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Renting a New York City Apartment is Like a Sport

Apartment search race finish line

We all know that New York is an incredibly competitive place to live, and New Yorkers are constantly at odds with each other, whether racing to the train, pursuing that big promotion, or searching for the best apartment. A recent study sponsored by Citigroup and conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit analyzed factors such as economic strength, financial maturity, and consumer behavior to determine which cities around the world breed the most competition. The result? New York is quantifiably the most competitive city on the planet and is projected to remain so through 2025.

As the rental markets heat up for 2014, finding an apartment in New York can feel like an Olympic event. In this hyper-competitive market, apartment-seekers must be prepared for mental, emotional, and possibly even physical highs and lows. Here are a few tips for prospective tenants looking to train for “their big event”:

Know the playing field

A good broker should lead the way on this one. In order to keep the process as painless as possible, expectations should be managed. Your broker can help you to gain an understanding of the current market, and in turn, you will know what to expect and feel more in control.


If you’re working with a great broker, finding an apartment that you love is the easy part. But when it’s time to apply for the apartment, preparation is the name of the game. This means that on Day 1 you should come to the table with supporting financial documentation and have certified funds available locally. Leave your hesitation at home, and be first in line for the apartment you love.


We can’t always have it all. Think about what is a must-have and what you are willing to compromise on. Neighborhood? Building amenities? Closet space? Whatever it is, you should make your priorities clear to your broker so that if you can’t quite afford your dream apartment, you can work together to find a creative solution that you are truly happy with.


Be patient; stay hydrated. Try to keep a level head throughout the whole rental process, and make sure you budget enough time to hit the streets and really see what’s out there—you may break a sweat, so really, stay hydrated! Keep an open mind and work hard. You will succeed.

Game on, renters! After you’ve signed your lease, make sure your move is successful by booking with the best movers in NY.

This article was contributed by BOND Magazine, the blog of BOND New York, the fifth largest residential real estate brokerage in Manhattan with seven offices and over 500 agents. If you are interested in buying, selling, or renting in NYC, contact [email protected].

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