The Search

New survey ranks the most popular and affordable NYC neighborhoods for roommates

By Brick Underground  | September 22, 2021 - 4:00PM 

Apartment shares are even more critical now that NYC landlords are no longer offering several months free, which made rentals so affordable during the height of the pandemic

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Sharing a rental apartment with roommates has long been the way to make living in New York City more affordable—and some neighborhoods are less expensive than others if you’re looking to split the rent.

Apartment shares are even more critical now that NYC landlords are no longer offering several months free, which made rentals so affordable during the height of the pandemic that some new renters found they could live in a studio or one bedroom by themselves. 

So where should you look if you want to share a cheap apartment? New data from SpareRoom ranks the most popular and affordable neighborhoods for roommates based on the average rent share in the second quarter of 2021.

One thing that may surprise you about this list: These neighborhoods don’t have extreme commutes to Midtown Manhattan.

“Roommates in Midtown and the West Village pay average rents of over $1,800 a month, but there are neighborhoods where you can share an apartment for less than half that. It’s all about knowing where to look, and it doesn’t necessarily mean trekking all the way out to Staten Island or Sheepshead Bay,” says Matt Hutchinson, director at SpareRoom.

SpareRoom’s 15 most popular and affordable neighborhoods to rent a room in NYC

  1. Elmhurst, Queens, $854
  2. East Flatbush, Brooklyn, $863
  3. Jamaica, Queens, $876
  4. Ridgewood, Queens, $938
  5. Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, $986
  6. Washington Heights, Manhattan, $1,001
  7. Hamilton Heights, Manhattan, $1,012
  8. Bushwick, Brooklyn, $1,019
  9. Sunnyside, Queens, $1,019
  10. East Harlem, Manhattan, $1,040
  11. Flatbush-Ditmas Park, Brooklyn, $1,043
  12. Astoria, Queens, 1,063
  13. Crown Heights, Brooklyn, 1,071
  14. Woodside, Queens, $1,116
  15. East Williamsburg, Brooklyn, $1,145

The average room rent data is from SpareRoom’s second quarter 2021 rental index report. NYC neighborhoods included all have a sample size of 20-plus in 2021.

Six new neighborhoods make the list this year: Jamaica, Washington Heights, Hamilton Heights, East Harlem, Crown Heights, and East Williamsburg. Last year’s list had seven neighborhoods where the average roommate’s share of the rent was below $1,000 a month. This year’s list has five neighborhoods with an average rent share below $1,000.

 

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