Category: New York (page 1 of 5)

The Best NYC Neighborhoods To Live In

New York City is gigantic. If you’re thinking of moving into the city, you’ll have plenty of options to choose from in terms of the neighborhood you live in. While you may think you only have to choose between Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Staten Island, the fact of the matter is that there are several neighborhoods within these 5 boroughs. That’s a lot of options, and it’s important you pick the right choice for your budget and lifestyle. Here are a few of the best neighborhoods to live in within New York City.

SoHo

Located in Manhattan, SoHo stands for South of Houston and is one of the busiest neighborhoods in the city. If shopping is your thing, you’ll never get bored in SoHo as it features great high-end clothing stores as well as plenty of great food options. You’ll also be able to find various art galleries within the neighborhood and the architecture sets up a certain vibe if that’s your thing. Being located in Lower Manhattan, housing can become rather expensive and you’ll primarily find expensive lofts and co-ops.

Downtown Brooklyn

If you’re looking for a location based on convenience such as having plenty of transportation options, Downtown Brooklyn might be the place for you. It’s located right over the Brooklyn Bridge and in the past few years, thousands of new apartments have been made as the neighborhood grows. Plenty of subway and bus lines get off in the area, meaning you can get to Manhattan in about 15 minutes and also be close to other great neighborhoods where you can find options for dining and shopping. Due to the location’s recent growth, housing will likely be expensive, though not as expensive as SoHo.

Forest  Hills

If you’re looking for something a little more urban and not as much big city, Forest Hills in Queens might be a good spot to check out. The area features a fantastic view of the Manhattan skyline so you’ll be close to the city but not smack dab in the middle of all the commotion. The architecture is one of the area’s many points of interest and you’ll find many single-family homes as opposed to the many apartments deeper into the city. To top it off, the area is much cheaper than Manhattan or Brooklyn if you’re not trying to break the bank.

Tips For New Residents of New York City

So you’ve decided to take the plunge and choose to live in New York City. While this is an exciting choice, it’s oftentimes a gigantic change, especially if you’re coming from a small town or someplace more rural. While you might think making the adjustment will be easy, it’s almost guaranteed you’ll have a rough time if you’re moving there and have nobody to guide you. Luckily, there are plenty of guides that feature tips and tricks to help you adjust, with many of them coming straight from the mouths of both newer and older New York City residents. Here are a few of those tips and tricks.

 

Prepare Your Budget

You’ve probably heard about this but you won’t truly understand until you experience it; living in New York City can be expensive. Many times you’ll find that living in Manhattan and other parts of the city costs double of what it cost to live where people are previously coming from, unless they’re coming from an equally pricey area such as another metropolitan area. If you think you have enough money prepared for the adjustment, think again as you’re likely under prepared. 

 

Public Transportation

Owning a car while living in New York is often no fun at all. Many New York Residents have gotten used to taking public transportation. You have the option of taking a bus, taxi or the subway, and the options vary in price and where they’ll bring you. Since traffic is always so jammed up in the city, public transportation is likely your best option so it might be wise to figure out your favorite style of transportation and stick with it.

 

Feeding Yourself

Feeding yourself when moving into the city can be a little challenging at first. Depending on where you live, you’re likely not going to be able to go to the large grocery store’s you may be accustomed to. Oftentimes you’ll be walking to the closest bodega and only getting enough groceries that you can carry home to your apartment. If that isn’t enough to satiate you, you may be tempted to order take out or go to a restaurant. While that’s not necessarily a bad choice, it’s quite expensive and can add up quickly. It’s important to figure out this balance before you overspend by eating out all of the time.

Should You Buy Or Rent In NYC?

If you’re moving to New York City, one of the hardest decisions you’ll likely have to make is choosing between buying a home there or just renting one. Many different factors come into play when making this decision. Are you planning on staying in New York for a long time? Can you afford extra chargers such as utilities, food, entertainment, and property taxes? These are some of the common questions you should ask yourself before deciding if owning your home is worth it. It usually takes about 5.6 years in order to break even after buying a home in New York, so if you think you’ll be there that long or longer, buying may be worth it. To be sure, let’s take a look at some of the other benefits that come from both buying and renting in NYC.

Renting

While a lot of people say that renting is a waste of money in the long run, there are still plenty of perks that come with it, especially in a place like New York City. First off, by renting your home you can give the neighborhood or even the building you’re in a “test drive”. It gives you the chance to learn more about the area you’re in. Another great perk to renting is that in most situations the landlord will pay for most utilities outside of electricity and the internet. You may have to pay more for these units but overall this makes things like budgeting much easier. Renting also helps you get your money situation in order in case you ever decide you do want to buy.

Buying

One of the biggest perks of owning your home is the fact that you build equity. When you rent, the landlord builds equity, meaning you get nothing but the space you’re renting. Building equity is great because once the mortgage is paid off you can use that equity to borrow money for another large purchase in your life. Buying is also great because of the tax reductions you get, as well as the potential for the IRS not applying capital gains tax when you sell your house. Finally, the ultimate benefit of buying your home is the freedom you get. You can do whatever you want to your home when you own it, but when you rent it there are usually distinct boundaries.

Making the Most of a NYC Studio Apartment

New York City is known for a lot of things, one of them being its real estate. While many people dream of someday living in a spacious New York City apartment, a lot of those living in a city are confined to small one-bedroom or studio apartments. It can feel a bit cramped, but with these tips, you can make the most of your NYC studio apartment.

Clever Storage

The best way to ruin the layout of a tiny apartment is by having all your belongings out in the open. To give the apartment a clean and open appearance, find ways to store your belongings away. Every piece of furniture is a storage opportunity such as a bedside bureau, a side table with shelves or a drawer, or a lidded ottoman

The Mirror Trick

Making tiny apartments feel bigger can be tough, but there is a super easy trick you can try. Especially is your space is lacking natural light, decorate your apartment with mirrors. Setting up a mirror helps bounce light around, creates depth, and makes the room look bigger than it really is. 

A Stylish Dresser

To add style and sophistication to your small space, invest in a good dresser. In a studio, the dresser can be utilized in many different ways. The top of the dresser can be used as a dressing table, a makeshift kitchen table, of a place to add some decoration. A dresser can easily become the focal part of your studio, so make it count!

Furniture to the Wall

Another great way to keep the space open is by keeping furniture against the wall. Furniture in a small space can easily block out the natural light and make it appear to be even smaller. Pieces such as couches, dressers, bookshelves, nightstands, and other pieces should also be kept partially open to create expansiveness in your studio by leaving room for white space.

Historic House Museums in NYC

Across New York City, there are dozens of historical buildings and history on nearly every corner. However, there are little-known house museums, 23 in total, spread across the city. They are all run by a non-profit group, the Historic House Trust, which aims to preserve the richness of the past to educate the present and future generations of those who choose to visit. Here are some of the top houses to visit on your next trip to the big apple.

Merchant’s House Museum

As one of the first individual buildings to be designated an official landmark, this home is steeped in history. It features a gorgeous facade, many items from the late 1800s, and offers a rare glimpse into domestic life during the 19th century. You might want to book your tour in advance for this popular house!

Gracie Mansion

If you want to see how the wealthy once lived along the East River, look no further. Built by a merchant, Archibald Gracie in 1799, this house is the only one of its kind left along the river. After the rich owners left, it once was used as an ice cream stand for the surrounding park, but upgraded its standing by becoming the home to the mayor in 1942. 

Morris-Jumel Mansion Museum

Built in 1765 as a retreat for a wealthy couple, this home has seen quite a few changes. From host to fashionable parties, to being seized by the Continental Army to serve as the headquarters for George Washington, to becoming the extravagant home of a French wine merchant, this mansion was finally opened to the public in 1904 as a museum and features items from each of its transitional periods. 

Blending Traditional and Modern: New York City Real Estate Architecture

When you think “New York City architecture”, you probably immediately picture towering skyscrapers that reign over the city with all glass windows. You aren’t wrong, but if you look closer you’ll start to see several addresses transforming their facades in a new and exciting way. More and more architects are reimagining what buildings throughout NYC should look like. Many real estate addresses are taking a blended approach, giving a nod to the past while bringing the building into the future. Here are five of these innovative buildings you can search for the next time you find yourself in the Big Apple. 

Prospect Leffert Gardens, Brooklyn

This 467-unit luxury rental building still boasts a glass facade, but incorporates brownstone-esque bay windows, precast concrete, and a chevron pattern to give homage to the surrounding architecture. The result is a stunningly unique place to live in Brooklyn if you’re looking for something both modern and traditional.

Oskar, Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan

This luxury rental fuses modern glass and shapes with old-school masonry. The building features a rounded glass form but incorporates the traditional with white terracotta wrapped around the facade. While it blends well within its surroundings, its impressive fusion of modern and traditional elements set it apart, making it a unique find within New York’s real estate market. 

11 Hancock, Harlem, Manhattan

This building, by far, has the most powerfully modern shape, but the traditional aspects are certainly there to make it stand out above the rest. The 12-story cantilevered structure offsets its modern shape by combining glas, steel, brick, and burnished copper, all paying tribute to different eras of construction in the city. 

40 Bleecker, NoHo, Manhattan

Manhattan has no shortages of condos, but not all condos are made equally. This 12-story building sits in a landmark-rich neighborhood. The architects wanted to do something different but not so different the building would stand out as an eye sore. This address features a brick and metal facade with punched-glass window openings to give homage to the pre-war buildings that dominate the area. 

How to Adjust Living in a Big City

Many people dream of moving to a big city. Much of the time, when they finally achieve their dream of moving to New York City, there is a bit of a culture shock. When living in NYC, there is a lot to get used to. There is much more hustle and bustle, and a lot less space. Here are a few tips on how to adjusting moving to the big city:

Join a Club

This one may seem a little silly, but it’s very effective in making the big city your home. When moving from a small town to NYC, it’s important to find something you love to do by joining a club, If your hobby is gardening, join a community garden. If you love music, find a favorite local band to see a show. One of the best ways to make a city as big as New York feel more like home is by finding something that you love to do through the club, team, or community.

Never Fear Public Transportation

Driving a car might fly in a small town, but it’s a whole other story in a big city. Most of the time, taking the subway, train, or bus is much faster, easier, and cheaper. It’s important to get a feel of the land and learn about the city by public transit. It helps whenever you get lost and adjusts you to the routes you need to take.

Say Hi to Your Neighbor

One of the best ways to make a big city feel like home is by getting to know your neighbors. In a bigger city, some people like to keep to themselves. You don’t have to sit and play Scrabble with them every other Friday, but simply saying hello and introducing yourself to them is a great first step. This might not lead to you making best friends, but it’s always nice to be friendly with your neighbors to build a stronger sense of community.

Take Time to Explore

The big city will seem big and scary at first, and it will be easy to stick to the places you know right away. Try not to get in the habit of only going to the places you know. The city is big enough to find a new adventure every day. Find new favorite spots and you will fall even more in love with the grand New Your City. 

4 Reasons to Live in NYC

If you’re looking for a new city to move to, you should be considering New York City. There are many reasons that 8.6 million people have chosen to call this great city home. In addition to our world-class museums and entertainment, here are four reasons to live in NYC.

 

1.  NYC is where many great things begin.

If you enjoy being in the “center of the action” or being the first to experience new things, NYC is the place to be. Many great new things start in New York City, including technology, architecture, and music. 

 

2. You can be “green” in NYC.

When you live in New York City, you can opt-out of driving a car. Instead, you can choose to walk to many destinations or, if you have a longer commute, the subway is always an option. Furthermore, an increasing number of apartment complexes are also now composting and recycling. You’ll also find that most places to live in NYC require less energy due to the vertical nature of the buildings. 

 

3. NYC is full of history.

Whether or not you are a history buff, it’s hard not to enjoy the history around NYC. The city’s architecture is full of rich history. Some of the most famous buildings, statues, and monuments are here. New York City is also often the center of “history in the making.” An example is the super tall buildings that are breaking records and will transform the skyline by 2022.

 

4. Nowhere else has the same amount of diversity or variety.

New York City is one of the most (if not the most) diverse cities in the world. Here you can find people of every culture in the world. As a result, you’ll also find restaurants and other bits of culture from across our planet.

Moving Tips If You’re Coming to NYC from Out of Town

Moving itself is a hassle, but moving to New York City presents a set of unique challenges, especially if you and your moving company are unfamiliar with the, ahem, quirks of the city. To ease your transition, be sure to brief your movers on the conditions they might experience, such as the lack of parking, tight spaces, and other issues that might arise. Prepared movers are better movers, and if your mind is drawing a blank, here are a few tips on what to discuss with your mover if you are coming from out of town. What you (and your movers) don’t know can end up costing you extra. 

 

Big Trucks Won’t Fit

Most of the time, you won’t be able to bring an 18-wheeler into the city. Some companies will drive a truck to the outskirts of the city before transferring to a smaller truck to shuttle into the five boroughs. Be aware though: you’ll be charged what’s known as a “shuttle fee” and should be sure to have that included in your quote. 

 

Certifications and Insurance

Most elevator buildings in Manhattan require proof of insurance from the hired moving company prior to authorization to work in the building. As such, out-of-state moving companies will likely be blocked from doing the drop off at the building. If your moving company is from out of state, you may need to look for an additional moving company that has the needed requirements. 

 

Tight Spaces

New York City moves are notorious for their narrow hallways and tight stairways. As Lior Rachmany, CEO and founder of Dumbo Moving + Storage, puts it, “Only the best of movers can move in New York.” Make sure that your movers have experience with these kinds of spaces. More often than not, it will be necessary to disassemble furniture prior to moving. Be sure to discuss what happens to the furniture before it gets loaded on the truck.  

How New York’s New Rent Laws Will Affect Real Estate

Tenant protection laws were first introduced to New York City in 1920. The country was recovering from World War I and many landlords were raising rents monthly due to a housing shortage. 

Just this month, landlords and legislators are having similar conversations about New York’s rent laws. On June 14, 2019, New York State and Assembly leaders passed new laws to protect tenants by controlling rent in New York. In light of the new law, landlords will have limited ability to raise rents, even if renovate their buildings or apartment complexes. Landlords can also no longer be able to raise rents due to vacancies or deregulate apartments.

So what does this mean for NYC real estate? 

The new laws have shocked New York’s real estate investors. Some landlords and investors are concerned that they will not be able to cover the costs of maintaining buildings without the ability to raise the rent. This leads to concerns that property values will decrease and many landlords will choose to sell. 

Some people, however, are seeing opportunity in the new market. Some property owners who will now struggle to stay afloat will be looking to sell quickly and likely for lower prices than they would have otherwise. Furthermore, the newly passed laws are expected to cause foreclosures, which lower property values. Investors who are able to take advantage of the lower prices for property may be in luck. 

The long-term effects of these new laws have yet to be seen. While it’s likely that some investors will suffer as a result of the new restrictions, others may flourish. Many have theorized on the potential outcomes, but it will take time before the consequences come to fruition. In other words, “only time will tell.”