It’s no secret that rent in New York is incredibly expensive. But did you know that it is actually used as the standard against which all other cities are compared in cost of living lists? Yes, New York was given the value of 100 based on it being the most expensive city in the world for rentals.
Today there are actually two cities more expensive than New York for renting apartments. Hamilton in Bermuda is slightly more expensive. San Francisco, on the other hand, has a current rating of 118.96, making it by far the most expensive city in the world for renting.
Millennials living in New York don’t need all this context to know how unaffordable it is to rent even a humble apartment. Unfortunately, the expenses don’t begin and end at the exorbitant monthly rates.
If you are considering a New York apartment, here are some extra expenses you need to know about.
An extra month’s rent
It will be tough to afford one month’s rent in New York, but when you start renting, you may need to pay for two. While there is no hard-and-fast rule, landlords generally take your “final” month’s rent as a deposit. If and when you decide to move, this will account for your final month, but in the meantime, you are going to need to find some spare cash.
A security deposit
Not all landlords require both a rental deposit and a security deposit. But you can expect to pay this extra amount when you start renting from even some of the most welcoming landlords.
A security deposit is worthwhile in concept. After all, it will pay for accidental damages you cause to the apartment, and at the time will keep you and your landlord from having to pay out of pocket. That said, when you’re struggling to find the cash to pay for rent alone, adding a security deposit on top of everything can create another barrier to entry.
If you are allowed to have pets in your apartment, your landlord may charge a deposit for the privilege. This is to cover any damages caused by pets, including the increased necessity to clean carpets and furniture regularly. Your pet might be worth it, but it is yet another expense to consider.
Renters insurance in NYC
Getting renters insurance in NYC is a responsible choice. But even if you are willing to risk losing your possessions, your landlord might make it a requirement in the lease.
What is renters insurance? Renters insurance covers your possessions, as the landlord’s homeowners insurance does not. It can also cover personal liability, so that when you cause damage to your landlord or anyone else, your insurance pays out claims laid against you.
Personal liability insurance does not, unfortunately, negate the need for a security deposit. If you do cause damages, your landlord will rather turn to the security deposit before trying to claim against you, and this will be beneficial to your future insurance premiums.
Renters insurance also covers things like temporary accommodation if the apartment becomes unlivable due to a fire or other damages. The good news is that it is extremely affordable at an average of $15 a month, with some providers offering premiums that cost as little as $5 a month.
Utilities in New York
When renting in New York, you will also have to pay for utilities. You may be able to negotiate these into your lease, but either way you will be paying for them.
You’ll be relieved to know that the basic utilities – heating, water, electricity, garbage – in New York are actually slightly cheaper than the national average. You will pay about $7 a month less than the national average, which may seem like a small victory, but it is quite a difference to the premium costs you may have expected.
Finally, if you are lucky enough to find an apartment with amenities such as an indoor gym or swimming pool, you are probably going to have to pay an extra monthly fee. This monthly fee may be included whether or not you actually take advantage of them, but you might find that this saves you money you would have had to spend elsewhere.