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Guest Ms. Geology

Buffalo, NY

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Thanks for posting, Liz86!

I'm moving to Buffalo around mid-August and I need to find a place to live sight unseen, which I've done many times before with varying outcomes.

I'm trying to research online about the different areas, but I can't seem to shake the desire to live on campus, even though it would cost almost half of my monthly budget! -$689-$750.

How did you find a place to live and a roommate? Did you use the UB off campus apartment search engine?

I have a car, but I'm worried about finding parking and the costs involved in parking on campus. I know that here at UNLV the oncampus parking is outrageous. I park in the housing area behind UNLV and walk the 10 minutes to campus.

I would rather just walk to school and only use the car for errands. Do you think that cheaper and far away is better than on campus and expensive?

I'm a phd student, so I expect to be a workaholic, but I'm worried about getting around at night in a place I don't know. Most of my classes are at night and that worries me.

For future posters, has anyone lived in an on campus apartment complex like Flickinger Court or an off campus apartment like Collegiate Village? Are they worth the cost?

Thank you!

Parking permit at UB is cheap. I guess it was $25 for a semester. Don't worry about it... and sometimes it's not easy to find a space, but if your classes are at night, then I bet you can always find a good spot near the academic complex.

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Just got accepted to SUNY Buffalo--so excited! So are the recommended neighborhoods still the same or have they changed much since last year? I'm looking for a decent apartment for my husband and I, preferably 2 bedroom (so we can have an office). I don't mind a bit of a commute to campus. Also...anything else I should know? Thanks so much!

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Congrats jmkyle! All this info is still relevant. I know that I wished I had someone to contact whenever I was in the process of relocating (I purchased a home), so if you have questions on down the line feel free to send me a PM. I happen to be in the Anthro department. =)

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So another town impossible to see without a car?

I was stuck with no life in suburbia in undergrad, hoping I'm not for grad school.

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i am from Asia, and i got my MS degree in SUNY buffalo almost 1 years ago. yes, it is poor, declining,violence, but they can't stop me loving this city! You could also live good with tide budget, but having car will help you know this city better:) Now i am living in Rome, the life here sucks for me, although you have wonderful public transportation, plenty of restaurant, cafe, bar and when i open the window, colosseum is there. But i still miss that wacky city, which give you the feeling of being home! To be honest, i travelled many main cities in Europe, North and South America, Buffalo is my best. Luckily, i got acceptant by phd program at buffalo again. I am so happy! ( that's only my opinion, many of my classmates hate there, and can't wait to leave).

As to live:

I lived around south campus for 1 year. ( house:250$ per room + utility)

pros: convenient for students without car. walking distant to: metro, south campus, tops, budway's( cheap)

cons; people always say' it is dangerous to live there' But i lived in the house with the broken door for one year, nothing bad happened. Most of the neighbors are black but with family ( W. northrup).

Specific: it is better not to live souther than Northrup except you have a car.

lived around Robert Dr in north tonawanda for 1 year. (apt:300$ per room+ electric, internet)

Pros:1. it is cheap, because the gas is included in the rent, so perfect in the longgggggg winter!

2. it is safe and it is neat the river, really enjoy when you drive home in the summer.

cons:1. kind of far from school, drive 6 miles to North campus.

Specific: there is some restaurant and bar within 1 miles. Lively band and Dj on weekend's night. feel safer than downtown.

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I have been accepted to SUN"Y Buffalo, M. Sc. in Physics.

I Plan to rent a unit in the North Campus Apartments (Flint Village, specifically).

It costs too much ($825, including utilities), but that's because I am not used to live in a room with someone I don't know.

Also I need my only bath, that's why I can't go to doubles which are cheaper...

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Any new thoughts on Buffalo? I grew up in another of the rustbelt cities so I'm pretty familiar with the weather and the general economic climate.

How good is the city and/or campus at dealing with all of the snow? If I end up in Buffalo, I'd like to be pretty close to campus if possible, but also somewhere that is affordable and offers a nice, vibrant community. I don't mind a bit of a commute, but despite where I grew up, I'm not really used to driving in intense snow conditions. 

Any other information? Where do most of the grad students live?

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Buffalo is honestly not that bad of a city, despite everyone's opinions (most of whom haven't even been there). Sure there's some run down parts, but the same can be the said even for the NYC area. Also the city itself is on the rise economically, a lot of banking and a growing healthcare sector is bringing a lot of new jobs in. With that being said, you won't even be near the city itself (assuming you are an English major) as UB's main campus is in nearby Amherst, NY, a very wealthy, populated, and upbeat suburb, about 20 min from the actual city. In terms of weather, yeah it gets cold in the winters, but having grown up in upstate NY, I can attest Buffalo does not get nearly as much snow as neighboring rochester or syracuse do. The snow is mostly not a problem, the snow plow services are usually working 24/7 when there's a major snow storm. In terms of apartments/living, there's literally a billion places you could live, on campus and off. They're building new apartment complexes every year off campus, all of them within no more than a 5-7 min drive from north campus, most of which less than 5 min away. (UB has three campuses btw, north, south, and downtown). Rent can range anywhere from $300-$1000 a month depending on which you choose and if you want to live by yourself or not. There's also tons to do, 2 major league sports teams, a huge art community, and tons of bars (top 10 in the nation for # of bars per population). The city gets a bad rap, but UB is the top public research uni in the northeast so the school speaks for itself.

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I'm curious about how car-centric the SUNY-Buff. north campus is.  Since the school is in a suburb, I'm assuming that it's not particularly walkable.  Most of the places I'm seeing that I could afford on the initial stipend offer aren't really near campus.  Is it possible to get a decent, affordable apartment within, say, a 20-30 minute bike ride?

 

I have a car, but I don't like driving, and I'd like to avoid it.

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It is awesome that I found this thread. I received an offer for a PhD in History from Buffalo the other day and I'm so interested in learning more about the city. I have been reading through all the posts but I'm still really curious whether it is necessary to get a car to live in Buffalo, and if I buy a car, is it convenient to deal with there? 

 

I have not officially started to look for apartment or anything but I feel relieved to see from most of the feedback that the rent is low. I have no idea where the grad school of arts and science located. Where do you think is the best neighborhood for students to live in Buffalo on a very reasonable budget? I actually prefer somewhere within walking distance to campus, and convenient transportation to downtown (with a lot of bookstores and coffee shops ! I'm a huge fan of those) 

 

Any future Historians joining next year's cohort at Buffalo? 

 

Thanks guy for your information and feedback !  

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I'll try to help, as I was in Buffalo for almost a year.  I didn't have a car.  If I had stayed longer, I definitely would've gotten one.  However, for short term, you can def. manage without.  The shuttle btwn north and south campus is flawless.  It runs regularly.  There's also a shuttle between south campus and the Wegman's supermarket (if you're not from the area, definitely aim to food shop here...love wegman's!).  I did have 2 friends with cars and never heard any complaints about that.  So, I'm assuming both the campus and city are pretty car-friendly.  I'm also assuming that the history department is on North campus.  As a car-less student, I only considered housing complexes with shuttle service.  So, I can't speak to (non-complex) rents in the area.  I do remember that people recommended renting rooms in houses closer to north campus as opposed to south.  If you're not afraid to spend a little more $, A LOT of students like living in Elmwood.  HTH, maybe someone more familiar w/ the area can jump in.

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I'll try to help, as I was in Buffalo for almost a year.  I didn't have a car.  If I had stayed longer, I definitely would've gotten one.  However, for short term, you can def. manage without.  The shuttle btwn north and south campus is flawless.  It runs regularly.  There's also a shuttle between south campus and the Wegman's supermarket (if you're not from the area, definitely aim to food shop here...love wegman's!).  I did have 2 friends with cars and never heard any complaints about that.  So, I'm assuming both the campus and city are pretty car-friendly.  I'm also assuming that the history department is on North campus.  As a car-less student, I only considered housing complexes with shuttle service.  So, I can't speak to (non-complex) rents in the area.  I do remember that people recommended renting rooms in houses closer to north campus as opposed to south.  If you're not afraid to spend a little more $, A LOT of students like living in Elmwood.  HTH, maybe someone more familiar w/ the area can jump in.

 

This is great information. I appreciate it! Is Elmwood close to everything? Is there a bus that runs from North Campus to downtown, and other interesting places? 

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This is great information. I appreciate it! Is Elmwood close to everything? Is there a bus that runs from North Campus to downtown, and other interesting places? 

Maybe there's a more direct route, but from my experience it may've been a 15min drive from S. campus?  You def. need a car if you want to reside there.  Oh, and Elmwood is in Buffalo...it's a village within it.  Maybe I didn't make that clear.

I'm from NYC, so I'm probably biased, but I didn't think the downtown part of the city had much to offer...period.  My family stayed at the Buffalo Hyatt (at the heart of downtown) and they were very disappointed w/ the surroundings.  To be honest, I was shocked...I couldn't believe that that was "downtown".  So, no there's no shuttle that takes you there.  You'd just have to do normal, public transportation or drive.  IMO, Elmwood was the only interesting spot.  Cute shops, small restaurants...quaint, nice feel.  Downtown Buffalo to me = cold, barren, blah.  Oh, and I think Elmwood is near one of the museums in the area (huge plus!).

Let me be clear, there are other areas in the city where you can happily live, but just know you'll mostly be sleeping there.  You can't roll out and hit some cute shops on the way home.  From what I saw, that was the province of Elmwood (and perhaps another small part of the city I don't know about???).  Oh, and north campus has its own little hub.  It has a CVS, bank, various restaurants.  So, it might be nice to live close to that.

Edited by Chai_latte

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I was just offered a fellowship for an American Studies PhD at Buffalo. I'm curious about renting with a pit bull type dog who is super friendly, loving, and submissive.

Hey congrats ! Did you apply from the History Department ? 

 

 

 

Maybe there's a more direct route, but from my experience it may've been a 15min drive from S. campus?  You def. need a car if you want to reside there.  Oh, and Elmwood is in Buffalo...it's a village within it.  Maybe I didn't make that clear.

I'm from NYC, so I'm probably biased, but I didn't think the downtown part of the city had much to offer...period.  My family stayed at the Buffalo Hyatt (at the heart of downtown) and they were very disappointed w/ the surroundings.  To be honest, I was shocked...I couldn't believe that that was "downtown".  So, no there's no shuttle that takes you there.  You'd just have to do normal, public transportation or drive.  IMO, Elmwood was the only interesting spot.  Cute shops, small restaurants...quaint, nice feel.  Downtown Buffalo to me = cold, barren, blah.  Oh, and I think Elmwood is near one of the museums in the area (huge plus!).

Let me be clear, there are other areas in the city where you can happily live, but just know you'll mostly be sleeping there.  You can't roll out and hit some cute shops on the way home.  From what I saw, that was the province of Elmwood (and perhaps another small part of the city I don't know about???).  Oh, and north campus has its own little hub.  It has a CVS, bank, various restaurants.  So, it might be nice to live close to that.

 

Thank you for your elaboration! I'm a history person so I really enjoy museum. Elmwood seems like a good choice. As long as it has good restaurants around, some bookstores, and maybe some cute coffee shops for me to sit in and just enjoy the atmosphere, I will be basically happy. How do you cope with the weather at Buffalo? I went to college in the Midwest (very close to Chicago) so I have to bear the whimsical Midwest weather these 4 years. It can rain the morning and then snow at night. But at least the temperature never falls too low. I'm a bit concerned about the coldness...

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Hey congrats ! Did you apply from the History Department ? 

The American Studies program is actually through the Transnational Studies department, but I'm sure there is overlap with the big emphasis on interdisciplinary scholarship. What's your focus?

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The American Studies program is actually through the Transnational Studies department, but I'm sure there is overlap with the big emphasis on interdisciplinary scholarship. What's your focus?

Mine is on Modern China/East Asia. The transnational department is great. I almost applied to the Global Gender Studies program which is also in the transnational department. Have you made the final decisions or you are still waiting? I'm researching more on the city as I'm curious about where I'm gonna spend the next few years living.

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My focus is Native American studies, lit, & language. I still have a couple schools to hear from but this program is one of my top choices. I only hear good things about the city. Ani DiFranco moved back from NYC, so that's gotta say something, lol.

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@getitlow: http://www.city-data.com/forum/buffalo-area/592435-elmwood-village-buffalo-ny.html

You'll see some youtube vids of elmwood if you click on the link.  What you see, IMO, is pretty true to form. 

Weather: you're not from the south or the tropics, so I think you'll deal.  Wear a warm coat, get a quality pair of (warm) boots for the snow.  Add on a hat, gloves, scarf and you'll be fine.  Really.  It's not so bad.  You will have the "lake effect" = extra cold/damp.  But, it is doable.  P.S. the city does a good job clearing snow.  P.P.S. No snow days :-( 

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@getitlow: http://www.city-data.com/forum/buffalo-area/592435-elmwood-village-buffalo-ny.html

You'll see some youtube vids of elmwood if you click on the link.  What you see, IMO, is pretty true to form. 

Weather: you're not from the south or the tropics, so I think you'll deal.  Wear a warm coat, get a quality pair of (warm) boots for the snow.  Add on a hat, gloves, scarf and you'll be fine.  Really.  It's not so bad.  You will have the "lake effect" = extra cold/damp.  But, it is doable.  P.S. the city does a good job clearing snow.  P.P.S. No snow days :-( 

Thank you so much for the videos! It feels really neat, organized and peaceful there. Elmwood looks like a great area to live in. I will definitely take this into consideration when looking for apartment. your information on the snow makes me relieved. In the Midwest, snow clearing is sometimes horrible. The weather is fickle so snow is going to melt before the clearing service jumps in and I really hate that ! 

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Mine is on Modern China/East Asia. The transnational department is great. I almost applied to the Global Gender Studies program which is also in the transnational department. Have you made the final decisions or you are still waiting? I'm researching more on the city as I'm curious about where I'm gonna spend the next few years living.

Sorry, I never answered your question! I'm still waiting on a couple schools but very interested in UB. Looks like you're still waiting, too?

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Sorry, I never answered your question! I'm still waiting on a couple schools but very interested in UB. Looks like you're still waiting, too?

I will be waiting until Mid-March, but I will consider UB very highly because the department has a professor who is very prominent in what I want to research on, plus the utility of the city and everything. Do you think UB has a prospect's weekend or something for admits to go visit the school before making enrollment decision?   

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I haven't heard anything about one. I was planning on looking into it, so if I hear anything I'll let you know.

I also forgot to ask. Did you receive official notification of admission, or just email ? it seems like they are still preparing for those and for me it takes like forever. I know I'm a little impatient :( 

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I also forgot to ask. Did you receive official notification of admission, or just email ? it seems like they are still preparing for those and for me it takes like forever. I know I'm a little impatient :(

I received an email from the grad school with a letter attached with my offer that I am supposed to sign and return when I decide. A few days later, I received another email from the department informing me of another future email that I received a few days after that with paperwork from the department. I also received a generated email from my website status being changed on that same day. Yesterday, I finally got my official letter from postal mail, which was the exact same thing that was attached to the first email.

 

Hope that makes sense...still having my morning coffee.

 

I know how you feel--I don't like any loose ends or anything up in the air. Hope you receive it soon!

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