Things You Need to Know Before Renting an Apartment in NYC

Searching for a new apartment to live in takes time, especially if you are unsure of what to look for in a place like New York City. A list of things should at least guide you to get to your dream place.

The following tips will help apartment hunters choose the best place to settle down as they start a career in The Big Apple. 

An apartment in Queens, NY

Proximity to workplace

One of the things young professionals look for in a new place is the proximity of their work to their apartment. It saves them time, energy, and money if they are lucky enough to find an apartment just a stone’s throw away from the office. 

Give yourself enough time to search for an apartment, so you have plenty of options. Ideally, the best time for apartment hunting is from May to September. These are the peak season months in NYC when you have plenty of choices, but competition and rates are high. On the other hand, October to April are the lean months; rates may be lower, but options are few. 

Budget

The first apartment you’ll end up living in in the next few years is dependent on your budget. Affordable apartments are usually smaller and with fewer amenities. If you want a better place, you have to shell out a hefty sum for the rent.  

New York City is an expensive place; you should have ample savings to cover your first few weeks in your new home. It should be enough for the deposit and rentals for the new apartment and your expenses until your first paycheck. 

Even before you made your final choice, some documents should come in handy such as your bank statements, a photocopy of your ID, employment records, and a check for the rent and deposit.  

Since you want everything to work within your budget, make sure there are grocery stores and laundromats in the area.  

Safety

Is the apartment located in a safe neighborhood

You most probably live on your own so wanting to secure your safety is necessary. Besides the comfort of the new apartment, you must ensure that you are safe while everything else is accessible in your new neighborhood. You may ask some people around to get to know about the place and potential neighbors, too. Is the area generally peaceful? Do a little research about the area.   

Space 

Do you need a bigger space or just the right size for your belongings? If you pick a small apartment, it is best to choose the right furniture to fit in it. It is advisable to get furniture with numerous uses, often called multifunctional, for a small space. Assess your room or space size so the furniture will fit perfectly.

Rental Marketplace

If you find it hard to do all the legwork in apartment hunting, you can check an online apartment search source like Zumper. 

The good thing about this rental app it has a real-time inventory of houses, rooms, condos, and apartments for rent. Clients are alerted of new rental listings based on their preference, such as location, price range, bedroom count, pet-friendly, or amenity.  

Through the Zumper app, clients can request virtual or in-person tours, submit applications, and pay rent. 

The next best thing to happen besides landing your dream job in New York City is finding your dream apartment. Cheers!

Money Management Tips to Improve Your Finances

Managing the family budget is no mean feat if you rely on a single source of income. By learning and developing a thing or two about better money management, budgeting is less stressful. These simple money management habits will help you appreciate every centavo that you earn regularly.

There are three things to remember if you want to make the most of your hard-earned money. Moreover, this works whether you are planning for yourself or your family.

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Create a Budget

It is easier to plan your finances if you know how much you have in your budget. A well-thought-out budget will help you track your expenses and savings. 

List the amount of money you expect for the month minus the tax – be it coming from your regular job or sideline jobs. 

Take note of all of your spending. These include household bills, mortgages, credit cards, personal loans, groceries, personal effects, and other items. Be sure to pay your bills on time to avoid paying penalties. Paying up late fees would bust your budget list. Failing to pay your credit card would incur a higher interest rate and might damage your credit score. 

Collect the receipts if you must to get the exact amount for each expense. From here, you can be more specific in areas that need allocation adjustments. 

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Saving Goals

Once you identified your spending list, set aside a portion from your take-home pay. 

A budget rule called the 50-30-20  is a simple guide to help people reach their financial goals. 

Allocate 50 percent of your take-home pay to spend on your basic needs and paying your obligations. Allot 30 percent to your wants like shopping or traveling, and 20 percent for emergencies and retirement.  

While unexpected expenses happen beyond our control, the 50-30-20 rule will help you manage your hard-earned money, so you have funds on hand for emergencies.  

You can adopt this budget rule if it suits, or create a plan that fits your need and lifestyle. 

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Tackle Your Debts 

It is hard to achieve your financial goal if you are heavy with debts. It may seem difficult to pay off a loan diligently, but it’s the only way to control your finances. 

Pay on time. Never miss a payment. If you are dealing with multiple loans, pay the ones with the highest interest rates. You can also try paying the smallest loan to the biggest. Whichever strategy you apply, the important thing is you avoid paying compound interest.  

Reassess your budget plan after settling your debts. Check on areas where you overspend. Adjust your habits if necessary such as, dining out, watching a movie, or shop an expensive gadget.

Avoid owning several credit cards. Whenever possible, use cash in your transactions. 

Conclusion 

Knowing your financial situation and having a direct hand in managing your own money will guide your spending habit. Your budget plan will show you how much money you have after paying your monthly bills and show you how much you can allocate for your savings.

Lastly, find more passive income ideas to improve your financial status. You can start by creating a blog or a Youtube channel, creating an app, or sell information products.

How to Prepare for the First Night in a New House

After you have settled all the paperwork at Halton Real Estate to get your keys, you are now ready to move into your new house. It is the most exciting feeling in the world after years of renting.

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However, do not let the arduous packing and unpacking of boxes dampen your spirit. It is not going to be easy. But let me share some tips to lighten up your burden and enjoy your first night in the new house.  

If you have moving experience, you are likely familiar with the checklist. But for those moving into the new house for the first time, this one’s for you.

Clothes

Do not put everything in moving boxes. Pack a day worth of clothes, undies, and sleepwear. It lessens the hassle of searching through the boxes looking for incompatible items.

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If you have young kids, you better pack a separate bag for them. Do not forget their favorite toys and jammies to make them comfortable for the night.

Food and Snacks Stash

Pack easy to prepare food, canned goods, and non-perishable snacks and place them in insulated containers. Prepare sandwiches ahead of time. You can do this the night before or in the morning. You do not have to inconvenience yourself by cooking when you are too tired the whole day.

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Carefully pack food, formula, vitamins, and snacks for your little ones.

Do not forget to bring bottled water as well.

Toiletries and Other Home Essentials

Next to your bag of clothes is an essential box for your toiletries. It contains your toothbrush, toothpaste, toilet paper, soap, shampoo, conditioner, comb, lotion, mouthwash, and razor. Bring a towel for each family member.

Bring sheets and pillow for the beds. If the bedroom is not ready yet, a folding bed or foldable mattress will do for the night.

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Keep separate containers for kitchen utensils (paper plates, utensils, cups, can opener) and cleaning supplies like trash bags, laundry detergents.

Pack toys for the young ones and food for your pets if you have one.

First Aid Kit

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No matter how careful you are, minor accidents or bumps from lifting boxes or maneuvering furniture is unavoidable. Place your first aid kit within reach. Have some bandages and disinfectants. It would be a tiresome day, do not forget to include a pain reliever for head and muscle aches in your bag. Place them along with other medicines and vitamins that you are taking.  

Important Documents

This one should come in handy. Important documents such as birth certificates, Social Security cards, passports, checkbooks, life insurance, and employment records should be in separate folders within a file box.   

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Label all your bags, boxes, and luggage with markers so you can easily find them when you need to check on something.

Load the essentials last, so they come off first in the moving van. You can load them in your car if there’s space so it won’t mix with other big boxes.

Your handheld bag can easily fit in phone chargers, pen and paper, markers, and cash.

Enjoy the Night

Moving is so stressful and tiresome. Why not enjoy the night with your loved ones and celebrate.  

It is your time to relax and recharge. Forget about the boxes scattered everywhere in the meantime. Let the unpacking starts the next day.

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Have some food delivered to your house or eat out. Prepare your favorite drinks to share with everyone. If you do not have cable yet, play a game with your family.

Enjoy me-time by reading books.

If you are adventurous enough, go for a walk in the neighborhood to familiarize yourself with the area. Maybe you can meet and introduce yourself to new neighbors.

After unloading your necessities and settled in, it is time to enjoy your new house. Cheers!