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1 hour ago, qt_dnvr said:

We're still waiting for word on grad housing but I thought I'd get some neighborhood advice if it doesn't work out.

I'm looking for a quick commute into UofC but hopefully a little more access to the city at large by public transit, bar culture isn't important to me but food options- especially ethnic food/good produce grocers are

. I was thinking Kenwood, Bronzeville, Bridgeport and maybe McKinley Park and other Southwest areas with access to transit. I'm bringing my car, at least for the first year, and would like a place I could park it multiple days without worrying about tickets or parking rules too much. Am I missing other options?

Everywhere has access to the city via public transit. Parking is more tricky. There is street parking in Hyde Park, but it's a pain to find. Most of it is metered, some of it isn't. And in HP the police will ticket your car over the smallest violation; it's absurd! Commuting via car can be tricky as well, as traffic is unpredictable. I would try to stay as close to campus as possible, but that's just my opinion. 

Chicago is nothing but food options. Pick any neighborhood and you will find them. ;)

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Hi All,

I've been accepted to UIC to get my PhD in Epidemiology. I'm vaguely familiar with the city based on a few visits, but I'm still kind of iffy on the housing situation. I've heard that there are some good realtor type services where the apartments pay the realtors their commission/fee. Does anyone have one they can recommend?

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On 3/29/2017 at 1:14 AM, ayim93 said:

I have recently been accepted into the Master's program for Rhetoric, Writing, and Discourse at Depaul University in Chicago.  I am looking at living in Lincoln Park or other surrounding neighborhoods.   Are there any areas that people would recommend that are affordable and is pretty close to Lincoln Park?

I know quite a few people who live in Logan Square and go to DePaul. It's a relatively easy bus ride away from campus so that's good. Other than that, you can definitely find relatively affordable apartments in Lincoln Park or Lakeview but you just have to really do some digging! They are out there but will be tough to find. Still, it's nice to be able to walk to campus if you are close enough and those neighborhoods are incredibly beautiful.

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On 3/29/2017 at 1:14 AM, ayim93 said:

I have recently been accepted into the Master's program for Rhetoric, Writing, and Discourse at Depaul University in Chicago.  I am looking at living in Lincoln Park or other surrounding neighborhoods.   Are there any areas that people would recommend that are affordable and is pretty close to Lincoln Park?

Other people gave good advice but I'm going to DePaul too! Woot woot!

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On 4/1/2017 at 7:27 AM, lorear2 said:

Hi All,

I've been accepted to UIC to get my PhD in Epidemiology. I'm vaguely familiar with the city based on a few visits, but I'm still kind of iffy on the housing situation. I've heard that there are some good realtor type services where the apartments pay the realtors their commission/fee. Does anyone have one they can recommend?

Hey! I'm also heading to UIC in the Fall for my PhD (Microbiology & Immunology). Do you have any insight regarding living near campus? Or is the Little Italy/Med district part of town considered sketchy? I feel totally clueless, lol :p. 

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Hi everyone! So I am going to UIC in the fall, however, I am planning to move next month as I'm taking one more course to fulfill my prerequisites. Ideally I want to live close to UIC but I've been flexible since my budget is pretty low. I found a sublease for the summer that would allow me to move in soon, not have to move all my stuff and then would give me time to look for another place/roommate. The apartment is in Hyde Park right near the UC law school. I did a ton of reading on Hyde Park and it sounds nice. However, everything I read kept saying to stay away from south of the Midway. This place is exactly south of the midway, between 60th and 61st. How is this area? I went to undergrad at a very urban campus so I understand the basic street smarts of living in these areas. I never once felt unsafe living in an urban area. It's still a little nerve wracking without seeing the place first!

Also...since I will need to commute to UIC (just one day a week this summer), I plan on bringing my car. How accessible is it to 1) have a car in Hyde Park 2) get into the city 3) park in the city (if I want to visit friends in Lincoln Park or Lake View, for example) I was not planning on bringing my car but don't really want to spend all my time commuting! 

thanks! 

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1 hour ago, brenbren12 said:

Hi everyone! So I am going to UIC in the fall, however, I am planning to move next month as I'm taking one more course to fulfill my prerequisites. Ideally I want to live close to UIC but I've been flexible since my budget is pretty low. I found a sublease for the summer that would allow me to move in soon, not have to move all my stuff and then would give me time to look for another place/roommate. The apartment is in Hyde Park right near the UC law school. I did a ton of reading on Hyde Park and it sounds nice. However, everything I read kept saying to stay away from south of the Midway. This place is exactly south of the midway, between 60th and 61st. How is this area? I went to undergrad at a very urban campus so I understand the basic street smarts of living in these areas. I never once felt unsafe living in an urban area. It's still a little nerve wracking without seeing the place first!

Also...since I will need to commute to UIC (just one day a week this summer), I plan on bringing my car. How accessible is it to 1) have a car in Hyde Park 2) get into the city 3) park in the city (if I want to visit friends in Lincoln Park or Lake View, for example) I was not planning on bringing my car but don't really want to spend all my time commuting! 

thanks! 

Not a local, so take with a grain of salt:

Hyde Park is not exactly south of Midway - that said, I've heard and been told by Lyft drivers the same - use your head and listen to your gut about the areas you're in when you're that far south. Hyde Park is good, safe, and relatively inexpensive neighborhood to live.

From my time in Hyde Park, it seems cars are pretty common - it isn't as "city" as the Loop. However, because Hyde Park is a ways off any L-stop, so consider taking the bus up to the city or to an L-stop. Also, you could consider utilizing the Metra. From talking to Lyft drivers and locals, if you don't have to drive (and moreover park) in the city, don't. Lincoln Park and Lake View are a simple ride up the Red Line. The ride, I would imagine, would be just as time consuming as driving and parking (if not less so) and more cost effective - as a student, you will be given (rather you'll have to pick it up) a U-Pass which you pay for in your student fees to travel the L "free" of charge - this would not be effective until Fall semester though, although you could request to purchase it for the summer term.

Hope this helps and that others can confirm (or refute!).

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3 hours ago, brenbren12 said:

I did a ton of reading on Hyde Park and it sounds nice. However, everything I read kept saying to stay away from south of the Midway. This place is exactly south of the midway, between 60th and 61st. How is this area?

Hi! I live in Chicago now and lived in Hyde Park for a while (now I'm on the north side) and wanted to put a 2017 era update to the eternal "south of the midway" question on the record here, since it seems to come up a lot when discussing Hyde Park. My understanding is "don't go south of the midway" was a commonly given guideline for many years, but it hasn't really been accurate since around 2010 when a large undergrad dorm opened at Ellis and 61st. Now, most of the 60th/61st area is university buildings, including housing, the law school, and the arts center and campus security patrols down to 64th. If you wanted to draw a new line now, it's probably 63rd, conservatively. 

For your other questions: A lot of people in Hyde Park have cars, and street parking is manageable. (Free) parking elsewhere in the city varies from neighborhood to neighborhood and is predictably harder in the loop and other dense areas. Hyde Park is unfortunately a bit removed from convenient public transit, you're mainly reliant on buses and metra. You can get into the loop in about 20-30 minutes, but over to UIC would be at least an hour and a lot of transfers- you'd probably want a car. Hyde Park in general is a nice neighborhood, but if you're not UChicago affiliated or going directly into the loop it can be hard. For a short term summer sublet you'll probably do fine but quickly realize it's easier to be somewhere else. 

People with questions about travel times in general- google maps is really accurate now for transit and traffic. Put in your commute at the hours you'd be doing it to see what it would look like (and on the CTA add 10 minutes for delays). Chicago is big! I commute 45 minutes each way and that's not exceptional. 

If people have other questions about apartment hunting ask away. 

(Also, to politely disagree with the above re: travel times Hyde Park- Lakeview, I live in Lakeview and have a good friend in Hyde Park, it takes me 1 hr 15 minutes on the CTA to get to her, and it takes her 25-35 minutes to drive to me including parking) 

Edited by clarchibald
correction to travel times

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48 minutes ago, clarchibald said:

Hi! I live in Chicago now and lived in Hyde Park for a while (now I'm on the north side) and wanted to put a 2017 era update to the eternal "south of the midway" question on the record here, since it seems to come up a lot when discussing Hyde Park. My understanding is "don't go south of the midway" was a commonly given guideline for many years, but it hasn't really been accurate since around 2010 when a large undergrad dorm opened at Ellis and 61st. Now, most of the 60th/61st area is university buildings, including housing, the law school, and the arts center and campus security patrols down to 64th. If you wanted to draw a new line now, it's probably 63rd, conservatively. 

For your other questions: A lot of people in Hyde Park have cars, and street parking is manageable. (Free) parking elsewhere in the city varies from neighborhood to neighborhood and is predictably harder in the loop and other dense areas. Hyde Park is unfortunately a bit removed from convenient public transit, you're mainly reliant on buses and metra. You can get into the loop in about 20-30 minutes, but over to UIC would be at least an hour and a lot of transfers- you'd probably want a car. Hyde Park in general is a nice neighborhood, but if you're not UChicago affiliated or going directly into the loop it can be hard. For a short term summer sublet you'll probably do fine but quickly realize it's easier to be somewhere else. 

People with questions about travel times in general- google maps is really accurate now for transit and traffic. Put in your commute at the hours you'd be doing it to see what it would look like (and on the CTA add 10 minutes for delays). Chicago is big! I commute 45 minutes each way and that's not exceptional. 

If people have other questions about apartment hunting ask away. 

(Also, to politely disagree with the above re: travel times Hyde Park- Lakeview, I live in Lakeview and have a good friend in Hyde Park, it takes me 1 hr 15 minutes on the CTA to get to her, and it takes her 25-35 minutes to drive to me including parking) 

Thank you! This was the kind of information I was hoping to get! I figured by some of the stuff I read that the suggestions to not live south of midway was inaccurate but wanted to still ask. 

I'm definitely okay bringing my car (even if it wasn't in my original plan). I think I also have to be okay with being further away from friends (who all have well paying jobs and can afford to live in more expensive areas). Hopefully once I get there it'll be easier to find a place/roommate (closer UIC) than it has been from far away. 

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21 hours ago, brenbren12 said:

Thank you! This was the kind of information I was hoping to get!

Glad to help! If you end up moving in there, you'll also be pretty close to the 61st St Farmers Market, which imo is one of the better ones in the city. I second the Hyde Park Produce love above too- I miss being able to buy fresh herbs by weight instead of prepackaged.

Also, it is definitely easier to find apartments when you can look in person- in my experience, a lot of the online listings you can easily find are big management companies kind of spamming craigslist, apartments.com, etc. whereas smaller management companies/family owned buildings/condo rentals will only post on their own website or even only put a sign out in front. If you have time to wander around neighborhoods you're interested in looking for rent signs and see places in person, you can find some good deals- even in more expensive areas. 

Edited by clarchibald

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1 hour ago, clarchibald said:

Glad to help! If you end up moving in there, you'll also be pretty close to the 61st St Farmers Market, which imo is one of the better ones in the city. I second the Hyde Park Produce love above too- I miss being able to buy fresh herbs by weight instead of prepackaged.

Also, it is definitely easier to find apartments when you can look in person- in my experience, a lot of the online listings you can easily find are big management companies kind of spamming craigslist, apartments.com, etc. whereas smaller management companies/family owned buildings/condo rentals will only post on their own website or even only put a sign out in front. If you have time to wander around neighborhoods you're interested in looking for rent signs and see places in person, you can find some good deals- even in more expensive areas. 

Oh good to know! I love a good farmers market! Yes...I've found a lot of scams. I also get someone not wanting to sign a lease with someone they've never met in person. 

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On 3/27/2017 at 0:31 PM, Oddich55 said:

Hmm. Uptown isn't too bad, but is a little sketchy. I live right north of it in Edgewater. If you're going to UIC - Uptown is going to be a pain in the ass without a car (you'll have to take the red line into the loop and the blue line west). If you're looking for a hip area that's easy to get to UIC, I would pick Logan Square or Wicker Park (but they are a little on the pricier side). I've been living in Chicago for most of my life, so if you have any questions - let me know =)

I live in Logan Square right now and I feel like the commute down to UIC would get old really fast. Logan is a great neighborhood and grad students do live here I just imagine it would be a hassssssle, but if you're not commuting during rush hours it wouldn't be as bad...

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On 3/22/2017 at 3:05 PM, tonydoesmovie said:

Also, if any are interested, Chicago Tribune runs a crime tracker on their site here.

Full of great breakdowns and maps so that those of us unfamiliar with the area can try to better understand the onslaught of neighborhoods around beautiful Chicago. It also helps to destigmatizes (or rather put in perspective) the "unsafe" and "dangerous" tag Chicago often receives. As a Baltimore native, I can greatly appreciate this.

I often read on various forums that Hyde Park is unsafe. I am amazed with the urban legend about UChicago and Hyde Park. Between the Chicago Police and UChicago Police, Hyde Park has one of the highest police per capita in the US. In terms of actual crime, there is a great site of statistics by university at the US Department of Education (https://ope.ed.gov/campussafety/#/). The data are in the form of crime incidences (of various categories) per 1000 students. Folks may be surprised to find that UChicago is one of the safest universities. For fun, compare UChicago versus Stanford, Berkeley, Harvard, etc. You will find that UChicago is pretty much uniformly less than all these schools. Number of incidents of sexual crimes, burglaries are on the order of 3 to 5 times higher at schools like Stanford, Berkeley, Harvard than UChicago.

With this said, with any urban institution, there are areas and times that would be stupid to venture into. When you live in Hyde Park, it is pretty obvious what boundaries you don't want to cross especially in the dark hours.

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Hey guys, I was wondering if it's possible to live decently through a PhD in Chicago with ~2k USD per month, and if possible, how the condition will probably be like (sharing a room, sharing an apartment, living by yourself etc).

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Hello! I moved here in August and live on about $1,700 a month. Definitely not the easiest, but totally possible. I currently have roommates but want to live alone next year, so I'm willing to pay extra. You can find studios around $750-850 and some one bedrooms around $900 in the outer edges of the city. I prefer the northern part of the city anyways. However, I did move from Pittsburgh where the cost of living is significantly lower, so it was a sad change. Taxes on groceries and stuff like that are also fairly high. 

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On 1/11/2018 at 7:40 AM, raul.carmo said:

Hey guys, I was wondering if it's possible to live decently through a PhD in Chicago with ~2k USD per month, and if possible, how the condition will probably be like (sharing a room, sharing an apartment, living by yourself etc).

I am in Hyde Park (not the cheapest not the most expensive neighborhood) and do that easily, but it depends on how much you eat out/drink/spend on extra stuff. In college housing areas like HP a big tip is to see if you can post-pone or move up your move-in date to be off the university move-in schedule.  Rent prices gone up $100-300 if you have a desired move-in date between June and September. My friend and I looked at two apartments with the exact same 2-bedroom layout & upgrades  (kitchen, dishwasher, and bath) but one had a sept 1 move-in date at $750/month and the other, an Oct 1 move-in at $650 with better light. It’s easy to find temporary housing if you’re willing to move twice and look to find cheaper housing. If you’re part of the U Chicago community (you have an email) then you can also access the Marketplace which is the most efficient place to find listings in HP area.

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I will be attending DePaul in the Spring, and my program is based at the Loop Campus. I will be commuting by bike and public transit. There are some cheap, large, cat-friendly apartments in North Lawndale, which is quite close to the Loop. However, I've been reading online that North Lawndale is one of the worst parts of the city. I'm used to living in fairly unsafe areas, such as South Africa and West Oakland, CA. What I've been reading about North Lawndale seems very intense, but I also think people tend to be a bit dramatic when discussing crime in Chicago. Is there anyone who is used to living in places that are a bit rough around the edges able to give me a perspective on North Lawndale? Is the cheaper rent and shorter commute worth it?

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12 hours ago, KrmDePaul said:

I will be attending DePaul in the Spring, and my program is based at the Loop Campus. I will be commuting by bike and public transit. There are some cheap, large, cat-friendly apartments in North Lawndale, which is quite close to the Loop. However, I've been reading online that North Lawndale is one of the worst parts of the city. I'm used to living in fairly unsafe areas, such as South Africa and West Oakland, CA. What I've been reading about North Lawndale seems very intense, but I also think people tend to be a bit dramatic when discussing crime in Chicago. Is there anyone who is used to living in places that are a bit rough around the edges able to give me a perspective on North Lawndale? Is the cheaper rent and shorter commute worth it?

I've lived in Chicago for a couple years now (congrats on DePaul, I love my school!) and agree that people are kind of dramatic--with one caveat. The time you spend in areas with both excessive crime and excessive police (like North Lawndale) does significantly increase the likelihood of your being victim to a crime, whether it be on purpose (muggings outside CTA stations) or accidental (witnessing or becoming involved in a crime that doesn't involve you). What kind of budget are you looking for? In Chicago, there are a good deal of apartments in areas that are safer that can accommodate your need for space and pet friendliness. If you don't mind living further from transit, check Hermosa Park and Humboldt Park; remember that you can also take Metra downtown from stops throughout the city, though it isn't as frequent as the CTA. As a rule of thumb, if you can get 3-4 roommates in a 4-5 bedroom apartment, you're gonna be paying much less and can stay in a safer area. 

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14 hours ago, KrmDePaul said:

I will be attending DePaul in the Spring, and my program is based at the Loop Campus. I will be commuting by bike and public transit. There are some cheap, large, cat-friendly apartments in North Lawndale, which is quite close to the Loop. However, I've been reading online that North Lawndale is one of the worst parts of the city. I'm used to living in fairly unsafe areas, such as South Africa and West Oakland, CA. What I've been reading about North Lawndale seems very intense, but I also think people tend to be a bit dramatic when discussing crime in Chicago. Is there anyone who is used to living in places that are a bit rough around the edges able to give me a perspective on North Lawndale? Is the cheaper rent and shorter commute worth it?

 

I can't speak to South Africa or West Oakland, but I would not recommend living in North Lawndale.  Here's an interactive crime map so you can look at the types of crimes in that area:

https://data.cityofchicago.org/Public-Safety/Crimes-Map/dfnk-7re6/data

 

In general, I would suggest living a little further away, but close to the train line.  You'll probably be looking at Roger's Park, which is on the north side of the area, or somewhere south of there.  Here's the search string that I used on Trulia.  Compare available apartments against the crime map.  Generally, the west side and south side are the more dicey neighborhoods.  Feel free to tag me if there's a specific neighborhood you'd like my 2 cents on.

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On 2/10/2018 at 11:12 PM, KrmDePaul said:

I will be attending DePaul in the Spring, and my program is based at the Loop Campus. I will be commuting by bike and public transit. There are some cheap, large, cat-friendly apartments in North Lawndale, which is quite close to the Loop. However, I've been reading online that North Lawndale is one of the worst parts of the city. I'm used to living in fairly unsafe areas, such as South Africa and West Oakland, CA. What I've been reading about North Lawndale seems very intense, but I also think people tend to be a bit dramatic when discussing crime in Chicago. Is there anyone who is used to living in places that are a bit rough around the edges able to give me a perspective on North Lawndale? Is the cheaper rent and shorter commute worth it?

Agree with latemeg. Would also say that depending on budget West Pilsen is a good in between (and cheaper that a lot of Pilsen). My sister lives in Bridgeport (just south of the river from Pilsen) not convenient for transit (but biking is a solid option). It's more affordable than a lot of areas and has a nice community feel.

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Jumping on the bandwagon, I know Chicago is a queer friendly city, but is there any advice where to live based on that information? where not to got? etc. Thanks! 

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I'll likely by attending UIC in the fall and have friends all over the city. I love a lot of their neighborhoods, especially on the northern side of the city, but in terms of convenience and affordability, we will be moving to Pilsen. There are amazing restaurants and bars, but also a less crowded and more comfortable atmosphere. I also like that good chunks of it are not completely gentrified. It reminds me a lot of where we live now.

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On 2/21/2018 at 11:02 AM, Bschaefer said:

Jumping on the bandwagon, I know Chicago is a queer friendly city, but is there any advice where to live based on that information? where not to got? etc. Thanks! 

Boystown is the “traditional” queer neighborhood, but would be a not so fun commute if you’re headed to UIC. That being said, I think anywhere within the city would be chill. Stereotypically, most nightlife is on the north side, it is also a much whiter, privileged, and gentrified part of the city. South side is more diverse, less nightlife, but not abesnt, and more affordable. If I were going to UIC, I wouldn’t want to go north of Ukrainian Village/Noble Square (commute south on the 90/94 is brutal) it’s doable if you have a reason to be north (ie family, partner, etc) but not ideal

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Hey, everyone! I'm a Southerner considering attending Northwestern (Evanston campus, but I'd like to live in North Chicago). Just wondering what life in the city is like in the winter. Do people just sort of hole up inside and try to bear it, or are there fun parts to the cold months?

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