Most of you know already but I got my dream internship in NYC y’all! I start my first day on June 4th in the TIMES SQUARE TOWER (!!!!). I thought I would do a post on this because I’ve had a few other intern ladies reach out about how I found housing.
This whole post will be on How to Find Affordable Housing for an Internship in New York City! This is especially for people with an extremely limited budget and can’t spend like $3,000/month on rent. I have had help from my family for sure, but I have to keep all my costs as low as possible!
How to Find Affordable Housing for an Internship in NYC
The first thing to do: FIND SOMEWHERE TO LIVE
A lot of internships in NYC will give you a list of options and/or a stipend, but 1) they might not be affordable or 2) your company may not give you any help at all! Mine did not (which is totally okay). Finding housing is almost as hard as getting the internship itself!
If you don’t have family or friends that live up there, it can be such a daunting thing to do. My first thought was to email the internship coordinator at my school. Your school or department should also have one of those and they can give SUCH valuable info on how to find housing. Mine definitely did!
The first places to check:
I had used Airbnb once before while volunteering at Charleston Fashion Week! It was a great experience and my host was the nicest ever. I first started here and that was because you can do EXTENDED AIRBNB STAYS.
This just means that if you stay for more than a month most places will give a 20-50% discount! Personally this still made the costs too high for my budget (with fees and taxes and such) but for some people this might be perfect!
You can also customize your preferences!
I always start with my dates. That way you can see off the bat how much it’ll be for how long you need it!
I then obviously added in what price I prefer per month. You can edit and adjust this!
The last item is to specify what type of room you want! You don’t want to book a place and then realize you’re sharing a room with 3 other people!
Streeteasy is almost exactly like Airbnb! You can specify by location here a lot easier though and it will show you housing in the location that you need! For me, that was Manhattan. My favorite thing about Streeteasy over Airbnb is that they also list nearby transportation.
I started by searching for location on this one and then you can move on from there.
The next thing to do is obviously select your price!
You can also refine your search once you have your location and then specify your dates!
Hotpads is one that I really liked. They show all the housing options all over the city and you can click on all the little houses. The only bad thing about this is you can’t use Hotpads to book the property. You have to communicate with the person directly and this can make it a little sketchy/difficult.
I personally think I was being scammed and that is why I didn’t use this site. Make sure to get a Facetime or Facebook video walkthrough with the person you contact, google street views of the front of the building, and ask for MANY MANY pictures to verify what they put on the site is accurate.
The cool thing about Hotpads though is that you can add a destination. For me, my internship is in Times Square so you can put that in to the locator and see how far of a commute you’ll have.
If those aren’t your cup of tea:
I hadn’t had much luck finding anything in my price range on these housing websites. Everything was so expensive ($3,000-$4,000 for JUST TWO MONTHS). The next thing I did was contact my aunt’s friend! She told me that her friend had recently moved to NYC and that I should check with her and see what she did.
1. Gypsy Housing:
Her first recommendation was that I should check in East Village. That is a safe area and she also said it’s only a few train stops away from Times Square. She then told me I should join the “Gypsy Housing” Facebook group!
This is where people post their sublets (anywhere from a couple weeks to a year) and then you can contact them directly about it! It’s almost like Hotpads but without the third party.
This is actually where I found my sublet from! I had a lovely lady reach out to me who immediately offered to Facebook video chat and show me her apartment. She also told me up front her house rules and such. The best part? It was a 15 min walk from Times Square!
2. Church Mission Housing/Co-Ed Housing:
There are sooo many churches and other places with housing! A lot of them are female only and a few are male only so you’ll have to google around and see which is the best suited for you. A lot of these have intense application processes and rules so you’ll have to be aware of that as well.
These are some my professor recommended to me so I thought I’d provide them to y’all as well!
A few links to some other places:
Y’s & Hostels:
3. Subletting from New York College Students:
This is a really good idea that I first thought to do off the bat. The only problem? Dorms and college apartments are EXPENSIVE and often the affordable ones don’t have A/C (which was a major must for me since I’m ALWAYS hot).
You also have to be wary of the stipulations involved! A few summer dorms required meal plans when you wanted to apply for the cheaper rooms which made them almost as much, if not the same, price as the expensive dorms.
Here are a few links to dorm websites:
I hope this post will help y’all be able to find housing for your internship in NYC! If you have any other helpful tips for others interning, leave some in the comments! I also have another post about a recap of my internship in New York City this past summer and you can read it (here).
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