Chances are, if you’re trying to navigate the congested streets of Los Angeles city, it’s stuck in gridlock, inching along at a pace that makes a slug look like a Lamborghini. Not so in Glendale, where residents average a meager 23-minute trek to work each morning. Local bus lines connect Glendale to the rest of the L.A. area, and the newly-constructed Highway 2 provides a direct link to the city.
Still, especially on the frequently crowded streets of south Glendale, the occasional traffic jam is inevitable. Most neighborhoods have plenty of sidewalks, but the majority of Glendale’s residents (nearly 90 percent) still prefer good ole’ gas guzzlers to get around. Downtown and South Glendale renters especially should give themselves extra time for their morning commute.
You Pay For What You Get … And Pay You Shall!
The average rental unit costs between $1200 and $1300 monthly, and premium 1 BR and 2 BR units approach the $2500 range. Thankfully, the amenities tend to be terrific. Many units include washers and dryers and feature granite counter tops, hardwood floors, modern kitchens, and ample living space (you can expect to get 1100-plus square feet out of most units). Even studio apartments in Glendale (which can be found in the $700 range sometimes) are more spacious than a typical studio pad. In Glendale, you really do get what you pay for, and a nice, spacious, amenity-laden pad is just what you’ll get for your hard-earned cash.
Glendale is predominantly a city of renters, with leaseholders accounting for more than 60 percent of occupants. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean apartments are always available, and renters may sometimes find themselves on waiting lists for 6 months or longer. The good news is that many complexes are similar in layout and offer comparable amenities, so if you fall in love with an apartment that doesn’t have vacancies, don’t fret: You should be able to find something similar pretty easily.
Also, remember that in California, people like to change things up on you (why, you ask? well, why the hell not?), so be aware that apartment prices are likely to fluctuate based on availability and demand. Just because you scouted out a great deal one month doesn’t mean it will be there later on down the road.
Many properties offer short-term, month-to-month leases, but they are considerably pricier ($500 or more) than 12-month deals. Also, be prepared to buck up for a hefty deposit at most locations before moving in. As long as you don’t treat your apartment like a rock star’s hotel room, you should get your money back at the end, although sometimes deposits are non-refundable. Inquire about deposit amounts at individual properties, and also ask about parking, which can be a hassle at apartments that don’t have an on-site lot for tenants.
Finally, you might want to look into the multi-level townhouses and single-family detached homes and cottages that are frequently available to rent in places like Montrose and North Glendale (where apartment options are slimmer).
The Lay of the Land
Generally speaking, the southern neighborhoods like City Center and Adams Square are the most renter-friendly areas of Glendale. Renters can often find move-in specials. Renters typically spend in the $1200 range, but lucky leasers can land quality lodgings for under a grand. South Glendale is also where you will find most of the city’s nightlife.
Houses are often available to rent in North Glendale, but the price is steep. Don’t expect to come across many properties with less than a $1500 price tag on them.
If you’ve got the right sized bankroll, value a more secluded atmosphere, and want to experience some of the most stunning mountain views in all of California, Montrose is the area for you. Situated at Glendale’s northernmost point, just beyond the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, Montrose is (for good reasons) one of the city’s costliest regions (average cost to rent is around $1800). Prospective renters should keep their eyes open for special move-in deals that pop up frequently at the handful of Montrose apartments.
Plenty of other neighborhoods have their pros and cons as well (i.e. Rossmoyne is a great neighborhood for walkers but the speed bumps frustrate commuters; Verdugo Woodlands claims some of the city’s finest architecture but you’ll have to drive to get anywhere). Picking the right ‘hood depends on your tastes, your budget, and your transportation situation, but we’re sure somewhere in Glendale lies the perfect pad for you.
Hope this helps, and happy hunting!
-By Kera Zacuto
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