Living Alone v. Living with Roommates

Hi all, 

Happy New Year - I hope everything is off to a great start! 

I wanted to write this post to get your perspective on living alone v. with roommates my first year. I went to a school in NYC for college and had horrible roommate experiences and want to live alone but think I will be lonely once I start working in a couple of weeks. Unfortunately, many of friends that I tend to room with have bad habits: leave things dirty, have alcohol everywhere, terrible smoking habits, among other things... 

I can get a studio for 2.5k/mo. not including utilities but if I live with two friends, I could bring this housing cost to roughly 1.9-2.1k/mo. including utilities. For context, I have a base of 110k and have been told that bonus is around 75-120% of base and currently have no student debt. 

As an analyst, how did you send going out a month and do you think living a studio for my sanity will break the bank? Curious to hear your thoughts!

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Comments (17)

Jan 5, 2022 - 2:46pm
Urban Mogul, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I never had roommates, but I know I would hate sharing space with others. After starting my 1st year in banking, I saved for about 8 months and got a spacious 1 bedroom with modern amenities on my own. I can pay rent easily. I did have to compromise on proximity to the office. I'm about a 35 minute train ride to the office but after factoring in walking, it's like 50-55 mins.  Still not worried because we been WFH for a while & whenever we do return, we'll only be in office for 2-3 days. On top of that, it made no sense to break the bank to live by the office (rents over there are easily 2-3x more than my neighborhood).  

It does get very lonely, but I feel like I can always get a puppy and probably will have a partner in the near future. 

  • Analyst 2 in RE - Comm
Jan 5, 2022 - 5:22pm

Interesting you mention puppies… I currently live in a major Southern city with a dog. We're back in the office 5 days a week but our office usually empties out between 5-6 (usually still have more to do but everyone will just wrap up from home) so it's never been an issue to go home and let out / feed the dog. I'm targeting a move back to NYC in the next few months. Obviously hours tend to be longer in NYC - do you think it would be problematic/frowned upon to try and leave the office by 6:30 or 7 and finish up from home in NYC to take care of the dog?

Jan 5, 2022 - 6:19pm
Urban Mogul, what's your opinion? Comment below:

At a major bank and people will wrap up around 5 if they have an after work meeting like a happy hour, client/colleague dinner, etc. If they have no plans after work, then it's common to see folks until 6:30-7. Anything after that is when people just head home and finish up there. 

  • Analyst 1 in RE - Comm
Jan 5, 2022 - 2:48pm

If you have friends in the city, I'd say live alone if you can afford it. If your working a lot, it's easy to get irritated and sometimes you just want to come back and unwind and have a place the way YOU like it. you can alwags invite people over, etc.

Jan 5, 2022 - 4:27pm
JJAJJ, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Definitely live alone. I spent a couple of years with roommates in NYC and then lived on my own ever since and prefer it. You're going to be working long hours and the last thing you want is to be coming home to unthoughtful/dirty/loud roommates at 2AM on a weekday. The peace of mind is well worth the incremental cost, in my opinion. Plus, if you're in NYC, you're already in a very activated city. 

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Jan 5, 2022 - 5:02pm
aspiringcoolperson, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Live alone. It's a great way to build character -- for as many hours as you work, you'll want to come home to a space that's fully under your control. Nobody's stealing your food, skipping out on chores, playing loud music, or inviting strangers over. Your apartment, even if it's smaller, will be like a refuge, and there's nothing better.

It's also just a great way to build character, I think. 

  • Analyst 1 in RE - Comm
Jan 5, 2022 - 5:08pm

Can you elaborate on the build character point? Don't quite understand the perspective your speaking from.

Jan 5, 2022 - 6:21pm
Urban Mogul, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Can't speak for the OP but since living alone, you will have a lot of time to think. Which means you self-reflect ad question how you can better yourself. For me, it made me want to start working out and get fit. Also leads me to read more news and become educated about global topics. 

Most Helpful
Jan 5, 2022 - 8:02pm
aspiringcoolperson, what's your opinion? Comment below:

It forces you to take care of yourself better, and by extension, your surroundings. If your place is a mess, there's no roommate to blame it on. If something breaks, it's your responsibility to figure it out (e.g. call maintenance or fix it yourself). You need groceries? Supplies? Go get it yourself. By living alone, you become more self-sufficient faster than if you lived with roommates, IMO.

To Urban Mogul's point, it also helps you learn to be alone, enjoy your own company, and self-reflect.

  • Associate 1 in IB - Cov
Jan 5, 2022 - 5:21pm

I'm shocked at the responses. I figured most of the people here, based on prior threads, would be telling you to share a bathroom stall in Penn Station with other homeless people to save money. That aside, live alone. 

Jan 5, 2022 - 6:23pm
Urban Mogul, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I never understood folks in finance who already are high earners for their age, but also wanna save every penny. Not everything can be measured in IRR, NPV, ROE. At the end of the day, even if you spend more money on expenses than your cohorts, you still have a lot of money left. 

  • Analyst 1 in RE - Comm
Jan 5, 2022 - 8:12pm

I went from living in a fraternity satellite house with 17 other guys for 2 years to living in a 2 bedroom flexed into a 4 bed (with 1 bathroom). If you work from home then certainly consider going solo or finding a buddy.. If you're in the office every day like us then I find it doesn't really matter.

Jan 7, 2022 - 11:44am
its-accrual-world, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I would also recommend living alone if you have the financial capacity to do so. I had a few toxic roommate/suitemate situations in college and was excited to have my own space in NYC. Rent is definitely a bit steeper than what you'd have with roommates but it's definitely worth it. I'm lucky enough to live within 10 minutes walking distance of both the office and my closest friends so I don't feel too lonely. With the higher rent, I just am a bit more frugal with other things (eat out less, etc.). Definitely am all about the studio apt life!

  • Prospect in RE - Comm
Jan 8, 2022 - 4:05am

Thank you all for the advice - ended up going with a studio!

  • Associate 1 in PE - Other
Jan 10, 2022 - 2:45am

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