Would it be possible to find a 3 bd rm rental for 1200 in a decent neighborhood that isnt more than an hour and a half away from a beach for this price anywhere in either of these states? Crunchy communities ideal .
Looking for affordable rental options in washington and oregon....
Depends on where you look. You mention "decent neighborhood", but where? If your criteria is "an hour and a half", you've got wide open options in both states. And in WA, we've not only got the Pacific but also the Puget Sound and the Straight of Juan de Fuca as well.
"A beach"? What kind, sandy, rocky, one where you can swim? No swimming, or very little, at the Pacific Ocean beaches, for the most part unless you are a strong swimmer, brave or just plain crazy. Playing in the waves, maybe some. Not really a family swim kind of place! Surfing? Westport is the place to go, so you'd be looking in the Aberdeen to Olympia areas, both well within your price range.
Puget Sound, much much better for real swimming, and more family friendly in the sense of boating and general, safe access to the water.
So, be more specific, because the answer is "yes, depending". Seattle 3 bedroom? 1200? Probably a stretch in the decent areas. Forks? OMG, you could probably get 4 bedrooms on 2 acres for that, plus a little hobby barn.
Yup, be more specific about what you need. Way, way more specific.
In Washington, if you wanted to be near the ocean (not the Sound so much) and wanted a larger, more urban area within 1 1/2 hours of the ocean, that would be the Aberdeen to Olympia corridor, Olympia/Lacey being the larger community. The nice thing about those areas is that both are on calmer waters that are fun to explore by boat, canoe or kayak: Grays Harbor in Aberdeen/Hoquiam and Puget Sound in Olympia (though forget "beaches" in that local area-- that's the southern terminus of the Puget Sound and most waterfront is mud and very big tides, but still a very nice area to live, though I'm biased--my home is in that region.) And yes, in both areas you could find somewhere a house that meets your criteria.
Oh, Vegas-- I grew up there. Moved from Spokane when I was 10. We actually had a very nice yard. No pool, a garden and a lawn--water intensive, nothing that would be allowed there today. Amazing apricot tree. No, I don't miss Vegas, but I guess a little part of me misses that yard. Small, yes. There are plenty of postage-stamp yards in Oly, but you do have choices.
I'm sure their are small yards there too its just exciting to think about having real yard with lots of grass for my boys to run around in. I grew up in Oregon but have been here in Vegas for many years now too many for my liking.
What about Portland? Definitely crunchy. Closer to the beach might mean you'd want to choose the west side... maybe a suburb, off 26? Hillsboro? Beaverton? I'm an east sider, so I really can't say much about those communities or what a rental costs or what would be considered a decent neighborhood. My folks live in Raleigh Hills, which is Portland, but in the Beaverton School District. It's nice there but again, not sure about rentals. I think throughout the Beaverton school district there are places that are nicer and others that are not so much, but I guess that's like anywhere. Good luck with your search/move.
I think your options are still wide open, though it's probably prudent to secure a job and housing before you go. There's a reason people live in those communities, they are not living there for free! But restaurant work on the coast tends towards seasonal work, though some communities are relatively busy enough to have year-round income: towns like Ocean Shores, Lincoln City, Seaside. There are so many great places up and down Oregon and Washington if I was coming in from out of state, I wouldn't know where to start. For crunch, you can't beat Eugene or Olympia. Portland has crunch in spades, too, but for proportion of total population, my bets are on those 2 communities.
We are in love with this place.