Top 5 cheapest places to live in Los Angeles (2024)

Discover the 5 most affordable neighborhoods in Los Angeles to rent in without compromising on the livability, safety, entertainment, and transportation options.

Ivandzhelin

5 minute read
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Updated on 17 May 2024
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Searching for the cheapest places to live in Los Angeles can be such an easy task when you know where to look. We've curated a list of the top 5 most affordable neighborhoods in Los Angeles that strike the perfect balance between excellence and affordability. We focused on 3 key aspects:

  • Environment (e.g. farmer’s markets and places to unwind or socialize)
  • Quality of life (e.g. walkability, sense of community, access to parks or hiking trails)
  • Livability (e.g. rental costs, safety, connectivity)

Once you've narrowed down your options, you'll have an easier time finding houses for rent in Los Angeles that meet your tastes and budget.

What is the cheapest place to live in LA?

Los Angeles might have a high cost of living but it has plenty of affordable neighborhoods to live in. Below you can see the top 5 cheapest places to live in LA: 1. Panorama City and Pacoima 2. Larchmont Village 3. Carson 4. Long Beach 5. Koreatown

Let's dive deep into what makes them the best.

1. Panorama City and Pacoima

  • Neighborhood vibe: Tranquil and residential with scenic views of LA
  • Average rent: $1,571
  • Transportation: Both neighborhoods have access to the 5, 118, 405, and 210 freeways. Commuting to Downtown Los Angeles (DTLA) can take an hour during peak times, but efficient local public transport makes traveling within the neighborhoods easy.
  • Perfect for: Families with children

Nestled in the tranquil San Fernando Valley, Panorama City and Pacoima provide a reprieve from the city's hustle and bustle. While the cost of living in these areas is lower, it's worth noting that the commute to DTLA is around 25-40 minutes in good traffic conditions.

Here, you can enjoy scenic hikes, leisurely walks along tree-lined streets, or simply relax in one of the many city parks, such as Branford Park or Richie Valens Park. You'll be part of a tight-knit community and have a plethora of dining options, bars, and entertainment venues at your disposal. Panorama City and Pacoima also offer a range of great elementary and middle schools, making them ideal for families with younger children.

Renting in either of these neighborhoods offers affordable housing options and the chance to enjoy a skyline view of Los Angeles. The diverse architectural styles create a rich tapestry of living options. For the budget-conscious, private rooms are available for around $900 to $1,100 monthly. Studios typically cost around $1,595, while apartments range from $1,700 (1 bedroom) to $2,190 (2 bedroom).

2. Larchmont Village

  • Neighborhood vibe: Small-town vibe, central, safe place to live for cheap
  • Average rent: $2,028
  • Transportation: Only 12 mins to DTLA with easy access to the 101 and 10 freeway, and buses (10/48, 207, and DASH), and subway (B-line).
  • Perfect for: Families and young adults

Larchmont Village, nestled in Central LA between La Brea, Fairfax, and Beverly Boulevard, stands out as one of the most affordable neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Living in Larchmont, your commute will be shorter and cheaper because of its central location.

Here, you can become a part of a diverse community, explore Larchmont's vibrant farmer’s market, and even peruse LA’s oldest bookstore, Chevalier’s Books. Strolling through Burns Park or indulging in delightful treats from the Larchmont Village Wine Spirits & Cheese store are just a few of the leisurely activities you can savor in this charming neighborhood. Larchmont Village has several excellent schools and preschools, ensuring that families have access to quality education within easy reach.

One of the best neighborhoods in LA, Larchmont is safe, central and affordable. Private rooms range from $1,330 to $1,450 per month, while studios average around $1,550. Apartments provide various options, with one-bedroom units around $1,984 and two-bedroom for $4,263 monthly.

Carson

  • Neighborhood vibe: Residential, rich dining culture, family-friendly
  • Average rent: $1,600
  • Transportation: 45 mins to DTLA and 30 mins to Long Beach by car. Public transport within the area is divided into 2 bus routes – Route A and Route B – with connections to metro, Torrance and Long Beach transits, and GTrans
  • Perfect for: Families with children

Coming in at the third spot on our list of the cheapest places to live in Los Angeles is Carson, found on the south side of the city. Carson is mostly a residential neighborhood, offering a convenient commute to DTLA and Long Beach.

Carson stands out as one of the most affordable areas in LA, offering a diverse community and a vibrant cultural scene that's perfect for families. As a suburban neighborhood, Carson is well-equipped to meet the needs of families, boasting 19 schools, convenient supermarkets like Walmart and Target, numerous parks, playgrounds, and a variety of highly-rated restaurants. Some areas are rougher than others (around the neighborhood's northeast), but it’s safe overall.

For golf enthusiasts, Carson is the home of The Links at Victoria Golf Course, a large golf course where you can practice your swing any day of the week. This neighborhood is also the home of the LA Galaxy soccer team.

Carson proves to be a cost-effective option for living in LA, with room rentals ranging from $850 to $1,100. Studios come at an average monthly rent of $1,623. If you're in the market for an apartment, budgeting should typically fall within the range of $1,830 (1 bedroom) to $2,308 (2 bedroom) on a monthly basis.

Long Beach

  • Neighborhood vibe: Eclectic, casual, detached from the hustle and bustle of LA
  • Average rent: $1,525
  • Transportation: Around 40-80 minutes from DTLA and 60-120 minutes from Santa Monica with a range of public transportation within the area.
  • Perfect for: Young adults, families, retirees

Nestled along California's coast, Long Beach offers residents picturesque views of the Atlantic Ocean at an affordable price. The blend of industrial, urban, and residential spaces makes it the ideal neighborhood for young adults, families, and retirees.

If you’re looking for a cosmopolitan feel, explore rental options in Downtown Long Beach, whereas for an eclectic and casual vibe, go for East Village.

Long Beach has a remarkable array of amenities, including nearly a hundred schools, a vibrant nightlife scene with numerous bars, clubs, and jazz lounges, and a diverse selection of restaurants, ranging from upscale dining establishments to beloved taco trucks. It's also one of the dog-friendliest areas in California!

Rent prices vary depending on the area, but you can generally expect an average monthly rent of $1,000 for rooms, $1,362 for studios, and between $1,603 (1 bedroom) and $2,172 (2 bedroom) for apartments.

Koreatown

  • Neighborhood vibe: Eclectic Asian food, late nights, young vibe
  • Average rent: $1,733
  • Transportation: Easy access to 101 freeway through the Normandie onramp; 20-30 min to NoHo, Studio City, Burbank, and Silverlake by car. Parking can be a hurdle, but Ktown is walkable with connections to metro B-line and D-line and buses 14/37, 16/17/316, 204 and DASH.
  • Perfect for: Young adults, students

Koreatown (or Ktown), situated west of DTLA, between Central LA, Pico-Union, and Beverly Boulevard, offers the best of affordability and central location in Los Angeles.

With a lively nightlife, an abundance of exceptional dining options (we recommend starting with Dong Il Jang), and attractions like Chapman Market, Koreatown Plaza, and Korean supermarkets (the H-mart), Ktown is a young and exciting neighborhood.

Koreatown is an affordable LA neighborhood, perfect for urban-loving young adults. While it's dense and lacks green spaces, you can enjoy MacArthur Park, just a 30-minute walk away.

Ktown is one of the more affordable neighborhoods in LA when it comes to renting. If you’re living by yourself, you should look for either a private room averaging $1,100 or a studio if you want more space for $1,796 monthly. Renting an apartment is better if you've someone to split the price with, as rents go between $2,191 (1 bedroom) and $2,894 (2 bedroom).

Having the right tools makes finding an affordable neighborhood in Los Angeles easy. Use this guide to confidently choose a neighborhood to call home and start discovering rental homes in Los Angeles with HousingAnywhere.

This article is for informational purposes only.

Please reach out to content@housinganywhere.com if you have any suggestions or questions about the content on this page.

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