How To Rent An Apartment in NYC

Manhattan apartments rent very quickly. You have to be prepared to make a fast decision. Have your money and paperwork ready to go.

According to Curbed, in January, the average Manhattan apartment rental was only on the market for 9 days. When you’re looking for a Manhattan apartment rental, you have to make quick decisions and be ready to move quickly if you want to get an apartment that suits your requirements. To help aid in the decision-making process, it helps to have a clear idea of exactly what you want in an apartment rental.

Natural Light

When it comes to Manhattan apartments for rent, space comes at a high premium and square footage is limited, natural lighting can make a huge impact on the feel of an apartment. Large or strategically place windows can make even the smallest apartment feel more open and breezy. While some people get hung up on the view from their apartment, it’s often better to have expansive windows with a sub-par view that less windows and a better view. For a less-than-stunning view, you can hang sheer curtains to obscure the vista without blocking the glow of natural sunlight.


According to the New York Police Department’s historical New York City crime data, there were

A doorman is the best security in a Manhattan building.

18,720 burglaries in the city in 2011. In order to protect you, your family and all of your stuff, the best wireless alarm system is a must-have for your new apartment. Look for a rental that already has a security system if possible. However, if your dream apartment doesn’t have one, it shouldn’t be a deal breaker.

You can also easily install an alarm on your own. Customer reviews can quickly point you to the best DIY security system that fits your budget.


As the cliché goes, location really is everything in New York City. You can minimize stress by finding a place in close proximity to your office as well as to friends. Make a list of all of your weekly errands, from dry cleaning and the gym to the grocery store and pharmacy, you want to make sure that each of the essential businesses you regularly frequent are nearby. New York Daily News broke down the best neighborhoods for various demographics:

  • Singles hotspots: Gramercy/Flatiron, East Village, Hunter’s Point, Wall Street, BAM, Williamsburg and Hell’s Kitchen
  • The stroller brigade: Battery Park City, Little Neck, Park Slope, Forest Hills, Upper East Side, Tribeca, Ridegwood and Bay Ridge
  • Best neighborhoods to retire in: Murray Hill, Prospect Heights, Morningside Heights, Peter Cooper Village, Parkchester, Elmhurst and Upper West Side
  • Best rental prices: Apartments for rent in Queens represent, dollar for dollar, the best apartment rental values in NYC.

Flexible Space

When space is a luxury, it helps to have multi-purpose areas instead of a floor plan with distinct rooms. If you’re an avid cook, look for an apartment that has a closet near the kitchen that can double as a pantry for dry goods and cookware. If you work at home, you’ll need a living room that can pull triple duty as your office, dining room and relaxing space for down time, so you’ll want a place with a generously sized main room. Determine what functions your apartment needs to fulfill and use that to guide you in your apartment search.


For some, living in a building with a doorman is a necessity that’s essential to the Manhattan lifestyle. You can count on a doorman to do everything from helping you carry groceries upstairs and walking your dog to leaving your morning paper on the doorstep and hailing you a cab in the rain. By living in Manhattan apartments with a doorman, someone is always looking out for you, which can be a comforting throwback in this no-nonsense city.

Your Personal Non-negotiable

Make a list of your personal non-negotiables and let it guide your through your search of apartments for rent in Manhattan. Do you have young kids? An in-unit washer and dryer may be a helpful amenity you have to have in your next place. Do you have little time to get to the gym? Building workout facilities may be a useful amenity to look for. Here are some common non-negotiables to consider for your new apartment:

  • Pets allowed
  • On-site storage
  • Parking
  • Trash removal
  • 24/7 maintenance
  • Package holding
  • On-site or in-unit laundry facilities
  • Fitness facilities

For more information on what to look for in an apartment, check out our post on the seven things your landlord must provide for apartment safety.

<a href=””>Blog post by Lorenzo</a>

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Written by Lorenzo

Lorenzo has been hanging around the office for the past 24 years, and, in the process, has become the president of,, and His mission is to build into New York's largest no fee apartment rental service. Before, Lorenzo was a Regional Sales Manager for Time Equities, Inc., one of New York's largest converters of rental buildings to coops and condos. Lorenzo was once a part owner of Swift & Watson Real Estate in NYC's Greenwich Village.

This article has 2 comments

  1. surveillance camera Reply

    Every country have different rules for rent a home in commercial or local area . In our area if you would like to rent a house your will pay 6 month advance rent and document will attested from Government offices. you can contract between you and tenets no need for real estate agencies.

  2. internet home business Reply

    Wow, incredible weblog format! How long have you ever been running a blog for?
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