I'm relocating to NYC...help?
June 7, 2005 3:19 PM   Subscribe

I'm ready to move to NYC. I grew up in NY (suburbs), have tons of friends/business associates up there, I'm young, have no attachments (relationship-wise), and I have a decent career. But I have a ton of questions and need help because I would like to be living there by end of summer...

1. Employment: I've been working in the online advertising industry (client-side media planning/analysis, publisher-side sales, agency account management, etc) for 8 years. I figure I can easily find a job in my field but I'm not sure how to word my cover letter to convey that while I have a Florida address (and my current job is in FL), I'm looking to relocate and want to be considered a serious candidate. How often should I plan on flying up for interviews?

2. Moving: I have my heart set on Manhattan and I want to live alone (at least for year #1). I know quite a few people who have been able to find places for <$2000/month (and I've seen similar listings on craigslist) on the UES (very far east) and they love the neighborhood but I'm nervous about being a single female and the possibility of having to walk that far alone at night. (I have never had a problem walking around in the city by myself but I'm not super-familiar with that particular area.). Is craigslist the way to go? Will it be difficult for me to find an apartment if I'm not employed but have some kind of offer?

3. Exchange rate: So if I make a certain amount of money here in South Florida, how do I figure out how much more I need to make in order to support myself comfortably (taking increased taxes and cost of living into account)? Is there a website where I can calculate what the multiplier is?

4. Any other advice?

(I'm posting anonymously because people from my job visit this site.)
posted by anonymous to Travel & Transportation around New York, NY (9 answers total)
1. I just went through the opposite move (NYC -> Mpls) and wrote, in my cover letters, that I would be available for an interview a month away. Different professions, different cities, but it worked okay for me.

2. I found my apartment (in the financial district) through Craigslist. It was a big, no-fee building. If I remember correctly, I had to show them a letter from my employer, setting forth my start date and salary. I expect that most landlords will be accustomed to that sort of transaction.

3. Try this. However, a lot will depend on your tastes (e.g., shopping. dining, drinking). I spent most of my evenings downtown (e.g., Mercury Lounge, Bowery Ballroom) so it was a steady drain, but not as bad as if I went to bottle-service clubs.

4. Have fun. It's the greatest city in the world. I've been in Mpls. for two months, and I miss NYNY terribly.
posted by subgenius at 3:44 PM on June 7, 2005

1. Get a 917 or 646 cellphone number. Don't, like, lie about not being in new york, but don't go out of your way to let prospective employers know, either. Most employers would rather not deal with the hassle of out of town applicants, especially in a city with such a large pool of potential employees. However, I don't know your industry well enough to provide any more specific advice.

2. Craigslist is good. Word of mouth is better, if available. The UES is not bad, but if your goal is to spend between $1500 - $2000 / month, there are parts of Brooklyn that you should seriously consider, as well: Carroll Gardens / Cobble Hill / Boerum Hill ; Fort Greene; even Williamsburg / Greenpoint. You'll get a LOT more space for your money, and the services in those neighborhoods (restaurants, bars, shopping, etc.) tend to be far superior to what you will find in the far UES. By the way, most of the UES (and the neighborhoods in Brooklyn I just mentioned) is very safe, but there are always problem areas, frequently on a block-by-block basis. That having been said, I lived in NY for 5 years and was never a victim of any sort of crime whatsoever.

3. Depends on where in South Florida. If you currently live in Miami, I would imagine that the cost of living, other than rent, will be pretty similar. This cost of living calculator should be able to provide a rough guide, however.

4. Enjoy yourself.
posted by dersins at 3:46 PM on June 7, 2005

Also, on the Upper East Side, you'll may be 3 or more avenues over from the subway (i.e., a longish walk), and it's known for being a "right out of college/fratboy" area, especially 1st and York Aves and inbetween. For 2000 or less (and you definitely want to pay less, since rent stabilization stops at 2000), you can afford a lot of neighborhoods--in and out of Manhattan--Hell's Kitchen, Turtle Bay, ...I had luck with Tues, Wed, Thurs NYTimes ads--look at all the tiny ones and not the big broker ads. You might think about sharing for a few months at first--you'll meet people and get a feel for the city and where you want to be.

I'd definitely do as dersins said re: phone and interviews. Try to schedule them together if you can, and use JetBlue or another cheapo airline to come up.
posted by amberglow at 5:01 PM on June 7, 2005

I second Hell's Kitchen. I moved into the 'hood about three years back, and have completely fallen in love with it. Lots of great little restaurants and bars along 9th between 42nd and 55th, very reasonable prices, and (if you look primarily around 50th) access to a whole lot of different subway lines.
posted by thomascrown at 6:12 PM on June 7, 2005

I second dersins, don't rule out the outer boroughs. They're cheaper, have plenty of culture, and have more of a neighborhood feel than Manhattan.
posted by jonmc at 6:44 PM on June 7, 2005

1. I wouldn't assume that you can necessarily find a job that quickly. I am familiar with the advertising industry around here (but from the creative side) and I wouldn't say that the job situation is that great. It's not as bad as it was right after the dot-com bubble, but it's not exactly booming, except maybe for people who focus on pharma. Of course, you may have particular skills that will land you a position right away...

2. Other people have given you good advice. I wouldn't worry about the UES (or, as the old folks call that particular area, Yorkville). I am in that area of town at least weekly and it seems perfectly safe. And NYC is the safest large city in the US, as you probably know. But it's going to be tough to get an apartment without proof of employment. Better to go apartment shopping after you get your job. I'm sure your employer will give you some time to get settled.

3. The big factor is rent. You seem to have a handle on that. You can easily blow through a lot of money on nights out, but there are also a lot of ways to economize.
posted by lackutrol at 7:00 AM on June 8, 2005

thomascrown is way way WAY off -- Hell's Kitchen is a pit, a complete crap-hole. There is NO way that you want to live in such a disgusting part of Manhattan. Seriously. You're much better off on the UES.

side note to thomascrown: Didn't you get the memo? Are you trying to ruin everything?
posted by hummus at 7:43 AM on June 8, 2005

You're probably going to need proof of employment. I needed paystubs for my very unglamorous apartment way out in Bushwick, Brooklyn.
posted by 4easypayments at 7:51 AM on June 8, 2005

I'd second the 646/917 cellphone idea, especially if you're planning to get a local number once you move to town. You can be upfront about currently living out of the city, but the number itself will tell a prospective employer that you belong here.

I wonder if a potential landlord would accept proof of current Florida employment.
posted by nobody at 6:27 PM on June 8, 2005

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