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Old 09-09-2011, 12:18 AM
 
Location: Flushing, Queens, NYC, NY
393 posts, read 470,243 times
Reputation: 297

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Average cell plan: $50
Average electric bill: $100? depends on the apartment
Average food cost for one person: maybe $250, ballpark estimate
Plane ticket cost divided by month: $75
Sports thing divided by month: $34
Basic cable: about $25? (idk, i get over the air)
You're approaching $600 and this isn't even a complete list of costs, and many guesses are conservative.
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Old 09-09-2011, 04:13 AM
 
10 posts, read 30,999 times
Reputation: 13
it doesn't seem very promising

the reason I accepted the campus housing is that I never lived in the States, so I have no credit history etc, and at this point I cannot afford paying deposit + brokers fee + 6 months rent in advance. and the apartment is ready for me to move in as soon as I arrive in new york.

mostly I cook at home, but when I was travelling in the US I thought the fresh produce were crazy expensive.

I guess I'll have to look for a more reasonable apartment once I'm there.

I cannot find a parttime job, with my visa I'm not allowed to do that. also my job is very demanding, I'll be working late, on weekends etc. as well.
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Old 09-09-2011, 04:51 AM
 
1,812 posts, read 1,404,346 times
Reputation: 751
Quote:
Originally Posted by maleficum View Post
Hi!

I'm moving to NYC very soon, I'll be working as a postdoctoral scientist at the Columbia University.

My monthly salary after tax reductions will be $2480. They offered me campus housing, a 350 sq ft studio, rent is $1332 (heating, hot water and internet included, electricity not included). I'll walk or take the free shuttle to work, so I won't need to buy the monthly metrocard.

My question is, what's left after paying the rent, would it be enough to live in NYC, for 1 person? I like going to the movies, theater, musicals, and I love travelling... will I be able to do such things? or will I only be able to afford food and very basic things?

apart from the rent, I'll regularly pay for a cell phone line (thinking of getting the $50 no contract plan from t-mobile), I'll sign-up to the sports center at the university ($400 annual fee). I'll go to my home country once a year ($800-1000 round trip plane ticket).
if you already have negative doubts about your finances that is a RED FLAG that you are not going to do well. You need to re evaluate your finances and make some serious cut backs or you will not survive. how about sharing a apt so you can cut some of that rent and have more money
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Old 09-09-2011, 09:18 AM
 
7,226 posts, read 12,081,479 times
Reputation: 4252
It's very easy to find extremely cheap produce, but probably not in that neighborhood. You might need to do a once/week shopping to Chinatown or out to Astoria in Queens, which has a couple of huge and very cheap good produce places. (Other places in Queens do as well, but Astoria has my favorite cheap ones.)

I recommend doing a complete budget by combing through threads on this board. I can understand wanting to take the Columbia apartment, because otherwise you would have to come and spend time searching for a roommate situation in neighborhoods you are not familiar with.

Is there any way you can take out a loan for some living expenses? Many people do that when they are in school. I'm not so familiar with how post-doc works.
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Old 09-09-2011, 09:27 AM
 
Location: UWS
122 posts, read 141,457 times
Reputation: 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by maleficum View Post
it doesn't seem very promising

the reason I accepted the campus housing is that I never lived in the States, so I have no credit history etc, and at this point I cannot afford paying deposit + brokers fee + 6 months rent in advance. and the apartment is ready for me to move in as soon as I arrive in new york.

mostly I cook at home, but when I was travelling in the US I thought the fresh produce were crazy expensive.

I guess I'll have to look for a more reasonable apartment once I'm there.

I cannot find a parttime job, with my visa I'm not allowed to do that. also my job is very demanding, I'll be working late, on weekends etc. as well.
You'll be a post-doc scientist at Columbia. I would say the sacrifice is worth it. Most PhD students live on that type of fixed income. Some of them even support their families.

You will not be able to go to the theater or the movies very often, but I don't think you'd have time any way. New York City does have a lot of free or cheap entertainment so if you do a little research you'll be Ok.
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Old 09-09-2011, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Hudson County, NJ
1,493 posts, read 1,532,135 times
Reputation: 1148
Pretty sad when we look at the whole picture and someone can't survive on $1,000 a month. Then we look at other countries and they survive a year on $1,000.

It all depends on your lifestyle, and needs vs. wants.

I think it's totally do-able, but its going to be on the lower scale. biggest thing to take up money is going to be food and drinks if you go out. Take care of as much of that as you can at home, or just go to places with good and drink specials. If you search, you'll find them.

Now might be a good time and way to lose weight if you need to (kidding, sort of)
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Old 09-09-2011, 09:45 AM
 
Location: Manhattan
11,355 posts, read 11,273,779 times
Reputation: 4803
You WILL need a Metro Card if you want a life...walking back and forth to school will be exciting for about 2 trips.
So figure an additional $104 (or less per $2.25 ride.)
Air conditioning will MURDER you during the Summer.

Figure $400/mo. for food which will allow the very occasional meal out relief from Ramen! Find a good DOLLAR pizza joint.

Do your drinking at home.

I recommend a Theater Club (Audience Extra or Play by Play.) For about $100/yr. you can see tons of shows every night for $3 or so.

Learn when museums are free.

It's gonna be tough but avoid the urge to get sucked into Credit Card debt...at 20-30% interest.

A nice TV and a Netflix subscription will add a lot to your "home" time! For $7.99/mo you can stream a million movies to your TV via that nice free internet connection the school provides.

Find a rich friend.

(Geez, can Columbia BE more greedy renting to Grad Schoolers or staff at $1300 for a 300 sq.foot closet?)
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Old 09-09-2011, 10:10 AM
 
71 posts, read 128,554 times
Reputation: 26
$400/month for groceries for one person is a bit much, I think.

You will want a metrocard though, maybe a monthly or one that you can put $40, $60 bucks on every month, depending on your commute.

Sounds like you will have a very demanding schedule and will be working a lot during the weekends and at night. If this is the case, you can probably swing it since it sounds like you won't be going out an awful lot.
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Old 09-09-2011, 10:23 AM
 
Location: NYC
161 posts, read 221,698 times
Reputation: 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by KBF30 View Post
$400/month for groceries for one person is a bit much, I think.
Agreed...I think $250 is a much better estimate. That's what I spend- eat at home most of the time and still get take out a few times a month. I definitely don't live on Ramen either.
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Old 09-09-2011, 10:27 AM
 
Location: NYC
161 posts, read 221,698 times
Reputation: 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by nowitsshowtime View Post
Pretty sad when we look at the whole picture and someone can't survive on $1,000 a month.Then we look at other countries and they survive a year on $1,000.
To be fair, I've lived in a country like that and the average local salary($150 month) definitely accounted for the cheaper cost of living.
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