HF offer in Greenwich. Live in NY or CT?

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What up monkeys,
I've just been offered a role at a fund in Greenwich, CT and wanted to know you're guys' opinions on whether or not I should live in the city and commute every day or should I live in CT and then come to the city whenever I want. I am from the west coast so obviously this will be somewhat of a big change for me but I'm no stranger to NY. Currently, I am looking for spots in Murray Hill (close to Grand Central) and then in CT looking at keeping a car and living in the new Harbor Pointe development. Any thoughts you guys may have would be much appreciated.

Comments (29)

 
Dec 20, 2019 - 7:23pm

It depends on your personality and interests. If you’re not big into going out on weekends, live in Stamford or Greenwich. Otherwise, live near Grand Central in NYC. You can always move once you figure out your interests too.

 
Dec 21, 2019 - 6:14pm

Most of my friends live in the city so on nights out. Usually the night would end up turning into the morning so I assume at around then I’d prob just take the first morning express train back to Greenwich, as for on weekdays I assume I’ll be so swamped with work that last thing I want is to deal with an hour commute every single day and would wanna get home and relax for a bit and if I want to head into the city for late night drinks or something.

 
Dec 20, 2019 - 8:03pm

Well Greenwich is the first stop, which I think should take you only fifty minutes one way? Honestly CT doesn’t really have much to offer but it’s cheaper. I live in CT near Stamford. I know guys from the desk commute back and fourth, i just don’t know how they do it. Trying to catch the train, weather delay, higher rent, it makes all sense to stay in CT. I mean unless you want to enjoy what the city offers, then you made your decision. Personally for me, I don’t need that. Cost too much $$$

 
Dec 20, 2019 - 10:00pm

It really depends on what type of person you are. If you like cities with a lot going on, things to do at all times of the day, a lot of diversity, food, etc then you will not like Stamford. If you like a slower pace, more space in an apt, the ability to drive places, etc then you probably will. Just think through that because if you love cities (I do) I don’t think you’ll be able to tolerate CT. It also depends on your friends and whether you already have a network in the area.

Other things to keep in mind:

  • you say you plan on driving, take a look at traffic between Greenwich and Stamford. Going south on 95 in the mornings will suck. A 10 min trip will easily be 20+. You really don’t want to be going south in the AM and north in the PM
  • if you don’t have a good group of friends it will be much harder to meet people in CT. You will come into nyc every now and again but having a base in the city (being able to go out for a drink and regroup in your apt before heading out again) is very nice
  • yes if you live in nyc the commute won’t be fun
  • if you live in ct you probably won’t come into nyc as much as you think you would
  • taxes in ct are better
  • if you like food CT will be tough

Anyway many other points, but like I said it is usually pretty clear based on the type of person. I understand wanting to be close to work when you are working late but if that is the case I probably wouldn’t be north of Greenwich

Array
 
Dec 21, 2019 - 12:36am

Was in exact same situation - debating on whether to live in murray / make the reverse commute or live in Greenwich / Stamford. Decided on living in CT and glad I did so. My colleagues that do the reverse commute are fucking miserable - - > higher taxes, higher rent, monthly MTA pass which I think is like $400/mo., monthly subway, and an unforgiving commute. Ultimately it comes down to preference as others have said. It makes it much easier if you have a network of friends in CT. I chose CT to save money and I hate commuting. Can go to city whenever I want vs HAVING to commute from the city at least 5x per week, 2+ hrs each day

 
Jan 7, 2020 - 5:05pm

Where in CT are u living? Harbor Point or somewhere else? Also im coming from the west coast. How does the Greenwich area in general compare to like Bellevue/Redmond in Seattle or Palo Alto/Mountain View in the bay? Since from experience both of those areas have grown rapidly for young people cuz of work but also benefit from being like 30 to 60 min away from the downtown city center.

 
  • Analyst 3+ in HF - Event
Dec 21, 2019 - 10:09am

I've been doing the reverse commute for three years now, I'll give you my two cents.

I'm a city guy, there simply isn't any way I couldn't live outside of NYC and commute in if I ever wanted to have time in the city. Friends are here, food is here, etc. The best thing for me is leaving my apt and being able to go do whatever I want in the city. I considered living in Stamford / White Plains / Greenwich, which was attractive due to the sort of apartment and easy commute I could get, but those places just don't offer the same lifestyle I want at this point.

I live in Murray Hill and am < 10 minutes walking distance to Grand Central. Not having to worry about taking a subway to GC and also being so close when I get off the train is huge huge huge.

Some things that suck:
Monthly MTA tickets are expensive, try to get your employer to pay for it.

Depending on your train stop, you getting held up at the office for even ~5 minutes can result in missing a train that now doesn't come for another 30 minutes which really sets you back. These can be rage inducing moments.

Train delays really suck. If it is snowing I often just choose to work remote than deal with the train.

You are ~1 hour away minimum from being able to do things in the city. So many times I get hit up for a lunch / midday gathering and can't go.

Your ability to attend conferences / meetings in the city is limited to the extent you can be in the city for the day, so those days tend to be filled start to finish with meetings to be the most value add.

The things that make the commute bearable for me is that I have incredibly flexible hours and normally take off around 5 and have a broad remote work from home policy when needed. This is huge because it'd really suck to be getting back into the city around 8 or 9 and then having to just go to bed. I've got time to work out and have a normal dinner / go out.

All that said, every day I wish I didn't have to do my commute.

 
Dec 21, 2019 - 6:24pm

This was honestly great to read. So when I was there for the on-site I actually decided to take the train down to the city after interviewing to meet up with some friends. So what I noticed was that a lot of firms were clustered around the Greenwich train station. The firm I’m going to is about a 8 min drive away, so I’d have to Uber everyday or take the bus. And I feel like that’d be super annoying cuz on the way back from the city it took me like 30 min to get an Uber from the Greenwich train station back to the hotel. Obviously if the firm was right next to the train station then hands down I’d take living in the city. But after dealing with the Uber situation in greenwich it kinda made me think that it’d be easier to live there and have my car and then just take the train down to the city whenever. Let me know what u think. I’m still keeping the idea of Murray Hill open but it’s just that last segment after the train into Greenwich which kinda made it more difficult.

 
Dec 21, 2019 - 6:47pm

Having to take a bus or Uber from the station to the office is annoying and will make your commute much more annoying. Again it comes down to what you enjoy, I would still deal with the commute because I like the city that much but the commute will be tough.

Another option (if you already have a car) is to drive up to work. The reverse commute is relatively easy and street parking in nyc (off hours, I.e. not during working hours) is free and in certain areas easy to find. But having a car in the city can also be a pain (figuring out where to put it when traveling, what to do if you happen to be in the city for a day, etc).

Again the biggest thing to check is the traffic from Stamford to Greenwich in the mornings. It is really bad.

Array
 
  • Analyst 3+ in HF - Event
Dec 21, 2019 - 7:01pm

In that situation, if you're very set on the firm and want to accept the offer, I'd prefer to drive rather than take the train with an added bus/uber stop. Sometimes I've been in a situation where my train breaks down and I have to uber the rest of the way...really annoying and adds an unnecessary expense.

I've often thought that if I stay at my firm for the foreseeable future I would start driving instead of taking the train. There is the added expense of car / parking / insurance / gas, but in my opinion you have greater control over your schedule with a car. I'd rather sit in traffic rather than be stuck in the grand central tunnel not moving for 15 minutes with zero updates. It is also more comfortable to take calls in the car rather than on the train, but on the other hand you can bring your laptop and get stuff done on the train, which I frequently do.

 
Dec 23, 2019 - 7:54am

Analyst 3+ in HF - Event:

Depending on your train stop, you getting held up at the office for even ~5 minutes can result in missing a train that now doesn't come for another 30 minutes which really sets you back. These can be rage inducing moments.

Missing the 6:50pm train or whatever it was and having an hour to wait until the next express train from Stamford was soul crushing.

 
Dec 21, 2019 - 8:56pm

Have a friend heading to a fund in CT FT.

He spent a lot of time asking these same questions and decided on living in CT because the low taxes and cost of living were too good to pass up. He's pocketing much more than his coworkers living in NYC and is able to own a car and live on his own (no roommates).

I'd probably go with CT too, but if being in NYC and enjoying the nightlife/amenities is a huge deal to you I can understand why it's such a difficult choice.

Array
 
Dec 26, 2019 - 1:56pm

Yeah thats a big thing. I have a lot of friends that live and work in the city. So I was gonna spend most weekends there. Weekdays i usually try and make time to focus on me and what not. So thats why Harbor Pointe is really attractive to me. Its got that new development vibe, a good amount of young people. 40 min away from the city since the train station is right there and then like a 10 min drive away from work. I even justified if my hours aren't too bad I could even hit up the city in the evenings after work for like dinners and drinks if I wanted to and then just take the next train back after. With my current role I currently have a 40ish min commute driving to work so anything to cut that time down would be great as its really exhausted me

 
Jan 2, 2020 - 9:22pm

My friend is in the same boat and she commutes from Murray Hill to CT every day. If she stays in the office past 9pm they pay for her Uber back to NYC. If you work at a somewhat established/big fund they probably reimburse you for your commute home as well.

Array
 
Jan 3, 2020 - 3:31am

Do the math on your taxes. The spread between CT and NY is 5%+ for the highest tax brackets, because NYC charges a city tax on top as well. Given the tax savings, many people find it cheaper to keep a place in CT and NYC vs. just a NYC place. You have to be in CT 50% of days to file CT taxes.

It will also typically be cheaper after tax to have a CT place and do hotels in NYC on the weekends (or uber back at night, those cost roughly $100). So ask yourself whether you mostly see yourself going out in the city on the weekends, or if you actually want to spend time during the week there (after the back & forth commute).

My friends that are living in the city and working out here in CT seem to be having a rough time, but that's just my take (if you asked them, they love the city too much to give it up for anything).

 
Jan 30, 2020 - 5:43pm

What up,
Thank you all for your input. It really helped me make a decision that I feel confident with. After weighing the pros and cons and even going to NYC a couple of weekends ago to scope out apartments I decided to go with living in Murray Hill. I've also decided to just drive to old greenwich(where the office is) from NYC. I know before everyone goes off on how crazy that sounds I realized that it can be a 40 to 50 min drive one way and if I gun it I can potentially cut it down to 35 min as its going reverse of traffic. The place I chose is right by FDR road and the rent is coming out to be less than what I would be paying in Greenwich. As for parking I calculated that the difference between monthly parking in my building and a monthly metro pass is only around 50 to 60 dollars and if I can get that covered by the firm then it'll be a great deal. Having never lived in the city before I decided to use this as an experience that will be worthwhile. If anyone else ends up in a similar situation as I am I'd love to chat and give you my inputs on why I made the decision I did. Again thank you all so much for all the input and suggestions. Excited to move to the city next month and look to make a lot of new memories and gain valuable work experience.

 
  • Analyst 3+ in HF - Event
Jan 30, 2020 - 9:28pm
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