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East Lansing, MI

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I'm considering Lansing proper as well. It's nicer than my home city (most places are), which is good enough for me. I like the convenience of the East Lansing places, but I'd rather avoid roaming undergrads as much as possible.

I imagine I will end up driving or taking a bus to campus. While I know how to ride a bike, I've never used one for travel, so I don't know if I'd be comfortable not knowing the etiquette when riding on roads and all that.

I walked everywhere during undergrad (small school close to my house), but I don't know how feasible that would be in this case.

I live in Lansing and I like it fine. I'm even further west than Sparrow and I have a parking pass, so I can't really speak to the bus issue.

wwellington, where does the parking pass allow you to park? Is finding a spot somewhere reliable?

When I visited, the student who picked me up talked about parking on the south side of campus, but most people I talked to said they tend to not drive.

I don't mind having to walk a long way on campus as long as I know I'll have somewhere to park.

Edited by Pitangus

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wwellington, where does the parking pass allow you to park? Is finding a spot somewhere reliable?

When I visited, the student who picked me up talked about parking on the south side of campus, but most people I talked to said they tend to not drive.

I don't mind having to walk a long way on campus as long as I know I'll have somewhere to park.

It's the "Graduate Assistant" pass (if you're a TA you can request it online, otherwise you have to go into the office). It allows you to park anywhere south of the river (if you were there for Zoology, Nat Sci is north, BPS/conservatory is south). I usually try to park in the lot closest to the bridge across from Erickson, which is the closest lot to Giltner/Nat Sci south of the river. Usually if you get in before 10, you can definitely find a spot there, but I've always managed to find a spot in a parking lot somewhere in that general area even when I come in later (if you get in at certain times of the day, it requires a little more effort to find one, but I've always eventually been successful). The parking lots I tend to check (38, 40, 41, 56 on busier days) are like 5-10 minutes walking to Giltner/Nat Sci, depending on how quickly you walk, so it's not even taking you that far out of the way.

I think there's a good portion of people who live pretty close to campus so driving isn't as necessary for them; I prefer driving since I'm not much of a biker and I believe the bus ride from my apartment is over 45 minutes.

Feel free to PM me if you have more specific questions.

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Thanks wwellington! That sounds manageable. I've been told I'd be spending a lot of time in Nat Sci, so I've been basing distances on that so far.

I'm currently looking at places in Lansing that are 25-45 minutes from campus on the bus, but that is according to the CATA website, so those times are assuming all buses are running on schedule.

I wish I could be more efficient and bike, but I know I'd be overly cautious to the point where I could get hit or cause an accident simply because I'd be too passive when riding near cars.

So driving will probably be the way I go if I find that the bus routes I need are not reliable.

Despite many places being just out of reasonable walking distance for me, I'm still leaning towards Lansing because it also seems less expensive (not that East Lansing is at all expensive compared to many places).

I've noticed that the rental prices look similar at first between the two, but upon further investigation I've found that many of the prices in Lansing include heat + water, while many in East Lansing do not.

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but upon further investigation I've found that many of the prices in Lansing include heat + water, while many in East Lansing do not.

Yeah, that makes for some nice winter utility bills.

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Does anyone know anything about the job market in East Lansing? My boyfriend is moving with me and I want to make sure he'll be able to find something. Specifically, what's the job market for teachers & those in the education field?

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This is a pre-mature post, as in I have not yet offically been accepted. My program (MA linguistics), has recently hired a few new professors, and is looking at applications now. However, I have had a few teacher assistant interviews, and I know that doesn't garentee aceptance. However, I want to go more then anything, and the minute I get in, with some position resulting in at minium my tuition covered, I am accepting. I know there is going to be a lot to figure out, and even though I could end up being very disappointed, I wanted to post here anyways. What would you guys recomend as a graduate student, (I am Canadian, and was on an athletic scholarship at my undergraduate institution) in terms of living situations? I know no one, am fairly quiet and studious. I would like to if possible, be around other younger graduate students. Also, inorder to save money, I would possibly like to find a roomate. I don't know if I will have a car, but have no problem taking buses places and or biking. Also, does anyone have any experience with trains, in and out of East Lansing? I just wondered where the best place to look for tickets is? I have a boyfriend who has another year of undergrad left, so he'll be in Minnesota, and once and a while, pending on various factors I would like to visit him, and wouldn't mind getting an idea of the cost of doing that ahead of time/

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Also, inorder to save money, I would possibly like to find a roomate. I don't know if I will have a car, but have no problem taking buses places and or biking. Also, does anyone have any experience with trains, in and out of East Lansing? I just wondered where the best place to look for tickets is?

Hi, Finishing up my undergrad at MSU this year and considering their graduate program for nuclear physics. Some useful links:

www.allmsu.com to find roommates, you may need to have an MSU ID to sign up though, I don't remember

also lansing.craigslist.org for some rental options. Look at reviews before you get a lease on an apartment.

It is a great place for biking, except for when the snow comes. You can get a bus pass for $50 a semester which lets you on any bus routes. You'd likely need a bus pass or car for getting groceries.

www.amtrak.com for train information. There is a station right by campus, but the station is small and a bit rundown.

Good luck!

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Does anyone know anything about the job market in East Lansing? My boyfriend is moving with me and I want to make sure he'll be able to find something. Specifically, what's the job market for teachers & those in the education field?

The job market for teachers is very bad in Michigan. There's a glut of highly-ranked education universities in the state which means there tends to be a lot of job seekers in that field. On top of that, the state is slashing k12 funding wherever it can. I did my undergrad at MSU and grew up in a suburb next to East Lansing, and my mother was on the school board for the district we lived in. Any time a teaching position opens, they have hundreds of applicants. Sorry for the bad news, maybe your boyfriend will have more luck!

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What would you guys recomend as a graduate student, (I am Canadian, and was on an athletic scholarship at my undergraduate institution) in terms of living situations? I know no one, am fairly quiet and studious. I would like to if possible, be around other younger graduate students. Also, inorder to save money, I would possibly like to find a roomate.

Check out http://www.dtnmgt.com/ for apartments. They own like half the apartment buildings in the whole area. I rented from them several times and never had any issues. Where campus meets Grand River Ave is the main "happening" part of EL, with all the bars and galleries and restaurants and such.

I don't know if I will have a car, but have no problem taking buses places and or biking. Also, does anyone have any experience with trains, in and out of East Lansing? I just wondered where the best place to look for tickets is? I have a boyfriend who has another year of undergrad left, so he'll be in Minnesota, and once and a while, pending on various factors I would like to visit him, and wouldn't mind getting an idea of the cost of doing that ahead of time/

There's an Amtrak station right next to campus, although keep in mind the campus is enormous, so being "right next to it" could still be pretty far from wherever you are. I've taken the train to Chicago from there a number of times, and once you're in Chicago I imagine you can get a train to anywhere that has railroad tracks! Plus it's exactly on the way to Minnesota.

Edited by jeffster

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Just flipping through the thread, I saw a few topics come up repeatedly:

The bus system is pretty good - a few years back MSU integrated all their busses with the CATA system, which operates city-wide. There's a brand new bus terminal right in the center of campus, and from there it connects all over EL, Lansing, and the other nearby suburbs, including the large mall and Meijer (like a midwestern Walmart) next door in Okemos. It's actually a very good bus system, everything is clean and they have quite a few hybrid busses, and won some national awards recently.

I found when I rode it in undergrad that the timing wasn't always as reliable as I would have liked, especially the heavily-frequented route that runs north up Abbot road to the new apartment complexs like Chandler Crossing. It's was good enough - you just wouldn't want to rely on it to get you somewhere important on time, without any leeway.

There's a ton of parking ramps - more than seems to make sense to me! They're fine for one-off parking, but not very reasonable if you were planning to do it regularly. You wont have trouble getting parking spaces if you do decide to foot the cost though.

Also, someone asked about health food stores or farmer's markets. There are two relatively close stores and one co-op to campus that I used to visit. The Foods for Living is particularly nice, and is reachable by bus or bike, or even a long walk if you live on the east side of campus.

http://www.thebetterhealthstore.com/stores/lansing-east/index.asp

http://www.foodsforliving.com/retailer/store_templates/shell_id_1.asp?storeID=F491B142FA784F2CBDF1E053A643A6A7

http://elfco.coop/

There's also a nice farmer's market that's only a short bus ride/drive or a decent bike ride away, which has the advantage of being right next to the aforementioned mall and the Meijer:

http://www.meridian.mi.us/index.asp?Type=B_BASIC&SEC={FBDDD477-61D6-4BC4-8CAD-81DAA4BB9692}

Let me know if anyone has other questions, I lived in the area for over 20 years. :)

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Hi! I am hoping some people still frequent this area! I am considering MSU for grad school this fall and had a couple of questions:

 

- What is the culture of renting like? For instance: are there lots of rental houses, or mostly apartments? Is it easy to find places that would rent to a married couple with two cats and a medium sized border colie-ish dog? What are rents like? Do people find rental homes mostly through Craigslist, relators, word of mouth, the newspaper, signs in yards, etc.

 

-Do there seem to be many companies that would need IT people?

 

-Is it a dog friendly town?

 

-Is the comic book store of a decent size?

 

-Are there any areas of town where you absolutely wouldn't live?

 

-Is there anything I should be asking that I don't know to ask?

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Hi!  I'm planning on attending MSU next fall, and I'm currently looking for an apartment.  Specifically, I'm looking for a quiet, dog-friendly one within biking distance of campus.  So far, I've found Tammany Hills, Timber Lake, Nemoke Trails, and Homestead.  Unfortunately, I can't afford to visit them in person.  Does anybody have any experience with any of them?  Thanks for your time!

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Please keep this topic alive,

me and my wife are also going to reside in east lansing for five years and we will come from abroad.

Any suggestion related to where to live will be appreciated :)

Because the grant that I acquire is 1450 $ per month, unfortunately we can only afford at most nearly $600 for rent we guess...

So is it possible to live with the rest of the money in east lansing with 2 person? ($850)

 

-Most importantly, can you please also share information about the average bills of the electricty/heating/water? are they to expensive? (for example heating costs 200$ in winters, electricity generally costs $80 etc...)

 

Thank you!

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MSU was one of the schools I visited recently, so I can only offer the benefit of three days worth of knowledge. cemelokko, you shouldn't have any problems living off your grant. Prices seem really low compared to most of the other cities. I didn't really get a sense of which might be the best area to live in, but I suggest trying Craigslist or http://offcampushousing.msu.edu/ as options in your housing search. Good luck.

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Thank you very much Keephopealive.

 

I do not know whether there is big differences for bills between states but can you also share your thought that what is average electricity bill for a two person family do you think? (If you lived in a similar climate like east lansing (or not), can you also guess what will be the heating cost approx.? )

 

Thanks again!

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You might also want to try looking in Lansing rather than East Lansing. I didn't pay for heat in my apartment complex (Westbay Club), and it sounded like this was the case at other places in Lansing as well, although I don't know how widespread this is.

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I also live in Lansing, close to the East Lansing line, and I don't pay for heat either. 

 

I can't speak to the electric bill for a family, but as one person in a one-bedroom apartment, my bill is usually $30 - $35 per month. I have my laptop plugged in most of the time, and I use my TV most days, but I tend to keep my lights off unless I'm eating or doing work in that room. Also, my stove is electric, but I only do the most basic cooking. My highest bill was $50 in August when I had the A/C on pretty much every day. 

Edited by Pitangus

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Hi!  I'm planning on attending MSU next fall, and I'm currently looking for an apartment.  Specifically, I'm looking for a quiet, dog-friendly one within biking distance of campus.  So far, I've found Tammany Hills, Timber Lake, Nemoke Trails, and Homestead.  Unfortunately, I can't afford to visit them in person.  Does anybody have any experience with any of them?  Thanks for your time!

 

Nemoke Trails is very far from campus, you would need a car for pretty much everything. Tammany Hills is south of the main part of campus, near all the farms. It is a quiet area and nice, but pretty far from any of the East Lansing bars, restaurants, or grocery stores, and is also pretty far from important campus buildings - campus is huge. Timberlake and Homestead are very close to major grocery stores, a shopping center, and a movie theater, close to major bus routes, and relatively close to campus - in the summer it would definitely be biking distance, but in the winter you would probably want to drive.

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Hello all,

 

I'm about 2 years removed from my time in EL, but I did all 4 years of my undergrad there and can say a few things about the city. Probably nothing ground-breaking, but the perspective of a Spartan may be helpful.

 

Transportation: CATA runs the MSU buses, and connects to a station in the middle of campus. The MSU bus lines are very convenient, and you will become accustomed to taking them. The campus is literally the largest by sheer physical size in the US. Parking can be an issue, passes are expensive, and spots on the interior of campus are hard to come by. Plenty of parking on the outside of the campus, but it is a giant block of a campus. Not spread out over the city. So, taking the bus or biking is often the best solution.

 

Weather: If you're moving to the northern midwest from somewhere warm... I'm sorry. You'll be in MI. Expect below 0 F weather several times December-February. Generally, summer may not be "hot" in terms of raw degrees, but it's going to be humid. The joy of being surrounded by the great lakes. It will still get up to 100 F on occasion in the summer, yes, with high humidity.Generally, it stays below 90 though. Autumn and Spring are wonderful, very comfortable. Winter doesn't bother me, and mid-MI actually gets much less snow than other parts of the state since it's farther inland and gets less "lake effect snow". You'll become familiar with totally unpredictable weather due to the lakes. There's a certain charm to the unpredictability. I'm a Michigander and I'm used to it.

 

Campus: Most of it is tree-covered. Literally, a giant park. You'll love it, I promise.

 

People: Michiganders are kind of odd compared to what preconceptions about midwestern people usually are. Decades of high unemployment and a depressed economy have taken away a lot of "the friendly midwestern feel." We're perhaps a little more "east coast" than you may think. Very much a "what have you done for me lately" sort of feel. EL/Lansing is a pretty liberal area of the state. This doesn't mean that we aren't friendly, just not in the profusely polite sort of way. The students pretty friendly and definitely feel that they share a common bond. The student environment is generally a cooperative one, rather than a competitive one. If you shout "Go Green!" you will always get a "Go White!" back... regardless of where you say it around town. The students have a reputation as crazy partiers. This is only as true as you want it to be. It's a university with 45,000 students. Some are serious about school, some aren't. The same as anywhere else.

 

Sports/Campus Activities: MSU football and basketball is a huge boon to the local economy. The football games usually are sellouts. Basketball ALWAYS is. The fans are diehards. We were always quite mean to the opposing teams as well. Very much standard Big 10 in that respect. They usually get great entertainment at the Wharton Center as well (broadway plays, symphonies, etc.)

 

Nightlife: Most of the campus bars are dives. I like that sort of thing rather than clubs. They have those as well though. Food is affordable, drinks are usually cheap. Michigan has an incredible beer selection.

 

Housing: Rent is cheap, but the nicest places are taken really really early every year. 6 months or so before move-ins. The area north of campus is actually a nice area. As opposed to most "Student ghettos"

 

Lansing has some rough areas, but EL is quite a nice town. I have no complaints from my time there. Loved every minute of it. I can answer any questions you might have.

Edited by groverj3

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Hi everyone! Sorry for this odd question but I have to ask this!

did anyone live in a mobile home in lansing (or in a cold climate like lansing)? How much does heating costs for these apartments? It is interesting to see that house prices in lansing seems to be good if you have some saving.

I will be there for my ph.d and instead of givind 650$ per month to 1-1 houses for 5 years it would be better to give 350 dolar per month for 15 years for me especially for my income.

If we will leave, we can sell it half the price and still profit! What do you think?

I am looking for mobile homes that built after 1976 (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Code took effect in 1976).

Oh, one more question,do we have any chance to escape to anywhere if a tornado appears and how likely to see this? :D  (http://www.homefacts.com/tornadoes/Michigan/Clinton-County/East-Lansing.html)

(I am a visiting scholar and also anyone know anything about mortgage for foreigners?)

Thank you for your patience for these absurd kind of questions :)

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Hi everyone! Sorry for this odd question but I have to ask this!

did anyone live in a mobile home in lansing (or in a cold climate like lansing)? How much does heating costs for these apartments? It is interesting to see that house prices in lansing seems to be good if you have some saving.

I will be there for my ph.d and instead of givind 650$ per month to 1-1 houses for 5 years it would be better to give 350 dolar per month for 15 years for me especially for my income.

If we will leave, we can sell it half the price and still profit! What do you think?

I am looking for mobile homes that built after 1976 (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Code took effect in 1976).

Oh, one more question,do we have any chance to escape to anywhere if a tornado appears and how likely to see this? :D  (http://www.homefacts.com/tornadoes/Michigan/Clinton-County/East-Lansing.html)

(I am a visiting scholar and also anyone know anything about mortgage for foreigners?)

Thank you for your patience for these absurd kind of questions :)

 

This isn't something I've ever investigated. However, one thing to be aware of with mobile home communities (aka, Trailer Parks) is that they are mostly a low-income housing option. While this isn't bad in and of itself, this does mean that many of the problems affecting low-income/unemployed people will be more prevalent. Things such as property crime/vandalism, drugs, etc... Now, just like anything else there are better communities which probably don't have these problems. It is possible you could make a small profit, but the value of mobile homes usually goes down over time. It could be a good option, just make sure you do your homework on it before-hand.

 

This may seem counter-intuitive, but I've always preferred living in apartments that cater to students. It might be loud sometimes, but usually complexes that cater to students do a better job with maintenace. Plus there are fewer shady people there, usually. Depending on your age though, this may not be all that appealing. As far as heating costs, you'll probably run the heater constantly from November-April. However, heating a small place isn't that expensive. I usually spend about $65 for combined electricity and gas in the winter here. Most companies include your gas for heating, and electricity in one bill. Some apartments include heat in your monthly rent, so you can just set it comfortably and not worry about paying for it.

 

There are tons of decent apartments in EL that I could steer you toward, and a few to avoid. Send me a message and I'll try to help you out, if interested.

 

Don't worry about tornadoes. I believe that one of two touched down there while I was in Lansing. None were big enough to cause any real damage, just knocked some tree branches down. Michigan doesn't have bad tornadoes, and while it's still a possibility, it would be very unlikely.

Edited by groverj3

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I was born and raised in Lansing and lived there until a couple years ago. I figured I'd chime on the thread.

 

If you have a car, you might want to look into some of the properties on the west side of Lansing. Specifically, I'm referring to those on west Michigan (Westbay Club, Plum Tree, Delta Square, Newberry) and those on Canal (Canal Club, Canal Club 2, etc). You're near really good supermarket options such as Meijer, Kroger, Horrock's (which has awesome fresh produce), and Aldi's; you're near the rather underwhelming Lansing Mall (which at least has a Best Buy); and you're far from the loud undergrad lifestyle one might find in the neighborhoods immediately north of MSU campus while still being at most 20 minutes from campus. Also, if you're bringing children they would be in the Waverly or Grand Ledge school districts. That all said, Lansing and (particularly the west part of Lansing) is about as unhip as it gets. For culture or entertainment, you're looking at going out in downtown Lansing (meh) or East Lansing (beware the undergrad bars, unless that's your thing). If you're coming from a non-Midwestern large town, let me recommend to you now to plan some trips to Detroit (DIA, DSO, major sports and concerts), Ann Arbor (our little pocket of the East Coast in Michigan!), or Grand Rapids for fun. I repeat - the Lansing area, for all of its wonderful qualities, is not hip.

 

For those who are moving to Michigan and have never experienced upper Midwest weather, know that we get all four seasons. Be aware that you W-I-L-L be using your air conditioner if you have one from June through August, and you absolutely W-I-L-L have the heat on from December through February. Plan accordingly for slight bumps in your energy usage during those times.

 

I agree with groverj3 that the student ghetto neighborhoods north of campus aren't as shady as some you may find near other universities. However, I've found that if you're south of Saginaw Rd and west of Hagadorn Rd things can be noisy in the typical "undergrad area" way. There are developments north of Lake Lansing Rd that are all still relatively new (< 10 years) that are an option, but many of those tend to attract undergrads as well.

 

I also agree with groverj3 that most of the prime student-appropriate housing options are snatched up very early. Again, having a car opens up many options.

 

If you have any questions about the Lansing area, PM me. In particular, if you're thinking about moving to an area and you'd like a scouting report, I'd be happy to help. :)

 

edit - went crazy with commas and parentheses. Haven't had my coffee yet, oh wells.

Edited by 33andathirdRPM

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Anyone know anything about Akers hall or Williams hall?

I lived in Akers hall as an undergrad, but I'm not sure what it would be like living there as a grad student. 

Pros: Good-sized dorms (I lived in a four-person dorm that had a separate living space)

          Access to the Hubbard caf, which has some pretty great caf food, in my opinion

Cons: Might be pretty noisy if you're considering it for grad school. It is mainly an undergrad dorm, and the undergrads at MSU love to party 24-7.

          It's located on the edge of campus, so depending on where your classes are located, it could be up to 30 min. walk. MSU does have CATA buses that travel             within and off campus, but they fill up quickly.  

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