Most people describe finding an apartment in NYC as very stressful, time and energy-consuming experience. It’s very difficult and demanding task, so make room for variety of emotions like disappointment, frustration, discouragement. In order to make the apartment hunting process less overwhelming, make sure to be fully prepared and keep yourself informed.
Being new in town, you could use every sort of help. Having friends or relatives in NYC might be very helpful, but what to do if there are none of them? That shouldn’t be a problem, at least in NYC, which abounds in real estate brokers. This kind of professional help is usually required by people who don’t have enough time and patience to search for apartments on the internet and by those who are moving to NYC for the first time.
Once the broker is hired, you can share with him all your expectations and demands regarding your new home in terms of preferred location, borough, neighborhood, budget, apartment size, number of bedrooms, whether you’d like a condo or an apartment…If you are lucky enough to find a good broker without doing your own research about them previously, it shouldn’t be a problem to find a suitable apartment. Your broker will find apartments that meet all your standards, show them to you, and in case you like some of them, he will help you with the paperwork in order to sign a lease. Otherwise, broker will continue the quest and keep you informed all the time.
However, the odds are good that your broker won’t be as honest and dedicated to your issue as you expected him to be. In case you don’t rent any the apartments you were shown, your broker might ignore you and move on to the next client. Apartments suggested by brokers happen to be very attractive and at an excellent price, which could be the first indicator that something’s really wrong. Not necessarily, but those more than convenient offers might be a bait for you to take a look at some apartments inferior to your expectations and requirements.
Broker’s fee in NYC may vary depending on the area, borough, neighborhood. In light of that, the cost of their services is higher in Manhattan and more affordable in the outer boroughs.
One of the advantages of hiring a broker is that they might know apartments’ owners and their relationship with tenants. So, by finding a dedicated broker you can trust you can get a friendly landlord as well.
However, by investing more effort, energy and patience you can take it upon yourself and handle the apartment hunting on your own, without spending any money.
Provided that you have already determined what type of apartment you are looking for, try to get to know NYC better. Do thorough research on the internet, get all relevant information about boroughs, neighborhoods, all diversities within the borders of New York – cultural, racial, economic, linguistic,…Engage all your cyber (internet, social networks) and living resources (your relatives, friends, friends’ friends) to be fully informed and prepared for what’s to come. Spread the word about your move, and you may even get a recommendation for some apartments or an advice. Take into consideration other people’s experiences, compare them and decide what suits you best.
Once you have established the preferences regarding the apartment, borough and neighborhood, begin with the apartment hunting at least one month before the planned move. Visit all relevant real estate websites and give yourself enough time to perform this task without unnecessary pressure and additional stress. Search the listing, call the owners, ask for more information and make an appointment to see your potential home.
Set your search parameters to no-fee apartments if you are not willing to pay any additional costs. Sometimes, brokers offer no-fee apartments, which means that that there’s no fee for you to pay. But, since the broker is a liaison between you and your landlord, it is the owner of the apartment who has to pay the fee.
Make an estimate of your budget and plan how much you are willing to pay for the monthly rent. Some of the landlords have specific income and credit demands, which is why new graduates must engage guarantor to sign the lease. Owing to a lack of one, you might be forced to hire professionals who will perform that role for a fee. In case the costs of living in NYC are extremely high for you, you might opt for sharing them with a roommate.
When visiting apartments, your potential landlord might require to see your personal documents, so have your bank statement and ID copy ready. In order to prevent illegal rent increases and allow the landlord to take care and maintain the property, there is a legal rent regulation in NYC. By finding a rent-stabilized apartment you can rest assured that you are protected by low. However, those apartments are hard to find, because people who are lucky to find ones, stick to them for a long time.
No matter how frustrating and exhausting apartment seeking process in NYC, sooner or latter you will succeed and the effort you have invested will eventually pay off.