but as with any other city, affordable options are always available; you just might have to dig a bit deeper and that’s what we’re here for – to do some of the dirty job instead.
To better settle in LA, here is our guide:
- Set your priorities straight, why did you move to Los Angeles? You must have an answer for this one (I hope, if not, well….good luck….no, I really mean it J), it will be your guide when you don’t know what to do next – was it for a career change, the weather or you just wanted to meet new people? Whatever the case might be, you should know what to look for and more importantly – WHERE to look for it.
Check out some photos, you may find some reasons:
- Before you get to LA, you should spend some time in Google Maps. Nothing is more beneficial than actually knowing where you’re going to, even if you’ve never been there. What do I mean by that? – Every time I had to move from one city to another or from one country to another, I would spend hours in Google Maps trying to understand the layout of the city, which neighborhood is where, what are the major street names, etc.; pretty much give yourself a sense of location. Los Angeles is no different – layout is important and if you are to really be an Angeleno, you need to know the city, as if you were born here. Get to know the 101, 405 and 10 highway and how they circle around the city. To give you a starting point, the major roads in the City of Angels are Santa Monica Blvd, Olympic Blvd, Pico Blvd, Sepulveda, and Wilshire Blvd (5405 is where we are located at this boulevard J)…your turn now.
- Unless you know someone in L.A., or already have arranged a place to stay, you will need to look for accommodation. One thing to say here – RESEARCH YOUR AREA. Get as much information as possible; starting from crime rates to average rent prices by region. A couple of good places for that are http://maps.latimes.com/neighborhoods/, http://www.padmapper.com/# and https://www.rentometer.com/. If there is something in the neighborhood that doesn’t look or feel right, well may be there is a reason for it, listen to your gut.
- If you just got a new apartment, chances are it’s empty. The most affordable way to fill it up would be Craigslist – you will find tons of affordable, almost new furniture available there. You don’t like used stuff? – IKEA Burbank/Carson is right around the corner.
- Transportation – what to do and how to do it. Let me guess, you have a car, if you do – don’t forget these two words – PAID PARKING – everywhere you go. Are you already reconsidering that? Thought so. Having a car is a great advantage, I won’t say no to that, but the thought of paying for gas and parking pretty much all the time is giving me a headache already; not to mention the lovely traffic jams and the fact that between 4pm and 7pm, you really don’t want to be on the streets, at least not on a major one. The good thing is that there is always a solution to that, well kind of – the public transportation factor is always there to consider, a bike is a good option if you like living on the edge or if you are not against car services – Uber and Lyft are right at your fingertips, literary – put that phone down!
You will need a car to get around.
- Do you have a healthy lifestyle or you just like exercising? When you are trying to save some money, the first thing you usually cut on is gym or anything that is not a “vital necessity”. If you happen to be one of those people, you will be happy to hear that in Los Angeles you don’t have to kill your exercise routine for the sake of money saving; the nice weather conditions (300+ sunny days a year) allow you to exercise any time you want and you can do it virtually anywhere. One good outdoor place is Runyon Canyon and if you are lucky, you might run into a celebrity or two. If saving some money is not a priority for you or giving up gym is not acceptable, you can always sign up at 24hr Fitness, YMCA or LA Fitness, full functioning gyms with a lot to offer and can please pretty much anyone.
Or you can simply run at the beach every day!
- Unless you are one of the lucky ones that come to L.A. with a full time job contract and benefits, then you will not need to look for a job. When you are trying to find a job in LA, you should follow pretty much the same rules that you would in any other American city; there are a few differences though. First, make sure you have a headshot, regardless of whether you are an actor or not; it is essential to present yourself in the best way possible, after all in Los Angeles the looks are everything. Second, follow the dress code. This is not New York; you don’t have to be dressed over the top in order to impress your future employer/business partner. All you have to do is find the perfect business-casual outfit and you’re ready to go. Third, one good place to start looking for jobs is LinkedIn… just saying.
- In order to make a new place your home, you need to make friends, nothing makes you feel welcomed more than having friends where you are. A good way to do that is to get together with other people like you; go to MeetUps Los Angeles, for instance. They have something for everyone and at least you know that whoever you meet is there for the same reason as you are.
- Social etiquette – as with any new place, there is a new social etiquette that you need to adapt to, LA is not an exception. I am sure you’ve heard the saying that Angelenos tend to be a little flaky, well depends how you take it. You can easily have someone call you 10 min before an arranged “date” to cancel or reschedule. Don’t take it personally, it’s perfectly normal, to be honest – I do it all the time. Trust me, you’ll get used to it, just like my friends got used to me acting this way.
- This one is more of blankly honest advise – do your calculations right! Budgeting will be an important part of your “settling” period, so don’t overlook it – depending on your financial abilities and goals, you can easily sit down and put a few numbers together. If you need more information on how to do it, this article might give you a hint – How much will it cost to move to LA.
One thing is for sure, moving to a new place takes courage and tons of planning, but whatever the outcome there is one thing you need to remember – everything will be alright! Will it be a bumpy ride – possible, will it be easy – heck no! Yet, if you have decided that the place where you are at the moment is not right for you, then you can be sure that it WILL be worth it.
What are you waiting for? Start packing! And don’t forget if you need to ship your vehicle, give us a call or get a quote online. Thanks!