Lessons Learned: What to Know When Going From Small Town to City Life

11:42:32 | 2012-04-13

He: “Farm living is the life for me!”

She: “New York is where I’d rather stay”

For those who don’t recognize, or are too young to remember, these famous lines are from the theme song from the long ago show “Green Acres”. The basic premise? A lawyer wants to chuck city life behind him and move to the country for the simple life. His wife, a certified city girl, would rather stay in New York. Though it’s common for people to long for country life, more people are leaving their small town lives  and coming to the ‘big city’. New York city is one of the most sought after destinations for people eager  to pursue their dreams and goals, whether they be business aspirations or the great white way. Many people don’t know what to expect they’re struggling to find a place to live.

NYC Girl in Central Park | Flickr, Kent

The new city resident should expect that the wide open spaces they have grown accustomed to all their lives will be just a memory. Other than visiting Central Park, filled to the brim with walkers, dog owners and those pursuing fresh air and sun, wide open space will be replaced with crowded pavements. The sounds of crickets that lulled them to sleep will be replaced by honking horns and other city things that go bump in the night. And unless you have a budget to match your desire for space, count on small rooms and a bathroom you can just about turn around in.

There are a few points the newcomer needs to keep in mind. Be realistic about what you expect to pay. A thousand dollars in New York City might get you a one room studio. Know how much you can afford but prepared to stretch your dollars further. You will have to learn how to live with less space(be prepared to pare down your belongings as well) and, depending on your budget, may have to find a roommate. Check with work colleagues and your realtor before advertising for a roommate on sites such as Craigslist. Think sensible. Think safety. Real estate is tight in New York City and as fast as an apartment comes available it’s gone. Once you find an apartment you’re interested in try to see it that day. Wait too long and you’ll lose out to someone else. And last  but not least, be sure your potential home is close to subways and buses. You’ll appreciate that on those cold, windy city days.

—Email  rlorenzen@brokerpulse.com

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