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mosquito0016

Berkeley, CA

97 posts in this topic

Hi everyone,

 

Thanks for all the helpful information on this thread so far. For me, application season is winding down and I'm very strongly considering a PhD offer from UC Berkeley. Unfortunately, I won't be able to visit (I'm living abroad and can't get the time off), so it's difficult for me to get a sense of Berkeley culture.

 

The thing that worries me the most about Berkeley is the high cost of living. I don't mind living with other people, but I strongly prefer having my own room and bathroom in a safe area that's relatively close to campus. Is this possible for less than $1,000 (including monthly rent and utilities)? Also, I won't be heading back to the States until the end of July. Do you think it would be possible to find an apartment during August?

 

Thanks in advance.

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Hi everyone,

 

Thanks for all the helpful information on this thread so far. For me, application season is winding down and I'm very strongly considering a PhD offer from UC Berkeley. Unfortunately, I won't be able to visit (I'm living abroad and can't get the time off), so it's difficult for me to get a sense of Berkeley culture.

 

The thing that worries me the most about Berkeley is the high cost of living. I don't mind living with other people, but I strongly prefer having my own room and bathroom in a safe area that's relatively close to campus. Is this possible for less than $1,000 (including monthly rent and utilities)? Also, I won't be heading back to the States until the end of July. Do you think it would be possible to find an apartment during August?

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Hey. There's usually plenty of places open in August. I had to apartment hunt twice, both in August, and found reasonable places within a week of looking around on craigslist. I'd suggest you look on Craigslist to get a sense of the range of rent prices. $1000 would probably do fine for a studio and utilities, or a room of your own in a shared house and utilities. Check out North Oakland too; it's cheaper and a lot of grads or older undergrads seem to live there.

 

Also, there's always plenty of semester-long subletting going on as undergrads leave to study abroad for a semester. So, in the probably unlikely case you don't find somewhere suitable in August, you can manage for a semester by subletting a room, which would also have the probable advantage of being pre-furnished (since nobody's logging their futon to Rome or Paris).

 

Good luck!

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@hj2012, I was worrying about some of the same things in terms of cost of living. I would also prefer a spot in a roommate situation for under $1000 within biking distance from campus, and I also live abroad right now and am having a hard time getting a feeling for what the costs/environment will be like. I will, however, make it to the visit day in my department the weekend after next, so I'd be happy to let you know about anything I find out ;) 

 

@davidipse, I was wondering if it's realistic to hope I can live entirely on the stipend I've been offered ($22,000/year). I looked it up on a comparison site, and that apparently only covers about 92% of the average cost of living in Berkeley as a student. From your experience, will I be able to live on that sum (rent/utilities/food/transportation/personal expenses), or should I start looking for outside funding/a side job asap? This is honestly my biggest concern about choosing Berkeley.

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Hi everyone,

Thanks for all the helpful information on this thread so far. For me, application season is winding down and I'm very strongly considering a PhD offer from UC Berkeley. Unfortunately, I won't be able to visit (I'm living abroad and can't get the time off), so it's difficult for me to get a sense of Berkeley culture.

The thing that worries me the most about Berkeley is the high cost of living. I don't mind living with other people, but I strongly prefer having my own room and bathroom in a safe area that's relatively close to campus. Is this possible for less than $1,000 (including monthly rent and utilities)? Also, I won't be heading back to the States until the end of July. Do you think it would be possible to find an apartment during August?

Thanks in advance.

You could also look for in law units in addition to studios. They are more standalone than a shared room in a house and usually have their own bathroom, but they won't be as expensive as a studio in some places.

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@hj2012, I was worrying about some of the same things in terms of cost of living. I would also prefer a spot in a roommate situation for under $1000 within biking distance from campus, and I also live abroad right now and am having a hard time getting a feeling for what the costs/environment will be like. I will, however, make it to the visit day in my department the weekend after next, so I'd be happy to let you know about anything I find out ;)

@davidipse, I was wondering if it's realistic to hope I can live entirely on the stipend I've been offered ($22,000/year). I looked it up on a comparison site, and that apparently only covers about 92% of the average cost of living in Berkeley as a student. From your experience, will I be able to live on that sum (rent/utilities/food/transportation/personal expenses), or should I start looking for outside funding/a side job asap? This is honestly my biggest concern about choosing Berkeley.

If it's just you and you bike, then all this should be possible. $22k sounds doable. If you house/apt share, your rent will be well under $1000.

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@davidipse Whew, that's a relief that I shouldn't worry too much about housing now.  :)  I think I'm going to put in an application for the grad school co-ops mentioned above and see if it works out.

 

@maelia8 Please let me know what you think about Berkeley! I reaaaaaaally wish I could visit!

 

@seeingeyeduck Thanks for the tip about in-law units. I'll definitely keep that in mind.

 

 

And one last question, for any current grad students -- how did you guys go about meeting new people? My cohort is going to be really small (probably ~5 people), and I'd like to expand my social circle beyond that.

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I went to every possible event at uni and ended up with more friends than ever in my life.

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For grad school coops I highly recommend HIP and The Convent. Both are pretty quiet, and get great groups of people in them. Places like Cloyne, Casa Zimbabwe and several of the other undergraduate coops are drug addled party dens.

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How hard is it to get into a coop like HIP or The Covent as a grad student coming from another institution? I've heard that the coops have a system of points and if you don't have very many due to prior residency it can be hard to get in. Is it worth it to apply regardless?

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There is a priority system for exchange students and senior residents of the coops (you can read about this on their website). So it could be difficult to get in, but in my opinion it is totally worth it. I would have tried really hard to get into The Convent at some point if I had been accepted in Berkeley last year.

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Hi everyone, 

Do you know anything about housing for married students?

Thanks!

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Does anyone have any advice re: looking for a place in Berkeley if you have a dog? I'd ideally be biking distance from campus and prefer to have roommates. Is craigslist my best bet?

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Hey mosquito0016 , I'm also goin to take admit in UC and i'm looking ofr house on rent so i just want to know that which option you took for housing? and how's your experiecne there also how much the cost was?

Looking forward for your reply..

 

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I'm planning to start at Berkeley in the fall, but will be traveling throughout the summer (backpacking in California, so I could interrupt my trip if necessary but would prefer not to). Does anyone have advice about looking for housing in the area when I won't be there? I'm hoping for an apartment or house for myself and my partner.

 

I have a few ideas for how to go about this and am interested in people's feedback:

1. just go on my trip, come back in mid-August, and stay in an extended stay hotel while looking for places to start Sept 1.

2. get an apartment at the beginning of the summer and try to sublet it over the summer.

3. apply for University Village housing (any idea how competitive this is?).

4. look for a place now that would start in August or September (do those even exist?)

 

I'd appreciate any advice anyone here has! 

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Machine, I'd like advice on this too!

 

I'm going to be overseas until June 30th, and I'd like to know if it's more practical for me to start looking now (would anyone even rent to me without meeting me/this far in advance?), or whether I should wait until July when I can be there in person. I have relatives and friends in the Bay Area whom I can stay with while looking/moving in, I'm just wondering when I should start, and how to get started from over here (if that's even something that's possible).

 

Any tips from experienced distance movers to Berkeley?

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I'm planning to start at Berkeley in the fall, but will be traveling throughout the summer (backpacking in California, so I could interrupt my trip if necessary but would prefer not to). Does anyone have advice about looking for housing in the area when I won't be there? I'm hoping for an apartment or house for myself and my partner.

 

I have a few ideas for how to go about this and am interested in people's feedback:

1. just go on my trip, come back in mid-August, and stay in an extended stay hotel while looking for places to start Sept 1.

2. get an apartment at the beginning of the summer and try to sublet it over the summer.

3. apply for University Village housing (any idea how competitive this is?).

4. look for a place now that would start in August or September (do those even exist?)

 

I'd appreciate any advice anyone here has! 

 

Another option, similiar to your hotel one but likely cheaper, would be to sublet a room for a month or longer. That way, you'd have a month to look for housing.

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That's a pretty good idea, Davidipse - I hadn't thought of subleting for that short of a time, but if I can find a sublet out there, that would be great!

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Does anyone know how available off-campus housing is during the year? I'm thinking maybe I'll living in graduate student housing for a semester and then look for off campus housing for the second semester and beyond?

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Rejuvenating this thread to ask about housing in Berkeley!

I'm thinking of accepting my PhD offer, and trying to consider cost of living. How easy is it to find a place within walking distance (20 mins or less) from UC Berkeley for $1,100 or less per month? I would of course have one or more roommates in a 2+ BR house or apartment. 

Going off of that, can anyone provide rent ranges for the different areas in and around Berkeley?

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On 3/5/2014 at 11:53 PM, maelia8 said:

@hj2012, I was worrying about some of the same things in terms of cost of living. I would also prefer a spot in a roommate situation for under $1000 within biking distance from campus, and I also live abroad right now and am having a hard time getting a feeling for what the costs/environment will be like. I will, however, make it to the visit day in my department the weekend after next, so I'd be happy to let you know about anything I find out ;) 

 

@davidipse, I was wondering if it's realistic to hope I can live entirely on the stipend I've been offered ($22,000/year). I looked it up on a comparison site, and that apparently only covers about 92% of the average cost of living in Berkeley as a student. From your experience, will I be able to live on that sum (rent/utilities/food/transportation/personal expenses), or should I start looking for outside funding/a side job asap? This is honestly my biggest concern about choosing Berkeley.

I live near Berkeley and I am working but I can still give you a bit of a perspective.

I live as frugally as possible and my expenses are about 20k/year.  That is my rent ($700/mo), food, transportation, phone, insurance, and other expected expenses.

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Hi there!

 I will be moving to Berkeley in August - September to start the PhD! I have no idea of where to start to look for a house. I won't be able to go there before summer (I assume by August all flats will be gone?) so, do you know of any complexes or flats that are safe to rent online? I would be moving with my partner (non student), and we are looking for a one bedroom flat (we don't want to share). Any ideas?

Thanks!

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2 hours ago, tere93 said:

Hi there!

 I will be moving to Berkeley in August - September to start the PhD! I have no idea of where to start to look for a house. I won't be able to go there before summer (I assume by August all flats will be gone?) so, do you know of any complexes or flats that are safe to rent online? I would be moving with my partner (non student), and we are looking for a one bedroom flat (we don't want to share). Any ideas?

Thanks!

You might look into University Village in Albany (https://housing.berkeley.edu/universityvillage), which is definitely safe and a good price for a one-bedroom in the area. What's your budget? My sense is that it will be challenging to find a one-bedroom apartment for less than $2,000 a month in Berkeley. Do you have geographical constraints? If you're open to living outside of Berkeley (e.g. Oakland, Albany, El Cerrito, Emeryville etc) that will give you more options. 

I'd start the search now (join relevant Bay Area housing Facebook groups, check the Cal listings site, etc) but also make contingency plans, i.e. moving to the Bay in August w/ a 2 week AirBnB rental to search for housing. The uncertainty might be stressful but it will definitely be doable to find someplace to live in August. 

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