How to Find a Month to Month Apartment in Los Angeles, CA
There are several things to know before moving to Los Angeles. First, it is an ideal place to move, offering residents plenty of fashion, nightlife, sunny weather, and booming entertainment industry. Everybody from young professionals to even college students, and all different types of folks in between, can find what they’re looking for in this incredible city.
Finding a place to live is where the challenge begins, so it’s essential to check out some of the best neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Those looking for month-to-month leases might even have a more challenging time finding exactly what you're looking for since those options tend to be more limited.
Thankfully, we did all the homework, so you don’t have to. If you’re wondering how to find a month-to-month apartment in Los Angeles, look no further. Keep reading to learn all you’ll need to know about finding monthly apartments in The City of Angels.
How to Find the Best Los Angeles Neighborhood
Los Angeles is a sprawling metropolis with unique neighborhoods ranging from funky and laid-back to upscale. Thankfully, everyone can find what they're looking for when moving to Los Angeles since each area offers something different.
Unfortunately, rent prices are rising in Los Angeles, and some neighborhoods are less safe than they used to be. However, you can make the most of Los Angeles's neighborhoods by grabbing ride shares and using common sense.
To help you find the best Los Angeles neighborhood for you, here is a list of some of the most popular areas in this famous Southern California city.
Downtown Los Angeles
If you’re looking to live near some of the world's best restaurants, nightclubs, shopping, and more, look at the apartments in Downtown Los Angeles. The average one-bedroom rent prices here are currently at $2,897.
Once a ghost town of abandoned business buildings and homes, the neighborhood has since seen its evolution into a creative community with refurbished warehouses. Today, Modern urban dwellers looking for upscale amenities flok to Downtown Los Angeles. Look for apartment buildings with pools, on-site gyms, city views, and parking to enjoy the best downtown living.
Hollywood lies near the Hollywood Hills in Central LA with luxurious homes and the trendy West Hollywood neighborhood. Average rents in Hollywood are at $2,599. Locals mix with tourists in Hollywood at neighborhood staples like Madame Tussauds, Dolby Theatre, and the Chinese Theatre.
Many Hollywood residents are young professionals who enjoy easy access to nightlife. Thankfully, this neighborhood boasts several public transportation options and access to numerous shopping centers and stores.
Another excellent Los Angeles option for live-work-play balance is North Hollywood. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,750. A diverse mix of locals, a creative spirit, and a wide assortment of quirky restaurants are just some of the amenities this San Fernando Valley area of "NoHo" offers.
People working in Downtown Los Angeles often commute from North Hollywood since it's just a quick trip away. Up-and-coming actors and musicians are also known for seeking refuge in this Los Angeles neighborhood.
Wilshire Center - Koreatown
The Koreatown - Wilshire area features a melting pot of residents in a bustling neighborhood located in Downtown Los Angeles. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in this area is $2,295.
Visit a dive bar, sip on cocktails, hit the clubs, or step out to dinner 24-hours a day. Even though Koreatown has become such a trendy place to live, it’s remained authentic in its roots. As a result, Koreatown is still home to some of the most authentic Korean eats in the U.S.
Woodland Hills - Warner Center
Millennials moving to Los Angeles are often attracted to new developments in the Woodland Hills - Warner Center area. Woodland Hills offers upscale living surrounded by lush green space bordering the Santa Monica Mountains. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in this area is $2,404.
Locals grab their mountain bikes or lace up their hiking boots on weekends. Instead, you'll find residents of this neighborhood gathering at coffee shops, bars, and restaurants to enjoy outdoor dining in the always-beautiful weather after some time spent outdoors.
How Much Are Month-To-Month Apartments in Los Angeles
The number of bedrooms and the type of apartment you are looking to rent will significantly impact your monthly lease costs. Remember, more desirable Los Angeles neighborhoods will cost you more, so it might be worthwhile to look into some of the less popular areas of the city for more affordable rent prices.
You can anticipate paying more for a month-to-month lease than a traditional 12-month lease wherever you live in Los Angeles. So, if you’re considering moving to a month-to-month apartment, first learn more about the average rent prices in Los Angeles for traditional 12-month leases.
- The average rent for a Los Angeles studio apartment is $2,203
- The average rent for a Los Angeles 1-bedroom apartment is $2,974
- The average rent for a Los Angeles 2-bedroom apartment is $3,915
- The average rent for a Los Angeles 3-bedroom apartment is $4,971
How to Find Cheap Month-To-Month Apartments in Los Angeles
Finding cheap month-to-month apartments in Los Angeles is possible, despite the rising cost of living. Make it your goal to learn more about the cost of living in Los Angeles and stick to your budget before you begin apartment hunting.
To lower your month-to-month rent with your landlord, consider discussing outdated amenities or units on less desirable floors. Another good way to look out for cheaper month-to-month Los Angeles apartments is by checking the outskirts of your favorite neighborhoods or away from commercial strips.
Finding an apartment you can afford in Los Angeles is possible, though it might just take some extra effort on your end. Always be on the lookout for any move-in specials, such as no application fee or one month of free rent, as another way to find cheap month-to-month apartments in Los Angeles.
Budgeting for your new apartment is essential, whether you haven’t moved in a while or are a first-time renter. For more help, check our apartment budget checklist. In addition, you can look for a month-to-month apartment that includes utilities in the monthly rent since summers in Los Angeles may lead to costly electricity bills.
Lastly, beat out your competition on the best deals by coming prepared to sign a month-to-month lease on your new Los Angeles apartment on the spot. Bring all your documentation and references anytime you tour a month-to-month apartment.
When is the Best Time to Move to an Apartment in Los Angeles?
Whether you live in Los Angeles or New York City, seasonality in apartment rentals can drastically affect prices. The winter season is the best time to rent an apartment. Since fewer people are looking to move from December through February, rent prices are more likely to be at their lowest during the winter.
The peak rental season is from July to September. As a result, you can expect to find higher rates for anyone looking for a month-to-month apartment in Los Angeles in the summer season. The one upside of all this demand is that since more people are moving in the summer, you might find more options available on the market.
6 Reasons Why Renters Consider Month-To-Month Apartments
There are several different reasons renters look for month-to-month apartments in Los Angeles, some of the most popular being:
- You’re planning to buy a home soon.
- You’re a student and will only live in the area for 9-months (Use our college apartment checklist when moving)
- You’re new to a city and do not know where you want to live yet, so you prefer some flexibility in your living situation while you get settled.
- You’re planning on living with a roommate that can’t commit to a 12-month lease.
- Your work requires you to travel frequently and may unexpectedly ask you to move to new cities.
- You’re expecting a significant life change in the next few months, like a career move, a child, or marriage.
If you frequently relocate for work or are new to a city, we recommend looking for a month-to-month rental apartment. Even though month-to-month rent may cost you more, canceling your lease will come with more flexibility, usually a 30-days notice.
How to Find a Month-To-Month Apartment in Los Angeles
Ready to find a month-to-month apartment in Los Angeles? Here's the step-by-step process to finding the right neighborhood.
Determine Your Budget
Before finding an apartment in Los Angeles, consider your budget by following the 30% rule. According to this rule, your rent should make up 30% or less of your pre-taxed monthly take-home pay or gross income. To get the same number to calculate this figure based on your annual salary, take your gross yearly salary and divide by 40.
You’ve found a one-bedroom month-to-month apartment in Los Angeles for $3,200. Using the 30% rule, your gross income should be at least $10,667 a month or $128,004 a year.
Understand the True Cost of Renting
The 30% rule keeps your Los Angeles apartment hunting budget in check as long as your finances are straightforward. However, there's more to determining how much apartment you can afford if you have other financial obligations, such as student loan debt.
While searching for an apartment, you’ll also need to budget for apartment expenses that often go unnoticed, including:
Analyze your bank statements and credit card bills once you've used the 30% rule as a baseline for your rent. Financial obligations that could require some adjustments to your apartment hunting budget may include credit card debt, medical expenses, student loan payments, etc.
We’ve made figuring out all the moving pieces of your finances while apartment hunting easy since we know it can get tricky. To find your dream apartment in Los Angeles, use our Rent Calculator to help you figure out how much rent you can afford.
Know What You Want
Outline what you are looking for in your ideal rental situation before starting your search. During this process, make sure you know the answers to the following questions:
- What are transportation options nearby?
- What neighborhood do I want to live in?
- Do I need a furnished apartment?
- Am I interested in living with roommates?
- How much rent can I afford?
- What are my must-have amenities?
Knowing what you want in an apartment is crucial since month-to-month rental apartments can be hard to find. That way, you can be sure to strike fast! And don’t forget to keep your budget in check by always keeping an eye out for apartment move-in specials.
Browse Apartment Lease Options
Check apartment websites first since most apartments have lease options on their websites. However, don't give up hope if you find that monthly leases may not be available. Most large multi-family properties might have alternatives for short-term options such as 3- or 6-month leases.
Longer leases make landlords’ lives easier, so they often prioritize these leases versus month-to-months. Check the website ahead of time to see if an apartment offer aligns with your goals to avoid sticky situations.
Call the Leasing Office
Don’t be afraid to check for month-to-month leases. Call different leasing offices to see what type of short-term rental options are available. After all, the worst possible scenario is they say no, and you move on to the next.
Even if they don’t have anything to offer you that is month-to-month, they may be able to provide you with local options that do have apartments available.
Look for Sublets
Subletting or subleasing is another option for those looking for month-to-month apartments in Los Angeles. When you sublet, you cover the monthly rental charges for another individual whose name is on an extended lease agreement.
Having to leave the city for work for a couple of months is one of the reasons renters may sublet their apartments short term. Since these circumstances won’t allow tenants to live in the apartment and are probably doing this for a short time, they will likely be open to considering month-to-month rental apartments.
Explain Your Situation to Your Current Landlord
If you find a place you love that doesn’t have a month-to-month lease option available, consider explaining your situation to the landlord. You can prove you are a good tenant and create trust between you and your landlord by explaining your situation upfront.
If you are completely honest about your situation, you may be able to negotiate a month-to-month rental apartment after all.
Applying for Your Los Angeles Apartment
It’s finally time to sign a month-to-month lease on your Los Angeles apartment! Come as prepared as you possibly can by bringing your ID, documentation, and plenty of references.
Don’t worry if you lack rental history. You can ask your new landlord if personal references or a lease guarantor are allowed for your application. Above all, the best advice is to get familiar with the apartment application process ahead of time if you're new to renting.
The most impressive and least expensive month-to-month apartments in Los Angeles go fast. So, before someone else beats you to it, come ready to sign the lease. Find out which form of payment they accept for your application fees and potential background checks ahead of time.
Protect Yourself from Rental Scams
Be aware of rental fraud and scams. These issues can sour your apartment searching experience. U.S. renters lose upwards of $5.2 million every year on some of the most common rental scams that involve bait-and-switch listings and apartments that don't even exist. 30% of renters have lost over $1,000 by paying a security deposit on a false listing.
Trusting your gut is the best way to combat rental scams. Deals that sound too good to be true are likely scames. Ask for recommendations from friends or work with reputable landlords or property managers to help keep yourself protected.
Ready to Rent?
Congratulations on your upcoming move into your month-to-month apartment in Los Angeles! Los Angeles is an urban epicenter offering residents access to world-famous restaurants, endless entertainment, and the great outdoors.
Ready to make your move to Los Angeles? Apartment List is here to help you find your dream home.