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Apartment searching here is a bitch. I can’t put it any other way. This is the hardest city to find an apartment and move to. For the first time, I began weighing options of cockroaches, brokers fees, subway lines, commutes, safety, roommates, apps and early termination fees.
Finding an apartment here felt like dating here. I had such high expectations initially. I wanted an apartment with X, Y, and Z when I started. After searching a bit, I began to wonder, “are all the good ones taken?” and then a bit later, I began to compromise on my expectations. Please don’t have cockroaches. Please don’t have psycho roommates. Please be close to the train and no druggies on the corner. With dating, I lowered my expectations to, “please don’t be the drug dealer on the corner of the apartment I was looking at”.
It’s rough out here.
Unlike other cities in the US, New York has so much going on with their properties that landlords use brokers to lease out their places. These are the people you most likely meet as a possible tenant when checking out places. When you fall in love with the place, they hit you with an extra two grand to three grand fee (depending on your rent) that is generally 14% of your annual rent. That is an extra months rent just down the drain for someone who just opened the door for you. I’ve never heard of that before.
I quickly discovered apps that introduced me to numerous brokers, landlords and possible roommates. There are facebook groups looking for subleasers. The place you’re looked at one day is gone the next day.
Things move incredibly fast here.
Be prepared to be flexible with your budget, stay in seedy Air BnBs and possibly moving in with roomates as a subleaser if you’re moving to New York quickly.
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