After 10 years in Chicago, I just got a new job in NYC and am moving at the end of the month. I fly out this week to find an apartment, likely in the Brooklyn area, and am looking for any general tips on neighborhoods. I hear Williamsburg is a cool spot, though i also see on craigslist a lot of good deals in places such as Clinton Hill, Prospect Heights, Park Slope, Bed-Stuy, etc etc. Any places i should specifically check out or avoid altogether?? Ideally for work, I'd be close to a subway line that can easily connect to the F line. Many thanks for your input.
OT: MGoRelo to NYC/Brooklyn
its a slow fall sunday after a crucial 7th victory, and the board has had enough threads called "OMG FIRE (KEEP) GERG."
Also clearly marked OT, i figure people can skip over it if they like.
Your just jealous he's moving to New York and your stuck in Wyoming.
That is exactly correct.
-1 for incorrectly using your, twice.
Of course right as I notice it and am about to fix it some catches me. Kudos.
go forward. Why not let the MGoBlog community help out another memberr from time to time? Has to be controlled but as they say, time, place and manner. This one worked.
Williamsburg is a really cool neighborhood, but also the hipster capitol of the world. Not for everyone.
If you're older than your 20's, you're too old for Williamsburg. Considering you've been elsewhere for 10 years I'm guessing thats the case. I have family in Brooklyn and was just there two weekends ago. Williamsburg is hip but way young. My brother has been in the area around the federal courthouse just over the Brooklyn Bridge (near but not Dumbo) for the last several years and its very nice, has the subway station nearby, is walking distance from the prominade and has great shopping, bars, restaurants nearby.
Worked for Jigga
To be totally honest if you can stay with someone for a little bit (and if you went to Michigan and you have friends, some of them are in NYC), I would check these places out for yourself. As an earlier poster said, places like Williamsburg are cool for people who like that kind of place, but they absolutely are not for everyone.
I live in Clinton Hill and its a great cheap neighborhood as long as you stay West of Classon Avenue. Look for a place near the Dekalb Avenue stop of the NQ subway line as it is two stops from Union Square. (Technically Fort Greene). If you can avoid it, don't get an apartment that requires you to depend on the G train.
Williamsburg is a great neighborhood, but expensive. Stay near the Bedford or Lorimer stops on the L train. It is completely gentrified and no longer the hipster capital of the world. That's Long Island City in Queens, so if you have a sick beard and a 28" waist, look there.
Finding an apartment in NYC is not like finding one elsewhere, so I wouldn't expect to step off the plane and have a place within a week. Craiglist roomshares is honestly not a bad option in NYC. There are a lot of normal and economical options out there, but you need to weed through a lot of crap.
Lastly, no matter what you're told, you do not have to pay a broker's fee to get a apartment. Thats for suckers. Good luck.
the stuff i'm looking for, thank you very much.
I grew up in the LES, and live still live here... I strongly encourage living in Brooklyn. If i hadn't such a sweet gig here, I'd move to BK in a heartbeat. Most of my friends from U of M that moved here went to BK. Either downtown BK (Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn Heights etc... or Parkslope.) My problem with Wmsburg is the Hipster aspect...but if that doesn't other you go for it.. A few of my buddies lived on Meserole and Lorimer st. in Wms burg, the building was awesome and had a sweet rooftop... the rent was very manageable and you're close to the J M Z and L trains. Straight shot into lower Manhattan.
EDIT: L train will take you to 14th and 6th where you can catch the F train.... if you're feeling adventurous, get off go to Terr'ys on 16th and 6.... ask for an "F" sandwich... just do it.... it was the sandwich to get in HS (Chicken cultet hero with bacon...de-licious.)
That said, Williamsburg is very convenient to Manhattan, has a lot of recently upgraded housing, good restaurants (Peter Luger's, anyone?), interesting bars. Bedford Avenue is interesting. And the hipster thing is true.
If you can afford it, I'd stay out of Bed-Stuy, its cheaper, but it's a kinda dangerous area. Another area not mentioned on your list, is Astoria Queens. Like Park Slope and Williamsburg in Brooklyn, Astoria has become a young neighborhood over the past decade, and like the other two, it's a very short train ride from Manhattan.
but i'd suggest you check out park slope...close to the F line, and I know a friend who loves living there
but, as with most neighborhoods, as they get more expensive/gentrified, the adjoining neighborhoods get better, and then in turn more expensive and gentrified. Choice may also depend on if you're a single male, single female, family, what your work schedule is (i.e., if you're going to have to walk distances from the subway in the dark). Some neighborhoods may look "adventurous" but are well-populated enough to feel safe coming home at night. And in NY, it's often block by block. I have friends in old neighborhoods in Queens that are inexpensive but possibly not too exciting (probably inexpensive and not too exciting because they inherited rent-controlled apartments from grandmothers), but Queens has become a haven for inexpensive ethnic dining.
But congrats on your new job. It's a great city with neighborhoods to please everybody, and you get really spoiled by the food options. [But you may miss your Chicken Vesuvio.]
Sorry, gotta go. Lights back on in Giants Stadium in time for me to see Manningham make a TD.
i'm recently engaged, and my fiance is joining me within a couple months. i know work will be busy, so i'll be coming home later more times than not. and i don't need to be walking distance to the trendy restaurant/bar scene, though i would like to have at least 1-2 decent neighborhood watering holes to call my own..
Its more expensive but in my opinion nicest neighborhood in Brooklyn. Check out Brooklyn Heights. Dont know where you are working but its 1 stop from Wall Street. I also think Fort Greene is a great place to live, still close to the city but not overly expensive.
Just make sure you check the place out and that you like the block. Many neighborhoods can change substantially from block to block, one is great the other is run down and loud etc.
but her first apartment there when she first came to NY was a newly renovated one-BR apartment for $280/month. You'd be lucky to get a parking space for that price now. That and Park Slope are the priciest neighbs in Brooklyn. But the adjoining neighborhoods-- Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Boerum Hill, etc. (the ads that say "Brooklyn Heights & Vicinity" usually mean those) are definite possibilities, and there are actually more interesting restaurants, etc., there as the chains are taking over Brooklyn Heights retail spaces.
EDIT: I see others below already discussed those spots. Consider this added support.
Ive lived in NY for 10 years and I agree with others: check out a few hoods and see what you like and what your money can buy in each. Take your time.
However, from what you've written so far, it sounds like Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill and Boerum Hill are good options for you. Fort Greene and Clinton Hill are wonderful but Clinton Hill is just slightly less convenient to public transport though more diverse than CG/CH/BH.
If you want more info, just reply with your email address and I'll shoot you a note.
chiblue2000 at aim dot com
I live on the upper east side of Manhattan. You can get some decent deals up here but there is a huge space deficit. You may also want to look into Brooklyn Heights. It's an expensive neighborhood but you can get some nice deals from Craigslist.
Carroll Gardens/Cobble Hill has better bars and restaurants than Park Slope, prices are about the same (expensive), and it's 10-15 minutes closer to Manhattan on the F. Doesn't sound like much, but it adds up, especially if you end up coming home late/having to pay for taxi and car service. They're both pretty yuppie family oriented, but CG/Cobble Hill feels less stodgy than Park Slope IMO (and I've lived in both). The subway is a nightmare for each neighborhood on the weekend (track work can leave you taxi dependent).
Fort Greene's also great and a bit cheaper than those neighborhoods (a bit), and offers relatively easy transfers to the F either at Jay (C) or Broadway/Lafayette (B/D) but avoid anything that will leave you dependent on the G at all costs. Even the C is going to be frustrating, but if you have to rely on the G, you'll go out of your mind.
I live in park slope and I recommend it, but it's on the pricier side. You can get many of the benefits of park slope for cheaper by living across Flatbush avenue in Prospect Heights. Fort Greene is also quite nice, but isn't as close to Prospect Park, which was a huge draw for me. Pretty much anything north of Prospect park is good: Carrol Gardens, Cobble Hill, etc.
It's worth trying to avoid paying a broker's fee, but I wouldn't rule it out outright. If you do that, you're immediately limiting the number of places you'll be able to see, especially in the more gentrified neighborhoods of BK. In my experience, if you are in a hurry (and it sounds like you are) you're likely going to end up paying a broker, just because they have access to so many more apartments. It's an awful system that exists nowhere else that I know of, but it is what it is.
Many employers will cover a broker's fee as part of a job change, it's at least work asking your new employer. If it's a larger employer (corporate law, Wall Street), they may actually expect to pay it as part of your relocation package. At any rate, it's better long term to find an apartment you're happy with (especially since you're moving in with your fiance) than to settle for an apartment that you like less but is not brokered. After all, the longer you stay in the apartment, the more you offset the broker's fee.
Broker's fees are also negotiable. You should never pay more than 12%.
FYI - there was another thread like this within the past year giving advise on bklyn neighborhoods. Use the search function on this site and that should assist.
Brooklyn is cool though. You'll like it.
This site is a community, and it was properly labeled OT, it would be kind of douchey to drop the D bomb.
Love Brooklyn Heights, lived at Atlantic and Henry for a couple of years, easy to get to the subways, close walk to the water. Just love it. Live in Westchester County now and love it, but it's no Brooklyn Heights...
I am also jealous...i hope to move to NYC someday if only to experience it sounds like alot of fun!!
so far for the valuable input. I am lucky to be a part of this MGoCommunity. I feel like it has the love and friendliness of 110,000 Happy Lloyd Bradys.
I can't recommend highly enough-- try to get a sublet for a month or two, or even a couple weeks. That way, you can spend a week or two walking through neighborhoods and getting a feel for what you like and what you could live with. It's not just about the name of the neighborhood because there are some shitty streets in just about every area listed above, including Park Slope (the definition of Park Slope keeps widening). Bring paper and a pen and write down streets that you'd find desirable.
Then you can spend another week or so looking at listings and you'll actually have an idea if the apartment is near things you like. You'll be an educated buyer and will avoid getting taken advantage of.
I lived in Brooklyn Heights and Park Slope and got lucky both times in finding a place that was under price for the area. But a big part of it was walking around and making lots of calls.
At the time (2002-2005) , I'd get a copy of the Village Voice (in front of the Village Voice headquarters in Greenwich Village) on Tuesday nights before it officially came out on Wednesday. I'd make calls to all the desirable places in my price range on Tuesday nights, mostly leaving messages. That way, the broker or landlord would call me first thing on Wednesday before anyone else and I'd get first viewing of a good deal. That may all be moot now due to the expanded use of the Internet but it worked then.
Good luck. I LOVE Brooklyn and miss it like crazy. It may take a year to really appreciate it because you will be spending lots of money for very little space. But there's SO much going on and you can get to it all on the subway.
P.S. The best burger in the world BY FAR is the panini burger at Bar Toto on 6th Ave and 11th street in Park Slope. Not near anything else, but worth walking to. I still dream of it.
I just recently moved to a place in the West Village so just went through the whole mess. You do not need to pay for a broker, which is true. However, if your work will pay for it (ask) then I would suggest going that route. They will show you places without you having to arrange.
If you are going to try it on your own, try craigslist and nytimes.com. Both have many listings. However, a couple warnings: (1) the pictures can be incredibly deceiving. I suggest seeing all apartments before signing on one. Its not Brooklyn, but what they call a one bedroom there wil shock you (I moved from Chicago myself). (2) you need to act fast - deals that pop up on those websites go very, very quickly. Do not hesitate. Therefore, you really need to spend a week or two to find a place if you go that route. That is why the sublet idea is not bad at all - a month or two sublets are plentiful on craigslist.
I recently moved from midtown (east 40s) to the Financial District. I looked extensively at Brooklyn, and while Brooklyn has a lot going for it, you don't save any money on rent. None whatsoever (for comparable buildings). If you're going to be working in Manhattan, you're better off finding an apartment in a low-cost Manhattan neighborhood and saving yourself the commute.
One of my friends who lives in Park Slope is renting her spot for the month; it's very close to the biggest transit hub in the boro (Atlantic/Pacific) and would be a good place from which to check out different hoods. E-mail me if you're interested - it's bmathis at gmail. I also have a pretty good landlord (strange, I know) who owns several places in the Park Slope/Prospect Heights area; they rent their own buildings which = no fee.
Based on this thread I'm starting to think we might have enough of a critical mass to take over a Brooklyn bar as an M viewing spot. Brother Jimmy's has good drink specials, but, you know, it's Brother goddamn Jimmy's.