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Advice on finding an apartment in Chicago

morkus64

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2004
3,302
1
81
Hey all,

So my girlfriend and I are moving to Chicago soon - she's moving in early August and I'll be moving late January. We're trying to find a place on the blue line, fairly close in (She'll be at UIC, and hopefully I'll be working in the city). It's gotta be a safe neighborhood that's not too expensive (especially since she'll be living there alone for a bit). I think our budget is under 800, as close to 700 as possible (if not below!). Can anyone recommend neighborhoods (or even specific buildings) to check out?

TIA!
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
102,088
16,313
136
Logan Square is where you will be looking for that price and Blue Line access. Decent neighborhood, too.
 

Matthiasa

Diamond Member
May 4, 2009
5,757
22
81
I know someone that might have listings or at least know of places in the area. He doesn't have a real site set up though... i don't think anyways. :(
Just some twitter thing. There is a number though.
 
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ric1287

Diamond Member
Nov 29, 2005
4,845
0
0
bridgeport is decent for UIC area, about 15 min on the #8 bus down halsted. I stayed in a huge 1.5 bedroom place for $595 a month a year back.
 

morkus64

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2004
3,302
1
81
We looked a bit at Logan Square... Bridgeport is too far south, I think. Even though she's going to UIC, and we want to be on the blue line, I think we want to be more north.
 

nick1985

Lifer
Dec 29, 2002
27,161
5
0
Hey all,

So my girlfriend and I are moving to Chicago soon - she's moving in early August and I'll be moving late January. We're trying to find a place on the blue line, fairly close in (She'll be at UIC, and hopefully I'll be working in the city). It's gotta be a safe neighborhood that's not too expensive (especially since she'll be living there alone for a bit). I think our budget is under 800, as close to 700 as possible (if not below!). Can anyone recommend neighborhoods (or even specific buildings) to check out?

TIA!
lol
 
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Lamont Burns

Platinum Member
Dec 13, 2002
2,839
0
0
awww come on nick, parts of the loop aren't bad, and neither is Lincoln Park.

For your budget tho safety will be a concern imo.
 

Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
31,012
274
126
:rolleyes:

----

OP, based on your criteria of "safe" and "cheap," it's going to be pretty hard to come by. Wicker Park is also close to the blue line but it's not going to be 700-800 a month cheap. I doubt you can find something bigger than a closet for that in Logan either... I think you need to rethink your budget a little bit or vastly lower your expectations.
 

Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
31,012
274
126
best advice would be to hit up someone like Chicago Apartment Finders or Apartment Savvy or Apartment People (google them) and tell them your budget and location necessities... but seriously, you're either going to find an absolute shithole for that price or live in an area where you don't want to be.

To give you a ballpark, when I had a shitty, shitty 1 bedroom apt in a safe neighborhood it was 1k a month just for rent.
 

K1052

Lifer
Aug 21, 2003
34,108
7,164
136
under 800, close to blue line, close to downtown, and in a good neighborhood...

pick two of the above
 

Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
31,012
274
126
Oh please.

Asking for a safe neighborhood in Chicago for $700/mo is most certainly lol worthy.
Yeah, but you edited your message way after the fact to bold the money part. Your original statement just said "safe neighborhood" and "Chicago" so obviously my response wont make sense when you alter yours.
 

nick1985

Lifer
Dec 29, 2002
27,161
5
0
Yeah, but you edited your message way after the fact to bold the money part. Your original statement just said "safe neighborhood" and "Chicago" so obviously my response wont make sense when you alter yours.
In all honesty, the money part was meant to be bolded in my original quote. Having lived in the Chicago area my whole life, I know that amount wont go far in the city.
 

swanysto

Golden Member
May 8, 2005
1,942
7
81
Wicker Park is the place you wanna be, but for that price you will most certainly have a roommates. I live in the ghetto(across the street from the UC) and I pay $1000 a month for a 2 bedroom. Of course, I could always stumble 3 blocks to Rush Hospital if/when I get shot by the natives of West Town/West Loop.
 

Gibson486

Lifer
Aug 9, 2000
18,379
1
0
I was just gonna say....wow. $700 a month can't get you anything in most cities. Heck, for $700 in Boston, you'd be limited to the darkest rat holes in East Boston or Mattapan with no public transportation. PUblic transportation in Mattapan consist of running like hell because someone will pull a gun on you. Infact, th eonly time I saw $700 a month was when I was looking at mortgages for foreclosed condos in Dorchester (50,000 for a 2 bed condo....hahahaha...not bad)
 

morkus64

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2004
3,302
1
81
Wow... a lot of haters on here. I've lived around DC for a while now, so I know that 700 and safe is a tough proposition, but I was hoping that some Chicago insiders might be able to tell me about lesser known "diamond in the rough" kind of areas. For instance, I know plenty of people in Dupont here in DC (a high rent area) who have places for well under market value because it'll be just off the beaten track or whatever.

Oy.
 

Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
31,012
274
126
Wow... a lot of haters on here. I've lived around DC for a while now, so I know that 700 and safe is a tough proposition, but I was hoping that some Chicago insiders might be able to tell me about lesser known "diamond in the rough" kind of areas. For instance, I know plenty of people in Dupont here in DC (a high rent area) who have places for well under market value because it'll be just off the beaten track or whatever.

Oy.
We're just trying to help, if that comes off as hate then I don't know what to tell you. You're asking the impossible.

The only 'diamond in the rough area' that meets your requirements is Logan Square. This area used to be a lot worse but is coming up so prices are still relatively low in comparison and its a nicer area now than it was a few years ago. Wicker Park is the same story.. it's still block by block in a lot of places. You can get some amazing deals on places in LS.. but not for $700-800.. just not going to happen man, unless you live with others.

We're just trying to manage your expectations a bit here.. I already offered the best help you're going to get in this thread by telling you about those 3 apartment finding services.. if what you're looking for exists, they will have it. Furthermore, think more on the idea of getting some roommates.
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
102,088
16,313
136
:rolleyes:

----

OP, based on your criteria of "safe" and "cheap," it's going to be pretty hard to come by. Wicker Park is also close to the blue line but it's not going to be 700-800 a month cheap. I doubt you can find something bigger than a closet for that in Logan either... I think you need to rethink your budget a little bit or vastly lower your expectations.
I think I was paying $825 at the Melrose place--though I know the rent increased after I moved.

Has rent skyrocketed so much in the city over the last 2 years that he can't find 1br for ~$800 in a neighborhood that is traditionally considered less desirable than LV?


(of course, my apartment building was a fucking shithole. :D)
 
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zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
102,088
16,313
136
how about considering the far north side, on the way to O'Hare?

I honestly know nothing about those neighborhoods (Jackson Park is one of them, right?), but it keeps you on the blue line.

FWIW, you do not want to live close to UIC.
 

Via

Diamond Member
Jan 14, 2009
4,695
2
0
I live in a city 1 1/2 hours South of Chicago and you can barely find decent non-student housing here for less than $700 a month.

I can't imagine what it's like in Chicago now.
 

K1052

Lifer
Aug 21, 2003
34,108
7,164
136
I think I was paying $825 at the Melrose place--though I know the rent increased after I moved.

Has rent skyrocketed so much in the city over the last 2 years that he can't find 1br for ~$800 in a neighborhood that is traditionally considered less desirable than LV?


(of course, my apartment building was a fucking shithole. :D)
That is now studio range instead of 1br around here.

Unfortunately for the op his options are limited if he wants to live off the blue line near the city center (mostly shitty hoods except for Wicker Park and Bucktown. Logan Square is a decent compromise and if he hunts around he might be able to find something close to his range.
 
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Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
31,012
274
126
I think I was paying $825 at the Melrose place--though I know the rent increased after I moved.

Has rent skyrocketed so much in the city over the last 2 years that he can't find 1br for ~$800 in a neighborhood that is traditionally considered less desirable than LV?


(of course, my apartment building was a fucking shithole. :D)
Yeah it's more like that would get you a junior 1 'bedroom' or studio in LV now.

The real problem is not only 700-800, but close to the blue line. You can find 700 dollar places in Logan but you'll be walking 15-20+ min through a not-so-great area to get to the train... and at night? fuck that.
 

Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
31,012
274
126

ASK THE COMMUNITY