Where to live in Los Angeles: A complete guide | Common (2023)

Part of moving to LA involves deciding where to live in Los Angeles

Making the move to Los Angeles is very exciting. There’s so much going on in this Southern California city that you’ll never run out of things to do in Hollywood, Ca. However, LA is a major city, so it can be difficult to decide which Los Angeles neighborhood is right for you. You might have an idea of what areas to avoid, but do you know if you want to live in the San Fernando Valley, Los Feliz or Beverly Hills? Each of the neighborhoods in the Los Angeles area has a distinct vibe, so you’re sure to find the best neighborhood for you.

To help you decide where to live in Los Angeles, we’ve created a guide to help you learn more about the different parts of the City of Angels. Read on to find out everything you need to know about the best neighborhoods in LA before you decide where to live in the city as a Los Angeleno.

Culver City is one of the best places to live in LA

Culver City is famous for being home to the MGM Studio and silver screen stars. However, it’s not just a piece of moviemaking history. It’s also where many diverse, young professionals and families call home. Not only does this neighborhood provide great restaurants and fun nightlife, but it also has reasonable rent.

This Los Angeles County neighborhood is close to Downtown LA, Venice Beach as well as Santa Monica, which makes it easy to commute to different parts of the city. Another thing that you’ll have easy access to in Culver City is the amazing Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area. This outdoor wonderland features a combination of the native coastal sage scrub habitat, landscaped areas, hiking trails, and a fishing lake. There’s also a community center and places for kids to play.

If you prefer to spend time indoors, you’ll want to check out the mall known as Platform. The space features everything, including boutiques, bars, restaurants, and a spa that focuses on massages. A few of the best spots to get a drink or a bite to eat in Platform include Loqui, which is famous in LA for its delicious Mexican dishes, and Margot, which is renowned for offering cocktails, small plates, and great rooftop views.

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Downtown Los Angeles has emerged as a new hot spot in LA

Some people think they should avoid Downtown Los Angeles, also known as DTLA, due to its infamous traffic and the reputation of Skid Row. However, this Central LA neighborhood is rich in culture and nightlife. As you explore this part of town, you’ll discover gems like Koreatown, Chinatown, Little Tokyo, and the Arts District. You’ll also find that this is one of the most transit-friendly and walkable neighborhoods in Los Angeles.

Downtown LA is full of amazing landmarks, including the breathtaking Bradbury Building, which was built in 1893, and the iconic Angels Flight Railway in the Bunker Hill district, and the historic El Pueblo de Los Angeles. Speaking of landmarks, many people view Skid Row as an infamous one. However, over the years, gentrification has brought new development and businesses to the area, revitalizing this once-avoided area of DTLA.

If you’re looking for amazing Los Angeles restaurants and enticing art and design, the Arts District in LA delivers. In fact, this district is home to Bavel, one of the best restaurants in the whole city. This Middle Eastern eatery is always packed with people looking to grab some shawarma or hummus. While we’re on the topic of good eats, Grand Central Market can’t be beat, as it offers a wide variety of established food stalls and emerging favorites.

Glendale makes the list of the best places to live in LA

When people ask where to live in Los Angeles, Glendale is a North Hollywood neighborhood that often pops up. This area is famous for being the heart of LA’s Armenian population. As a result, it offers diversity and a feeling of community that makes it perfect for families. However, keep in mind that Glendale is about 30 minutes from downtown. This is perfect for people who don’t mind a little commute.

This LA neighborhood is famous for offering views of the Verdugo Mountains and beautiful parks like Brand Park and, of course, Griffith Park on its border. This park features more than 4,200 acres of natural terrain and landscaped park and picnic areas. It also holds the honor of being one of the United States’ largest municipal parks that offers urban wilderness areas. Many people enjoy hiking the hills and valleys to check out the wildlife.

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Glendale is also renowned for offering amazing Middle Eastern food. Great eateries include Raffi’s Place and Skaf’s Lebanese Cuisine. However, Mini Kabob is the one that truly stands out. It might not look like much from the outside with its no-frills storefront, but this family-run Armenian joint serves up some of the best kebabs and salads in this major city.

Where to live in Los Angeles: A complete guide | Common (3)

Wondering where to live in Los Angeles? Los Feliz is a great option

Although technically in Hollywood, Los Feliz stands out as a unique Central LA neighborhood. You can find Old Hollywood charm and hipster delights that have helped this neighborhood make a name that’s all its own. People describe this Los Angeles neighborhood as “relaxed” and “walkable.”

Like Glendale, Los Feliz is near Griffith Park. That means you can work a corporate day job and still enjoy time hiking in the splendor of nature in an area that’s bigger than Central Park. You can also stop by the Griffith Observatory to see the stars in space rather than the ones in Tinsel Town.

To enjoy the hustle and bustle of Los Feliz, you’ll want to check out Hillhurst and North Vermont Avenues, which are lined with bars, restaurants and boutiques. The food especially stands out here. There’s great Italian food at La Pergoletta and Il Capriccio on Vermont. For incredible Asian food, you can check out Starfish Sushi or Pho VT Vietnamese and Thai Kitchen. There’s something for just about everyone.

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Hollywood isn’t just a place for celebrities to live in Los Angeles

Hollywood is probably the most famous part of LA County. It’s the home of glitz and glamour, but it’s not just a place where movie magic gets made. Real people do live in this Los Angeles area. However, these real people do need to have enough money to afford the rent here.

As you start to explore Hollywood as one of the places to live in LA, you should know it consists of several areas. Just a few of them include Bel Air, Beverly Hills, Central Hollywood, North Hollywood, East Hollywood, West Hollywood, and South Hollywood. You can also find the Hollywood Hills a little further out. You should know that each area has a slightly different vibe, but you can still expect to see celebrities, tourists, and lavish examples of wealth.

There’s a lot of variety in the things to do in Hollywood, California. To enjoy some amazing nightlife, you should visit the Sunset Strip. If you want to indulge in a little retail therapy, Rodeo Drive is the place for you. As for food and drink, there are some of the best restaurants in Hollywood. There’s everything from Wolfgang Puck’s renowned Spago to places for hot dog lovers like Vicious Dogs and Pinks.

Where to live in Los Angeles: A complete guide | Common (5)

Enjoy beautiful views and delicious food when you live in Marina del Rey

Marina del Rey is a wonderful place to live in LA County. As the biggest man made marina in the United States, you can expect to see sights that include beautiful boats and curious sea lions. When it comes to housing, there are many large Los Angeles apartments and residential complexes as well as towering condos that attract young professionals to this Los Angeles area.

If you love to enjoy sand and surf, Marina “Mother’s” Beach doesn’t disappoint. This 12-acre lagoon is peaceful due to its lack of surf, which makes it the ideal place to relax. You can also visit outdoor spaces like the Aubrey E. Austin Jr. Park and North Jetty. There, you can walk along paved pathways and enjoy views of the harbor and planes leaving LAX. You’re also not far from world-renowned beaches, including Playa Del Rey, Santa Monica Pier and Beach, as well as Venice Beach.

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Spending time on the water can make you hungry, but thankfully, Marina del Rey has no shortage of amazing eateries. There’s SUGARFISH for fans of sushi rolls and sake, while SALT Restaurant & Bar offers burgers, pizza and salads. You can also find steakhouses, seafood eateries and local Italian gems like Scopa Italian Roots.

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Silver Lake rounds out our list of the best places to live in LA

If you want to enjoy the best of Los Angeles without any of the downsides, Silver Lake is your best bet. It has amazing green spaces and the traffic and parking issues aren’t nearly as bad as other parts of the city. Although this area specifically appeals to millennial hipsters, it still attracts a diverse mix of young adults. This area provides easy access to DTLA and Hollywood and surrounding neighborhoods like Echo Park and Angelino Heights, which is great for commuting and checking out the latest in these areas.

People in Silver Lake love to visit the Silver Lake Reservoir. It’s a popular loop trail around a lake that’s a little over 2 miles long. It’s great for both running and walking, and you can even bring a furry friend if your dog stays on a leash. Speaking of dogs, the Silver Lake Dog Park is also a great place to bring your pup.

The Sunset Strip extends through Silver Lake, which provides access to plenty of nightlife. Both on and off the Sunset Strip, you can find plenty of amazing restaurants, as Silver Lake is renowned for its eateries. Some popular destinations include Night + Market Song for Thai street food, Freedman’s Deli and WOOD Silver Lake Pizza & Pasta.

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Find the best place to live in LA for you

Now that you have an idea of where to live in Los Angeles, we can help you find a great place to call home. We offer beautiful private studios, apartments, and coliving spaces across our locations. As a Common member, you’ll enjoy L.A. living with access to people-first property services, our built-in community, and convenient amenities, all for an attainable price. Explore our living spaces in Los Angeles today to find the best space for you!

Sources:

  1. https://la.curbed.com/2018/6/15/17454456/los-angeles-neighborhoods-where-to-live-advice
  2. https://dolly.com/blog/best-los-angeles-neighborhoods/
  3. https://www.thrillist.com/lifestyle/los-angeles/best-neighborhoods-in-los-angeles-where-should-i-move-in-los-angeles
  4. https://www.extraspace.com/blog/moving/city-guides/best-neighborhoods-in-los-angeles-for-singles-young-professionals/
  5. https://theculturetrip.com/north-america/usa/california/articles/best-neighborhoods-in-l-a-for-millennials/

FAQs

Where to live in Los Angeles: A complete guide | Common? ›

The best places to live in Los Angeles include Beverly Hills for its high-end real estate and amenities, Los Feliz for its high walkability score, and Santa Monica for its beaches and top-rated schools. People love Los Angeles for its sunny weather, diverse culture, and beautiful real estate.

What is the best area in Los Angeles to live? ›

The best places to live in Los Angeles include Beverly Hills for its high-end real estate and amenities, Los Feliz for its high walkability score, and Santa Monica for its beaches and top-rated schools. People love Los Angeles for its sunny weather, diverse culture, and beautiful real estate.

How do I choose where to live in LA? ›

How to pick a neighborhood in Los Angeles
  1. First, know LA's regions. ...
  2. Second, know the neighborhoods. ...
  3. It's important—for both your sanity and the health of the environment—to pick a 'hood that's close to where you work. ...
  4. Do you want to be near public transit? ...
  5. Do you want to live near the beach or trails?
Jan 21, 2020

Where is the best place to live in downtown LA? ›

Explore these distinct areas and get the complete DTLA experience.
  • Bunker Hill. Up Above it All. ...
  • Financial District. The Center of the City. ...
  • Historic Core. A Rich Past Comes Alive. ...
  • Arts District. An Expression of Creativity. ...
  • South Park. Residential, Restaurants, and Entertainment. ...
  • Little Tokyo. ...
  • Chinatown.

What area of LA should I stay in? ›

If you want to stay near the beach, stay in Santa Monica. For a quick weekend trip (and those on a budget), stay in Downtown LA. If you want to stay in one of the coolest neighborhoods in LA, stay in Silver Lake. If you want to stay in an area with amazing nightlife, stay in West Hollywood (also super LGBTQ+ friendly).

What are the safest suburbs to stay in LA? ›

Safest Areas of Los Angeles

Los Angeles' safest neighborhoods tend to be the most affluent ones of Bel Air, Beverly Hills, Malibu, Pacific Palisades, Hermosa Beach and West Hollywood. Most touristy areas are safe, especially during the day, but standard precautions apply at night.

Where do most millionaires live in Los Angeles? ›

Richest Neighborhoods in Los Angeles
  1. 8 Richest Neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Bel-Air. ...
  2. Bel-Air. The richest neighborhood in Los Angeles is Bel-Air. ...
  3. Pacific Palisades. The second most expensive neighborhood in Los Angeles is Pacific Palisades. ...
  4. Beverly Crest. ...
  5. Windsor Square. ...
  6. Brentwood. ...
  7. University Park. ...
  8. Holmby Hills.
Feb 7, 2023

What is the most walkable neighborhood in downtown LA? ›

The Arts District in DTLA is one of our favorite walkable destinations with its close proximity to the Gold Line, and an unending offering of restaurants, cafes, bars and galleries.

Is it better to stay in Hollywood or downtown LA? ›

A city's downtown is often the most central location. But while Downtown LA has the best access to public transport, staying in Hollywood arguably puts you in a better position. From your chosen hotel, you can head slightly east into the city or the other direction, to West Hollywood and the beautiful Pacific Ocean.

Can you live in LA on a budget? ›

Living in L.A. on a budget is possible!

But choosing your neighborhood wisely, being frugal with your entertainment choices, and living with roommates can all help you keep your bank account in check while you live in Los Angeles.

Is it better to stay in Hollywood or Beverly Hills? ›

If you're looking for a high-end, luxurious experience and have the budget to support it then Beverly Hills is likely the place for you with upscale hotels, stores & restaurants. However, if you're on a budget or looking for more of a casual experience, then Hollywood may be the better choice.

What time of year is cheapest to move to LA? ›

When is the best time to move to LA? According to RentHop, the best time to move to LA is September through December. On average, you'll see a 4% decrease from peak rental prices. This difference amounts to savings of $85 per month for a one-bedroom apartment, and $103 per month for a two-bedroom.

What to consider before moving to LA? ›

17 Things to Know About Moving to Los Angeles
  • The Traffic Struggle is Real. Yes, the traffic is as bad as you've heard. ...
  • The Freeways Have Names. ...
  • You Might Become a Taco Snob. ...
  • Time Works Differently in LA. ...
  • Yes, the Weather is That Good. ...
  • LA Hipsters Stick Together. ...
  • Dinner Parties are a Thing. ...
  • Get Ready for Smog.
Jun 11, 2018

What time of year is best to live in LA? ›

The hottest month is August, with an average high of 85 degrees; the coldest month is December, with an average overnight temperature of 48 degrees and a high in the 60s. The best time to visit Los Angeles is between March and May or September and November for the fantastic weather conditions.

What city in LA has the lowest crime rate? ›

Los Angeles crime map by neighborhood

In comparison, neighborhoods with the lowest crime rates last year were three residential areas: the hilly northeast hipster community of Mount Washington, the affluent Westside neighborhood of Beverlywood and the quiet suburban San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Porter Ranch.

What part of downtown LA is safe? ›

What are the safest areas of Downtown LA? The safest areas in Downtown LA are the Arts District, Bunker Hill, the Financial District, Little Tokyo, Chinatown and South Park.

Is Koreatown safe in LA? ›

Koreatown Los Angeles is a Safe Place to Live

On average, Koreatown Los Angeles has less crime (violent and property-related) than the national rate. 90% of residents report that they feel safe and overall unaffected by the crime that does occur.

How safe is Pasadena? ›

Pasadena Annual Crimes
ViolentProperty
Number of Crimes4093,251
Crime Rate (per 1,000 residents)3.0123.95

Is Malibu California Safe? ›

about-crime

Very safe. There are no safety concerns.

Is Inglewood safe for tourists? ›

The crime rate is higher than in the average American city. Over the past 10 years, it averages about 14 homicides a year.

Where not to stay in Los Angeles? ›

Most Dangerous Neighborhoods in Los Angeles
  • Downtown. Downtown Los Angeles has plenty to offer, including bars, restaurants, and museums. ...
  • Compton. ...
  • West Adams. ...
  • Skid Row. ...
  • Glendale. ...
  • Encino. ...
  • Los Feliz. ...
  • Playa Vista.
Aug 23, 2022

What are the poorest neighborhoods in LA? ›

As evidenced by the map, high levels of poverty are pervasive in South Los Angeles and are also found in portions of the San Fernando Valley, Hollywood, Boyle Heights, Northeast Los Angeles, and areas surrounding the Port of Los Angeles.

What is the poorest suburb in Los Angeles? ›

Nevin, Los Angeles - Wikipedia.

Where do the middle class live in Los Angeles? ›

Select a ranking
RankNeighborhoodMedian Income
1Bel-Air$207,938
2Hidden Hills$203,199
3Rolling Hills$184,777
4Beverly Crest$169,282
135 more rows

Where do old money live in LA? ›

Bel Air and Holmby Hills -- In the hills north of Westwood and west of Beverly Hills, these are old-money residential areas that are featured prominently on most maps to the stars' homes. Brentwood -- Brentwood is best known as the famous backdrop to the O. J. Simpson melodrama.

What is the top 1% Los Angeles? ›

LOS ANGELES - Are you a 1 percenter? If you live in California, you'll need to earn a minimum income of $745,314 to be considered among the top 1% of earners, according to SmartAsset.com.

What is the most iconic street in LA? ›

Hollywood Boulevard stretches for 15 blocks, home to the Hollywood Walk of Fame with nearly 2,700 personalities each immortalized in a sidewalk star.

Is LA walking friendly? ›

Actually, Los Angeles is a fantastic walking city. Exploring it on foot is how I started to make sense of things. Of course, L.A. isn't concentrated like Manhattan, or pedestrian-friendly like Tokyo. It's not aesthetically breathtaking like Rome.

What is the Mexican neighborhood in downtown LA? ›

Olvera Street is the birthplace of the City of Los Angeles, otherwise known as El Pueblo Historic Monument. The colorful village features 27 historic buildings with a traditional Mexican style plaza area. Wander around the marketplace and shop for souvenirs including handcrafted Mexican wares typical of old Mexico.

Is it better to stay in Santa Monica or West Hollywood? ›

Santa Monica has more of a suburban feel, while West Hollywood is literally 15 minutes from everything in Hollywood, Downtown, Beverly Hills, Westwood, Culver City, etc. so you'll get more of the big city exposure there. You may prefer one over the other.

Is it worth it to live in LA? ›

In conclusion, Los Angeles is a city that offers a warm and sunny climate, a diverse job market, a rich cultural scene, beautiful beaches, a thriving food scene, and unparalleled shopping and entertainment opportunities. However, it also faces challenges such as heavy traffic and a high cost of living.

What is the difference between LA and Hollywood? ›

Hollywood is a neighborhood in the central region of Los Angeles County, California, mostly within the city of Los Angeles. Its name has come to be a shorthand reference for the U.S. film industry and the people associated with it.

What is a livable salary in Los Angeles? ›

The data used in the study analyzed the cost of living in each city as of 2022. For California cities like Los Angeles, Berkeley and San Diego, a single person must make more than $76,000 to “live comfortably,” the data shows.

How much does it cost to live in LA with rent? ›

Housing is the most significant expense for most American households. The cost of living in a certain city takes into account both the price of rent and the price of a home. The average monthly rent in Los Angeles is $2,781, while home prices circle around $1,098,874. Thinking of moving?

What is the average cost of living monthly in LA? ›

A family of four estimated monthly costs are 4,308.6$ without rent. A single person estimated monthly costs are 1,197.1$ without rent. Los Angeles is 18.0% less expensive than New York (without rent). Rent in Los Angeles is, on average, 28.5% lower than in New York.

Is Calabasas better than Beverly Hills? ›

For the first time ever, Calabasas surpassed Beverly Hills for the title of the wealthiest city in the United States. According to Bloomberg, the Southern California hillside community of roughly 24,300 has an average annual income of $194,000—more than double the national average—and surpassed Beverly Hills by $4,000.

Can you be poor and live in Beverly Hills? ›

Roughly one out of nine households in Beverly Hills, population 35,000, are categorized as “extremely low income,” city documents show, with single people earning less than $17,950 and two-person households bringing in less than $20,050.

Do you need a car in Beverly Hills? ›

However, if you want to see the actual hills in Beverly Hills you will need a car. Los Angeles and Beverly Hills are car cities. We have a public bus system but it isn't easy to use. Beverly Hills is itself relatively small.

What city in Los Angeles has the lowest crime rate? ›

Los Angeles crime map by neighborhood

In comparison, neighborhoods with the lowest crime rates last year were three residential areas: the hilly northeast hipster community of Mount Washington, the affluent Westside neighborhood of Beverlywood and the quiet suburban San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Porter Ranch.

What salary do you need to live in Los Angeles? ›

The data used in the study analyzed the cost of living in each city as of 2022. For California cities like Los Angeles, Berkeley and San Diego, a single person must make more than $76,000 to “live comfortably,” the data shows.

Is 150k enough to live in Los Angeles? ›

You'll need to earn well over $100,000 to live comfortably. You'll need a staggering six-figure income to live comfortably in Los Angeles: at least $136,207 if you're paying rent or $150,391 if you own a house.

What major US city has the lowest crime rate? ›

MoneyGeek's report also ranked the safest cities in America with populations over 100,000. The safest city on this list was Naperville, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. This city has an overall crime cost per capita of $156. Next on the list was Sunnyvale, California, followed by West Covina, California.

Is living in LA affordable? ›

The cost of living in Los Angeles, CA is 8% higher than the state average and 51% higher than the national average. Los Angeles, CA housing is 140% more expensive than the U.S average, while utilities are about 11% pricier.

Is Sherman Oaks a safe place to live? ›

Is Sherman Oaks, California a safe place to live? Dwellics analytics team assigned the score 42.0 to Sherman Oaks, California (with 100 being the best). This score helps find the safest places to live in America.

Is $80000 a good salary in Los Angeles? ›

An annual salary of $80,000 can be considered a decent salary for a single person living in Los Angeles, but it will depend on individual circumstances and lifestyle. Los Angeles is known for having a high cost of living, with housing costs being a major factor in this higher cost of living.

What is the middle class income in Los Angeles? ›

In Fremont, the median household income is $155,968, and a middle-class income ranges from $104,499 to $311,936. Los Angeles ranks 37th among large cities for middle-class income, with a range from $47,149 to $140,744. The median income was $70,372.

How much should I save before moving to LA? ›

How much should I save to move to LA? Generally speaking, you should save about $20,000 to move to LA. There's a lot of variance in this number, so we'll break this down into cost subcategories so you can more accurately calculate how much you want to save: Moving costs.

What is a comfortable salary in LA? ›

According to the study, a Los Angeles resident without children would need to make $76,710 after taxes to live comfortably. The study is based on the MIT Living Wage Calculator, which uses the cost of housing, food, transportation, medical care and more.

What is the 50 30 20 rule? ›

The 50/30/20 rule is a budgeting technique that involves dividing your money into three primary categories based on your after-tax income (i.e., your take-home pay): 50% to needs, 30% to wants and 20% to savings and debt payments.

How much is considered rich in LA? ›

In Southern California (which the survey grouped Los Angeles and San Diego), the threshold for what is considered wealthy is $3.9 million. It's the second-highest total in the survey, trailing San Francisco, where the "wealthy" net worth is $5.1 million.

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