Looking for a place to rent in nyc

My kid will be moving to NY from west coast to start a new job at the end of summer. Where do you recommend to look? How do you look for an apt in nyc? Do you hire a realtor? Any other tips in finding a place for a young couple?

Streeteasy.com is a good place to start. Have them try to research neighborhoods a bit and get a sense of where they want to live. For example, how important is proximity to work, public transportation, etc. Do they want to live in a modern high rise with a doorman and lots of glass? Or, would they prefer a more traditional brownstone with just a few apartments per floor and no elevator?

The 5 boroughs of NYC each have different characteristics and some have better public transportation than others. Be sure to have them map their anticipated commute via public transportation / walking as places that seem close on the map can be pretty time consuming to get to via subway or bus. Also, rents are pretty good right now and there are lots of incentives but, while it’s good to start researching, it may be a bit early to be looking for a fall move-in.


They would like less crowd and parking is a must. Does that exclude brownstone? Somebody told them they need a realtor. Is that a norm in NY to hire a realtor to look for a rental? When do you start looking for fall move?

They will be working in lower Manhattan. And take public transportation to work.

I would agree with everything @HMom16 said above, especially about knowing your tolerance for commuting and/or desire to live on top of the office. There are pros and cons to that, depending on the industry. Also, post-pandemic, whether your kids will be working from home at all should be a consideration in the size of apartment they are looking for. I have kids who live in Brooklyn and Queens and all have offices in Manhattan. The commute can take anywhere from 20-40 minutes depending on the location of their apartments and their offices. Rents are expensive, but deals abound right now. I agree, too, that it’s too early to look for a rental for the fall. My D started looking the first week of January and moved on January 16th. She lives in a high rise in Fort Greene (one of the buildings with a doorman, outdoor amenities, gym, etc.), S1 and his wife own a 2 bedroom co-op in Clinton Hill and S2 and his wife live in a walk-up in Astoria. For both rentals, the process took less than a month. I also agree that Streeteasy is the way to go. Most people that I know don’t use brokers but if you’re coming in from out of town to look for a limited period of time one might be helpful.

Just saw your post about parking - few buildings in NYC have parking - my 2 kids with cars park on the street and play the alternate side of the street game. All parking is an additional fee and can be more than $500 per month. Working in lower Manhattan, Brooklyn is certainly an option. Neighborhoods like Brooklyn Heights, Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Downtown Brooklyn etc. will be about a 15-20 minute commute depending on proximity to a subway. My D lives in Fort Greene and works at 7 World Trade Center. If you (or they) have questions abut specific locations, feel free to PM me.


They are looking for at least two bedroom. One of them will be working from home. They are outdoor types and plan to get away every weekend, probably not up to street parking games. They expect to pay extra for parking.

When renting in NYC was a competitive nightmare ( in the Before times) many people did hire a realtor/ broker . But if there’s one upside to the pandemic is that the rental world has changed. It’s much easier and less expensive. Parking is also not much of an issue …now. But that could change. They probably need either a larger building with parking.


Thanks. It may be quite different in summer, people may be moving back in. They don’t mind a larger building. They will go if that’s where parking is.

Not all large buildings have parking but look for a lot nearby. Like I said, I have never seen a building with parking included, though it may be available. Trust me, right now street parking is no better than it ever was, except during the height of the NYC exodus. Many people bought cars to avoid public transportation and many street spots have been displaced by outdoor dining.


Weehawkin / Jersey City / Edgewater (NJ) is another option, depending on the balance between working and getting out of the city. There are a number of beautiful modern buildings at significantly less $$ than NYC and most have onsite parking. Commuting would typically involve a walk/bike to the ferry and then a bus ride once in the city. It’s a completely different lifestyle than living in NY though. Easy to drive to the beach or mountains and shopping / errands would be by car rather than walking.


We live in a super quiet and safe area of the North Bronx and there is plentiful and free street parking with no alternate side. It’s about an hour to manhattan on the subway, but since we are so close to westchester leaving here is uncomplicated.


If they are working in the Financial District, don’t rule out Staten Island as an option. The ferry ride isn’t bad and rent/parking likely to be more flexible.

No need for a broker/“key money” like in the bad old days. In addition to StreetEasy, a number of the larger/higher end building owners in NYC have their own websites where you can see their properties and deal directly with them. People like TF Cornerstone, Moinian, Gotham, BLDG, Dermot.

I think they’ve likely missed rock bottom on rent deals/concessions at this point, but they might have luck with some newer buildings that are still trying to lease up.


@runnersmom The car is non negotiable unfortunately. Hope to find some with parking.

@HazeGrey Thank you for Stanton island tip. It wasn’t in their radar.

@HMom16 I knew of Jersey city. Didn’t know the other two. Expanding search areas. Thanks.

@BronxBaby How far north are you?

If they’re working in lower Manhattan, need two bedrooms, and need parking, then Staten Island or New Jersey. There’s the ferry, or PATH train. The commute via these will be much easier than commuting in from the Bronx. Another good option would be Brooklyn. Possibly Queens, but the subway ride would be a bit longer. The reality is that the commute to lower Manhattan even via express subway is long, and crime on the subway is on the rise. There are better options than north of Manhattan, if one is working in lower Manhattan.


We are in the Pelham Parkway area. That and Morris Park are nice places to live and the parking is easy. On the 5 train line.


Rent for a 2 bedroom in this area is upwards of 2K.

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my son and his gf are moving there in june :frowning: from the midwest. we will miss him terribly. The GF lived there for 9 months before covid hit. her thoughts are similar; they will go out in early June, and try to find a place within a few weeks; not holding one for later. She wants a washer and dryer but says that’s rare.


Check out Hoboken NJ as well.


Keep the suggestions coming. They are all very helpful. Coming from high rent area in the west coast, they weren’t too shocked at ny rents.

They have friends living in Williamsburg. I think they are interested in the area.

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The commute from Queens to Wall Street is rough. Change to the Lexington Avenue line in most cases or ride the loop on the E train. My first NYC apartment was in Kew Gardens and the subway service on the E/F down Queens Blvd was so bad that I would walk to the J train and ride that in through Brooklyn to Broad Street.

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