With a population of over 8 million people and hundreds of neighborhoods, New York City can be a challenging place to find just the right apartment you want. Luckily there are several things you can do to make finding New York apartments for rent go a lot smoother and easier.
Narrowing the neighborhoods
The first order of business is obviously where you’d like to reside. This sounds somewhat easy, but there are many considerations. Living in the city typically costs more, but puts more at your fingertips and for most, puts the commute within a subway ride or walking distance. Of course the cost to rent in the better parts of the city will have a correspondingly higher cost than renting on the fringes or in New Jersey or Connecticut. On the other side of the issue is lifestyle. City living is not for everyone. Because there are so many different areas that have New York apartments for rent, each with their own unique community flavor and demographics, you’d be wise to start the search with a firm understanding of what each has to offer. Start by researching neighborhoods that are within a reasonable proximity of your most important “anchor”. Those in a line of work that requires long hours will probably not want to add to that with a very long commute. Those with families and children in school might opt for living within a desirable school district in the suburbs. Sometimes the most favorable rents are areas going through a gentrification. Of course there are pros and cons of being one of the “pioneers” of such, but when it suddenly becomes the hot place to live, you’ve got a leg up on the competition. Ultimately, making the best decision about finding an apartment in New York, you need to do your research and find out what those neighborhoods best suit your financial and personal needs. Getting to know a little more about them can help you decide if you think it’s the right area for you.
Consider what’s a must for you
Everybody has their preferences when it comes to apartments, roommates and living situations; and some are higher on the priority list than others. Maybe you have a cat, or maybe you’re allergic to cats. In either case, you will need to find a roommate and apartment that mirror these desires and necessities. There’s a wide variety of New York apartments for rent, from ultra-chic, to ultra-high-end, to ultra-claustrophobic, to everything in between. And each of these have their own terminology. You can rent; lofts, one-bedrooms, railroads, duplexes, penthouses, etc. So figuring out your preferences in advance can be a huge timesaver when searching for New York apartments.
Getting a Roommate
You don’t have to be a New Yorker to know that the cost of living in New York is expensive. Really expensive. If you want to live in a desirable NY neighborhood, with a doorman, decent amenities, etc., be prepared to spend a good portion of your disposable income on rent. One way a lot of New Yorkers deal with the expense it by sharing space with another person. Granted, unless you know of someone in your immediate circles who needs an apartment right away, has the financial wherewithal to afford the apartment you’d like, and in general, is compatible with you, finding that great roommate just when you need them isn’t an easy task. But the benefits of having a quality roommate extend far beyond just the economic part of the equation. Usually you’ll wind up living in a nicer neighborhood and building by being in a higher rent category. And living with another person means that you’re not the only one to deal with problems that emerge or everyday obligations like walking the dog or accepting packages. Similar to finding a great apartment, finding a great roommate starts with prioritizing qualities most important to you. Admittedly, you’re not looking for a best friend here, although that would be a nice development as the shared space relationship unfolds over time. A good first step in the process is a little introspection time. How would you describe yourself—easy going and laid back, or very particular about lots of little things? Let’s face it, everyone isn’t cut out for marriage, and not everyone is cut out to share an apartment.
But let’s get past the Freudian part of this exercise, and assume you are a great candidate for sharing space with another. First order of business is confirming that a prospective
roommate can reliably handle their portion of the rent. So determining that they being gainfully employed should be priority number one. Beyond that, it’s going to come down to your own intuition, and third-party background checking. As great as that person may seem on the surface, to put your mind at ease it’s wise to ask for references and hire a background check company for extra peace of mind.
By planning ahead, doing your research, and being a little lucky along the way, finding New York apartments for rent and choosing a great roommate can become as easy as a springtime Sunday afternoon walk in Central Park.