Columbia 1Ls taking questions

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
User avatar
piccolittle
Posts: 1118
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 4:16 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby piccolittle » Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:22 am

Lem37 wrote: Honestly, I don't know where you'll find the time during school to even go home 3-4 times a week to ride your horse.


Thanks so much for your input! This is also something I worry about. :(

User avatar
Lem37
Posts: 395
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 3:50 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Lem37 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:27 am

piccolittle wrote:
Lem37 wrote: Honestly, I don't know where you'll find the time during school to even go home 3-4 times a week to ride your horse.


Thanks so much for your input! This is also something I worry about. :(


I really don't want to be the bearer of bad news here, but I do want to give you a realistic picture of life as a law student. My family also lives an hour and a half away (in New Jersey). I try to visit them at least once a month, and only on the weekends. Key word in that sentence is "try" - I've had to cancel plenty of trips due to conflicts with my work here.

User avatar
CG614
Posts: 825
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 10:26 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby CG614 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 8:51 pm

Lem37 wrote:
piccolittle wrote:
Lem37 wrote: Honestly, I don't know where you'll find the time during school to even go home 3-4 times a week to ride your horse.


Thanks so much for your input! This is also something I worry about. :(


I really don't want to be the bearer of bad news here, but I do want to give you a realistic picture of life as a law student. My family also lives an hour and a half away (in New Jersey). I try to visit them at least once a month, and only on the weekends. Key word in that sentence is "try" - I've had to cancel plenty of trips due to conflicts with my work here.



Seconded. My mom lives in NJ and complains that I visited more when I lived in DC, prior to starting law school. It's not at all bad, it is just time consuming.

User avatar
jtemp320
Posts: 481
Joined: Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:27 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby jtemp320 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 9:00 pm

Hi,
I just wanted to say I've decided I will be at CLS next year and really appreciate you all taking time to answer questions and am looking forward to meeting you.

Two quick questions:

If you live in unfurnished apartments and got furniture off Craigslist - were bedbugs a worry?

Do any of you have bikes? Does it seem practical to have one?

User avatar
Zabini
Posts: 210
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:45 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Zabini » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:48 pm

Tagging this thread, just got in a second ago!

viking138
Posts: 223
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 7:55 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby viking138 » Sat Apr 16, 2011 9:02 pm

jtemp320 wrote:Hi,
I just wanted to say I've decided I will be at CLS next year and really appreciate you all taking time to answer questions and am looking forward to meeting you.

Two quick questions:

If you live in unfurnished apartments and got furniture off Craigslist - were bedbugs a worry?

Do any of you have bikes? Does it seem practical to have one?


I haven't gotten anything off Craigslist because of just that worry, but cost was less of an issue because my BF had a signing bonus so we could "splurge" a bit more (looking forward to the days when IKEA is not a splurge!). I know people who have gotten things from Craigslist and had no issues from what I've heard.

I would never feel comfortable biking in Manhattan streets, but that's just me. However, my BF and I are going to buy bikes now that the weather is getting nice so we can ride in Riverside Park and Central Park.

User avatar
Lem37
Posts: 395
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 3:50 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Lem37 » Sat Apr 16, 2011 9:34 pm

jtemp320 wrote:Hi,
I just wanted to say I've decided I will be at CLS next year and really appreciate you all taking time to answer questions and am looking forward to meeting you.

Two quick questions:

If you live in unfurnished apartments and got furniture off Craigslist - were bedbugs a worry?

Do any of you have bikes? Does it seem practical to have one?


So I never get furniture off Craiglist for that very reason. Plus, I've found that IKEA is so cheap that I basically buy from there. No risk of bedbugs + free shipping + new rather than used + cheap Swedish stuff = comes out about even for me.

Define "practical." Lots of people I know have bikes for recreational purposes, but we live really close to the law school (like, 5 minutes) so I really don't need a bike per se. Furthermore, since I only go downtown to drink or shop (usually both), and biking while drunk and carrying bags is a pain, it just doesn't fit into my lifestyle. Plus, I <3 the NYC subway system!

User avatar
Zabini
Posts: 210
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:45 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Zabini » Sun Apr 17, 2011 3:30 am

Wondering if there are any people out there who can comment on the best ways to find non-UAH housing? Someone said the apartments being advertised now are looking for move-in dates next month...is this true and if so is there any point in looking before june/july? Any advice is appreciated, this'll be my first time living in a real people apartment.

User avatar
swc65
Posts: 1003
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 11:27 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby swc65 » Sun Apr 17, 2011 8:35 pm

Zabini wrote:Wondering if there are any people out there who can comment on the best ways to find non-UAH housing? Someone said the apartments being advertised now are looking for move-in dates next month...is this true and if so is there any point in looking before june/july? Any advice is appreciated, this'll be my first time living in a real people apartment.



Apartments here go really quickly, so looking now for august is probably pointless.

If you're not going to use a broker (and I would recommend skipping them- they're pricey), you have to figure out your budget, how far you're willing to live from the school, and what neighborhood characteristics are most essential to you. Then go talk to someone who has been through the process and get help. It's just better to use someone's network to find a place. Also, UAH housing is kind of a rip off. It's more expensive than the surrounding area (morningside specifically) and you don't anymore for your money- other than not having to find you own place.

User avatar
Lem37
Posts: 395
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 3:50 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Lem37 » Sun Apr 17, 2011 9:11 pm

swc65 wrote: Also, UAH housing is kind of a rip off. It's more expensive than the surrounding area (morningside specifically) and you don't anymore for your money- other than not having to find you own place.


As someone who lived in NYC prior to law school and currently lives in UAH housing, I don't agree with this. Particularly since utilities (gas, heat, electric) are included in the rent and I live about five minutes from the law school. Even barring those two significant aspects of UAH housing, the hassle of finding an apartment two weeks before you have to move in is not worth it to me.

imchuckbass58
Posts: 1245
Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 3:24 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby imchuckbass58 » Mon Apr 18, 2011 12:48 am

Lem37 wrote:
swc65 wrote: Also, UAH housing is kind of a rip off. It's more expensive than the surrounding area (morningside specifically) and you don't anymore for your money- other than not having to find you own place.


As someone who lived in NYC prior to law school and currently lives in UAH housing, I don't agree with this. Particularly since utilities (gas, heat, electric) are included in the rent and I live about five minutes from the law school. Even barring those two significant aspects of UAH housing, the hassle of finding an apartment two weeks before you have to move in is not worth it to me.


I'm inclined to agree with swc, having lived in at least 4 NYC apartments in my time. UAH may be pretty cheap if you choose one of the shares, but in terms of value for the money, most UAH housing is a rip off.

I am paying slightly more than what you would pay for the 115th street shares (me and my roomates' rent averages $1100/person) and I live (1) 1 block from an express stop, (2) in a doorman building, (3) in a 21st floor apt with a balcony, (4) with a newly renovated kitchen and bathroom with stainless steel appliances. Our rooms are also slightly bigger than 115th shares. Sure, you can get a UAH share for less, but it will be (1) in a low-rise building, (2) no doorman, (3) with considerably less fit and finish (worn paint/walls, older appliances, old windows, etc). Several of my friends off-campus in walkups in the 96th-110th area and pay comparable rates for much better apartments. Forget about Lenfest and Lionsgate.

The only good reason to live in UAH housing IMO is:
-You don't want to have to go through the hassle of finding housing in New York (note to anyone not from New York: this is much harder than you think)
-You absolutely must be within 5 blocks of the law school.

Also, gas and heat have to be included in rent by law in New York, and our electric bill works out to $15-$20/person/month.

Different strokes, different folks I guess, but if you are willing to spend a week pounding the pavement and tracking down listings you can do much better than UAH.

User avatar
hellome
Posts: 237
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 8:41 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby hellome » Mon Apr 18, 2011 4:04 am

imchuckbass58 wrote:
Lem37 wrote:
swc65 wrote: Also, UAH housing is kind of a rip off. It's more expensive than the surrounding area (morningside specifically) and you don't anymore for your money- other than not having to find you own place.


As someone who lived in NYC prior to law school and currently lives in UAH housing, I don't agree with this. Particularly since utilities (gas, heat, electric) are included in the rent and I live about five minutes from the law school. Even barring those two significant aspects of UAH housing, the hassle of finding an apartment two weeks before you have to move in is not worth it to me.


I'm inclined to agree with swc, having lived in at least 4 NYC apartments in my time. UAH may be pretty cheap if you choose one of the shares, but in terms of value for the money, most UAH housing is a rip off.

I am paying slightly more than what you would pay for the 115th street shares (me and my roomates' rent averages $1100/person) and I live (1) 1 block from an express stop, (2) in a doorman building, (3) in a 21st floor apt with a balcony, (4) with a newly renovated kitchen and bathroom with stainless steel appliances. Our rooms are also slightly bigger than 115th shares. Sure, you can get a UAH share for less, but it will be (1) in a low-rise building, (2) no doorman, (3) with considerably less fit and finish (worn paint/walls, older appliances, old windows, etc). Several of my friends off-campus in walkups in the 96th-110th area and pay comparable rates for much better apartments. Forget about Lenfest and Lionsgate.

The only good reason to live in UAH housing IMO is:
-You don't want to have to go through the hassle of finding housing in New York (note to anyone not from New York: this is much harder than you think)
-You absolutely must be within 5 blocks of the law school.

Also, gas and heat have to be included in rent by law in New York, and our electric bill works out to $15-$20/person/month.

Different strokes, different folks I guess, but if you are willing to spend a week pounding the pavement and tracking down listings you can do much better than UAH.


Hm, interesting.
Would you say it's safe to arrive early August (around the 1st) to find an apartment (hopefully w/in a week)?

User avatar
CG614
Posts: 825
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 10:26 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby CG614 » Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:55 am

hellome wrote:
imchuckbass58 wrote:
Lem37 wrote:
swc65 wrote: Also, UAH housing is kind of a rip off. It's more expensive than the surrounding area (morningside specifically) and you don't anymore for your money- other than not having to find you own place.


As someone who lived in NYC prior to law school and currently lives in UAH housing, I don't agree with this. Particularly since utilities (gas, heat, electric) are included in the rent and I live about five minutes from the law school. Even barring those two significant aspects of UAH housing, the hassle of finding an apartment two weeks before you have to move in is not worth it to me.


I'm inclined to agree with swc, having lived in at least 4 NYC apartments in my time. UAH may be pretty cheap if you choose one of the shares, but in terms of value for the money, most UAH housing is a rip off.

I am paying slightly more than what you would pay for the 115th street shares (me and my roomates' rent averages $1100/person) and I live (1) 1 block from an express stop, (2) in a doorman building, (3) in a 21st floor apt with a balcony, (4) with a newly renovated kitchen and bathroom with stainless steel appliances. Our rooms are also slightly bigger than 115th shares. Sure, you can get a UAH share for less, but it will be (1) in a low-rise building, (2) no doorman, (3) with considerably less fit and finish (worn paint/walls, older appliances, old windows, etc). Several of my friends off-campus in walkups in the 96th-110th area and pay comparable rates for much better apartments. Forget about Lenfest and Lionsgate.

The only good reason to live in UAH housing IMO is:
-You don't want to have to go through the hassle of finding housing in New York (note to anyone not from New York: this is much harder than you think)
-You absolutely must be within 5 blocks of the law school.

Also, gas and heat have to be included in rent by law in New York, and our electric bill works out to $15-$20/person/month.

Different strokes, different folks I guess, but if you are willing to spend a week pounding the pavement and tracking down listings you can do much better than UAH.


Hm, interesting.
Would you say it's safe to arrive early August (around the 1st) to find an apartment (hopefully w/in a week)?


I would recommend 1L in UAH and then moving after, if you want. That is what I am doing. 1) It is nice to be so close while you are getting to know people and 2) you don't need that stress to start out.

AppsAbound
Posts: 88
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 12:04 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby AppsAbound » Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:34 am

I think that Lenfest and other studio/1 bdrm places are generally overpriced. If you get a share, I find that it tends to be a steal, and will be significantly cheaper than non UAH apartments. I suggest getting the share and waiting to see. And for whoever asked about furniture. I have furnished. Not attractive by any means, lots of ugly dorm things but it's nice not having to buy a whole bunch of furniture when you get here. I do not recommend getting things off Craigslist, or used in general unless you know the previous owner. Not worth the risk of bed bugs.

imchuckbass58
Posts: 1245
Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 3:24 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby imchuckbass58 » Mon Apr 18, 2011 11:46 am

hellome wrote:
Hm, interesting.
Would you say it's safe to arrive early August (around the 1st) to find an apartment (hopefully w/in a week)?


A week is cutting it pretty close. It's feasible, but dicey. You definitely can find an apartment in a week, the problem is that apartments start going 1 month to 1.5 months before the move-in date. If you need an immediate move-in, you'll find your options significantly constrained.

I think your case is one of those where it makes sense to do UAH, at least for the first year, then find your own place next year when you have more time to hunt.

User avatar
hellome
Posts: 237
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 8:41 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby hellome » Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:06 pm

imchuckbass58 wrote:
hellome wrote:
Hm, interesting.
Would you say it's safe to arrive early August (around the 1st) to find an apartment (hopefully w/in a week)?


A week is cutting it pretty close. It's feasible, but dicey. You definitely can find an apartment in a week, the problem is that apartments start going 1 month to 1.5 months before the move-in date. If you need an immediate move-in, you'll find your options significantly constrained.

I think your case is one of those where it makes sense to do UAH, at least for the first year, then find your own place next year when you have more time to hunt.


Thanks for the feedback!
UAH it is then :)

User avatar
Sogui
Posts: 621
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2009 12:32 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Sogui » Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:55 am

You really can't get a better deal than the shares IMO. With electricity/water/internet/heating/etc.. all included in rent, minimal fees, "flexibility" with payments (this is huge if you rely on financial aid to make rent payments, it came in really late this year).

My 2 roommates and I went looking for alternatives to UAH for 2L year and there was no clearly superior alternative. Lots of stuff in the same price range was farther away, had less floor space, didn't include utilities/internet/etc..., and wasn't maintained as well.

There were some comparable deals, but they always involved some kind of sacrifice that just wasn't worth it at the end of the day. Plus I love the 1-minute commute to class.

I'm by no means an expert in the NYC market yet, but to call UAH a "ripoff" I think is a bit excessive. On a side-note, it was a breeze finding sub-letters for the summer.

User avatar
Lem37
Posts: 395
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 3:50 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Lem37 » Thu Apr 21, 2011 10:29 am

Sogui wrote:You really can't get a better deal than the shares IMO. With electricity/water/internet/heating/etc.. all included in rent, minimal fees, "flexibility" with payments (this is huge if you rely on financial aid to make rent payments, it came in really late this year).

My 2 roommates and I went looking for alternatives to UAH for 2L year and there was no clearly superior alternative. Lots of stuff in the same price range was farther away, had less floor space, didn't include utilities/internet/etc..., and wasn't maintained as well.

There were some comparable deals, but they always involved some kind of sacrifice that just wasn't worth it at the end of the day. Plus I love the 1-minute commute to class.

I'm by no means an expert in the NYC market yet, but to call UAH a "ripoff" I think is a bit excessive. On a side-note, it was a breeze finding sub-letters for the summer.


This is all true. Plus, you'll save $104/month on a subway fees, since with UAH housing you'll be able to just walk 5 minutes to class. Maybe the OP was referring to Lenfest (which, IMO, is a ripoff). Also, my UAH apartment is refurbished by our super every year, so...yeah. Aside from having a doorman (which I'm fine without because I feel pretty safe around campus) and living in a low-rise apartment (which is fine with me, because I don't see the benefits of living in a high-rise aside from...maybe view? Or something?), UAH is the way to go. I'll be sad to leave my apartment next year, for sure.

User avatar
cardinals1989
Posts: 1191
Joined: Sat Jun 19, 2010 1:04 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby cardinals1989 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:18 am

So, a friend is offering me the possibility of sharing a nice house in Brooklyn-I would only be paying $350 a month. Considering how great this deal is, I was wondering-how feasible would the trip be between Brooklyn and MH? (I don't know what part of Brooklyn, so just assume it is somewhere in the middle, haha). I am also concerned about missing out on the social life of 1L year.

User avatar
Zabini
Posts: 210
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:45 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby Zabini » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:48 am

cardinals1989 wrote:So, a friend is offering me the possibility of sharing a nice house in Brooklyn-I would only be paying $350 a month. Considering how great this deal is, I was wondering-how feasible would the trip be between Brooklyn and MH? (I don't know what part of Brooklyn, so just assume it is somewhere in the middle, haha). I am also concerned about missing out on the social life of 1L year.


I can't speak to NYC specifically, but I had a somewhat similar experience to this when I studied abroad in London. My school (Kings) was in the heart of central London, but because I messed up my housing, I had to live in a house well into the outskirts (Zone 3, if anyone's familiar with the tube). I wouldn't recommend that lifestyle to anyone...withering away half your day (seemingly) on the subway, paying an arm and a leg on fares...it sucks. Your concern about social life is a good one too: even when you want to be social with people, it can be so hard to get the motivation to go all the way back home to change and drop off your school stuff and you feel so limited because you can only stay out as late as the subway will run.

And doing this for law school would be even tougher than my experience: you'd have to make the commute every single day, during rush hour. At least when I was in London, my classes were scheduled such that I could usually ride the tube at off-peak hours and have a place to sit and read rather than be sardined in with a trillion other people.
it

Obviously getting to live for $350/mo is a pretty sweet deal financially, but I wouldn't recommend it if you can afford not to.

bendurnotes4me
Posts: 77
Joined: Wed Jan 12, 2011 9:36 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby bendurnotes4me » Sun Apr 24, 2011 2:44 am

cardinals1989 wrote:So, a friend is offering me the possibility of sharing a nice house in Brooklyn-I would only be paying $350 a month. Considering how great this deal is, I was wondering-how feasible would the trip be between Brooklyn and MH? (I don't know what part of Brooklyn, so just assume it is somewhere in the middle, haha). I am also concerned about missing out on the social life of 1L year.


First, find out what part of Brooklyn - that are parts that would be doable but most wouldn't be worth it. Then, find out if the offer will still be available next year and wait till then.

User avatar
CG614
Posts: 825
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 10:26 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby CG614 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:08 am

cardinals1989 wrote:So, a friend is offering me the possibility of sharing a nice house in Brooklyn-I would only be paying $350 a month. Considering how great this deal is, I was wondering-how feasible would the trip be between Brooklyn and MH? (I don't know what part of Brooklyn, so just assume it is somewhere in the middle, haha). I am also concerned about missing out on the social life of 1L year.

I know a few people who commute from Brooklyn, not ideal, but doable. They don't miss out on the social life either. You just end up staying around the law school for longer hours on a typical day, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. You can get your work done while you wait for the social events to start. $350 is a good deal and may be in the zone of not being able to pass up. However, if you can afford it, I would recommend living close to campus, it will just be less stressful overall.

imchuckbass58
Posts: 1245
Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 3:24 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 11:02 am

cardinals1989 wrote:So, a friend is offering me the possibility of sharing a nice house in Brooklyn-I would only be paying $350 a month. Considering how great this deal is, I was wondering-how feasible would the trip be between Brooklyn and MH? (I don't know what part of Brooklyn, so just assume it is somewhere in the middle, haha). I am also concerned about missing out on the social life of 1L year.


You need to find out what part of Brooklyn. The commute could range from doable (45 minutes from somewhere like Brooklyn Heights) to completely unreasonable (closer to an hour and a half for many parts of Brooklyn).

But, you're looking at an absolute minimum commute of 45 minutes from the closest areas of Brooklyn (Williamsburg, Brooklyn Heights, etc).

lakerfanimal
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 1:22 am

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby lakerfanimal » Mon Apr 25, 2011 1:37 am

Lem37 wrote:
Sogui wrote:You really can't get a better deal than the shares IMO. With electricity/water/internet/heating/etc.. all included in rent, minimal fees, "flexibility" with payments (this is huge if you rely on financial aid to make rent payments, it came in really late this year).

My 2 roommates and I went looking for alternatives to UAH for 2L year and there was no clearly superior alternative. Lots of stuff in the same price range was farther away, had less floor space, didn't include utilities/internet/etc..., and wasn't maintained as well.

There were some comparable deals, but they always involved some kind of sacrifice that just wasn't worth it at the end of the day. Plus I love the 1-minute commute to class.

I'm by no means an expert in the NYC market yet, but to call UAH a "ripoff" I think is a bit excessive. On a side-note, it was a breeze finding sub-letters for the summer.


This is all true. Plus, you'll save $104/month on a subway fees, since with UAH housing you'll be able to just walk 5 minutes to class. Maybe the OP was referring to Lenfest (which, IMO, is a ripoff). Also, my UAH apartment is refurbished by our super every year, so...yeah. Aside from having a doorman (which I'm fine without because I feel pretty safe around campus) and living in a low-rise apartment (which is fine with me, because I don't see the benefits of living in a high-rise aside from...maybe view? Or something?), UAH is the way to go. I'll be sad to leave my apartment next year, for sure.


Very specific question but I've never lived in NYC before and don't know how not having a doorman works.. If you get large packages (cardboard boxes) how do you get them? Do the shipping companies like UPS just leave them at your building door?

Thanks!

User avatar
cardinals1989
Posts: 1191
Joined: Sat Jun 19, 2010 1:04 pm

Re: Columbia 1Ls taking questions

Postby cardinals1989 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 1:49 am

Thanks for the responses guys! I am just kind of baffled by the prospect of cutting rent costs to 1/3 or 1/4 the cost. It'ss be tough, but I'll probably end up near CLS for the convenience, for a year at least.




Return to “Ask a Law Student / Graduate”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests