Renting an Apartment in New York City

Are you looking to rent an apartment in New York City? Or planning to move to New York City soon? If so, this article will tell you what you need to know and where to start. There are ways to make this search easier on you. Let me explain how, read on!

When looking for your apartment, it’s important to consider location, neighborhood, price, space, pets, lighting, convenience and amenities. It’s going to be harder to find an apartment if you do have pets, and especially if you own a large dog.

The average base price for a studio apartment in New York City is above $1,200 a month. As a guideline, expect to pay around 25% of your income towards rent. If you can afford to pay $5,000 a month you’ll be able to see some of the best and most exclusive apartments in Manhattan. If you’re from outside of New York, it’s crucial to know that landlords don’t take out- of-state or personal checks. All landlords will require certified funds. If possible, have a 3 months worth of bank account documents ready before doing an apartment search. You’ll need to prepare the necessary funds before arriving to New York.

Be aware of no-fee apartments. Chances are that you’ll get gouged by price premiums. It may sound contradictory, but apartments with fees do tend to be cheaper in Manhattan than apartments with no fees. The cost is often hidden in the length of the lease. Be warned if you’re looking for a high-rise there could be a height premium charged for every floor.

Initially, you’ll typically need the first month’s rent and a security deposit. If you use a broker, you’ll also need to pay the broker fee. The fee is typically 15% of the first years rent. Since apartments aren’t vacant for long, it’ll be easiest to find an apartment using a broker. A broker will have firsthand knowledge of available apartment rentals and the best locations in Manhattan. There are some premiums to consider as well such as what is known as a “special view” amenity that can be added for 10% more as you go higher up in the building. If you want an unobstructed Central Park view, you may have to pay a premium of up to 50%. And a brand new apartment can have a price premium of 15% to 25% because it has never been lived in.

Having a broker will make it easier to find what you really want. Specifically in Manhattan there are many apartments you can only get using a broker. There are tons of advantages for using a broker such as their ability to get you approved by a difficult landlord, negotiate the best financial terms on your behalf; saving you a lot of money in the long run. Be aware that it’ll be easier to find a rent controlled apartment with a broker than without one.

A rent stabilized apartment limits the amount your rent can be increased on a yearly basis. These apartments can also be easily subleased as long as the terms on the lease are followed. A rent stabilized home is hard to find in New York City since rent controlled apartments were built from 1947-1974. A non-stabilized apartment isn’t subject to any rent guidelines. The rent is based on a free market guideline and is normally influenced by supply and demand. make the task a lot easier. You also know to avoid “no-fee” apartments if you don’t want to pay a lot for amenities and also be prepared to pay the first month rent and any applicable fees. Best of luck to you!

How to Find the Perfect Buenos Aires Rental Apartment – And What to Avoid

Luckily, Buenos Aires is a city full of temporary rental apartments. This is great for the tourist because you can rent an apartment for a week for the price of one night at a hotel. Also, apartments have full kitchens so you can save money by cooking your own meals. In addition, the apartments are much larger than hotel rooms, and you have more privacy then staying in a hotel.

However, finding that perfect tourist apartment in Buenos Aires can be challenging. At first you might be saying to yourself, well as long as it had a bed and it is clean what do I care? While that may be true for some people, if you are planning on staying in Buenos Aires for more than a few days you will want to avoid some of the mistakes I have made in the past when renting an apartment there.

After renting several apartment in Buenos Aires I now know what to look for and what to avoid. Below are some tips that will help you find that ideal apartment and make your stay in Buenos Aires more enjoyable.

Neighborhood – Make sure to ask exactly where the apartment is located. This might sound strange but many people renting out their apartments market their apartments as being in the desirable neighborhoods of Recoleta and Palmero when they actually are not. In fact at first glance you might think that those are only the two neighborhoods in Buenos Aires! But this is just real estate agents and apartment brokers tricky efforts to falsely expand the borders of the most desired neighborhoods in Buenos Aires. Recoleta and Barrio Norte (these two neighborhoods are usually used to denote the same area, with Barrio Norte being closer to subway stops) is the best place to stay while in Buenos Aires.

Palermo is also nice with cool new restaurants and hip bars, but for me the barrio still has a way to go before it is as nice and established as Recoleta/Barrio Norte. There is too much graffiti and dog crap (watch your step while walking on Palermo sidewalks!) for me to suggest staying there over Recoleta. While some parts of Palermo can be quite charming it is just too big of a neighborhood to recommend it as a whole. Unless you know the specific location in Palermo is what you are looking for, it is best just to stick to Recoleta.

Noise – I read once that Buenos Aires is the noisiest city in the world. After a night trying to sleep in an apartment on the street side of a busy avenue you will agree. Loud buses and scooters with no mufflers will keep you up at night or annoy you during the day if you aren’t careful about your apartment choice. The most important factor is make sure the apartment is not located on the street side of a building. For more quiet you want an apartment in the back side of the building or “contrafrente” as it is sometimes listed in spanish. Secondly, it is preferable to be on a low traffic street. But, I have stayed in apartments on a busy street before but the building was so large and the apartment was so far in the back it was actually very quiet. Finally the higher up the apartment the better, so look for an apartment on a high floor. However, I stayed in an apartment once that was on the 11th floor but it was still very noisy because it was on the street side. Therefore, the most important factor in having a quiet stay in Buenos Aires is look for an apartment on the back side of the building.

Rooms – In Argentina a one bedroom apartment is called a two room apartment. So don’t be shocked when you arrive and the “two room” apartment you rented is not a two bedroom, but an apartment with a living room and a bedroom. Likewise a studio apartment is called a “one room” apartment or “monoambiente” in spanish. Just make sure you are getting the right number of rooms you want when you rent, or ask for a floor plan before you decide to put down that deposit.

Bed(s) – The eyes can be deceiving is what I learned when I rented what I thought was a perfect apartment. I even went to see the apartment before I decided to rent it. But I was fooled by the queen sized comforter covering up two single beds pushed together. Now some people might prefer this if you are two people traveling together and you want your own tiny bed, however there were queen sheets on the bed so you would have to ask for two sets of single sheets and more blankets to have two beds anyway (which in Argentina may or may not happen). So make sure your check under the covers or ask what the bed arrangement is before you book the apartment because waking up in the crack produced when the two beds push apart in the night is not a fun experience.

Refrigerator – Many Buenos Aires apartments are small and sometimes the kitchen only has space for a small “dorm-style” refrigerator with a “freezer” the size of a text book that takes three days to make ice. This might not be a big deal to some, but I prefer to have a full sized fridge to make ice for drinks, and for longer stays to keep frozen food frozen.

Internet – Many apartments in Buenos Aires offer “high speed” Internet. But what that means to some people may be different to you. I rented an apartment once that claimed to have high speed internet and when I arrived it was slower than dial up. The owner was in Spain and wouldn’t increase the speed so I had to spend many afternoons at Internet cafes just to check email. Be sure to ask what the speed of the Internet is and if you don’t know what is fast and what isn’t usually a connection of 512 Kbps will be fine if you are just checking email occasionally, but if you are planning on downloading files and working online while you are in Argentina, then I would recommend at least a 1.0 Mbps connection or faster.

English – If you don’t speak Spanish, be sure to ask if the representative that will be meeting you at the apartment speaks English. Usually this isn’t a problem, but I have had instances where I had to conduct business in Spanish and while it went OK, if you don’t speak Spanish it might not go as smoothly for you.

Apartment Hunting – What to Look for and How to Search