Welcome to the first in our series of blogs on a popular NYC housing option among the millennial crowd of first-time renters, students and new graduates: the apartment share. Each week we’ll be highlighting a neighborhood and giving you an inside look at what it’s truly like to live there with a local roommate. We’ll feature an interview with one of our local apartment share hosts in the neighborhood, plus an inside look into the apartment and room for rent with New York Habitat. Our first neighborhood focus is on Williamsburg, Brooklyn!
If Portland and New York had a love child, it would be Williamsburg. This Brooklyn neighborhood offers some serious hipster vibes. And while this might not be everyone’s cup of tea, it definitely provides an interesting art scene and exciting nightlife. While prices may be on the rise, this is still a prime area for young college graduates to live. Its close proximity to Manhattan provides one of the easiest commutes in the boroughs.
Rental prices: What you can expect
We all wish we could live in a high-end luxury apartment, perfectly located near our university or workplace, but sometimes our finances can hamper those dreams of opulence. In addition to the monthly rent, there are also electric, gas, WiFi and cable bills to be paid, and basic living expenses like food and transportation. Knowing your rent budget and what areas of New York you can afford are important first steps in finding the right apartment and location for you. Check out our blog on finding an apartment to match your personality to help you narrow your apartment search as well. NYC is one of the most expensive real estate markets in the world. If you don’t have the budget of a Wall Street tycoon, an apartment share — renting a room in a shared apartment, as opposed to footing the costs of a full apartment on your own — can help curtail some of the costs associated with renting here. Don’t worry, we always have suggestions for free things to do in your free time in NYC on our blog! How exactly will renting in Williamsburg affect your wallet? The above infographic will break it down for you.
So you’re thinking about moving to Williamsburg? Get to know the neighborhood with some local spots that top our list of favorite things about Williamsburg.
1. ENTERTAINMENT & LEISURE
Baby’s All Right
If there’s one place that is going to have everything you need for an unforgettable weekend, it’s Baby’s All Right. The bar/restaurant/music venue embodies the vibe and spirit of Williamsburg. Their calendar is packed with acts from all music genres, so no matter what’s on your playlist, there is bound to be a show for you.
The food definitely leans on the Asian side, but we’re not complaining. Any bar where you can get pork dumplings and Korean BBQ is a bar worth visiting. To bring it all together, Baby’s bar has a varied selection of drink options. You can keep it classy with a glass of rosé, or let the night take over with a Pink Baby (frozen vodka, grapefruit, and mate).
This is not your average movie theater experience. Videology Bar is a micro-cinema that screens films from all eras, from classics like The Seven Year Itch to more recent releases like Midnight in Paris. What makes it better than most movie theaters is that there is always a full bar and food service. In addition to their films, there are bingo and trivia nights throughout the week.
East River State Park
East River State Park is a must-go for any Williamsburg resident (and even for those that live further away) from the view alone. While it’s the home of the food market Smorgasburg on Saturdays, every other day it’s a beautiful seven-acre waterfront park that will make you forget all the stresses of the city. As you stroll around, informative signs will give you a bit of the history of this site as a 19th-century shipping dock. Today you can still see the cobblestone streets and old railroad tracks that once traversed the area. Pack a picnic and chill out with lunch and a stunning skyline view.
2. LOCAL CUISINE
Smorgasburg is the king of open-air food markets. It will take you several weekends to try all 100 of the local food vendors participating! This is the place to sample truly unique food, from Mexican-Japanese fusion tacos, to the puzzling ramen burger and the Instagram-famous raindrop cake. This is basically the Holy Grail for all the foodies out there.
This food frenzy takes place on the Williamsburg waterfront on Saturdays and in Prospect Park on Sundays.
San Marco Pizzeria
San Marco Pizzeria has been in the business of serving up some serious New York slices and top-notch espresso since 1962 (long before Williamsburg became the new millennial hotspot). At $2.50 per slice and only $1.60 for a real Italian espresso, it’s a great local spot to get your caffeine fix and quick, delicious food on a budget. If you’re craving pizza, try some of our other top pizza places in NYC.
The Mini Mall
Don’t let the name fool you, this is not your typical suburban mall with a basic food court and department stores like Macy’s. The Mini Mall is everything you’ve come to expect from Brooklyn — vintage stores, handmade jewelry, work from local artists — all in one very convenient location. It is also the perfect place to pick up atypical, artsy souvenirs (i.e., something other than an ‘I Love NY’ t-shirt) for all your friends and relatives. Check out more of the best shopping spots in NYC on our blog.
Reviews: See what people are saying about Williamsburg
What are some of Williamsburg’s former residents saying about the area? Check out these reviews from our clients about the neighborhood to give you a general idea of what you can expect as a future tenant.
If you are looking for an apartment share in New York City, there seem to be a lot of options on the internet, but the internet is also a hotbed of fake listings, scams and illegal apartments. That’s why it’s always best to use a reputable local agency with licensed agents like New York Habitat to ensure your apartment choices are legal and vetted for quality. Apartment hunting can be a daunting task. Our agents are neighborhood specialists who can quickly help you narrow down your search and find what you’re looking for without wasting valuable time and chasing properties that never reply to you. Head to our website to start your search and browse some of our inventory. Submit a request online or call +1(212) 255-8018 if you need assistance with your request, and we’ll connect you with one of our apartment share agents to guide you in your housing search!