15 L.A. Neighborhoods for Renters Who've Been Priced or Pushed Out

We found a one-bedroom listed in Harvard Heights for $950.
We found a one-bedroom listed in Harvard Heights for $950.
Photo by Ted Soqui

Perhaps you can no longer afford the neighborhood where you now live. Or maybe you have the budget for a swank pad but can't seem to find one. Or it could be that you're simply sick of relying on your car and want to live near the train. If so, might we suggest that you steer your rental hunt in the direction of one of these 15 L.A. neighborhoods?

Hollywood, Koreatown and Echo Park are brimming with rental units, but you're going to be part of a large herd if you're hunting there. And, as you're probably aware, the cost-to-quality ratio for an apartment can leave a lot to be desired.

Looking for the next best (or maybe even better) thing? Here are some ideas.

5 L.A. Neighborhoods for When You're Priced Out of Your Dream 'Hood

5. Harvard Heights

This gem of a neighborhood south of Koreatown is not without crime and gangs, but like pretty much everywhere in the L.A. Basin, it's changing fast. Its stock of Craftsman homes is desirable, even if many have been divided into apartment units. We found a one-bedroom listed in the area for $950.

4. Hawthorne

The home of Elon Musk's rocket ship dreams, SpaceX, is looking up. It's not far from the golden sands of Manhattan Beach. And Inglewood's NFL revolution will be taking place right next door. We wouldn't be surprised to see rents here explode. Still, it's a community where homicides take place all too frequently. We spotted a listing for a one-bed, one-bath for $1,015.

3. Arlington Heights

This community is southwest of Koreatown and includes a mix of California bungalows, two-story Craftsman homes and disco-era courtyard apartments. In Country Club Park, part of Arlington Heights, you'll even find straight-up mansions. Graffiti is rife, and the neighborhood is filled with Korean, Mexican and Central American immigrants. The ethnic eats are solid. And if you're a clubber, you could even walk to Union, formerly Jewel's Catch One. We found a listing for a one-bed for $1,195.

2. North Hollywood NoHo is a known entity, particularly because of the success of its Arts District and because of its Metro Red Line subway stop. Those are toward the south end of the community, however. As you head north, immigrant watering holes and industrial warehouses abound, and rents seem to get cheaper. Of course, it's still the East Valley. We found a listing for a one-bed, one-bath unit near Burbank's Bob Hope Airport for $1,350.

1. Crestview

This is where Mid-City meets the Westside. There are tons of 1950s- through '80s-era buildings lining the narrow streets off La Cienega Boulevard just north of the 10 freeway. It's a traditionally African-American area. Bonus: The La Cienega Farmers Market sets up shop every Thursday. We found a listing for a one-bedroom apartment nearby for $1,500.

Hollywood has plenty of rentals.
Hollywood has plenty of rentals.
Photo by Ted Soqui

5 L.A. Neighborhoods Where There's an Abundance of (Not Necessarily Cheap) Rentals

Los Angeles' rental vacancy rate is less than 3 percent, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. That means we have a trifecta of housing misery that includes low-income earners (the median individual take is $28,555 a year), low rental availability and some of the nation's highest rents. One way to prepare yourself for the challenge when you go apartment hunting is to know where the fish are biting. Here are the five L.A. neighborhoods with the greatest number of units available in February, courtesy of the website Apartment List.

5. Westwood

This has traditionally been one of the most transient rental communities in Los Angeles, mainly because every four or five years a whole new crop of UCLA students moves in. The apartment stock in the neighborhood, nestled below Bel-Air, is hardly priced for starving students. Rents have become so high that Bruins have pushed south into once-sketchy Palms. There were 104 units up for grabs in Westwood last month, Apartment List says. The average rent, according to listings site Rent Jungle, is a parentally challenging $3,326.

4. Hollywood

The traditional landing pad for young newcomers to Los Angeles is still an entry point to the city, even if rents are almost unreachable for starving actors. Like Koreatown, Hollywood is chock-full of multifamily buildings that range from slumdog-apropos to millionaire-worthy. Apartment List tells us you had your pick of 141 units last month. Your average rent is $2,370, according to Rent Jungle.

3. Downtown

DTLA is hotter than the Coachella festival at 2 p.m. So while 160 units were available last month, be prepared to pay up. The Arts District, the Old Bank District and the Fashion District are all brimming with loft-dwelling hipsters. Rent Jungle says the overall average lease rate downtown is a whopping $2,680.

2. Marina del Rey

This unincorporated community next to the slips of the marina is almost void of single-family homes, but apartments and condos abound. And you'll pay dearly. Apartment List recently ranked Marina del Rey as the second most expensive rental community in L.A. for two-bedroom units. The median price to lease such a pad is $3,640 a month, the site says. There were 163 units available in February.

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