You Can’t Always Get What You Want

Find an apartment you can afford in a neighborhood you’ll love.

Living in New York City is many things. And cheap is not one of them. This is a headfact of life that city dwellers quickly accept as inescapable. You may end up shelling out an extra $200 a month for a better 1 bedroom that cuts your commute by 10 minutes, or you may decide to save $200 a month and stick with a studio instead. Very rarely do we end up with the apartment we had in mind…which is actually totally normal.


In fact, based on the apartment search trends of the last 45,392 members that registered on Naked Apartments, we discovered the following:

  • 26% of renters increase their max rent by a median of $250.
  • 21% of renters decrease their max size (e.g., start looking for a 1 bedroom, but settle on a studio instead).
  • 75% of renters who start searching for no-fee only apartments end up dropping the requirement and searching for apartments with a fee.

In other words, knowing what you can afford and what you absolutely need is crucial when it comes to finding the right space. And while rent, room size, and amenities are all important factors to take into consideration, the most important factor may very well be what neighborhood you choose to move into.

Too many renters rely on current trends (no, you don’t have to move to Williamsburg) to decide where they want to live. But in reality, there are dozens of other suitable neighborhoods around the city that you could be equally pleased with. We also found that:

  • 44% of renters who search in downtown Manhattan end up looking at neighborhoods in midtown or ones north of Central Park (i.e., less expensive neighborhoods).
  • 13% of renters who start searching exclusively in Manhattan end up adding Brooklyn to their filters (i.e., a less expensive borough).
  • 7% end up looking in Queens as well.
  • 4% eventually add the Bronx.

This is why we’ve rolled out the Neighborhood Finder.

It’s a new site feature that helps renters understand what neighborhoods they can afford with their must-have amenities, combined with neighborhood characteristics, so that they can also find a neighborhood they’ll love. Try it out and let us know what you think!

At the end of the day, we want everyone to be able to find an apartment that they can afford in a neighborhood they’ll love.