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Old 12-07-2009, 01:21 PM
 
55 posts, read 83,901 times
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Hello all! I'm moving to NYC in August from Oregon to go to Culinary school. My husband and I will be meeting another couple there to share an apartment. We are thinking we can afford about 2000-2500 a month rent. I've been looking at websites like city habitats, best apartments and a few others, and they make it seem like the apartments are very nice. Mod cut: NO links to specific properties. some better than others but doable.. Should I go this route and get an agent? is there another way to find a place to live? Whats the best way to go about this?

Last edited by Viralmd; 12-07-2009 at 01:44 PM..
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Old 12-07-2009, 03:25 PM
 
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Personally, I'd suggest the answer to your question depends on how long you can spend in NYC looking around for apartments. If you have a few weeks or more, then I'd suggest looking without an agent (on places like craigslist) to start, and then only resorting to an agent if you haven't found anything after that. However, if you only have a few days to spend in NYC then I'd definitely recommend organising a few agents in order to maximise the number of properties you can view in a short space of time.

For what it's worth, I only had a week to spend in NYC apartment hunting, so although I did look at a few places I'd seen on craiglist, I also arranged 3 agents who each spent about half a day with me and showed me 5-10 places each. As a result, I managed to see 22 apartments in 4 days, which (although tiring) meant that when I picked a place I felt comfortable that I'd seen a good selection. Given that I lived in the UK at the time, I also felt more comfortable organising contracts etc. with an agent than it would have been if I was dealing directly with the landlord. On the downside, it cost me ~$3000 in agent's fees on a $2000/mo apartment.

On a related note, if you don't know the area in which you'd like to live then it's also worth doing some research into areas on the net before you come out, and then planning on spending some time walking around the different areas to get a feel for them when you're here.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:01 PM
 
55 posts, read 83,901 times
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So I take it you didnt do a no fee type deal with your agents? I keep seeing no fee, fee, low fee.. If I choose a no fee does that mean I don't have to pay an agent? There is so much information out there so its somewhat difficult to sift through it all.
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Old 12-07-2009, 04:30 PM
 
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Correct - if you choose a "no fee" then you don't have to pay the agent (the landlord will pay the fee rather than you). Be aware, however, that a landlord won't be doing this out of the kindness of his heart, generally the apartment will be more expensive than it would be if you were the one paying the fee. So to some extent you're still paying the agent's fee, you're just paying a little of it per month as part of your rent, rather than all of it up front.
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Old 12-29-2009, 11:07 AM
 
55 posts, read 83,901 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aebrett View Post
Personally, I'd suggest the answer to your question depends on how long you can spend in NYC looking around for apartments. If you have a few weeks or more, then I'd suggest looking without an agent (on places like craigslist) to start, and then only resorting to an agent if you haven't found anything after that. However, if you only have a few days to spend in NYC then I'd definitely recommend organising a few agents in order to maximise the number of properties you can view in a short space of time.

For what it's worth, I only had a week to spend in NYC apartment hunting, so although I did look at a few places I'd seen on craiglist, I also arranged 3 agents who each spent about half a day with me and showed me 5-10 places each. As a result, I managed to see 22 apartments in 4 days, which (although tiring) meant that when I picked a place I felt comfortable that I'd seen a good selection. Given that I lived in the UK at the time, I also felt more comfortable organising contracts etc. with an agent than it would have been if I was dealing directly with the landlord. On the downside, it cost me ~$3000 in agent's fees on a $2000/mo apartment.

On a related note, if you don't know the area in which you'd like to live then it's also worth doing some research into areas on the net before you come out, and then planning on spending some time walking around the different areas to get a feel for them when you're here.

So I do only have a few days to look for an apartment. I was going to have a list of some that i've found online and have my agent arrange it for me. Now you said that you had more than one agent looking for you. Do I need more than one agent? Are agents only able to look at their own listings, or can they make appointments to look at any in the city? I ask because my husband sells real estate here in oregon, and will refer me to an agent in New York. We get a percentage of that commission. So would one agent be able to get the job done in a timely fashion? Or shouuld I do a couple referrals? I'd like to get an apartment as fast as possible so I can worry about other issues with moving across county!
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Old 12-29-2009, 02:46 PM
 
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First off- your income determines how much rent you can pay. It's generally 40x one month's rent in annual income. Do both couples combined make $80-100k? That's what you need for a $2000-2500 place.

I found all three of my apartments in the New York Times real estate section and never paid a broker's fee. One was a situation where the management company paid the broker's fee, the other two I rented directly from the management companies. I found my first apartment in 2 days of pounding the pavement (probably saw 15 total apartments). The second one took about a month because I wanted a very specific location. The third literally took an hour. Looked at 2, fell in love with the second.

If I were you, I'd pick up a copy of The Times as soon as you land in NYC. Also google the neighborhood(s) your interested in + property mgmt company to find landlords in the area you can go to directly (ie "Park Slope" + "property management" or "Hell's Kitchen" + "property management").

Also, both couples need to have all paperwork with them while apartment hunting: W2's and tax returns for past few years, copy of savings and checking acct statements for past six months, social security card for credit check, and two cashiers checks ready for credit check + application fee and 1st moths rent + security deposit.
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