There are many different pieces to consider when you are looking for a place to live off campus. OCSL encourages students to live off campus who are ready to become fully engaged in the off campus community, including but not limited to being able to independently find an off campus home. While OCSL does not endorse any of the following websites, examples of helpful resources include:
Weighing your different housing options can be a difficult task. Here are some details to keep in mind while hunting for housing.
Take time to determine all the expenses associated with living in a certain location. These could include:
- Renters’ Insurance (often required, highly recommended!)
- Other living expenses
Pay special attention to utilities. Examples of utility costs include electricity, water, trash, gas, landscaping services, and internet. Often, these costs are not included with rent and will vary from month to month. Use of air-conditioning can also have a big impact on utility costs. Having a roommate to split costs with can save money.
Affordable rent is never a reason to live somewhere you feel unsafe. Some tips to remember while evaluating housing options:
- Visit the property during different times, such as the day, night, and weekend to see if this makes any difference in the environment. If there is a difference, make sure you are comfortable with it.
- Learn about the neighborhood. Los Angeles is filled with unique neighborhoods complete with their own sets of amenities, pricing structures, and transportation convenience.
- Meet the current tenants and neighbors; ask how their experiences have been with the property.
- Talk to friends who live or have lived in the area. Trusted friends are a great resource for giving honest reviews of their experiences.
- Check the crime statistics for an area by visiting https://communitycrimemap.com/.
Your relationship with your landlord can have a big impact on your off campus living experience. Current tenants can share their experiences with a landlord and can answer questions such as:
- Was the place move-in ready at the start of the lease term?
- Does the landlord make repairs in a timely fashion?
- Does the landlord provide 24-hours’ notice before entering the premises?
- Is the landlord respectful and easy to work with?
- Would you rent from this landlord again?
Finding a Roommate
If you are having trouble finding a roommate, email OCSL@lmu.edu to request to join LMU’s Off Campus RoomSync portal. This online app uses Facebook to connect you with other students looking for roommates off campus.