Between finding an apartment that won’t break the bank to moving furniture through crowded streets, moving to New York City can be stressful. This guide on how to move to New York City shares some of the things I wish I would have known before I made the move!
HOW TO FIND AN APARTMENT IN NEW YORK CITY
Facebook Groups: This is definitely one of the top ways people find housing in NYC! Check out Gypsy Housing or NYC Sublets and Apartment. These groups are great if you are looking to move quickly. Sometimes you can find a room available immediately or for a month in advance. Often they are for sublets or lease takeovers and only for a few months with the opportunity to re-sign. You can also find fully furnished rooms which is great if you don’t want to buy a ton of furniture.
Be sure to do your due diligence when renting from someone on Facebook. Most of the time they are legit, but do not send money to anyone before seeing a place, meeting the roommates, etc..
Street Easy : If Facebook groups worry you, then check out Street Easy. You can narrow down your search by neighborhood and price. Plus, they are listed by licensed relators!
a few things to consider:
Subletting: Subletting is a great way to get your bearings on the city and have time to decide where you might want to sign an official lease. Plus, it can be a great place to meet people if you are brand new to the city.
Roommates: Robert and I got really lucky and one of my friends from college had a room opening right when we wanted to move. If you have a friend in the city, reach out to them first and see if they or anyone they know is looking for a roommate. People are constantly in and out of the city so finding a place shouldn’t be too hard.
Having roommates is also a great way to save money in this very expensive city!
GUARANTORS IN NYC
Many landlords require their tenants to make 40 to 50 times the rent. With the high rent prices and as a 25 year old with no idea what she’s doing with her life, I personally don’t make that. And I don’t think a lot of people my age do.
Because of this, you will most likely require a guarantor. This could be a parent, grandparent, brother, whoever, who will co-sign the lease and be responsible for the rent should you not be able to pay it.
If you don’t have a family member to be your guarantor there are companies who provide this service. Check out this entire guide on Guarantors.
Starting out in NYC
Assuming you are starting fresh when it comes to furniture, my suggestion is to check out IKEA and their delivery methods. When we did this we were able to pick the date we wanted it delivered and this took the stress off of finding furniture once we got there. Plus, the delivery cost was only $60.
IKEA also has an option to have your items assembled. The price here is pretty high, but if you know you aren’t the type to build your own stuff, it might be worth it. We did all of ours ourselves and it turned out great. Be honest with yourself about your carpentry skills haha
Moving between apartments in NYC is a hassle to say the least. You’ll most likely have to rent a U-haul and if you’ve never driven in NYC it can be a bit scary. Finding parking can also be difficult. Depending on how comfortable you are, hiring a moving service could be worth it. If you do it yourself I suggest having you and at least two other people. This way one person can stay with the truck and your things, and the other can help move your things.
What to expect in your first NYC apartment
No elevator: The buildings in New York are OLD which means there is a big chance that you won’t have an elevator. This is also why I recommend getting your stuff delivered. IKEA delivery says that they will put all of your things in one room of your choice, so they’ll be the ones hauling everything instead of you!
Laundry/ Dishwashers : Many apartments in New York don’t have in unit laundry or dishwashers. If you can find somewhere that has laundry in the basement it will make things much easier, but laundromats are everywhere in NYC. As for a dishwasher, it’s basically a lost cause in most apartments!
Air Conditioning: Before you move you’ll want to double check what the air and heating situation of your apartment is. Again, the buildings are old and you may very likely have to buy a window AC unit. If you are moving in the summer like we did, you’ll want this bad boy right away! Have it delivered with your furniture or make it the first item on your list. We use Danby from Costco and it’s been great!
Less is more: It took me time to learn that less is more, especially in NYC. Your apartment most likely won’t have a ton of storage space, so I recommend bringing the bare minimum and then accumulating stuff as you go! IKEA has a ton of fun storage items that can help you get creative. Also, if you need some spare cash, sell the things you don’t absolutely need before your move.
Buy in bulk : If you don’t have a car, running to the store requires more effort in NYC. We have found that buying in bulk has been the best way to do things! When we first moved we got large quantities of toilet paper, paper towel, toothpaste, dish soap, coffee, etc…which made life so much easier! When your inevitably busy schedule hits you’ll be so glad you don’t have to run to the store every week for household items.
Order online: Just like food delivery, grocery and household item delivery is your new bestie. Amazon Prime is actually a life saver! If you don’t have prime then I suggest investing or using someone else’s (Thanks Dad!) It has been an integral part in our shopping routine. The prices for most things are cheaper on amazon than at any local NYC store and obviously it saves you time. More happy hours and less time shopping!
HOW MUCH MONEY DO YOU NEED TO MOVE TO NYC?
This is different for everyone based on your income and rent, but I suggest having at least 6 months of rent in your bank account plus your deposit. Though many people move here with $1000 and hope to make it work. I personally wouldn’t go that route.
As a starting point I would say come to NY with at least $6,000.
First time to NYC? Check out my NYC know before you go guide.
There are your basics on how to move to New York City. This city is incredible and I suggest it to anyone looking for great adventures and opportunities. I hope that this helps you out and if you have any questions I’d love to help!
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