By: Alexandra Lazaridis

After two (sort of) successful moves in New York, I now try to claim myself as an expert. Finding an apartment in the city can be its own beast–and moving long distance was an entirely extra layer.

When I was admitted to Teachers College in 2016, my husband and I were excited to plan our move from North Carolina. I realized upon looking at apartments in NYC that the biggest difference was the turnaround time–many apartments are not available until two weeks before your move in date.

If you are outside of the state or the country, this can be a bit daunting. So with that, here are a few tips from both my out of state move AND crosstown move within the city.

  1. If you are living out of state, try to plan a time to visit New York around one month to two weeks before you move. Things are easier done in person. If this is not possible OR you don’t find a place:
  2. Connect yourself with the Teachers College Off-Campus Liaison in Residential Services.
  3. Check the Admitted Student Facebook Group for roommates, if interested! Your future roomie may be able to do the “in person” work of seeing apartments and putting in an application.
  4. Most NYC apartments have income requirements. These usually include, “Applicant makes 40 times the rent.” So if I am looking for an apartment for $2,000, my income would need to be at least $80,000…usually this doesn’t happen with us students, but do not fear! Check in with a family member to see if they will be a guarantor for you. Guarantors are required to make 80 times the rent (but usually you can have more than one).
  5. Moving from out of state, within the U.S.? Make sure you know how to drive OR hire movers.
  6. Moving in state? Make sure you know how to drive OR hire movers.
    *I highlight this to say that movers are expensive no matter where you are, but I’m confident that using them for our second move saved my sanity and likely my marriage!

Most of all–BREATHE! The market can be a bit stressful and surprising for those who haven’t lived in the city before, but I remember my second experience being far easier after I knew the above tips.

And, most importantly, New York is worth it! I was lucky to graduate from TC in May with my M.A. (and am slowly but surely working on an Ed.M), and my husband and I couldn’t imagine moving away. Yes, it’s crazy. Yes, it’s expensive. But is it worth all the work? Absolutely.

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