Take It Or Leave It

Is this $3,100 triplex in Bayside the perfect alternative to the suburbs?

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Bayside may not be as hip a Queens neighborhood as others that rivals Manhattan in its pricing. (Hunters Point and Long Island City we're looking at you!) But it has a low-key, suburb-in-the-city vibe and good public schools, so we're turning our attention to this $3,100 three-bedroom, three-bath apartment there. If you're looking to be in that zone for fall 2016, now's the time to start looking.

Note: This is the kind of community where you probably do need a car—luckily there's a two-car driveway—and your commute will be on the Long Island Railroad, not the subway. Assuming that works, is it time to relocate the family? I asked our experts (and veteran renters), RentHackr founder Zeb Dropkin and freelance writer Lambeth Hochwald, to weigh in with me on this week's Take It or Leave It.​

Size: Three-bedroom, three-bath
Location:  208-27 15th Road (between 208th Street and 208th Place)
Cost: $3,100/month
Flexible layout: Yes
Days on the market: 16
Subway:  No subway; LIRR to Auburndale is about 1.7 miles away

Pros and cons:

"Among the pros are that private backyard, the fact that it's on three floors and has a two-car garage. Now, for the cons: It's a long drive from the LIRR and is a little dated. Plus, it's hard to tell exactly which room is which from the the photos, but at least one of the bedrooms looks small." —Lucy

"The sunny, private backyard is a huge plus, as are the two full baths and dishwasher in this three-bedroom. On the downside, you're about one-and-a-half hours from Union Square, you have to ride a bus, and this place has that tacky shiny metal fencing." —Zeb

"The list of wows on this place are kind of endless. I mean seriously. A three-bedroom triplex, a jumbo kitchen and two-car driveway plus garage—where are we, the suburbs? Well that’s just it and this may be the biggest con. You’ll have to live all the way out in Bayside to get all of this for the cost of a Manhattan studio." —Lambeth​

Who would this apartment be perfect for?

"A family on a budget that's looking for a nearly suburban experience in the city. Also, must be a car owner—maybe even a two-car family." —Lucy

"This place is all about the kids. Good schools, a room or two for children, their own bathroom, and that yard make it very kid- and parent-friendly. " —Zeb

"A family with two-plus kids facing the sticker shock of private school and the overcrowding of certain ‘hot’ public school districts as this house is zoned in a good district." —Lambeth

The verdict(s):

LEAVE IT "This was a close one. As a parent myself I see the appeal, but this kind of feels like one of those in-between neighborhoods that lacks the conveniences of the city and the quaintness of the suburbs."—Lucy

TAKE IT "If your goal is to get a solid place for your young ones, and this location works, then it's a good spot. " —Zeb

LEAVE IT "After all for $3+K per month do you really want to live in such close proximity to the Clearview Expressway?" —Lambeth