Priorities for Young First-Time Renters in Manhattan

When May rolls around, recent college graduates and their nervous parents flood the Manhattan real estate market in search of the perfect first apartment. Here are some qualities that many first-time renters value.



For any parent, this is a top requirement for their child’s first apartment. Safety amenities might include, 24-hour security guards or cameras, well-lit entryways, and strong door and window locks or burglar systems. Other safety measures include fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.


Unless you are wealthy, space is usually an unattainable luxury. Multiple rooms or ample square footage are attractive to young people who may want to live together and pool their resources. Although most rentals throughout the city are relatively small, it is possible to find large apartments in east side Manhattan that are affordable for one or more inhabitants.


Reliable and efficient public transit is essential for commuting to a first job or social engagements. The point of living in Manhattan is to take advantage of professional opportunities as well as the myriad cultural and social offerings. Traveling throughout the city is inevitable. Thanks to the recent installation of the Second Avenue Q train subway line, residents of the east side and west side can get across the park more efficiently than ever.


The idea of dragging bagfuls of dirty laundry through the streets and waiting for hours before it is ready to take home is unappealing. Laundry machines in apartment units or somewhere within a building offer a convenience for which many first-time renters are willing to pay. A cooling and heating unit, or even central air, is another advantage, especially during the extremely variable seasons of New York.

Although most first-time renters usually make a few compromises, creating a list of priorities and narrowing them is the best way to find an apartment in Manhattan.

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