NYC Apartments for Rent
Elika provides sophisticated apartment rental services with 20 years of excellence.
Anyone who’s tried to find an NYC apartment to rent knows how complicated the process can be. With high demand and a limited inventory, you can find yourself in a highly competitive game. But you can increase your odds of finding that perfect apartment and in good time if, enlist the services of a qualified agent. Elika agents can do just that, and we provide the full range of our services no matter what you’re looking for. Whether it’s a long or short-term rental you’re looking for, a fully furnished Village studio, or a luxurious Upper East Side penthouse, we have you covered.
At present, demand, low inventory, and high prices are the name of the game in NYC. Let our agents at Elika help and guide you in the search for a new home. Our experienced team knows how to find the right listing and organize the required paperwork. We take all the needs of our clients into account to make sure we deliver on what you’re seeking.
Ready to Rent?
Let Elika’s experts search, filter and send you the best available New York City Apartments for rent that match your specific housing needs: Custom Search or Call 212-590-0540.
Before you begin your search for NYC apartments for rent, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the market. Seeking the help of an experienced rental agent can give you keen insights into the many different neighborhoods, New York City has to offer. A rental agent can help narrow down your search for rental apartments that are within your budget and are the best fit for your lifestyle. Or you can choose to go the No-Fee route.
New York City is the cultural and business crossroads of the world. Each of its neighborhoods provides unique offerings regarding schools, restaurants, shopping, and recreation, amongst much other quality of life factors.
Service and Fees
So far, so good, but how much will this cost? Well, you’ll be happy to know that our agents will show you all the luxury NYC rental apartments that suit your needs entirely free of charge. You’ll only ever pay a fee if you decide to lease an apartment that we have found for you.
This charge can be anything from one month to 15% of the first year’s annual rent. Until you’ve received building application approval, payment is not required. However, depending on the deal, the fees may vary. For example, if an apartment listing says No Fee, there’ll be no broker fees charged at any stage. To learn more, please visit our comprehensive guide to renting below.
The guide below has been assembled to help you prepare for proceeding with a rental of your choice. Most New York City landlords require that you earn up to 40x the annual rent in yearly income. Furthermore, below are additional items that you’ll need to expedite your rental application without hassle.
Table of Contents
- Why use a Rental Broker?
- Crucial Tips and Considerations Before Renting
- How Much are Rental Broker Fees?
- What Paperwork and Documents are Required?
- First-Time Renters Considerations
- Steps to Renting a New York City Apartment
- Application Process and Requirements
- Special Rental Situations
- Rental Building Types
- Rental (FAQs)
Why use a Rental Broker?
At this point, you might be asking yourself; do I need an agent to find a rental apartment? In short, yes. The process can be tricky even for those with experience, which is why tenant representation is so important. Elika renter’s representation guides you through every step of the rental process. Our trusted agents will evaluate your unique lifestyle needs and recommend NYC rental apartments that are right up, your ally. We’ll also handle lease negotiation and help make your move as smooth as possible. Every tenant is an individual, so we employ a custom approach that meets each client’s need. Whether you’re looking for a beautiful village studio or a luxurious penthouse, Elika has the resources and relationships to make your move a smooth, stress-free experience.
Elika professionals guide you through the entire process. We’ll help you identify and choose from the most appropriate apartment options and negotiate the best possible terms for your selected New York City apartment rental.
Crucial Tips and Considerations Before Renting
Finding a rental apartment doesn’t have to be a headache, as long as you’re prepared for the hunt. With all the borough and price options out there, doing a little research ahead of time can save you a lot of legwork in the long run.
Here in Manhattan, you can expect a market with high demand, low inventory, and prices that are just as lofty as its imposing sky-rises. As such, you’ll want the services of an experienced real estate agent that can lend a guiding hand.
First off, it is crucial for potential NYC residents to familiarize themselves with the entire leasing process and market conditions. This is important if you want to leverage the best deal. Here’s a quick and efficient eight-step guide that will help you find the best rental home in New York City.
Organizing Documents and Funds
It is essential for tenants to be equipped entirely with their documents and funds before they start their apartment search. The reason for this is because NYC rental apartments can sometimes be snagged within hours of being listed.
Before deciding on your budget, tenants need to decide what to prioritize in their apartment search. In NYC, it’s tough to find a place that fits all your needs and wants. Make a list of your top priorities as chances are, you’ll have to make some sacrifices due to limits on your budget. This will help you weed out potential properties and find the one that fits you both in needs and price.
Get Your Bearings Straight
The first step in finding the ideal rental is deciding which part of New York City to live in. Before your start borough hopping, you need to get your bearings straight. That way, you’ll know how each location relates to the next regarding distance and access to the things you want in and around your neighborhood. Whether you choose the hustle and bustle of Manhattan, the progressive culture of Brooklyn, the diversity of The Bronx and Queens, or the suburban feel of Staten Island, exploring the boroughs by foot is a great way to get to know them. Make sure you’re equipped with a map app.
Figure Out Your Budget Ahead of Time
If you’re already on the apartment hunt but haven’t figured out your budget yet, then you’re wasting your time. With rental prices in NYC from insanely expensive to surprisingly affordable, having a well-thought-out budget in mind is half the battle. That said, it’s essential to stick to your budget once you do come up with one.
Again, there is a range of rental prices in New York City. So don’t feel pressured to rent an apartment that is not within budget. Although there is significant competition when searching for a rental, more and more rentals pop up every day.
Fee or No-Fee
If you can afford to hire an agent, then it’s highly recommended that you do so. This will open up your options and allow you to find the right place much faster. Manhattan rental agents charge tenants a commission of about 15% of the annual rent. There are also no-fee apartments where the commission is levied solely on the landlord. Usually done because they want to fill the rental apartment as soon as possible. The NYC marketplace is priced accordingly for the most part, and the more you spend, including a fee, the better the apartment usually is.
Let a Rental Agent Help
Finding an NYC apartment for rent without the help of a rental agent is like going on a cross-country journey without a compass. Whether you’re a rental veteran or a first-time renter, rental agents have access to thousands of resources in the city. Rental agents can help you through every step of the process, and they charge reasonable fees for their services. Average brokerage fees range from 1 month to 15 percent of the first year’s rent. There are also no-fee rentals, depending on the area. Keep in mind that no-fee apartments will probably come at a higher cost than rentals with fees.
Have One or Two or Three Backups
As mentioned, the rental market in the five boroughs is competitive, so it’s essential to be proactive in your search. Don’t put all your rental eggs in one basket because you might lose to another renter. Instead, submit as many applications as possible, so you always have an apartment or two to fall back on.
Read the Lease Thoroughly
Once the hunt is over, and you’re ready to sign a lease, make sure you thoroughly read the lease agreement. That way there’s no confusion on the move-in or move-out day. From the lease terms and dates to the renter’s responsibilities, knowing your lease is all part of the renting experience. By keeping in mind the rental pointers above, your move-in day will be a hassle-free one.
Timing is Everything When Renting
Timing is everything when looking for an NYC apartment to rent. During the winter, most people are content to stay put, while the summertime is historically the busiest rental season. This is when students and recent grads descend upon the city, creating a severe upswing in demand and prices.
Therefore, we recommend putting off your search if you can. The best time to look for a rental apartment is in the late fall and winter months. The slow rental season presents; lower prices; less competition. Of course, seasonal fluctuations also depend on apartment size, neighborhood, and how the overall economy is doing.
To get the best deal, we recommend following the market close by reviewing rental market reports and news, and by studying the online apartment listings daily.
Most prospective renters do not have the luxury of choosing exactly when they will need to rent an apartment. Therefore, it is best you start looking one month to 45 days before you need to move in. Landlords usually select move-in dates for vacant apartments on the 1st or 15th day of the upcoming month. So prospective renters should plan accordingly.
Below is a comprehensive step-by-step guide to help you prepare and answer any questions you might have about, income requirements, documentation required, broker’s fee, no-fee, pets, apartment, and building types and more.
How Much are Rental Broker Fees?
RENTAL TERM / COMMISSION
Fewer than two months – 1/2 Month’s Rent
Two months and up to 6 months – 1 Month’s rent
Six months + option up to 1 year – 15% of the first annual rent
One year or more – 15% of the first year rent
What Paperwork and Documents are Required?
Required Application Documents
- Letter from employer stating position, length of employment as well as salary.
- Tax returns from the last two years
- Last two pay stubs
- Guarantor (If the salary does not qualify for 42x monthly rent)
- Verification of assets such as equities, real estate, etc.
- Bank statements from the last two months
- Name, address and phone number of the previous landlord
- Two business reference letters
- Two personal reference letters
- Photo identification (passport or driver’s license)
- First month’s rent
- Last month’s rent
- One Month Security deposit (Security deposit depends on a credit check and income etc.)
- Application fee ($50 – $200) per applicant
- Brokerage fee (15% of the annual rent), if applicable
The application form is the first step in the process of finding your perfect apartment. NYC management companies can provide you with the appropriate way. Don’t wait; download an Elika Associates application form and take that first step towards your new home.
Letter Of Employment
The letter of employment must use company letterhead. The letter should state position, start date and length of work, as well as annual income. A person in authority must sign this document. A signed offer and acceptance letter are usually not considered sufficient verification.
Copies of your three most recent pay stubs are also required, like proof of income.
Management companies may ask for a copy of your most recent tax return. However, not every company asks for this paperwork. If you’re self-employed or have varied sources of income, you will most likely be asked to provide a copy of your federal return. Every applicant should be prepared to submit this information if it’s the company’s policy.
When trying to rent an apartment, a glowing reference from your current landlord is a great asset. Indeed, this information is often requested during the process. But if you were unable to get a letter, be confident you can pass on your landlord’s name, address, and telephone number. Without a reference, a landlord might want to do his check into your history as a tenant.
You are asked to provide your three most recent bank statements. Checking or savings account records are acceptable proof of your banking history. These documents will also show the status and balance of an account.
Bank Account Numbers
You may be required to enter your bank account number on the application form. The paperwork can vary slightly from company to company. It’s wise to have this information on hand – in case it is requested in an application.
Not every landlord requires references, but it’s better to be prepared for that request. In addition to a landlord’s letter, a recommendation from an accountant or attorney reflects favorably on you. Decide on your references and have up-to-date contact information for them.
Prospective tenants will be expected to provide copies of a license or passport. Indeed, many landlords require a copy of a photo ID when signing a lease.
There are substantial initial costs involved in renting an NYC apartment. At the time of lease signing, you need available funds to cover the rent, security deposit, and broker’s fee (if any). Personal checks are not accepted to cover these costs. These funds must be in a certified form – bank checks, certified checks, or money orders.
There can be additional fees which vary from building to building. Elika Associates can offer expert advice in this area.
Not every owner requires a move-in deposit. However, some owners do request this fee, which can range from $250-$600. Fortunately, this deposit is often refundable if no building damage occurs during the move.
Some owners insist that you have renter’s insurance.
Condo and Co-op Costs
Tenants in condos or co-op can have additional fees
Move-in and processing fees as well as other charges. These non-refundable fees can range from $250-$1100.
Deposits For Pets
Many buildings are pet-friendly but can require an upfront deposit for pets – in case of any damage or other problems.
Temporary walls can mean opening your wallet for an additional deposit.
First-Time Renters Considerations
Finding an NYC apartment for rent has its challenges. But if you keep an open mind, the task needn’t be a daunting one. Before you start your apartment search, you should keep in mind that New York City’s real estate market plays by its own rules. Typically, apartments are only listed 30-60 days in advance. You should also expect to spend anywhere from three days to four weeks on your search.
Leading up to your impending hunt, you can check online listings to get a feel for what’s out there. Look at different neighborhoods to find one that fits your needs, and review market data. That way, you can be ready and confident when your search begins.
Preparedness is vital when apartment hunting in New York City. There’s a variety of factors to consider when entering the rental market, and the most important is managing your expectations.
The newer the apartment and appliances, along with the nearness to conveniences, all determine how much rent will be. Also, the neighborhood and buildings with an elevator and doorman all increase the monthly rent. Remaining open and knowing your apartment must-haves will help in your search.
When searching for the right apartment, you need to make sure you ask the right questions. Here is a list of items to query.
- How much is rent?
- Is there a Broker’s Fee and how much?
- What is included in the monthly rent?
- Is there a security deposit?
- Are pets allowed? – If so, is there a weight restriction for dogs?
- How far are the nearest conveniences such as a subway station, drug store, grocery store, etc.?
- Does the building have a doorman or buzzing service for guests and mail deliveries?
- Is there a building maintenance staff, i.e., super?
- If an appliance stops working, who would I call?
Steps to Renting a New York City Apartment
The first thing you need to do before renting is determining your criteria for an apartment. Here are some factors we suggest you consider when thinking about a rental.
Rental Agent versus Going it Alone
Before the advent of the Internet, searching for an NYC apartment for rent on your own was a complicated and challenging task. Now that the online world has bloomed, that’s no longer the case. It’s now possible to do all the research you need to do online through various websites, no–fee rental sites and public real estate databases.
However, you should know that if you go it alone, the process of finding an NYC apartment for rent can be extremely time-consuming.
If you decide to search for an NYC apartment for rent on your own, you’ll be forced to spend countless hours poring over online rental listings and arranging for apartment viewings at times that are often inconvenient for you.
Further, you may waste your time checking out 15 NYC apartments for rent, only to find that none of them are suitable and that you have missed out on “the one.” Also, you’ll have to contend with everything from irresponsible landlords who don’t return your calls to outright scams.
In short, searching for am NYC apartment for rent on your own can make you want to scream.
Hiring a Rental Agent
If you decide to go with a rental agent to help you find an NYC apartment for rent, you’ll likely need to pay a broker’s fee. Broker’s fees range from 1 Month to 15% of the first year’s rent. However, the broker, if experienced, will spare what can seem like unrelenting aggravation. Experienced rental agents will save you time because they know exactly what’s available, what apartments are worth, and whether or not they meet your criteria.
Agents will be able to select the most suitable apartments for you, help you avoid scams, help you prepare your application package, and negotiate a deal with the landlord. In a city where time is such a valuable commodity, such assistance can be invaluable.
Another benefit of having an experienced agent is the connections they have with other local professionals and landlords. Also, they’ll be able to provide you with recommendations for services like movers and decorators. This can be especially helpful if you are new to New York City.
Determine Your Budget and How to Qualify
By far, the most constraining factor in your search for an apartment is your budget. Before even starting your search, you need to get a clear picture of the minimum you want to pay. As well as the maximum you can afford to pay per month.
Once you’ve calculated your monthly expenses with rent figured in, you can get a much better idea of what apartments are in your price range.
To qualify for a New York City rental, most brokerages and landlords require that you make 40-50 times the monthly rent in annual income.
Choosing a Neighborhood(s)
Regarding areas, no other city offers the choices that New York City does. From the chic and trendy to the upscale and sophisticated. Depending on such criterion as accessibility and food shopping, the vibe may even be different from block to block within a particular neighborhood.
When it comes to Manhattan neighborhoods, no two are the same. From Chelsea to the Upper West Side, each community has unique qualities. Rental agents will introduce you to the many enclaves that comprise New York City, ensure that you know how to navigate around them and help you pick the location that is best suited for you.
If you’re looking to spend less money for more space, you might want to consider Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx.
You can visit online guides for more details on specific neighborhoods. However, it’s recommended you go for a walk around the area in person to get a feel for its atmosphere. By actually going to a neighborhood, you can discover firsthand the flavor and character by talking to residents, visiting stores, schools, restaurants, and other local haunts.
New Yorkers may have a reputation for being gruff. But they still love to talk about themselves and where they reside. By asking a simple question like, “Do you like living here?” you can get a wealth of information that you cannot get online or by talking to an agent.
Decide on the Size of the NYC Apartment for Rent You Need
Space is a precious commodity in the Manhattan real estate market. Therefore, it is essential that you be realistic about your needs. Ask yourself such questions as how many people will I be living with? Am I amenable to sharing a bathroom or bedroom? The more people sharing the rent, the less costly the apartment will be, but that comes at a sacrifice of privacy. Know your limits, but above all, keep an open mind and be ready for compromise.
Pick the Essential Amenities to You
Regarding facilities, New York City apartments offer an array of choices. Some luxury buildings feature such things as laundry service, on-site gyms, and electronic rent payment. Walk-up rentals have fewer amenities and can be more affordable. Consider compromising on things that are non-essential to you. But keep your safety uppermost in your mind as your security should be non-negotiable.
Research the Rental Market
If you’re considering a range of options, like renting a studio by yourself or sharing a two–bedroom with a roommate, remember to set up searches for all of these options. Even if you can’t afford a studio in your favorite neighborhood, you might be able to rent in that area if you split the cost of a more significant place with friends.
Furthermore, look to your friends and their real estate choices for market information and renting advice. Those who already live in a particular neighborhood are the best sources of information about it. Once you narrow down your search to specific properties, you’ll get a better idea of the types of apartments and features that mesh with your budget.
Organize and Schedule Viewings
Once you’ve selected a broker, you can put them to work scheduling viewings for you. All you have to do is tell your rental agent the dates and times that you are available, and we will do the rest. You probably have a full-time job that makes mid-week viewings difficult, but keep in mind that the faster you see an apartment, the quicker you can snap it up.
To save time, schedule back-to-back viewings of some apartments in the same neighborhood (allowing yourself between thirty minutes and an hour to see each apartment). However, make sure that you are thorough when you evaluate the property because your first viewing could potentially be your last before you sign the lease and move in.
Keeping tabs on your appointments is vital and can be accomplished by using a spreadsheet that contains the time, date, location, and contact information for each apartment. Agents will also keep track of your appointments in such a manner. It’s also essential that you be on time for your viewings to show prospective landlords and your agent that you are reliable and serious about renting.
Above all, it is vital that you visit each apartment that you are investigating in person. Advertisements can be deceiving, and what looks great on the Web can turn out to be a disaster when you visit the place. Suddenly that dream pad turns out to be a five-floor walk-up with the smells of the restaurant below wafting through the door.
Be Prepared When Viewing Apartments for Rent
We highly recommend when viewing an apartment that you come prepared with all the information necessary to apply to rent it. Since NYC apartments for rent move quickly, you’ll then be able to submit your application on the spot to stop someone stealing the apartment out from under you. Plus, the landlord will see that you are someone responsible and savvy.
Choose the Right Apartment for Your Needs
After you’ve seen the many NYC apartments for rent available, you can decide on one. Many people only have to look at an apartment once to conclude it is the perfect place for them. Others will have to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of many apartment rentals carefully. If you’re doing this, you have to consider which property is at the best location regarding such things as commuting, weekend entertainment, and traveling outside of the area.
Furthermore, you should think whether any repairs are necessary, whether the apartment unit itself is laid out functionally and has space for all your belongings and whether it has ample natural light. Above all else, you must ascertain whether you can comfortably afford the rent and the cost of utilities.
Bring the Following Information When Viewing Apartments
Required documents can vary depending on the landlord. However, most will need the following list of items to proceed with a rental application: Letter from employer stating position, length of employment as well as salary.
- Tax returns from the last two years – Last two pay stubs.
- Guarantor (If the salary does not qualify for 40x monthly rent).
- Verification of assets; equities, real estate, etc.
- Bank statements form the last two months.
- Name, address; and phone number of the previous landlord.
- Two business reference letters.
- Two personal reference letters.
- Photo identification; passport, driver’s license.
It’s a good idea to bring along a tape measure to make sure that your furniture will fit into an apartment. Be sure to come prepared with the measurements of this furniture.
Application Process and Requirements
When renting an NYC apartment, landlords usually require you to fill out an application. Applicants will be selected on the strength and balance of income, credit, assets, and guarantor. Below are just some details that will help you prepare for renting an apartment.
Most landlords require tenants to earn 40 to 50 times the monthly rent of the apartment as their annual income. This refers to the guaranteed income and does not include bonuses. (i.e., If the property is $3000.00 a month, you must earn $120,000.00 to $150,000.00 a year to qualify to rent the apartment.)
If an applicant does not meet the financial requirements, the landlord may require a Lease Guarantor. This is the person who pays the rent if the tenant fails to do so. They’re expected to navigate the same application process as the tenant and earn 80 to 100 times the monthly rent. Also, most landlords favor tri-state guarantors (people who reside in New Jersey, New York or Connecticut).
Application / Credit Check
This is a single document that will provide a landlord with all of an applicant’s required financial, professional, and personal background information. (Credit checks are only applicable to US residents).
Application fees are typically required when you submit your application and range in price from $50–$100 (per application) for a rental building and anywhere from $250–$1,000 for a co-op or condo building.
One month’s rent and one month’s security are due when you sign your lease. Landlords require this payment in the form of two separate certified checks or money orders. These checks can be obtained at a New York City bank for $10–$15.
Landlords do not accept personal checks or cash, but some will allow the tenant to pay with a credit card (often with surcharges of 2-3% added to the rent and security payments). If you lack a US credit history or have bad credit, landlords will usually ask for additional security.
Employer Verification Letter
This letter must be written on company letterhead and be signed by your supervisor. It should state your position, starting date, salary, and, if applicable, guaranteed bonus. It should also detail whether or not you are entitled to a housing allowance and, if so, how much.
When trying to rent an NYC apartment, a glowing reference from your current landlord is a great asset. Indeed, this information is often requested during the process. If you were unable to get a letter, be confident you can pass on your landlord’s name, address, and telephone number. Without a reference, a landlord might want to do his research into your history as a tenant.
Most landlords don’t require references, but it’s better to be prepared for that request. In addition to a landlord’s letter, a reference from an accountant or attorney reflects favorably on you. Decide on your references and have up-to-date contact information for them.
You should come prepared for at least the last two months’ worth of statements.
In some cases, you may be asked to provide tax returns. Therefore, it is essential to bring the last two years of tax returns with you.
It will be necessary to show a driver’s license, passport, or some other form of government-issued photo ID.
Many buildings and landlords are pet-friendly but can require an additional month of deposit for pets in case of any damage or other problems.
Since tenants pay the broker’s fee in New York City, it is customary to be asked to sign a fee agreement when enlisting the help of an agent. This agreement only states that you agree to pay a fee to the broker if they help you to obtain a lease on a particular apartment. You don’t have to pay a broker’s fee if you are unable to secure a lease agreement through the specific broker.
The broker’s fee in New York City can be up to 15% of the annual rent. This is usually required when you sign your lease. You are only responsible for this fee if you secure an NYC apartment for rent through that broker. Fees should always be made payable to the brokerage firm and not a specific agent.
If an apartment listing says NO FEE, there should not be a broker’s fee charged at any stage.
Owner Paid Fees
In certain instances, a landlord may pay a portion of a fee to a broker. Under New York State law, the broker must notify the person responsible for paying the fee, whether that is a tenant or sponsoring corporation. Elika’s Renters Representation will help you prepare your application, double check all requirements and follow up with the leasing organization quickly to ensure that nothing slips through the cracks, particularly in extraordinary circumstances. (See Appendix C for more details.)
Negotiating and Signing the Lease
In times when the market is soft, there is an opportunity in the Manhattan rental market to negotiate more favorable lease terms. Elika’s Renters Representation can offer you expert advice and guidance as to whether negotiation is possible and how to go about it. However, bear in mind that even in a soft market, a landlord will walk away from a deal if it doesn’t make financial sense.
Once you’ve agreed on the terms, the lease will need to be signed by all parties, including the landlord, renter and, if applicable, guarantors. All of the necessary documents need to be signed before you can move ahead, so if you’re enlisting a guarantor from outside the area, you need to be prepared to ship documents quickly. Once the lease is signed, it’s time to make a toast—the apartment has become yours officially.
Special Rental Situations
When searching for NYC apartments for rent, there are some unique situations that you may need to be prepared to address. These include the following:
Usually, landlords will not accept more than two names on a lease. Roommates are held jointly responsible for rent and broker fees. Also, roommates are held accountable for any other roommate’s unpaid rent. Elika’s Renters Representation therefore strongly suggests that roommates sign was written agreements which bind each of them to the rental fee and terms of the lease.
Regarding the Financial Requirements for Renting
Landlords will often consider the combined income of the roommates. However, this can vary from landlord to landlord, and you should tell your broker ahead of time if this is how you plan to qualify for an NYC apartment for rent. Also, be aware that landlords may require a guarantor even if your combined income meets the financial requirements. This is why you also need to notify your broker of this circumstance.
If you pay taxes outside of the United States, or if you have a housing allowance from your job, your qualifications are assessed differently. If this is the case, you can consult with Elika about the financial resources you will need to become eligible to rent. Without a U.S. rental history, many of those relocating from abroad are required to pay additional security.
Some landlords may even require six months to one year of rent to be pre-paid depending on your particular circumstances.
Your four-legged canine friend can sometimes prove to be your worst enemy when it comes to obtaining an NYC apartment for rent. Most landlords in New York City do not accept dogs over twenty pounds, and in many cases even frown upon smaller dogs, cats, and other small domestic animals. If you have a pet or plan on getting one, your choice of apartments may be limited. As such, you should alert your broker to this situation.
Since it’s often difficult to find affordable two-bedroom apartments, many prospective tenants look for one-bedrooms that can be converted into two by the installation of a temporary wall. Several reputable businesses will deliver and install a wall for a fee. However, many landlords do not allow these shares, so you should advise your broker if you plan on going this route. Be aware that you are responsible for removing the wall at the end of your lease.
Tenant Rights and Resources
Once you sign your lease, you can breathe easy. If an issue were to arise, you could refer to the New York City Rent Guidelines Board Tenants’ Rights Guide.
As you enter the New York City rental market, you can now feel confident in your search. Follow the tips above, and you’re sure to have a much easier time renting your first NYC apartment.
Rental Building Types
In Manhattan, there are three different ways buildings are owned, and they each vary about the approval process you need to go through to live in them, as well as other related requirements. The most comfortable building to move into is a rental, followed by a condominium, which has more significant restrictions, and then a co-operative building, where the requirements for moving into the apartment can be stringent.
A single landlord owns the whole property, which can be rent stabilized or non-rent stabilized depending on the real estate laws. Landlords typically require the official paperwork (discussed above) and a credit check, as well as one month’s rent and one month’s security deposit, for you to be approved to move in. The approval process can take anywhere from one day to one week, but usually no longer.
Each unit is individually owned and can be used either as a personal residence or rented out to somebody else as an investment property. The board sets regulations for moving into a condo – a governing body for the building made up of individual owners. As long as owners follow the board’s rules, they can set their rental price and lease length.
Owners will typically require you to provide the official paperwork, plus whatever additional information they feel necessary for approval. Also, applicants may be asked to supply extra paperwork that is deemed necessary by the board. Generally speaking, though, the board does not have the right to turn down an applicant that an owner is willing to rent to. Tenants are required to pay application, board and move–in fees, as well as additional security if needed. With a condo, the approval process can take anywhere from one week to one month.
These buildings are similar to privately owned condos. Individuals own shares in the building based on their apartment’s size and value, but not the deed to the unit itself. Co-ops tend to have stringent rules on renting. In addition to the standard paperwork, the co-op board always requires financial and personal information.
Prospective renters must attend an extensive interview with the building’s co-op board, and once approved, are usually required to pay application, building, and move–in fees, as well as extra security. If you are from abroad or do not have an extensive credit history, it can be challenging to get the board’s approval. The approval process can take a month or more.
What Is The Monthly Rent In Manhattan?
The rent varies according to the apartment. Monthly rental payments in NYC tend to be high but still vary as homes range from small tenements to luxury penthouses. On average, tenants can expect to spend approximately 25% of their gross income on rental payments. If you earn $100,000 per year, you should budget to pay $25,000 for a year’s rent.
What Is An No-Fee Apartment?
Landlords of No-Fee apartments offer to pay the broker commission themselves. This is done to get more potential tenants through the door and secure a full apartment in a short time. Brokerage firms like Elika Associates will then pass those savings right onto you. Thus, the term No-Fee apartments. This system is far more favorable for a tenant as it means not having to pay the broker’s commission. However, keep in mind that NO-FEE apartments tend to be more expensive. This is due to the price being raised to offset the landlord’s expense of paying the broker commission. No-fee apartments are also usually less desirable than those with a fee attached. Otherwise, they shouldn’t have a problem getting potential tenants through the door.
What is Required By Building Management Companies?
Rent payment. Landlords, almost without exception, will require a credit report and will expect a favorable report. Despite that, securing an apartment with less than ideal finances is still possible. That said, financial stability still works well for the landlord and tenant when renting high priced NYC apartments.
Are Credit Reports An Important Factor?
Almost without exception, credit reports are performed on every applicant and guarantor. A credit report is a critical factor in the approval process. Before the application process, prospective tenants need to have their credit reports in as near perfect condition as possible. By all means, aim for zero outstanding payments on your record. Adversely, late fees and a high revolving balance will reflect poorly on you. Likewise, delinquencies, collections, as well as unfavorable public and landlord/tenant records can end your chances. If you have bad credit, then inform your agent. Knowing the complete picture allows your agent to represent you more efficiently.
Landlords deal with credit issues in different ways. For instance, some landlords will immediately reject an application if presented with a weak credit report. Conversely, other landlords may ask that you increase the security deposit or get a guarantor.
Landlords will not accept credit reports obtained by tenants. Depending on management, credit reports/application fees can range from $25-$100. Anchor Associates is always available to guide you through the process. With our expertise, tenants save money and enjoy a stress-free experience.
What Is The Role Of A Guarantor?
A guarantor (or co-signor) is someone willing to guarantee your lease. If a landlord feels uncertain of your ability to keep up with rental payments, then they ask for a guarantor. For this reason, being a guarantor carries a great responsibility. If you default on your payments, then a guarantor is responsible for all the terms of your lease and guarantees. This doesn’t just include your rent. It consists of the entire lease agreement.
Will I Need A Guarantor?
Students and other young people on a low income will usually need a guarantor. Bad credit is undoubtedly a problem when finding a home, but it’s not the final nail in the coffin. Anyone with terrible credit will be asked by the landlord for a guarantor to secure the apartment. If you think you may need one, then advise your agent of this as soon as possible. That way, they can work with you to get the best possible outcome.
How Do I Choose A Guarantor?
When renting NYC apartments, landlords prefer the guarantor to live in either New York, New Jersey, or Connecticut. You do not have to choose a relative. To begin with, a guarantor needs to have proper credit and earn double the income requirements of the applicant. If the application form suggests that an applicant makes 40-50 times the monthly rent, then the guarantor must have an income of 80-100 times the monthly payment.
A guarantor must also complete an application form. Guarantors must present proof of income (usually tax returns) and a good credit report. Always ask a guarantor and explain the process to them before you submit their name. Guarantors typically do not have to be present at the signing of the lease. Given these points, a guarantor’s cooperation can seal the deal.