How important is comfort for you?

ob2314.ci's picture
Rank: Monkey | 44

Hi everyone!

I am from NYC and I go to a school here that ultimately helped me to land an IB internship. The housing at school is very limited and since I am from NYC, my school did not provide me with a room, so I have options of either staying at home and commuting or paying to rent a room of my own. I am a very rational person and my calculations show that I will be debt-free if I stay at home and use my savings/earnings/scholarships to pay for tuition and fees. However, commuting sucks (sometimes I sleep at the library or shower at the gym when it's finals season or smth) and I will be relocating to downtown Manhattan next summer anyway (for the internship). What would you do in this situation: stay at home and save money or move and be in debt? What is more important to you: comfort of being in close proximity or minimizing expenses?

Just curious to hear opinions of people who know how to count money :) Again, I am very rational and would not move if it was not necessary or too costly (note: I come from an immigrant family, so we may have different understandings of "too costly").

Thanks for reading all this!

Comments (28)

Aug 1, 2019

stay at home and save the money

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Aug 1, 2019

You didn't mention how far your commute is but it sounds far if you sleep at school. You can always start out by trying to stay at home and commute, and rent later on if it's not working out.

Aug 1, 2019
Synergy_or_Syzygy:

You didn't mention how far your commute is

Yeah this is vital information. 1hr each way? 2hrs each way?

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Aug 5, 2019

it is 1:20-1:30 each way. You know how MTA works haha

Aug 1, 2019

Money is quite comforting tbh

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Aug 1, 2019

I commuted from a suburb to university almost daily for 5 years straight (BA, plus 1 year MA) for at least an hour and 30 minutes each way when you count going from door to door. This could be longer in the winter.

Did I hate it? Absolutely. It made doing any extra-curriculars difficult, staying late in the city was always a logistically nightmare and more often than not meant that I missed out. That said, it really was not that bad on the day to day. It meant zero debt on my back which with a summer without gainful employment meant I could breathe easy.

To me, having the peace of mind to further and freedom to pursue jobs I want, rather than jobs I need just for some steady cash, not thinking twice about getting a car loan or planning for a mortgage... It was all worth it.

Also it helps during job interviews when they ask, "are you okay commuting that far" ( I still live in the burbs) I can just say "I did it almost every day for 5 years and the bank is closer than the campus anyway." It just takes the doubt out of their mind about my reliability.

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Aug 2, 2019

I think it's admirable that you want to avoid/reduce debt and it's a good mind set to have in life. However, don't compromise your social life for the sake of saving a few bucks at this stage of your life. It's one thing to do a commute when you have a wife and kids and you can save on a mortgage and school fees but if you're young and single you want to be where the action is. Don't underestimate how important networking/socializing is to building a long lasting career in this industry.

Aug 5, 2019

You're absolutely right. Networking for that IB internship was hard because of the commuting. Imagine having a 7PM networking event and having to wear/carry around a suit all day because of a morning class for example. But I been there, done that now and that makes think that I could do it again.

Aug 2, 2019

Advice: about eight weeks before your internship starts, start looking around for somebody in Manhattan who needs a roommate for the summer. Surely you have college friends in apts. Try to get a place close to work if possible. You don't need luxury, just a place to flop. A long daily commute will kick your ass if you're working ordinary IB hours.

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Aug 5, 2019

Thank you for the advice. I am definitely getting a place downtown next summer. I am not going to compromise my performance on the internship.

Aug 6, 2019

This seems like the right call. As someone who has been in banking in NYC for ~10 years, my advice would absolutely be to get an apartment in the city at this stage in your life. Plenty of time to commute when you're 30+ years old and your friends are all scattered across the country with kids.

--$$--

Aug 2, 2019

Save--its the right move

Aug 2, 2019

There is nothing magic about having zero debt. Zero is $10k less than $10k, just as $10k is $10k less than $20k. Zero is just another number.

The most important thing is to get a lot of out of the education (both in and out of the classroom) and develop into someone who will succeed in the early years out of college . . ie getting a good first job and doing well at that job. The difference between getting that mission right or getting it wrong is worth tens of thousands of dollars at a minimum. More likely hundreds of thousands, because of the domino effect of getting on the right path early.

Yes you have an internship but you want to succeed there and then succeed in FT recruiting (if necessary), not to mention after you graduate. How much you develop in these last 2 yrs of college will be a factor in all of that.

So the short answer is, don't sacrifice your development. Minimizing commute will always be worth it. Minimizing any distractions to your learning/studying will always be worth it.

Now where people go too far with this idea is when they start to treat their college experience as sacred and justify any expense (e.g. study abroad, spring break, overpriced upperclass apt with friends) as being essential to this rare and precious chapter of their life. Don't do that. But any time you have the opportunity to make your daily life easier so you can be more focused in school, its going to be worth a few thousand bucks a year.

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Most Helpful
Aug 2, 2019

I would do whatever it takes to maximize performance in your internship, which likely means living as close as possible. Getting a return offer should be your main focus, not a couple of thousand dollars of debt.

The late nights are much less difficult if it's easy to get home, and you don't deal with subway delays, bus problems, etc. on your way in. It's also much less annoying to go in during the weekend if it's fast and easy. I moved about 5 blocks from the office for my 2nd and 3rd years as an analyst, and it made life so much more easy. Some Assoc or VP asks if you'll be in on Sat because they are there, you just drop that you are already on the way (even if you weren't planning to), and you show up in 10 min. Things like that make you look good.

Aug 5, 2019

I am moving for the internship for sure. I am contemplating the move for the school year at the moment.

Aug 2, 2019

As someone else stated, a big factor is how close is your family?

A cautionary tale - an intern in my group tried to live at home, and her parents got pissed at her hours and would pressure her to be home for dinner, which was completely unrealistic. She would ghost to go home for dinner without having her work done and then make excuses. I gave a hard no on her return offer as a 3rd year analyst, and the staffer agreed.

Aug 5, 2019

That's insane. My fam does my laundry, makes me breakfast and does not ask unnecessary questions so we're good. But I am thinking about moving for the school year and not the internship. Taking into account IB hours I will live as close as possible next summer.

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Aug 2, 2019

If the commute is more than 30-40 minutes get a place downtown.

Aug 2, 2019

Rent. Don't schools offer cheap rentals in nyc to interns. If it's ib should be making enough to find a place big enough for a bed and stove for 1500-2k.

Commuting blows. One of the biggest things for happiness is minimizing commute.

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Aug 5, 2019

Agree with this; curious where you got the info on happiness & minimizing commuting time. Did you read happiness by design from Paul Dolan by chance?

Aug 5, 2019

Forget where but did come across it. I think people feel unhappiness when they don't control their time. So activities like being stuck in traffic feels like a prison.

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Aug 3, 2019

The problem with commuting is that you'll be missing out a lot of social events that are necessary to network, so it's a hidden cost. I'd agree with whoever mentioned that anything more than 30-40 mins commute isn't worthy it.

Aug 5, 2019

Not to mention sex. Much easier to secure some solid pre-marital when you're not living at home with mommy.

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Aug 5, 2019
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Aug 6, 2019