Law School Discussion

Blind Relocation

orky13

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Blind Relocation
« on: April 07, 2006, 12:07:55 PM »
I haven't decided yet, but I am an Ohioan considering moving out west, to Oregon or Washington depending on which schools still come through. Anyway, I am a bit apprehensive of the move, because it will involve fairly blindly choosing an apartment and hopefully a roommate or two. Does anyone know how you go about this? Is it 'safe' to choose a place on the internet? Has anyone else done a blind relocation? I don't have the time or $ to spend several weeks in a hotel while waiting to find the right place...

Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2006, 12:11:05 PM »
You can't afford not to travel out there, at least for a couple of days. Pick a cheap hotel, map out the apartments you want to look at, call to make sure someone will be available to show them to you the days you are there, and go.  The last thing you want to do is pick a place blind. There are way too many things that could go wrong.

BigRig

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Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2006, 12:13:52 PM »
Travel is absolutely necessary, especially considering that you're most likely only going to find employment in the region.  You must be certain you like that region before attending, which should take precedent over actually finding a place, which of course you'll want to see in person before signing a lease. Good luck!

orky13

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Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2006, 12:15:12 PM »
would a 3 day weekend be enough? I have no more vacation days at work :)

orky13

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Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2006, 12:21:32 PM »
Good thinking! I like that idea. I am all about narrowing the choices as much as possible from here. After all, I am going crazy with the law school decision and I only applied to 6 :)

Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2006, 12:50:16 PM »
I am guessing you are looking at Seattle and Lewis & Clark?  You can't go wrong with Seattle or Portland (especially Portland!), they are both fantastic places!  I would be more worried about living with someone you have never met or spent any time with.  Is is possible to go out there a month or so before school and sublet a place for a month while you look for a apt/roomie?  Craigslist is great for finding temp. summer sublets.  That would give you a chance to check out the area and make sure you get along with whoever you will be living with!

orky13

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Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2006, 12:56:10 PM »
Yes, you are indeed correct (Seattle is still reviewing apps from Mid February so I am thinking I will have to wait on their decision--my file went complete on 3/10.) That is a brilliant suggestion, re: subletting! I am trying to prolong my work though... hoping not to have to leave till August. If school started in September, though, I could sublet in August! Good point about the roommates. I am also considering Salem since I've already been admitted there.

Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2006, 01:08:39 PM »
I agree that you should not blindly choose an apartment. I had the misfortune of ending up in a complete dump because the person who was supposed to find an apartment for me did a crap job, and spent a few thousand dollars moving out because I simply could not stay there. You can really narrow it down a lot before you get there, so you'll only need a day or two to actually find a place. 

Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2006, 05:32:03 PM »
would a 3 day weekend be enough? I have no more vacation days at work :)

A 3 day weekend could work for you, as long as you mean taking one day off instead of using a holiday like the July 4th weekend.  In my experience, most apartment complexes run on business hours, so will be closed on weekends and holidays.

If you take a Sat/Sun/Mon trip (non-holiday weekend) you can spend Saturday and Sunday looking around the town and deciding on a few places you'd be interested in pursuing.  Monday you then have to travel between all of those places, inspect the rooms (if allowed) and get rental details (price, availability).  Leave enough time at the end of the day to get back to the place you plan on choosing, and sign the lease.

If you are a forward person, you can make the trip a little more effective.  On Saturday and Sunday as you are driving around and finding places you like, knock on a few apartment doors and ask to look around their apartment and if they'll tell you what their current rent is.  This will greatly help prevent you from losing time when you go around on Monday and someone tries to sell you on an overpriced dump of an apartment.  It does take a bit of guts to do it, though.

Re: Blind Relocation
« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2006, 05:40:00 PM »
I take it on-campus or law school affiliated housing isn't an option? I know a lot of others feel differently, but I personally hate worrying about that kind of stuff when you also have the stress of 1L. One nice thing about it is that there will be tons of other law students there who will be able to help you out and you also know that there's some accountability if it's affiliated with the school.