While a move to NYC can be exciting and filled with opportunities, you also want to consider if it’s a good idea for you and your personal situation. Sometimes, waiting and saving up more money might be better before moving to NYC.
Here’s what you need to know about moving to NYC and if you should do it.
- Your Salary
- Your Savings
- Finding an Apartment
- Timing Your Move
If you’re asking yourself, “Should I move to NYC” the first thing you should consider is your financial picture. Ask yourself if you have the savings to move to NYC and a salary to comfortably live in the city.
It’s estimated that to live comfortably in New York City, you should earn between $65,000 and $120,000. This is without any children and a single person. While this range may indicate you CAN live in NYC, it doesn’t mean that it’s a good idea (especially if you’re on the lower end of the budget).
The lower the amount you make, the more compromise you’re going to have to deal with. While you don’t need a car in New York City, you can still “live in NYC” while being far away from where you need to be, which means added time to your commute.
Another thing you need to think about when deciding if you should move to NYC, is if you have enough money saved up to cover your initial costs.
It’s recommended to have at least $20,000 saved up in advance. With average rentals being around $3,000 per month for a one-bedroom, that means you’ll need to include the deposit into your savings which can be an excess of $9000, including the broker fees.
Before you get an apartment, you should know in NYC that broker fees are very common. You will need to pay the broker 8-15% of the annual rent, which means that if your apartment is $3000 a month, you’ll need to pay a broker fee of $3000 to $5,400 (maximum).
This is non-negotiable, AND you’ll be required to put down money for a deposit and/or security fee. This should be budgeted for; if you don’t know before you come to NYC with a lot of hope, you may be brought down to Earth by the unfair practices that are in the NYC real estate industry.
While broker fees help the real estate industry, they further shut the door on who can move to NYC and who isn’t. So while it may seem unethical and downright unfair, broker fees in NYC are here to stay for the time being.
With a lot of competition in play, apartment hunting will be a burdensome task that can require a few months of preparation. Not only are prices high, but it’s not uncommon for realtors to use stock photos to show off their “apartment,” leaving you wondering if you’ve been the victim of a bait-and-switch rental scam.
It’s also a good idea to go check out the apartment in person. In more suburban areas, you may be accustomed to new buildings where there is central AC, but in NYC, it’s not uncommon for apartments to be run down and downright dirty (or not even have air conditioning at all!).
While it may seem like a good idea to rush into closing a deal quickly, that’s why it’s paramount that you give yourself a few months in advance to look through the market and check out apartments. The last thing you want to do is have a head full of stress and panic into a suboptimal lease.
With your apartment search planned out well in advance, you can look into getting a quote to find out how much NYC movers cost. This way, you’ll avoid having to unpack/pack your belongings and give yourself more breathing room (and less stress) when on your hunt for a new apartment.
You’ll also want to consider the time of year you’re moving to NYC. During the summer, you will compete with a huge wave of college students/graduates and others who think it’s a good time to make their way to NYC. This will leave your options limited and will lead to taking on a lot of unneeded stress.
Prices will also be higher during the months of June-September because of the influx of newcomers, so wait a few months to secure yourself a better deal. With some patience and good timing, you’ll be able to find a good apartment in a good location. Don’t be panicked into making a bad decision because of anxiety; it’ll only lead to more suffering down the road.
In conclusion, deciding to move to New York City requires careful consideration of several factors. One of the most critical aspects is your financial situation. It is essential to have a realistic understanding of the cost of living in the city and ensure that your savings and salary can support it. With average rentals being relatively high, having a substantial savings buffer of at least $20,000 is advisable to cover initial expenses such as deposits and broker fees.
Moving to New York City requires careful planning, financial preparedness, and strategic decision-making. While the city offers numerous opportunities and a vibrant lifestyle, it is essential to weigh the potential challenges and ensure that the move aligns with your personal circumstances and goals.
By considering factors such as savings, salary, broker fees, apartment hunting, and timing, you can make a more informed decision about whether moving to NYC is the right choice for you.