Things No One Will Tell You Before Moving To New York City

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You’ve been dreaming for so long of that glamorous and exciting big city life, eh? Finally, the time has come to do so, and you decided that you will be moving to New York City. Congratulations on your brewery! By now I bet that most of your friends and family told you that this is by far your best idea ever, or that you are insane. Honestly, I agree with both parties.

New York City is a city like no other, you best believe it! A lot of people consider moving to Big Apple as their biggest success and one of their main life goals. If you are about to move to NYC for the first time, there are a few key things you need to know before you accept this challenge to make your transition less stressful and complicated.

Moving To New York City “made easy”

This city can enchant you and frustrate you in a single heartbeat, accept that as a new normal. To get a better picture of why this city is also called a concrete jungle, I’ll try to describe to you the actual process of fully adapting to it.

First, when you decide to make this bold step, act as fast as you can, and never overthink this decision since you will for sure give up after some time. 

The second thing to do is to embrace the fact that you will need to hustle hard every day to be able to live a normal life here. But not your usual normal, I mean the NYC normal which can be compared to jumping on a moving train, but blindfolded!  

The third thing you need to do is to work on your tolerance and become less vulnerable. Setting the roots here is a tough task to do and it can be as hard as digging through concrete with a small plastic shovel. Do you know that one from the kid’s playground set? Well, in most cases you will feel like that’s your only gear for survival. The point is that if you work hard, you will eventually make it.

Lastly, dream big but don’t get your hopes too high. New York is one of the most expensive cities to live in, be prepared to spend big money on basic things that you took for granted back at home.

Now after reading this you are either frightened or challenged to prove me wrong so we can continue to talk about all the things you need to know before you move to NYC.

Be smart when choosing your new neighborhood 

The neighborhood matters more than you think; even though many will say this isn’t accurate. Keep in mind that your budget will afford you drastically different living arrangements solely based on the part of the NYC you choose to live in. People love nice things; nice things make people happy; living in a not-nice space makes people sad. 

Let me elaborate on this topic with some true facts. For example for a budget of $3700, you can rent a shoe-box-sized apartment in the Upper East or Upper West Side. On the other hand, for that same amount of money, you can rent a nice two-bedroom in Astoria, Queens. Now think where you would be happier, and tell me I’m wrong?

Here are some of the top neighborhoods you should consider when moving to New York City:

  • Manhattan: Upper East Side, Lower East Side, East Village, Greenwich Village, Yorkville, Times Square, Central Harlem, and Hudson Heights.
  • Brooklyn: Brooklyn Heights, Park Slope, Dumbo, Fort Greene, Cobble Hill, and Williamsburg.
  • The Bronx: South Bronx, Mott Haven, Riverdale, Norwood, Spuyten Duyvil, Belmont, and Jerome Park.
  • Queens: Astoria, Long Island City, Flushing, Ridgewood, and Rockaway Beach.
  • ​Staten Island: Midland Beach, New Drop, Todt Hill, St. George, Tompkinsville, New Brighton, West Brighton, and Lighthouse Hill.

Choosing the wrong borough, or neighborhood can cost you a lot, of nerves, time, and money. 

New York City is an old charmer

While this city is constantly growing and evolving this does not mean everything is brand new and shiny. 

Many of the residential buildings are seriously old, this can mean limited amenities like old heating and AC units, drafty windows, rusty plumbings, and smaller square footage. But hey let’s look at this from another POV, the unique design of these old buildings is what gives that recognizable NYC charm. 

Don’t be bothered by this since many older buildings have been even better maintained and renovated than some younger ones.

New York City subway is your best friend/worst enemy

Public transportation is on an avid level in Big Apple and you have lots of options. The NYC subway system is the most impressive one, however, it will break your bank if you don’t have a monthly pass. The bus is reliable but it moves so slow that sometimes it is better to declare bankruptcy than enjoy this ride.

A bike is a great option if you are in avid physical condition considering how big the NYC is. Uber and taxi are acceptable options when you are in a life or death situation considering the prices. As for being optimistic and driving your own car, well take my advice and use it only when you really need it, NYC traffic is hectic and in most cases, you will only lose a lot of time and nerves.

New York City is a place where all the best pizzas in the world live

I mean, common, who doesn’t love pizza. This epic dish must be the least hatred one in the world! 

New York-style pizza is something that every true New Yorker is proud of. Hand-tossed, thin-crust, and cut in 8 slices is how the New Yorkers make their pizzas. This city is filled with numerous pizza joints, pizzerias, and pizza restaurants that all serve a different version of the unique NYC-style pizza.

It is not London, but it rains a lot

New York City experiences a lot of rainy days even though this is not what you’ve seen on the big screen. Did you know that NYC’s average is 47 inches of rain per year? This is nine inches more than the U.S. average! You’ll get like 121 rainy days per year when you move to NYC. If you aren’t a fan of it then you might be in big trouble.

Occasionally you will need a break from New York City

If you stay too long in the city you will feel overwhelmed and burdened. But you can easily resolve this by taking a quick break from it. You will learn to appreciate NYC more if you take some time and explore other cities.

Take a timeout from time to time and I can guarantee you that this will make you fall in love with NYC even more.

Use your common sense

NYC is one of the safest big cities in the world, however, this doesn’t mean you can be reckless. If you don’t want to experience some not-so-pleasant situations don’t attract them. Avoid walking alone in districts that are known as a dangerous one, it is that simple. 

Stay connected with your community

Many people will say you can never be bored and lonely in New York. This isn’t true at all. Yes, NYC is jammed full with people but if you don’t plant roots in your community you will be lonely. Start making friends locally, they won’t magically appear on their own. Get involved with some charity organization, visit a local pub and make friends with a bartender so when you want to go out you know you’ll have someone to talk to. 

Note that it is quite normal in NYC for people to appear and disappear, don’t let that fact depress you. 

Make This City Your Biggest Achievement

Accept the fact that New York and you will have a love-hate relationship forever, but it will be a firm and long-lasting one if you decide to stick through every obstacle he will throw at you. 

You must be wondering what do you get in return for making so much effort? Well isn’t being a part of the greatest city on earth enough though? If it isn’t, then you should stand proud knowing that if you made it here you will make it anywhere. To me that fact is priceless. 

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