Renter’s Cheat Sheet: 13 NYC Apartment Types You Need to Know About

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When scouring Naked Apartments for a new rental, you’ll encounter a whole new vocabulary of NYC apartment types. Many of these apartment types are specific to New York City rentals. The names can be confusing and misleading so here we explain 13 common apartment types every New York City renter needs to know about.

Convertible

Not as sexy as convertible car, a convertible apartment is a typical form of New York City rental apartments. Often convertible apartments are set up as a 1-bedroom or 2-bedroom but offer a space large enough to be walled off to create an additional bedroom using a temporary wall or partition. Convertible apartments are also known as flex-apartments.

Studio

A studio apartment is the simplest of New York City apartment types, featuring a single room with a full bathroom and a pullman kitchen. The kitchen is most often contiguous with the sleeping and living area. If you are lucky, you may be able to score a studio that has a has an alcove for dressing or dining.

Convertible Studio

Essentially a studio on steroids, a convertible studio offers a floor plan large enough that renters can use a temporary wall to create a separate space for sleeping.

Alcove Studio

An alcove studio is a one-room studio with an alcove (often L-shaped) that can be used as a sleeping area. Typically, the alcove measures no more than 100 square feet and is located off of the living space. It’s sometimes referred to as a half room. Depending on its size and location, it could be walled off to create a sleeping alcove or a dining alcove.

Loft

A loft apartment is typically a large open floor plan apartment. Most often found in buildings that have been converted from commercial to residential, loft apartments feature high ceilings and windows and industrial aesthetic. If you are lucky, you’ll find one with exposed brick walls and exposed beams. Soho, Tribeca and Williamsburg are known for their historic loft apartments.

Junior 1-Bedroom

A step up from a studio, a junior 1-bedroom might be a large studio or a loft of sorts, sometimes featuring a separate sleeping area and/or an eat-in kitchen.

Junior 4

No, this is not a meal option at McDonald’s but rather a one-bedroom apartment with a separate dining room or small room. It’s called a junior 4 because it features four rooms: a bedroom, a kitchen, a living room, and an extra small room. Fries are not included.

Three-Room Apartment

The best example of a three-room apartment is a railroad apartment, which is a common rental layout featuring three rooms connected by doors but no hallway. Railroads are typically less expensive than other two-bedroom apartments, but not ideal for roommates who like their privacy.

Two-Bedroom Apartment

Also known as a true two-bedroom as opposed to a railroad (see above), this apartment layout has two actual bedrooms, a common living space, and a kitchen which might be separate. If you are sharing an apartment with a roommate, your best bet is a true two-bedroom.

Wing Two-Bedroom

This style of apartment has two bedrooms joined by a small common space, such as a kitchen, but not much more insofar as living space is concerned.

Classic Six

A classic six is a three-bedroom apartment typically found in pre-war buildings. It features a large dining room, a living room, and a full, separate kitchen. They are known for their historic charm and often have subway tile bathrooms, clawfoot tubs (if you are lucky!), parquet floors and crown molding. The Upper West Side is known for its wealth of pre-war classic sixes.

Duplex or Triplex Apartments

Duplexes and triplexes are the crème de la crème of New York City apartment types, offering two or three levels of living space, respectively. The levels may be unique in that the second or third level is for sleeping only, or they may feature actual floors with bathrooms on each level.

Garden Apartment

As the name suggests, a garden apartment offers direct access to a building’s back garden. If you have one of these, you’ll have lots of visitors in the summer. Typically, garden apartments are found on the ground floor of townhouses, brownstones or small multi-family apartment buildings. Since they are located on the ground floor, sometimes you’ll encounter a garden apartment that is really a semi-subterranean apartment. Because the apartment is partially below ground, windows will be higher up on the walls. Before visiting the apartment, verify what is meant by garden apartment.