If you are planning to move to New York City, you are probably very enthusiastic and hopeful of a prosperous future and exciting new life. And indeed, you have every reason to be eager and exhilarated as you are about to relocate to the Capital of the World – one of the most amazing places on Earth to live and work, full of infinite opportunities and exceptional experiences that you can’t get anywhere else.
However, moving to such a big and dynamic city presents a unique set of challenges that add to the general stress and anxiety of the relocation process. So, unless you know exactly what to expect and what to do during each and every stage of your moving adventure, you have little chance of a smooth and hassle-free relocation to New York. In such a case, the following practical tips for moving to New York City may turn out to be your “relocation savers”:
NYC Apartment Hunting Tips
Finding an appropriate place to live in New York is quite a daunting task – the cost of living and the real estate prices in the city are very high, the metropolitan area is excessively overcrowded, and the housing options are quite limited. You will have no choice but to move into a small apartment with an exorbitant monthly rent and restricted living space – you can expect an average of $2500 for one-bedroom apartment in Manhattan. The rental prices vary greatly from one neighborhood to the next, so you will be able to find more affordable living accommodations in the other boroughs, but your commute time and transportation costs will increase considerably.
So, in order to make the right choice and find a new home in NYC that will suit both your requirements and your budget, you are recommended to:
1) research your housing options well – you can choose from among co-op apartments, sublets, rental apartments, etc.;
2) assess your finances, your lifestyle, and your particular needs – find out the answers to crucial questions, such as: How much can you afford to spend on monthly costs (rent, utility bills, maintenance costs, etc.)?, Will a studio apartment be enough for you?, Are you willing to share your living space with a roommate?, How are you going to get to work and other places you need to visit on a frequent basis?, and so on;
3) get to know the neighborhoods – gather as much information as you can about the different neighborhoods in New York (crime rate, infrastructure, local amenities, cultural venues, etc.) and, if possible, spend some time in the city prior to your relocation in order to personally explore the areas you consider most appropriate for the location of your future home – see what the community life is like, talk to the locals, and find an affordable apartment that suits your needs;
4) inspect the apartment and discuss all the relevant issues with your potential landlord before signing a lease:
- Make sure the place is in good condition and can provide the comfort and coziness you need;
- Look for pre-existing damage and document them (if any) to avoid conflicts when moving out the property and requesting your security deposit back;
- Ask about the available storage and parking space, trash disposal rules, possible maintenance hours, deliveries, etc.
- Go over the specific conditions under which the rent can be increased, as well as the conditions under which you can end the lease ahead of time;
- Find out if there are any specific safety regulations, cleaning requirements, restrictions about pets, or other residential rules you need to comply with;
5) plan your daily commute – keep in mind that having a car is the second biggest expense in New York City (you will have to spend an average of $450 a month for a garage) and the traffic is extremely heavy. The public transportation, on the other hand, is cheap and convenient and offers the most advantageous solution for moving within New York City. Yet, expect commute time to be long and don’t forget to factor in waiting time for buses and subways, especially if you need to transfer.
Having found a place to live in the Big Apple, you need to organize your actual relocation. But what to know when moving to New York City?
NYC Moving Tips
Moving to New York City without professional assistance is only feasible if you have nothing to relocate but personal possessions that can fit into your car or inside several suitcases. Otherwise, don’t even think about it – driving a rented moving truck full of heavy furniture, bulky appliances, and other large household items along the busy city streets is virtually impossible without extensive previous experience. Besides, you won’t be able to find a suitable parking place and will most likely get a ticket, not to mention that you will never manage to unload your belongings and take them inside quickly enough if you are on your own (usually, there are restrictions on move-in/move-out times and access to the freight elevator in residential buildings in New York).
Your best bet is to hire qualified New York movers who have the appropriate equipment (such as small “shuttle” trucks, for example, that can get through narrow streets where a big truck won’t fit) and the professional know-how required to safely ship and deliver your belongings to your new NYC home. So, fill out a moving quote to get contacted by several reputable New York moving companies, compare their offers, check their affiliations and customer ratings to make sure you are dealing with licensed, insured, and trustworthy professionals, and choose the best NYC movers for your specific relocation needs. Don’t forget to discuss any specialized extra services that you might need when moving to New York City (hoisting services, shuttle services, etc.) and their respective charges.
NYC Packing Tips
When moving to NYC, you need to accept the fact that you are going to live in a much smaller home than you’re used to. Space is scarce in New York, which means you will be paying a considerably higher rent for considerably less space than anywhere else in the country (especially if you are planning to live in Manhattan). Renting the smallest residence possible is indisputably the best way to save money in New York, so you will most likely find yourself in a studio apartment that comprises of only one main room and a separate bathroom.
Therefore, you won’t be able to fit all of your belongings into your new apartment. You will have no choice but to leave most of your earthly possessions behind, so take advantage of this excellent opportunity to simplify your life – sort out your items and sell, donate, or give away anything you don’t really need. The fewer items you take along, the more breathing space you will have available in your tiny apartment and the smaller your NYC moving costs will be (the final moving cost is based on the total weight of your shipment).
SEE ALSO: How to have a garage sale before moving
In the same line of thought, have in mind that selling or donating your old furniture pieces and other large household items is a much better idea than moving them to your high-rise New York apartment. You will not only save on shipping costs, but will also save yourself all the hassle and nerves that result from the strenuous attempts to carry heavy furniture or appliances up several flights of stairs and through narrow hallways. Besides, your old pieces will most likely not fit your miniature new home layout. If you want to keep a certain item for sentimental, aesthetical, or practical reasons, at least make sure it can be fully disassembled and properly protected in order to survive the relocation in good condition.
Once you have moved in, you are advised to buy anything you need from Ikea-like stores, so that the piece arrives boxed up and can be easily taken up to your apartment and assembled inside.
NYC Move-In Day Tips
Everything is well that ends well. So, to ensure the favorable outcome of your moving adventure, you need to carefully plan and organize its end – move-in day:
1) get a parking permit to make sure that there will be an appropriate parking place for the moving truck near the building where your new apartment is located (keep in mind that your moving company will add any charges for parking tickets received during your move to your final bill);
2) reserve an elevator in the building for the time period when your items are expected to arrive (as already mentioned, many buildings restrict move-in/move-out times, as well as access to the freight elevator, so you need to check about any rules in advance). You may be required to pay an elevator deposit or a moving fee and to complete your move within a pre-defined time frame;
3) ask your chosen movers if they can provide a certificate of insurance as most buildings in NYC require it to verify that any eventual damages to the property will be covered;
4) arrange for any new-bought large items to be delivered at the time you’re moving in (most apartment buildings have specific restrictions about big deliveries, so it is a good idea to have everything brought in at once);
5) have the most essential utilities (electricity, gas and water) running in your apartment on move-in day;
6) check for bugs (a common problem in New York) and clean your new place thoroughly before moving in.
SEE ALSO: Moving day tips
The above moving to New York City tips will help you avoid rookie mistakes and major setbacks on your relocation path. Once you have settled in, it’s up to you to make the most out of your new life and enjoy every minute of every hour in the Capital of the World!