Neighborhood guide for renters in New York

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I first moved to New York City and I lived in nine different neighborhoods. With my packing-light personality and desire to live as centrally as possible, I’ve tried to stay away from neighborhoods that are too far North or South. There are some I’m still curious about (Williamsburg, for example), but lack the urge to take on what would surely be the biggest move of my life. All that said, if you’re a renter looking for the best neighborhood for you this guide was made for you.

The goal of this calculator is simple: to help potential renters decide what kind of neighborhood they’re looking for. We used the most recent housing and neighborhood data available from New York City to create this basic guide to rent costs across the city. The findings may surprise you; for example, some of Manhattan’s priciest neighborhoods are more affordable than Brooklyn neighborhoods that aren’t known for their luxury.

This is because we based our calculations on how much it costs, on average, to rent a two-bedroom apartment (the most common type of rental housing in New York) within certain neighborhoods — which means that even if an area is too large, or extravagant we still calculated rent averages based on two-bedroom apartments.

New York is an expensive city, and now more than ever, newcomers are looking for renters. This is the list of the best neighborhoods in Brooklyn from SharedEasy.

1. First, Know NYC’s Boroughs.

For many, Manhattan is where they want to be—it has a lot going for it. It’s the most densely populated of all five boroughs (1.6 million people in just 22 square miles), home to some of New York City’s most iconic landmarks and tourist destinations, covers the biggest swath of land, and is the cultural heart of the city. The borough houses the tallest skyscraper in America (the Empire State Building), which might come as a shock to those who think it’s all about the Brooklyn Bridge here in New York.

Staten Island is a bit of an oddball in New York City’s set of five boroughs, and in many ways, you could consider it NYC’s best-kept secret. The closest borough to the mainland United States, it is the second-largest in the area and the fourth most populated—though, at just over 470,000 residents (the same as Jersey City), it feels small in comparison to other areas of the city. On the other hand, its relative remoteness might appeal to you if you want to escape from Manhattan or Brooklyn for a spell without going too far—Staten Island is about 40 minutes by subway from Midtown Manhattan, or about 30 minutes if you take a ferry from Manhattan.

2. But Don’t Get Bogged Down In The Cachet Of Certain Neighborhoods.

Are you moving to the New York City area? If so, you’ll probably want to stick around for a bit. And if you’re going to settle down anywhere in the five boroughs, it might as well be a great place to live, right?

If you’re looking for a way to get a sense of what one part of the city would be like before you take the plunge, consider setting aside your Carrie Bradshaw DVD and following your nose. There are all sorts of fun ways to find out how good or bad a place is for your wallet or your daily routine.

3. Figure Out What Matters Most To You: Location, Space, Or Price.

Whether you live in the city or do business there, it’s important to know the neighborhoods New Yorkers call home. Seemingly every corner of the city is a hub of activity, with plenty of restaurants, shops, parks, and nightlife options nearby.

Many places are known for having a neighborhood feel—a small-town vibe that often makes the rest of the city feel like a distant nuisance.

4. Take your public transit options into account.

New York’s complex transportation network makes it the most transit-dependent large city in the country. In some ways, this makes New York a great place to live: Every subway and bus line can take you somewhere you need or want to go. 

But it also means there are parts of the city with limited service, and long waits at times of day when lots of people need to get from point A to point B.

5. Do you need peace and quiet?

The big apple that never sleeps does have some pockets of serenity. According to Renthop, the quietest neighborhoods in the city include the Upper East Side, Borough Park, Bayside, and Brooklyn Heights.

These neighborhoods have the fewest noise complaints law from neighbors. Residents of these areas can make use of their outdoor spaces without disturbances from street noise or nearby traffic. So, do your research and consider reviewing your rights under the HOA, and take a look at the noise complaint laws and review the bylaws if you live in an HOA community, condos or a townhome.

6. Once You Move In, Treat The Entire City Like Your Neighborhood—Live In It All

We have covered three things that you absolutely must do in one New York neighborhood before you move out. I’ve lived and worked in New York for 8 years, and every time I move, I do tons of research on a new neighborhood before I sign a lease.

This gives me intimate knowledge of the best way to spend my time when I first move in. There are always new restaurants to try, parks to explore, and nooks to checkout; however, there are some things you should make sure you check off your list before you start unpacking boxes.

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