How to Find an Apartment in New York City

Ever since I had my home tours published, I get readers emailing me from time to time seeking advice on finding an apartment in NYC. As much as I wish I could help, I don’t have much advice to offer because I was lucky enough to find my rental apartment through my job. I mentioned to my friend Victoria how I always feel a little bad about not being able to help the people who email, and she (brilliantly) suggested that I ask a few of my favorite bloggers for their apartment-finding recommendations and share their answers in a post. So, I did just that! I think that anyone looking to move to NYC (or just apartment-hunting in general) will be able to gain a lot of useful insight from these lovely ladies. Read on for advice from the NYC bloggers behind With Love From Kat, Design Darling, Victoria McGinley Studio, Stripes and Sequins, Daisy O, and Society Social

PS: For more advice from Mackenzie on this topic, check out her post Advice for Moving to New York
Huge thank you to all of the awesome bloggers who participated in this post!

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  1. So much good advice here!!! Ugh, I wouldn't go through the process again for anything, but for anyone who is about to, there's so many good tips from these gals!

    Published 11.17.14 · Reply
  2. Leslie wrote:

    What a great post! Your apartment is lovely; I see why you get inquiries!

    Published 11.17.14 · Reply
  3. Alexis wrote:

    One more tip: It takes some time and effort, but use the housing section of the website to find rent stabilized buildings in areas that you like. The building's management info is provided as public record and you can then contact them to inquire about available units!

    Published 11.17.14 · Reply
    • SUCH a smart idea! Love it, thanks Alexis. Ya can't beat rent-stabilized!

      Published 11.19.14 · Reply
  4. So much good advice here!!! Thanks for having me here, Jackie! x

    Published 11.17.14 · Reply
  5. Nicola wrote:

    The other thing I would add is time of year… we looked for an apartment in January and because it is "the right time of year" (according to our broker) we managed to find buildings that had offers to pay the brokers fee for us. Also, for any non native US movers – prepare to have about $25K to make a deposit. As we haven't got Social Security background, we are really stuck between finding a good place and paying a huge fortune! Thanks for all the info ladies πŸ™‚

    Published 11.18.14 · Reply
    • Excellent, excellent point about time of year, Nicola! It can make a huge difference as you learned.

      Published 11.19.14 · Reply
  6. Yup…did that with my sister when we were looking for her apartment! Sometimes word of mouth or just pounding the pavement can pay off. And old-fashioned landlords=the best.

    Published 11.19.14 · Reply
  7. Andrea wrote:

    Love this post. So awesome to include the perspective of so many awesome bloggers. Thanks for this, Jackie!

    Published 11.19.14 · Reply
  8. Val wrote:

    This is a great article with reality based info – kudos! I just moved to the upper East Side and avoided paying a fee by going through the management company. My apartment is wonderful – I’m spoiled! I think it will be much harder when I decide to buy.
    Love your blog – I’m glad I stumbled on it. I’m hooked!

    Published 3.10.15 · Reply
  9. My name is Kirby Sommers and in 2006 I tackled this problem. I created a DIY for renters called Landlord Links and a personalized “I will help you find the best deal with the best landlord in the city” service I call AptStar. Both help the rental consumer. When a broker shows you an apartment or even if you are lucky enough to find one on your own — there is no way to really tell what you’re getting. An AptStar client of mine sent me a link to an apartment she found on Streeteasy. As a courtesy to her I tracked down all the pertinent information. It was well priced and the location was good. Not so good was that the management had an “in-house” manager/agent who was a registered sex offender. I gave this piece of information to my client who also had a child and she was stunned. As much as landlords want to know everything about you – this doesn’t really happen when they hire someone. I perform due diligence for my clients. I also help them negotiate a possible hidden fees. There is so much that the normal rental consumer doesn’t know — even seasoned renters. The modest cost for my personalized AptStar pays for itself. Plus I love how happy my clients are. The DIY landlord links can be found here: and my personalized help here: / Kirby Sommers, Founder/CEO LandlordLinks and AptStar

    Published 3.19.18 · Reply