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Old 08-23-2009, 04:02 PM
 
486 posts, read 594,225 times
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Default Maybe I'm missing something?

My wife and I (no kids yet) will be moving to NYC. We're still about 4 months out, but I've been checking things out here and have done a couple of those cost of living comparisons between KC and NYC. The first big negative that comes up is cost of living, but I don't feel that it really will be that much more expensive.

Here, we each pretty much have to have cars...it's not even an option for one of us not to have one. Everything is freeway based here and very spread out. In NYC, neither of us plan to drive. Obviously rents will be way higher there (we're thinking about a 1 bed somewhere in Brooklyn or Queens), and I hear constantly about the middle class leaving NYC, and how it's so expensive, etc. It seems that although we may be paying another $800 in rent, we may lose that (almost) in car-related expenses. I know that NY can eat away at your wallet if you eat out often, etc, but my wife really loves to cook, so I imagine we won't go out too often.

My question is, won't losing 2 cars and the associated costs make up for higher cost of housing? Are there any other expenses that I'm not considering that I don't already have where I live now other than the higher housing cost?
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Old 08-23-2009, 04:07 PM
 
7,081 posts, read 23,389,096 times
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It's not simply housing. EVERYTHING is more costly here. Food (in the grocery stores) is more, clothing is more, there is a NYC income tax and wait until you get your first electric bill.
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Old 08-23-2009, 04:28 PM
 
Location: Bronx, NY
7,545 posts, read 12,766,801 times
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Income tax is a big factor.
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Old 08-23-2009, 05:28 PM
 
3,638 posts, read 2,603,386 times
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Its not so clear in your post why you decide to move to the city... You need to very good reason to do it.
Living without a car may be problematic. Indeed, you may not need it daily, but what about weekends and holidays? What about visiting relatives and friends or going to beach? Where would you shop for cheap appliances, or buy food for a party? Probably in NJ or LI... How would you manage that?
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Old 08-23-2009, 05:34 PM
 
7,081 posts, read 23,389,096 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oberon_1 View Post
Its not so clear in your post why you decide to move to the city... You need to very good reason to do it.
Living without a car may be problematic. Indeed, you may not need it daily, but what about weekends and holidays? What about visiting relatives and friends or going to beach? Where would you shop for cheap appliances, or buy food for a party? Probably in NJ or LI... How would you manage that?
I don't think that giving up a car is a huge deal. There are other ways to travel and if you REALLY want a car, there's a Zip Car. So far, the need for a car hasn't arisen and if you have a car for getting cheaper groceries, just the insurance will more than eat up any savings you might gain from the cheaper goods.
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Old 08-23-2009, 05:40 PM
 
486 posts, read 594,225 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oberon_1 View Post
Its not so clear in your post why you decide to move to the city... You need to very good reason to do it.
Living without a car may be problematic. Indeed, you may not need it daily, but what about weekends and holidays? What about visiting relatives and friends or going to beach? Where would you shop for cheap appliances, or buy food for a party? Probably in NJ or LI... How would you manage that?

We're moving for a job/school. As far as cars, I lived in Seoul, South Korea for 3 years. I didn't use or need a car at all. I actually dreaded getting my drivers license when I returned to the US...not a big fan of driving.
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Old 08-23-2009, 05:41 PM
 
7,919 posts, read 10,012,520 times
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Everything is more expensive and what you get for your money is much less. Two easy examples-
1) When I left NYC in 2006, my UES studio's rent was $1,375. This was for 275sf (I measures once! Includes every inch of the place, including closets). My kitchen (including all the floor space taken up by appliances & counters) measured 4 feet by 4 feet. The tiled are to stand in was about 4sf. I had approx 2 feet of counter space, where my microwave and dishrack lived. I now pay about the same in mortage+property taxes in Dallas, TX for a 1 bedroom, 900sf condo. My kitchen now is 8x12 and I have tons of counter space. So yes, the cost is similar, but there is no similarity in what the same cost gets you. Even if your wife loves to cook, will she love to if it involves 1)lugging groceries home several blocks by hand several times a week, 2)cooking in a kitchen with much less space for food prep, & 3)washing every dish & pan by hand as a dishwasher and disposal is a luxury, not a given, in NYC.

Second example- There are no Targets or Wal-Marts in the city. If you are used to buying toilet paper, paper towels, & laundry detergent in bulk, you really can't do that in NYC. Plus, who has closer space to store everything? You'll find that for laundry detergent, you will spend $1-2 more for a container that is 30-50% smaller than Target stocks. Sure, the cost is roughly equal, but for a whole lot less. This applies to almost every food (cereal, frozen dinners, diet coke) and toiletry (shampoo, razors,etc).
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Old 08-23-2009, 05:48 PM
 
Location: Bronx, NY
7,545 posts, read 12,766,801 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurtleCreek80 View Post
Everything is more expensive and what you get for your money is much less. Two easy examples-
1) When I left NYC in 2006, my UES studio's rent was $1,375. This was for 275sf (I measures once! Includes every inch of the place, including closets). My kitchen (including all the floor space taken up by appliances & counters) measured 4 feet by 4 feet. The tiled are to stand in was about 4sf. I had approx 2 feet of counter space, where my microwave and dishrack lived. I now pay about the same in mortage+property taxes in Dallas, TX for a 1 bedroom, 900sf condo. My kitchen now is 8x12 and I have tons of counter space. So yes, the cost is similar, but there is no similarity in what the same cost gets you. Even if your wife loves to cook, will she love to if it involves 1)lugging groceries home several blocks by hand several times a week, 2)cooking in a kitchen with much less space for food prep, & 3)washing every dish & pan by hand as a dishwasher and disposal is a luxury, not a given, in NYC.

Second example- There are no Targets or Wal-Marts in the city. If you are used to buying toilet paper, paper towels, & laundry detergent in bulk, you really can't do that in NYC. Plus, who has closer space to store everything? You'll find that for laundry detergent, you will spend $1-2 more for a container that is 30-50% smaller than Target stocks. Sure, the cost is roughly equal, but for a whole lot less. This applies to almost every food (cereal, frozen dinners, diet coke) and toiletry (shampoo, razors,etc).
Actually there are quite a few Targets now in the outer boroughs. There are also BJ's and Costcos. Also renting storage space is not that expensive from what I have seen. This might be more of an Manhattan vs Outer Boroughs thing. But I guess its assumed that if you want to live in Manhattan you should be willing to put up with those shortages.
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Old 08-23-2009, 06:19 PM
 
Location: New York City via Austin via Chicago
904 posts, read 1,723,620 times
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I would look into Queens or Brooklyn in one of the close-in neighborhoods with good subway access to Manhattan. Lots of the neighborhoods (not all) will give you more for your money and parking will be cheaper/more accessible.
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Old 08-23-2009, 06:50 PM
 
486 posts, read 594,225 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viralmd View Post
It's not simply housing. EVERYTHING is more costly here. Food (in the grocery stores) is more, clothing is more, there is a NYC income tax and wait until you get your first electric bill.
Regarding the tax and utility issues...would it be advantageous to live nearby in NJ instead? Are the taxes and utilities lower over there at all? Also, if I moved to NJ, would I then be at a severe disadvantage (in comparison with Queens or Brooklyn) without a vehicle?
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