Best neighborhoods to live WITH GF in NYC (and timing) - 1st year IB Analyst Midtown Summer 2019


I'm moving to NYC as a 1st year analyst this summer. I've seen a couple threads on best neighborhoods to live in as a 1st yr analyst but I think my situation is a bit unique because I'm moving WITH MY GIRLFRIEND. Some considerations:

  1. My job is IB in midtown, so crazy hours, in midtown
  2. We will NOT be living with any roommates and it's unclear how much my GF will be able to contribute toward rent. Basically, we need a 1 bedroom and it has to be cheap enough that I could afford it ON MY OWN with my $85K salary.
  3. A lot of threads talk about single life and stuff like that, we obviously don't care about finding lots of singles and that, but don't want to live in a boring AF neighborhood. She will also have a lot of free time so she'd like to live in a decently entertaining neighborhood.
  4. How early did you guys sign your lease and in which neighborhood? I've heard people start looking 2 weeks before moving in, is that true? Seems to be cutting it close. Did you guys all fly out to NY for a couple days to tour apartments?

Thanks for the advice!

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Comments (49)

Most Helpful
Mar 3, 2019 - 7:07pm

Not sure whats up with the random caps but anyhow

  1. "so crazy hours" weird flex but ok

2., On a $85k salary you'll be bringing in about monthly $4.5k. If you want a decent 1 bedroom in manhattan that is decently close to the office you'll be spending at least $3k a month. It is stupid of you to be spending more than 60% of your monthly salary, I'd suggest you look at studios if possible. I would also suggest you live in the "cheaper" neighbors might even suggest commuting from LIC or Brooklyn to save rent

  1. Who cares, she has free time and you're living in NYC (probably in Manhattan, Brooklyn) she isn't working for the most part from what it sounds. She can take the subway and go to "entertaining neighborhoods" during the day if she wants its probably a 20 minute commute max. Also look at point 2

  2. Two-three weeks since summer is when the market is hottest

P.S. Just my thoughts but moving in with your girlfriend especially when she isn't bringing in any income/sustaining the rent is pretty stupid IMO. It'll even look more stupid if you guys breakup and you realize you've been spending all that hard-earned money and all that is going to rent. Also it brings up the question, why can't your GF contribute? And please hope it isn't the "she is a freelance xyz designer blah blah but I love her dearly"

Mar 3, 2019 - 7:26pm

thanks for the insight. Just saying crazy hours to point out that I don't want to do commuting for Brooklyn or other boroughs.

  1. What would you consider a "cheaper" neighborhood in Manhattan? Like Murray Hill or what?

  2. I know you don't think being in a cool neighborhood is that important for us, but are there any specific neighborhoods that are reasonable fun and cheap?

  3. Did you personally fly out to NY around the 2/3 week mark to tour apartments?

P.S. So I'm sure my GF will get a job at some point, she's definitely looking, but worst case scenario, I'd have to pay for the apartment on my own for a few months.


Mar 3, 2019 - 10:58pm
  1. Murray Hill / UES / LES is what I would try to target. I remember LES was def cheaper BUT to get there to midtown is pretty long but if you can a place near a subway stop it wouldn't be too bad. Afterall, at night you'll be taking a cab so that won't matter that much.

  2. I'm sure if you interned during the summer you'll know that most "fun" stuff is downtown around LES. At least anywhere K-town and below is where most of the time I was at (especially the east side) for bars and stuff. Its new york so they'll all be expensive but there won't be exactly much entertainment UES or hells kitchen in comparison to downtown.

  3. Had a sibling living in NYC so didn't need to fly out.

P.S. Good luck!

Mar 3, 2019 - 7:51pm

UES - it's cheaper and has enough bars so you don't want to kill yourself, but isn't like you're moving to east village. Also easy subway access to both east and west midtown for work.

That aside, I agree with this other poster that moving in with someone who is new to NY and doesn't have a job and is not contributing and isn't married to you is a recipe for disaster.


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Mar 3, 2019 - 7:58pm

Thanks! Did you also start looking around 2/3 weeks out? Did you fly in for in person tours around that time?

As for the GF, we have a unique situation and have been living together for a couple years now. She's coming with no matter what but I definitely understand why it sounds like a recipe for disaster.

Mar 3, 2019 - 8:09pm

For the type of apartments in your rental range, they are just not going to be available more than 4-6 weeks out. I would plan a few days maybe 4 weeks out to look at apartments. You literally need to say "yes I want it" when you are in the apartment, otherwise they usually get taken (there are no exclusive listings, multiple agents show the same apartment).

You're gonna need to have cash for 1st and last months, plus security deposit (1 month) plus broker fee (usually 15% of annual rent) ready to go. So for a $2000/month apartment, you're gonna need to be ready to cut a check for ~$8-9000. You'll also need to show you make 40-65x monthly rent (offer letter), or if you use a guarantor, they need to make 100x monthly rent. Now you are seeing why so many kids in your position room together because they can't make these numbers work on their own.

You can sometimes avoid the fee if you go to a bigger new building or complex (like stuy town) or look for "no fee" apartments. Problem is these are usually more expensive.


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Mar 4, 2019 - 10:42am

Last one: Hoboken/Jersey City is probably your best bet here. Cheap(er) and your GF won't want to kill herself out of boredom. She MAY suddenly want a ring and baby with all the stroller gangs rolling around.


Mar 3, 2019 - 8:54pm

If on east side, live in upper east side, more afordable and not bad commute.

If on west side, you should be able to find an ok spot in ~hells kitchen. Otherwise, might be able to find something in the waste land between chelsea and midtown west. Shitty neighborhood feel, but convenient location.

Mar 4, 2019 - 9:10am

Hey, also secured position for 1st year analyst for Summer 2019, so congrats!

Please find answers below since I am also in the same boat, but minus the girlfriend part.

  1. Same

  2. 1 bedroom that would be cheap in Manhattan? Kind of hard, I have been looking at the other boroughs. Look at "Parkchester apartments." Nice little complex not too far from Manhattan. Brooklyn also might be better but noticed you didn't want to do that.

  3. NYC isn't boring in general so wherever you guys land, I am sure she will enjoy herself. Train rides to other boroughs and Manhattan at your fingertips will elude anything related to "boring."

  4. Heading up before May to sign mine. 1st month + security deposit in hand + room reservation since I am signing so early. Best advice for this part would be to use whatever websites you want, get the leasing person to skype with you and give you a tour so you can save money on that aspect.

All in all, hope you enjoy yourself and find what you are looking for!

Mar 4, 2019 - 10:16am

LOL, please don't tell me you are moving to Parkchester as a 22 year old. It's literally stuytown but all the way in the Eastern Bronx. All families/old people who have been there forever. This plus an hour commute on the damn 6 (2nd to worst subway line) and a $40+ uber from Manhattan (that will cancel on you half the time once they see your destination because they don't want to drive from LES all that way).

If you're really trying to save money, move to Astoria or Yorkville.


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Mar 4, 2019 - 10:24am

It was one of the options I had in mind, but I ended up signing with another complex.

Didn't mind the commute for the lesser cost, the centers around the area, plus the basketball court since I like playing ball.

Do you have any data points as to Astoria or Yorkville? Just researched two websites and cheapest I found was a $1,600 studio in Astoria... OP wants a 1BR which could cost upwards of $2,000 per month.

Mar 4, 2019 - 11:20am

live in ny(outer boroughs) so can offer some insight. I would give yourself more time than that if you can TBH. As previous posters stated rooms go up and often get snatched up so you want to be ready. I would say 3.5 to 4 wks is a good starting point. You don't have to be in NY but the actual planning(i.e. contacting the broker, doing a virtual walkthrough, background/credit check, then put down the deposit, etc) should be put in motion early. Also, I don't know when your start date is but moving, in general, is a pain but doing it in NY especially in the summer could be a nightmare so you want to be moved in a couple days before you start work so you can relax & recoup.

A buddy of mine actually locked down an apartment when he was in Florida traveling by calling the broker venmoing him the money the day is was available and moved right in when he got back, only saw pictures online. Also, it's important you get a feel for the landlord or building itself once you get here, asking around to people you may know, or reviewing anything online, I've heard horror stories of landlords doing shady shit like not fixing furnaces or air conditions, pest infestations like crazy all to make living conditions terrible in order to push out tenants to increase the rent.

just my opinion

Mar 4, 2019 - 11:20am

Look at studios in Murray Hill, you can find decent ones for ~$2-2.5k. You will never be there, and ~400-500 square feet will be enough for your girlfriend while you're away. Look for listings on Street Easy and make sure the "no fee" filter is ticked and stay away from co-ops. Think of it as a one year pit stop while you ease into the city life and you can upgrade after that when you get a raise and your GF gets a job. You cannot afford a good one bedroom with what you currently make.

There are tons of places to go out at in Murray Hill, you won't need to look far for vest wearing analysts. It is walking distance to all of the firms in Midtown, an easy walk to the East Village / LES when the weather isn't freezing, and walking distance to a subway to take you anywhere else in the city.

I don't know why you're so focused on making sure your GF doesn't have to break a nail going to an entertaining area. As I mentioned, theres stuff to do in Murray Hill and its an easy trip anywhere else that you'd wanna go. If she complains that the bars are literally not at your door step tell her to fuck off.

You also sound uncertain whether your GF will find a job. Huge red guys should have a plan for her to get employed ASAP. Otherwise, what is the point of her even moving out with you now? I have friends in analyst programs who specifically left their GFs back at home during their 2-year stint because they'd be working so much they'd never see them. You can afford to fly her out on monthly visits with the savings you'd gain from choosing a cheap studio over one bedroom that is too small to even be considered a one bedroom. Unless she is going to be working, I really don't see the point of her being here. You are really just setting her up for disappointment when you cancel dates last minute, annoyance when you wake her up in the middle of the night when you stroll in from work, and aggravation despite faux-understanding when you finally have free time and all you want to do is chill instead of go out with her. If she doesn't work and just hangs out all day, there is a probability (not possibility) that she'll seek attention from the barista at Starbucks who has all the time in the world for her.

Seriously, as someone who has seen it via friends and personally (sister is engaged to an analyst and currently lives back at home), this is not a very well thought out plan on your end.

Mar 4, 2019 - 11:33am

Hey good to hear about Murray Hill, definitely one of the places I was looking into. I'll for srure consider studios as well. She's dead set on moving out to NY and finding a job so we're not going to do the long distance thing even if it might workout.

Mar 4, 2019 - 11:40am

When I moved to the city I think I picked up my apartment ~3 weeks before I moved in and that was after getting the landlord to give me as far back of a lease start as possible. It was more than enough time to get everything shipped, but I already had that organized before hand. But it is 100% real that you'd likely have less than 2 weeks to pack your stuff up and move in.

When I moved into a one bedroom after that I had a month between when I signed/moved in. Moving in with my GF now we expect to have 1-1.5 months to move in.

Mar 4, 2019 - 5:48pm

You obviously aren't the only one. And there's nothing wrong with it. If you really like someone, go for it.

I'm just saying that many men do a lot for women (and vice versa), and that should be recognized.

Mar 4, 2019 - 6:20pm


Might be doable if you don't mind living in a shit tier apartment in the city. You might be able to get a decent studio in a non-luxury apartment for like $2,000-$2,500 but not 1BR.


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Mar 4, 2019 - 7:48pm

No fee rentals are always doable as long as you go to the management/owner directly or use agents that say "no fee apartment" for that unit.

I would look into Hell's Kitchen and Upper East Side.

Careful though. NYC is hella expensive and NYC personal income isn't a joke for people like us, Analysts.


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Mar 4, 2019 - 8:22pm

While you're working "crazy hours" I'd worry she's going to be h/u with either old college flings, randoms she met on tinder (because she's soooo bored during the day) and/or her SoulCycle instructor. Even loyal girls turn nutty when they're stir-crazy in a new city and feel insecure and purposeless about bringing nothing to the table financially. Idleness and loneliness are deadly combos in a relationship.

Mar 4, 2019 - 8:43pm

If your past relationships lead you to be this cynical about women, I am sorry man

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Mar 4, 2019 - 8:29pm

I'm assuming you met her in college? If you're becoming a banker, obviously you went to a decent school. What's her degree in, didn't she intern anywhere last two summers? Pretty sketchy she has no job prospects. What do her parents have to say about this? Just doesn't sound very classy. And the fact that she's bringing no money, not even a little of dad's coin? Problematic.

Mar 5, 2019 - 7:01pm

Awesome neighbourhood but maybe a little bit more geared towards families or people who aren't into nightlife. There isn't a whole lot in terms of good bars and restaurants besides a couple ok stretches along Amsterdam, Columbus and Broadway but I still feel like UES (which is probably the most comparable neighbourhood in Manhattan) has a lot more going on in terms of local joints if you don't want to go all the way downtown. Still, it has a great neighbourhood vibe full of people who have lived in the area for a while and you're sandwiched between two great parks plus the Hudson if you're into running or biking.

Transport is generally amazing, especially if you're living near 72nd street as the 1/2/3 gets you to midtown quick. However, that area around 72/Broadway is very expensive, know 3 of MDs from my bank who live there.

Also. Make sure to avoid the areas below 72 st by the Hudson, a lot of people new to NY seem to end up there since there are tons of newish no fee buildings but it's super far from the subway (that ten minute walk to the 1 stop fucking blows in August and January) and there's nothing around.

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