How to face the daunting aspects of living in NYC


Igormattio | Pixabay

Estelle Saad

New York City is known for being one of the most expensive places to live in the world, which is especially daunting for graduating students. The cost of living in Manhattan was 138.6 percent of the 2018 national average, according to Investopedia.

The majority of New Yorkers’ paychecks go toward their rent. As of February 2019, the average rent for an apartment in New York was $3,369. Though this figure does include housing options from both ends of the spectrum, from penthouses in the most expensive parts of Manhattan to matchbox-sized apartments in cheaper neighborhoods, rent is nonetheless high.

There are areas that are relatively cheaper in New York compared to the more affluent neighborhoods, though many areas are gentrifying, limiting the number of affordable options.

Being ‘rent-burdened’ is spending more than 30 percent of your household income on rent. Moving to more affordable areas of New York and living in shared living spaces can help people — like recent college graduates — who cannot afford rent on their own.

A major perk of living in New York City is that with the wide variety of transportation options available, cars aren’t needed to get around. The cost of public transportation in New York, however, is 75 percent higher than the national average.

Though food costs are higher in New York than in many other cities, there is such a large variety of eating options in New York that finding an economically savvy diet plan is possible.

Cooking food at home and bringing lunch to work are also ways of cutting down on eating costs. It is also recommended to meal plan before going to the grocery store in order to limit impulse spending. Additionally, there are many lunch specials around the city, so consider taking advantage of this by eating a big lunch or buying dinner at lunchtime.

With taxes in New York being high, it is also recommended to not shop in New York. One can avoid the high taxes by shopping for items such as clothes and appliances in New Jersey.

Entertainment prices can be high, particularly for young adults, but there are many free events to attend throughout the city that people can take advantage of, such as free museum admissions.Time Out New York, as well as other magazines, update a schedule with free events going on every week.

Though New York is a very expensive place to live in, there are ways of saving money and being able to live comfortably. Financial management apps are also available to help allocate your pay in a way that will allow you to live comfortably in the Big Apple.