Best Apartments For Rent NYC

Looking for an Apartment for Rent in NYC? It can be difficult. We make it easy. Delancey Street has a curated list of amazing apartments for rent. Our goal is to provide you with a list of amazing apartments in NYC, and also information on what to look for, what to do, and how to handle the process of moving into apartments.

Best NYC Apartments for Rent

If you’re moving to NYC, remember that the more people you live with/move in with to NYC, the more difficult it is to reach to a consensus on anything, including the apartment you choose. But, having more roommates makes it easier to find an affordable apartment and share space.

When you decide you want an apartment for rent NYC, list the features and amenities you and your roommates care about the most, and those you care about the least. This makes it easier to decide which apartment is the best fit for you. Once you decide this, decide when you NEED to move in by. Pick a move in date, and a move out date. This is based on factors like when your lease is up, when school starts for you and your kids, and when you/your roommates can actually move in and move out.

Where do you want to live is important

Ideally, you want to live near a subway. Like most big cities, NYC is a city filled with numerous neighborhoods. Each area differs widely in terms of price point, and lifestyle. Here are some important factors to keep in mind:

  • Access to transportation
  • Distance to important things
  • The residents
  • Noise
  • Proximity to parks, etc

It’s important to remember that in NYC, you probably won’t need a car. Most people avoid driving, and take public transportation or Uber. Living near a subway live, or within walking distance to your job, school, or a subway line is important when deciding on which apartment is right for you.

We highly recommend you don’t let a broker, or someone else, convince you where to live. Don’t live where you don’t want to live; more importantly, don’t live where it’s unaffordable or inconvenient for you.

How much do you want to pay f0r an apartment for rent NYC?

It’s important you set a price range that is realistic for you. Landlords are VERY smart, and look at your financials and ability to pay. If you sign a lease in NYC for an apartment for rent without a guarantor, you’ll need an income 40 times your monthly rent. For example, for a $3000 rental, you’ll need to have a minimum income of $120,000. It’s super important to find an apartment near your budget.

How much rent can you actually afford for your NYC apartment for rent?

Most landlords in NYC want you to have a gross annual income 40 times your monthly rent. Landlords want to make sure you’ll be able to pay your rent without headaches, or pain and agony. That’s why they look at your income and have such high expectations.

It’s important that you also consider utilities and expenses when considering the affordability of the apartment for rent. For example, you want to consider money for retirement, money you put for health insurance, and other monthly payments like utilities, cable, laundry, etc, which add to the cost of living!

Another major expense is the broker’s fee

If you choose to look for an apartment using a broker, remember it comes with a price tag. Brokers charge 12-15% of the annual rent, or one month’s rent. Landlords often ask that renters pay first, and last month’s rent up front. Some landlords may even ask for a security deposit on top of that, which is equal to one month’s rent. You’ll usually get the security back in the event.

How can I find a roommate in order to reduce the cost of my new NYC apartment for rent?

New Yorkers pay almost 60% of their income in rent. It’s a crazy number! Many apartment hunters decide to find a roommate to help reduce this cost. Finding a roommate can be a daunting experience.

Pros of having a roommate:

  • More flexibility on your move-in date
  • More control over your finances
  • More options

Cons of having a roommate:

  • Tied to a lease
  • End up with a roommate you don’t like

Should you use a rental broker for an NYC apartment for rent?

Using a broker is a great idea. Sometimes it can backfire. Using a broker is a standard procedure in NYC – but it’s not free. Renters who use a broker have to pay a broker’s fee.

No-fee: If you rent a no-fee apartment, you usually don’t pay a rental fee. The management company or landlord pay that fee.

Fee: If you rent a “fee apartment,” you are required to pay a broker’s fee, and will pay it directly to the broker. The cost varies by broker, and area. It is slightly negotiable, but it’s usually one month’s rent.

One of the things you have to be careful about is brokers who show you a no-fee listing. They will not specify which apartment is fee, or no-fee. Their claim their job is only to find you a place, and they expect to be paid. There’s nothing worse than being shown a no-fee listing from a broker, and then being expected to pay a fee for an apartment for rent in NYC.


NYC Apartments for rent, can be cheap and furnished

Knowing where to look can make a huge improvement on the apartment hunting process. Depending on your needs, it’s possible to find a furnished apartment with the touch of a button.

Apartments come in all shapes and sizes, and its possible to get one cheap and furnished as well. Typically, rents are higher the closer you are to Manhattan. Downtown Manhattan has a typical median rental price of around $3,500. As you get farther from downtown Manhattan, the average price goes much lower.

NYC Apartment Hotel & Serviced Apartments for Rent in

It’s possible, if you wish, to also rent penthouse apartments , overlooking central park, always clean with fresh linen. This dream can become a reality. Apart-hotels have grown in popularity due to the full-service approach. Many people are offering up their apartments for short term, and hotels have realized people want independence.

Short Term Rentals vs Long Term Rentals when considering an NYC apartment for rent

Short term apartments for rent have many different benefits versus long term apartments. If your job requires you to have a lot of short stays in different places and lots of travel, then it might not make sense to find a long term apartment rental. You’ll end up paying rent for a property you’re not living in long term.

Areas like Downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn have high rents associated with their properties. In August of 2019, the median rent rose to $3,000 a month – which is a record for Brooklyn. In Manhattan, the rent hit $3,595. IF you’re moving indefinitely then a long term apartment rental in NYC is a better option. Many apartments and landlords offer year long leases that have fixed rents for the duration of the contract. The various long term apartments can come furnished, or unfurnished. It all depends on your preference and budget. Furnished apartments are generally more expensive, as there are additional facilities.

Short term leases are in VERY high demand. There’s less haggle in signing long term contracts, and renters are willing to move in on short notice. The cost of these short term apartments will vary depending on the size, the quality, and location, of your apartment. Another factor when deciding whether to get a short term rental apartment in NYC is whether you’re willing to have roomates.

Furnished Short Term NYC Apartments For Rent

Getting a furnished short term rental isn’t as easy as you’d like it to be. Furnished short term rentals are harder to get in NYC because there’s simply less of them available. Landlords prefer long term leases, and as long as the vacancy rate in New York City continues to remain low, it will remain so. To landlords, furnished short term rentals are too risky. In an article posted by, according to NYC – the rental vacancy rate in 2018 was just at 3.63% which means around 79,000 units! It’s much lower than the national vacancy rate which is at 6.9% (click here to read that full article). There are a number of startups trying to improve this situation by providing short term rentals, but it’s difficult to find these units in the first place. 95% of landlords say no to these types of rentals, and even if they accept it – they’ll demand enormous security just in case.

Short term: In NYC, short term furnished apartments with a lease of 1-12 months. Mostly, we’re talking about apartments between 30 days and 6 months. Be very careful if you’re looking for a furnished lease that is less than 30 days. THIS IS ILLEGAL IN NYC! The NY Attorney General wrote a report stating that 72% of rentals on AIRBNB violated NYC rental laws.

Furnished: With a standard 12 month rental, the apartment traditionally comes unfurnished. It means you have to rent the furniture, or bring your own.

Pricing and Fees for Furnished Short Term Apartments For Rent

The price of a furnished short term rental, compared to a 12 month rental, can be anywhere from 10-200% higher depending on where you get it. The price spikes tremendously in the summer months when demand is very high. According to an article by prices go 2-3% higher during the summer months, regardless of how many bedrooms you wish.


Why are New York apartments so expensive?

NYC is one of the biggest hubs in the world. The rent here is VERY high. The average rent of an apartment in Manhattan is $3600. In New Jersey the average rent for a 1-bedroom apartment is $1300. This is a big difference. Part of the issue is because there are SO MANY PEOPLE and limited space. As a result, landlords make prices higher.

Top 10 Tips For Tenants When Getting an Apartment For Rent

Get your paperwork in order: The best way to get taken seriously for an apartment for rent, is making sure your ducks are in a row. To get a competitive edge over other applicants, bring the following when you meet your landlord: complete application, written references from other landlords, employers, etc, and a copy of your credit report.

(You can get a copy of your credit report by mail, or online at or you can go to one of the three major credit bureaus directly).

Review the lease: Carefully review all of the conditions. You might find provisions that are unacceptable. It’s important to address them as SOON AS POSSIBLE, for example there might be restrictions on pets, running a home business, etc.

Get everything in writing: To avoid disputes, keep everything in writing. It means texting, and emailing, so that you have written correspondences. For example, if the landlord agreed to make repair for something broken, make sure the request is in writing, even if that means text message or email.

Protect your privacy: One of the most common issues tenants and landlords have is the landlord might enter your rental unit without your permission. You should make it clear that you have privacy rights.

Repairs: Know your rights to live in a habitable apartment for rent, and don’t give them up. Most landlords are required to offer livable premise, which means weatherproofing the apartment, making sure there’s heat, water, and electricity. It means making sure the apartment for rent is in good repair. You have options if they don’t – like withholding rent in order to pay for the repairs, and deducting the costs. You can even call the building inspector, who will then order the landlord to make repairs.

Talk to the landlord: Have an open relationship with the landlord, if there’s a problem, keep in touch with the landlord and constantly follow up.

Purchase renter’s insurance: Your landlord’s insurance policy doesn’t necessarily cover theft or other damages. Renter’s insurance covers you if you’re sued because someone was injured in your apartment. This can cost $300 a year for a $50,000 policy, which can cover theft, or other disasters.

Protect your security: Make sure your lease and rental agreement is clear on the use of the security deposit, allowable deductions, and when it can be refunded. When you move in,  make sure to do a walk-through with the landlord to record existing damages.

NYC Apartments For Rent FAQ

What should I do if I have bad credit and want an apartment?

Good question. Typically, you’ll want to have a guarantor in place. This is someone whose obligated to pay your rent if you fail to do so. Guarantors need to have an annual income of 80-100x of the monthly rent. This is critical if you have bad credit or no credit history/rental history.

What should I do for my lease agreement when getting an apartment for rent?

Before you move in, you’ll need to have a monthly or long term lease agreement in place. Month to month rental agreements renew every 30 days, unless one of the parties give a 30 days notice. You want to make sure before you actually sign the lease agreement someone reviews it. It’s not uncommon for any basic attorney to have the qualifications to be able to review the agreement. Leases typically cover longer periods of time, anywhere from 2-3 years. Tenants, like yourself, are signing a lease agreement and agreeing to pay the rent for the premises for the full duration of the lease. One of the things you should make sure is included in the agreement is that the landlord will not raise the rent during the lease.

In 2019, a new law passed which provided protections to tenants. You can read this by clicking here. The bill virtually changed all of the tenant rules in New York. The bill expanded rent control to almost every apartment in New York, except for new developments which are exempt. The only exceptions are 2, and 3 family houses, where the owner lives in the building.

The bill capped an owner’s ability to raise rents at 1(1/2) times the consumer price index.

What is the landlord responsible for?

Landlords have an obligation to their tenant to keep a warranty of habitability. This means making sure your apartment for rent is livable, safe, and clean. It means the landlords responsible for the financials, taxes, utilities, and maintaining the property. The landlord is also responsible for following all state, federal, and local laws when it comes to the property. Every single lease inherently has a warranty of habitability. It’s the right of every tenant to have a safe and clean rental. It means there is functioning hot water and heat. Broken staircases, or insect infestations in the apartment is a violation of this warranty.

Every rental will vary in what safety codes are required. But here are some basic things.

Lead Paint: If your rental was built before 1978, you can ask for a lead paint disclosure form.

Mold Remediation: It’s a violation if mold is found in the apartment, and your landlord is required by law to clean the mold and to fix the issue causing water to build up.

Occupancy Standards: Every rental will differ on occupancy standards. In New York, the standard is maintained by maintenance code 404.

Smoke Detectors: Laws are in place which dictate how many smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are mandated in each room.

Window Guards: Landlords must install window guards if you ask the landlord in writing. If you have a child 10 years of age or younger, then this is a MUST.

Snow removal: The landlord is responsible for making sure the sidewalk is free of snow. In the case of an injury, the landlord can be held responsible for any damages as a consequence of not making sure the snow was removed.

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