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SeattleNative
January 1st, 2007, 08:51 PM
I am moving to NYC in a few months. I will be taking a job that will pay $120,000 a year. I am not interested in how hip a neighborhood is. Nor do I want to live in the projects. Just looking for a nice comfortable part of town where I can find a modest one bedroom apt. Maybe a neighborhood with a more working class feel to it. Also, I want to live where taking the train into midtown Manhattan (my workplace) is convenient. From my research I am finding that parts of Queens fit my criteria pretty close. Staten Island looks good to me, too, but getting to Manhattan appears to be a bit more challenging than from Queens or Brooklyn. And I bet the ferry is expensive. Also, the Bronx. Any advice on what part of the Bronx to live in? The only problem with that is my disdain for the Yankees so that might not work. Thanks for any advice.

Front_Porch
January 1st, 2007, 09:51 PM
I got married on Staten Island. Lovely boro; the ferry is free.

Queens, however, is probably better for your purposes. Astoria is a former working class neighborhood that has gotten an influx of some younger people, but is still very down-to-earth.

The Bronx is one very large borough; it sounds like you'd like some neighborhoods near Pelham Bay Park, but your commute from Queens should be faster.

ali r.
{downtown broker}

BrooklynRider
January 1st, 2007, 09:57 PM
Check out Park Slope. The neighborhood is crossed east to west by 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th Aves (9th aka Prospect Park West). You are are in a neighborhood on the perimeter of Frederick Law Olmstead & Clvert Vaux's Prospect Park (considered their crown jewel). Walking distance to the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Prospect Park Zoo and the Celebrate Brooklyn Concert series in the Prospect Park bandshell each summer. The northern part of Park Slope has streets running north/south that have names. I consider Flatbush Avenue to Union Street the northern slope. From Union Street to 3rd Street I consider center slope. From 6th Street to 15th Street I consider south slope. Other's may disagree with the definition of "north, "center" and "south", but realtors will often note where in the Slope a property is by these adjectives.

From a residence in center slope, you have access (equi-distance) to the 2, 3, B, F, G, M, Q ,R trains and easy transfer points to 4, D, N trains as well as Long Island Railroad.

The neighborhood is predominantly Brownstone from 5th Avenue to Prospect Park with a few pre-war apartment buildings thrown in. Between 4th Ave & 5th Ave many newer condominium and rental buildings are going up.

It's an ideal neighborhood for someone wanting to be in a cosmopolitan area that has a neighborly feel.

Also try: Brooklyn Heights, Boerum Hill, Fort Greene, Prospect Heights. (all in Brooklyn)

Or head across the Hudson to Hoboken or Jersey City.

shocka
January 1st, 2007, 11:10 PM
Take a look at Long Island City in Queens. IT is one stop from Grand Central Station. http://www.queenswest.com will be of great help.

bmc
January 2nd, 2007, 12:30 AM
SeattleNative,

What's the most you are willing to spend on an apartment per month?

You could live in Lower Manhattan/Financial District for more of a working class feel, or you could live in Midtown East/West, the UES/UWS, Astoria, Park Slope as suggested, and Riverdale in the Bronx.

Punzie
January 2nd, 2007, 05:32 AM
SeattleNative, do you plan to have a car? That's a very important question and may be the deciding factor in choosing where to live.

ablarc
January 2nd, 2007, 06:53 AM
SeattleNative, do you plan to have a car? That's a very important question and may be the deciding factor in choosing where to live.
Shouldn't be.

Sell your car, and rent one when you feel the need to get out of town.

Punzie
January 2nd, 2007, 07:32 AM
Shouldn't be.


That's a value judgement that SeattleNative needs to make.

As you know, some people put a premium on having a car readily available to them most times. If SeattleNative happens to fall in this category, then he should choose one of the nice parts of Brooklyn or Queens that are relatively close to the Manhattan and also have garages with nominal fees or (free) street parking.

kyle
January 2nd, 2007, 11:20 AM
I second the Long Island City recommendation. Real easy access to Midtown Manhattan and a working class feel.

ablarc
January 2nd, 2007, 11:30 AM
^ They also have strip joints. :p

ThisIsntMyRealName
January 2nd, 2007, 03:26 PM
"I will be taking a job that will pay $120,000 a year." That is a nice chunk of change, what do you do? I would recommend anywhere in Manhattan. That is where I landed.

ZippyTheChimp
January 2nd, 2007, 04:07 PM
SeattleNative: How much do you plan on spending for housing?

That will give us a better idea of where you should look.

Michi
January 3rd, 2007, 03:17 PM
with 120k why live "far away" from your work? Check Upper East(also West) Side o all the areas in downtown (Greenwich, Lower East Side), you will live IN Manhattan and really close by subway to your work.

Ninjahedge
January 3rd, 2007, 04:34 PM
At 120K, you may want to save what you can and put a down payment on a small condo up by Yankee Stadium or maybe somewhere that has been converted a bit more.

Your salay is at a level theat you should really have things like 401K and a mortgage to keep your taxes at bay for a while.

Let us know what you choose.

Front_Porch
January 3rd, 2007, 05:18 PM
I wouldn't advise anyone to buy in this city without renting for a year first.

Besides, the opportunity cost in this price range isn't that great . . . $120K income = $250K condo = maybe $13K in mortgage interest + property taxes = what, a $3K or $4K tax break?

Better to ease in, learn neighborhoods and pricing, and be a smart buyer in a year.

ali r.
{downtown broker}

Ninjahedge
January 3rd, 2007, 06:30 PM
Ali, only problem being that it is VERY expensive to rent and live in the city...

Most people I have seen that rent here find it hard to get anything on their own for quite a while.

BTW, the area around Yankee can be bought for less than 200K for a decent sized place, but you will be several steps down from living in what many people to be "NYC".

If you an save $40K or so, you can make a decent DP and probably make an offer on one of the glut housing in JC or Hoboken.

Queens might also be good, but there is no change in that area, so what you see is what you get and what you will have for a while...


I DO agree you need to learn the area first before you decide on what is what, but I am just kinda trying to tell him to live WELL within his means (even if that means getting a place that is less than what he is planning on) so he will be able to get a nice place for himself......

Oh, btw, if you are looking for a condo, remember one thing. Maintenance fees are BS.


'nuff said.

Schadenfrau
January 4th, 2007, 01:33 AM
There aren't really any condos around Yankee Stadium, only co-ops.

clubBR
February 7th, 2007, 08:56 PM
My favorite types of neighborhoods are those that are run down and beat but have superb public transportation. Parts of L.I.C. and uptown Manhattan would be my picks.

Punzie
February 8th, 2007, 02:51 AM
Queens might also be good, but there is no change in that area, so what you see is what you get and what you will have for a while...

Incorrect (my boldface). Some parts of Queens are very rapidly changing; some are metamorphizing; and some are almost stagnant. The Queens real estate topics here depict some of the changing neighborhoods:

http://wirednewyork.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=39

A number of topics on changing Queens neighborhoods are scattered elsewhere around this website and can be found with a search.

ablarc
February 8th, 2007, 07:45 AM
If they'd ease up on the zoning in a few selected places, Queens could become the next Big Thing.

Ninjahedge
February 8th, 2007, 09:30 AM
Hair splitting Rap.

SOME parts of Queens is not Queens in general.

SOME parts of Pennsylvania are very happening, but in general it is a boring state (sorry to all of you PA residents!!! ;) )

My statement was a general statement referring to many areas like Astoria, Forest Hills, Kew Gardens, Flushing, etc etc etc.

And Alb, you are right, but that is a definite "if" statement.

clubBR
February 8th, 2007, 04:24 PM
I think Queens' zoning laws are perfect the way they are. On the most part, keeping Queens a suburb. Parts of L.I.C., Astoria, Forest Hills/ Rego Park, Kew Gardens, Jamaica, Far Rockaway are the areas that are easing up on zoning laws. Isn't that enough people? I say, keep Queens a suburb of NYC because it is what it is. Besides, after L.I.C. develops and another borough gets the spotlight, Queens will be old news.

Schadenfrau
February 8th, 2007, 08:38 PM
Queens is in no way a "suburb" of NYC, and Long Island City has been in heavy development for well over a decade. New York isn't a city that focuses on developing just one area until it's spent, so I would not hold my breath until Long Island City is far midtown east.

clubBR
April 5th, 2007, 01:31 PM
Queens is in no way a "suburb" of NYC, and Long Island City has been in heavy development for well over a decade. New York isn't a city that focuses on developing just one area until it's spent, so I would not hold my breath until Long Island City is far midtown east.
True. I guess my expectations for LIC are too high. Its my pride that leads me into over assuming. I stand firm that for the most part, Queens is a suburb of NYC. Queens West being the exception

Allbluestarr7
April 23rd, 2007, 06:23 PM
I second the Long Island City recommendation. Real easy access to Midtown Manhattan and a working class feel.

Drug Island City?

I suggest a neighborhood in Queens, such as Kew Gardens, Forest Hills or other surrounding neighborhood. Those neighborhoods over there have subway access and are reasonably priced housing.

Schadenfrau
April 23rd, 2007, 10:40 PM
Yeah, and they're also really far out and nowhere near as desirable as "Drug Island City."

Front_Porch
April 24th, 2007, 09:50 AM
Yeah, and they're also really far out and nowhere near as desirable as "Drug Island City."

I have to disagree with "nowhere near as desirable" -- Forest Hills Gardens (which, let me explain to our Seattle reader, is an English-town style enclave in Forest Hills) is one of the most desirable neighborhoods in Queens, partly because the schools are good out there and it's on an express train stop.

Kew Gardens I'm less into, but I would certainly say at this point Jackson Heights -- also further out than LIC -- is more desirable because of its ethnic diversity, great restaurants, general liveliness, and prewar housing stock.

LIC is convenient, and it has great views, but IMHO, the community is not there yet.

ali r.
{downtown broker}

Schadenfrau
April 24th, 2007, 10:54 AM
They're both fine neighborhoods, but neither is what the intial poster is looking for so much as LIC.

shocka
April 24th, 2007, 12:52 PM
LIC is convenient, and it has great views, but IMHO, the community is not there yet.

ali r.
{downtown broker}



What do you mean exactly that the community is not there? I moved to LIC in March in the little time here I gotten to know a lot of the local store owners. Additionally, I have met MANY of the people in my building all who seem really friendly. Additionally, there is a GREAT community (http://www.queenswest.com) which is a great resource for the nabe. PS LIC bar crawl June 16th.

I think the issue here is that there is not that many people yet.

If you are refering to the services like grocery, drug store, etc then i agree, we are a fews years away from all this but then this is due to my previous point, not to many people live here in order to make one of these business' profitable.

The people who have lived here for decades have gone so long with out these services. Citylights (the oldest high rise co-op) residents have done 10 years w/o these stores. Finally you have Avalon (2000) and EastCoast (2006) which one could argue only bring about 1500 (if that) residents combined to the area, which is not a lot to warrant a profitable grocery store. BUT with the 2nd Avalon and Rockrose building coming up in 2007/08 things are bound to change there will be a influx really quickly of people here.

LIC does take a little getting use to, have to learn how to live off fresh direct or have a car.

Front_Porch
April 24th, 2007, 06:03 PM
I was specifically thinking groceries, shocka, but I'm a hard one. I have enough access to the suburbs that I don't think there are any decent grocery stores in Manhattan (I found shopping during Passover took around an hour a day). FD may be truly the way to go, but I have mixed feelings about all the packaging.

ali r.
{downtown broker}

shocka
April 25th, 2007, 01:15 AM
I was specifically thinking groceries, shocka, but I'm a hard one. I have enough access to the suburbs that I don't think there are any decent grocery stores in Manhattan (I found shopping during Passover took around an hour a day). FD may be truly the way to go, but I have mixed feelings about all the packaging.

ali r.
{downtown broker}


well i said grocery in LIC is ROUGH! I lived in Astoria and had a car, so i just went to the pioneer/ctown picked up what i needed and head home. Now in LIC w/o a car its pretty bad.

Unless a grocery store opens walking distance from me in LIC, i doubt i will be here too long in that sense. I hate having an empty fridge.. and even worse i hate that i cant decided oh i want to cook this tonight goto the store and just get what i need.

Liz
May 24th, 2007, 01:10 AM
I grew up in Queens (Bayside) and have lived and commuted to Manhattan from Kew Gardens for the past 15 years. Actually, I'm the Board president of my building now, so I'm pretty aware of coop pricing, value, subletting, commuting and parking in this area and in nearby Forest Hills. The subway is a 25-minute ride to Lexington Avenue and the Long Island Railroad is a terrific 16-minute ride to Penn Station (I drive in to Chelsea sometimes, too, in just 20 minutes). You can attend a concert at MSG, catch the 11:04pm train and dive into your bed by 11:30pm. I have co-workers who take longer to commute across town to their city apartments than it takes me to get home to Queens.

Forest Hills is pricey. While it has all the stores and restaurants, it also has the parking headaches. Kew Gardens is a terrific value and you can hop over to Forest Hills anytime to shop by foot, bicycle, subway or one-stop on the railroad. On weekends, the railroad offers the "City Ticket", which brings you into Manhattan for only $3. I can be at B&H Photo or Macy's in 20 minutes. Broadway shows are a breeze.

Kew Gardens' apartments sell and rent for significantly cheaper than Forest Hills, the streets are QUIET, it has a real neighborhood feel (everybody knows one another) and your chance to park on the street is a lot better than in Forest Hills. I rent a parking space here for $90 per month, while the city will charge 5 times that (and more). I do think that prices will rise here in the next few years with the influx of new stores coming into the area. Trader Joes is opening soon on Metropolitan Avenue and the upscale outdoor mall, Atlas Park, just 5 minutes away in Glendale, is bringing better shopping to the area. Nicer restaurants and bars are opening, along with new condos, banks and supermarkets. Lots of development suddenly.

I've seen a significant rise in single Manhattanites moving into Kew Gardens - many with salaries over $100K (some over $200K). They not only appreciate the value, but the size of the apartments in all of these prewar buildings. A mint 1,100 square foot Junior 4 coop can be had here now for $235K with maintenance running about $750. One-bedroom rentals run anywhere from $1,100 - $1,500 per month. Two years ago, those same coops ran about $135K, but like everywhere else they have skyrocketed. However, at $235K they are a steal compared to their Forest Hills counterparts which sell for double (and higher). The same apartment in Manhattan, of course, would run $1.1M, at the going $1000 per square foot rate.

I often contemplate moving into the city (I could afford it), but common sense stops me every time. I'll never same a dime that way and I doubt I'll find as quiet a street as I live on now. Remember one thing - it's not only the cost of the actual apartment you are buying/renting. Consider the cost of the local supermarket, the dry cleaner, the movie theater - EVERYTHING is considerably higher in Manhattan. You will be paying through your nose across the board.

Oh - and let's not forget that when you have a car in Queens, you can be at the beach in a half hour, too. :)

Liz

clubBR
May 28th, 2007, 08:05 AM
I grew up in Queens (Bayside) and have lived and commuted to Manhattan from Kew Gardens for the past 15 years. Actually, I'm the Board president of my building now, so I'm pretty aware of coop pricing, value, subletting, commuting and parking in this area and in nearby Forest Hills. The subway is a 25-minute ride to Lexington Avenue and the Long Island Railroad is a terrific 16-minute ride to Penn Station (I drive in to Chelsea sometimes, too, in just 20 minutes). You can attend a concert at MSG, catch the 11:04pm train and dive into your bed by 11:30pm. I have co-workers who take longer to commute across town to their city apartments than it takes me to get home to Queens.

Forest Hills is pricey. While it has all the stores and restaurants, it also has the parking headaches. Kew Gardens is a terrific value and you can hop over to Forest Hills anytime to shop by foot, bicycle, subway or one-stop on the railroad. On weekends, the railroad offers the "City Ticket", which brings you into Manhattan for only $3. I can be at B&H Photo or Macy's in 20 minutes. Broadway shows are a breeze.

Kew Gardens' apartments sell and rent for significantly cheaper than Forest Hills, the streets are QUIET, it has a real neighborhood feel (everybody knows one another) and your chance to park on the street is a lot better than in Forest Hills. I rent a parking space here for $90 per month, while the city will charge 5 times that (and more). I do think that prices will rise here in the next few years with the influx of new stores coming into the area. Trader Joes is opening soon on Metropolitan Avenue and the upscale outdoor mall, Atlas Park, just 5 minutes away in Glendale, is bringing better shopping to the area. Nicer restaurants and bars are opening, along with new condos, banks and supermarkets. Lots of development suddenly.

I've seen a significant rise in single Manhattanites moving into Kew Gardens - many with salaries over $100K (some over $200K). They not only appreciate the value, but the size of the apartments in all of these prewar buildings. A mint 1,100 square foot Junior 4 coop can be had here now for $235K with maintenance running about $750. One-bedroom rentals run anywhere from $1,100 - $1,500 per month. Two years ago, those same coops ran about $135K, but like everywhere else they have skyrocketed. However, at $235K they are a steal compared to their Forest Hills counterparts which sell for double (and higher). The same apartment in Manhattan, of course, would run $1.1M, at the going $1000 per square foot rate.

I often contemplate moving into the city (I could afford it), but common sense stops me every time. I'll never same a dime that way and I doubt I'll find as quiet a street as I live on now. Remember one thing - it's not only the cost of the actual apartment you are buying/renting. Consider the cost of the local supermarket, the dry cleaner, the movie theater - EVERYTHING is considerably higher in Manhattan. You will be paying through your nose across the board.

Oh - and let's not forget that when you have a car in Queens, you can be at the beach in a half hour, too. :)

Liz

Wonderfully said. Queens is a true beauty

-But lets say, someone didnt have a car and commuted to Manhattan daily. Where would be the best value in Queens?