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24 Strange Things About NYC Apartments Most Americans Won’t Get


Living in any part of a major city can have it’s drawbacks. Apartment living is especially difficult. In a major metropolitan area like New York City, the difficulty and bizarre things about apartment living are even worse.

City life isn’t for everyone. Especially New York. It’s like jam-packing a bunch of different people from all walks of life onto tiny little islands. It’s an especially difficult transition if you come from the countryside. Wide open spaces and green pastures are few and far between in NYC, unless you count the cesspool, rat infested Central Park. To make matters worse, trying to find an apartment in New York City is like like trying to find a needle in a haystack, only you also have to make a bet on the haystack before seeing what the needle even looks like.

Any person who has ever lived in a major city can tell you that every apartment building, old and new, duplex or condo, has it’s strange little quirks. They’re like living breathing entities, and we are all parasites trying to make a nest inside. The following list, contains bizarre facts or encounters about apartment living in NYC that most people just don’t understand.

1. Historical Listings: Some buildings in NYC come with construction dates that require you to become an overnight expert on pre-war/post-war architecture. For example, a building made in the 1930s might sound like a delightful old historic building with character, but it might also mean the difference between polyurethane insulation, and asbestos.

2. Bankruptcy Before Occupancy: A normal cost in applying for any apartment is requiring that tenants provide their first and last month’s rent. In NYC, you may also be required to fork over for a renter’s application fee, a security deposit, bankers fees, AND your first / last month rent all UP FRONT. Excuse us while we sell all our things…  

3. Papers, Please: Some building managers have a very strict policy when it comes to documents before taking over an apartment. Aside from references from your previous landlords, a standard practice by all building managers is to also require previous bank statements, previous pay stubs, a resume, proof of citizenship, and even your tax returns.

4.  Placing A Blind Offer: Sometimes when you start looking for apartments, a listing will go up online with very few hits. You get very excited and call to book an apartment viewing. You’re almost certain you’re going to take it, but you still want to see it first. Then, 10 minutes later you get an email telling you the apartment is taken! WHAT? How? In NYC, sometimes you gotta take a gamble and bet on a nice place before anyone else does. Who has time for viewings?

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