6 Tips for Living on a Budget for Those New to Los Angeles

Posted March 24, 2020 by in Lifestyle

Known as the “City of Angels”, Los Angeles is a large, booming, and beautiful place for many to call home. Everyone knows it for the television and film industry, but there is a lot more to Los Angeles than meets the eye. It also manages to bridge that mix between a coastal beach city and a booming downtown metropolis with ease. 

However, for all its amazing qualities, it does have its downfalls – one of which is the cost of living. Los Angeles is consistently rated among the top 10 most expensive cities to live in within the United States. For newcomers to Los Angeles who haven’t done their research yet, the cost of living can come as a real shock and leave you wondering how exactly you will go about living on a tight budget. 

To make your move to Los Angeles a little smoother, we’ve gone ahead and compiled a list of tips that can help save you money and make it possible to stick to a budget:

new to los angeles

Consider a Furnished Apartment

One of the biggest expenses you’ll encounter when relocating to Los Angeles is furnishing your home or apartment. Even if this is just a temporary move for work, you’re still going to need to buy the basics in order for your place to be comfortable and functional. All of these items will add up costs quickly and can send you over budget in no time. Even if you weren’t planning on purchasing all new items, then you’d need to pay for the cost to move your existing items to your new place in Los Angeles – which is a major expense all in itself.

So, what’s the solution? Consider looking into the kinds of furnished apartments that Los Angeles has to offer, such as those available from Blueground. Their properties come fully furnished and equipped with all the appliances you need to live from day one.  Meaning you don’t have to worry about buying or transporting things like furniture, décor, and even simple things like dishes and cookware. The idea is that you can stay in LA, rent a Blueground property, and feel completely at home and relaxed right away.

Not only will you be able to check all those items off your shopping list and avoid moving expenses, but you’ll also have much less stress and hassle on your plate. You could also look into finding a furnished sublet while you get settled. Once you get used to your new city, you can then find your own place. 

boho chic decor los angeles

Skip the Expensive Gym Membership

If you’re the type that enjoys working out and being part of a gym, Los Angeles can offer you a cheaper alternative. Rather than signing up for that expensive gym membership, why not take advantage of thhe natural landscape of the city and use it as your gym?

You can engage in swimming, surfing, running, hiking, biking, and so many other activities that don’t have to cost anything.

Glendale Hike Los Angeles, CA

Get into the Habit of Cooking Your Meals

It’s really easy to grab a bite to eat for lunch and dinner each day, as Los Angeles certainly has no shortage of restaurants. The problem with dining out all the time is that it can make a real dent in your monthly budget.

A cheaper and frankly healthier option is to get into the habit of preparing your own meals at home. You can also make enough to pack your own lunch to take to work, thereby curbing that impulse to grab take-out.

Look into All Means of Transport

Many people move to Los Angeles expecting they will own a car and drive everywhere. While that is certainly fine, it may not take you long to realize that parking isn’t exactly cheap. It may make more sense to use the public transit system, Uber, or even start walking/biking to and from work if possible.

After living in LA for over a month without a car, I have found that it is absolutely doable.

View of Hollywood Sign

Plenty of Budget-Friendly Entertainment Options

Where Los Angeles really shines is its entertainment scene and the fact that you can find so many budget-friendly things to do. You’ll find everything from cheap nights/days at local theaters, to comedy clubs, rooftop bars, art shows, and even festivals/events that can be very affordable.

The key is to find a source of information that you can refer to, giving you all the details on what’s happening and the cost of the events.

Two friends and I went to the Museum of Selfies and we all had a blast. 

Museum of Selfies in LA

Explore the Local Flea Markets

Who doesn’t love finding a great buy? It’s those great buys that you will find in abundance at the local flea markets. You can literally find all kinds of fabulous treasures for extremely affordable prices. In terms of what Los Angeles is known for, it tends to be a mecca for mid-century vintage items which are collectibles in many people’s eyes.

Melrose Trading Post

Go ahead and live it up in Los Angeles! By using these tips, you’ll be able to live in Los Angeles on a budget without having to make any major sacrifices to your lifestyle. 

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