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A Renters Guide to Highland Park

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All Renters Week long we'll be looking at some of the most happening rental neighborhoods in Los Angeles. We start today with Highland Park.

Highland Park real estate may be best known for its sea of flipped Craftsman bungalows with their tasteful paint jobs and horizontal fencing, but it's got a lively rental market, too. Nothing sums up the 'hood's hipster quotient better than this: a new local production of La bohème is trading the original's starving artists of 1840s Paris for graphic designers and fashionistas of modern-day Highland Park.

Who lives there: Mexican and Salvadoran families, young marrieds and new families priced out of Silver Lake and Echo Park, Occidental students and professors, comedian Marc Maron and his many cats, first wave gentrifiers who haven't moved on yet.

The neighborhood: Upscale shops, restaurants, and cafes continue to sprout along York Boulevard and Figueroa, and the historically Latino community is still a major presence, especially south of York. The old guard and the new arrivals have even engaged in some delicious comingling: horchata-based coffee drinks have been spotted in a few Highland Park cafes.

Highlights: Galco's Soda Pop Stop, an outpost of Scoops ice cream, La Estrella taco truck, bars The York and La Cuevita. Pasadena and Downtown are both a couple stops away on the Gold Line. Plus there's the Gold Line!

Rental stock: Primarily one- and two-bedroom units in buildings that range from the quite old to the merely not new. Think small Craftsman and late Victorian houses--especially in the Garvanza neighborhood east of Figueroa--as well as bungalows and low-rise apartment buildings. Not too much stucco.

Rent range: $650 for a single to $2,950 for a two-bedroom house.

Try it if: Mid-century is too modern for your tastes, you're looking for a neighborhood that hasn't yet been gentrified beyond recognition, you want to rent a tiny house.

Can spend a little more? Try: Echo Park, Silver Lake, South Pasadena

Want to spend a little less? Try: Elysian Valley, Montecito Heights

Sample rentals:
-- A sweet little--really little--single in a well maintained building in Garvanza for *$795
-- A live/work space with one bedroom and cement floors in a historic building for $1,750
-- A no-frills two-bedroom in a "New York-style" brick building for $1,200
-- Lovely two-bedroom Spanish house near Occidental for $2,950 --Eve Bachrach
· Renters Week 2012 [Curbed LA]