How to View An Apartment When You Don’t Live in NYC

Moving to a big city can be a daunting task. Many people dream of living in New York to become an artist, a day trader or to take advantage of the many opportunities the city offers people. But finding a place to live when you’re out of town can be a daunting task. It’s a good idea to examine a house before you rent it, but how can you do that if you live far away? Luckily for you, there are plenty of ways to get a feel for a home if you live out of town. It will take some extra effort, but it will be worth it once you are in your dream home.

Apartment looking out of town

Don’t rent blind

Some people will rent a property they have never seen. This is a huge mistake. If you rent blind, you could very easily fall prey to scams. You might end up with something completely different from what you expected, if you end up with anything. Even if you’re moving in with other people you know (or don’t know), make sure they give you all the information you need to make a good decision. Nothing is worse than paying a ton of money for a bad product, so be sure to do your homework before offering anyone money.

Be ready to go fast

Houses in New York move incredibly fast and people often miss their ideal apartment because they weren’t prepared for it. This means it’s important to have the proper documents, like proof of employment and your credit score, as well as a large sum of money that you can deposit in an instant. This ensures that you can quickly move into your dream home once you find it. This is especially important for people out of town, who don’t have the benefit of seeing a ton of houses over a long period of time. Once you do that, you’ll be one step ahead of the game.

Also, be sure to research prices in the city. Some neighborhoods have better prices than others, but homeowners and landlords know the New York market is hot right now. This means that they will look for people willing to pay higher prices if they can. That’s why it’s important to know NYC tenant rights and average prices for the area you want to live in. This will be a huge advantage during negotiations and will help you pay a fair price for the property you are looking for.

Find an agent

Realtors work with people outside of New York all the time, so they’re well equipped to find you the places you want. You will need to be absolutely clear with what you are looking for. Simply saying “I want a two bedroom” won’t be enough. You’ll need to know what neighborhood you want, what amenities you want, how many bathrooms you want, and even if you prefer an open concept. This way the agent will be able to find exactly what you are looking for. They will also be able to tell you about potential problems and benefits of the properties they find for you.

Tips for your remote apartment search

Now that you have the necessary papers, money and help, you are ready to visit some apartments. Some simple techniques include:

Visit the city

Even if you don’t live in the city, you are still allowed to visit it for a day or two. Choosing a day or two to be able to attend tours or open houses will be extremely beneficial for anyone wishing to live in the city. Although it can be difficult to find time to travel, this is by far the best option for viewing potential homes. It’s always best to see a potential home for yourself, so even if you don’t like all the homes you see on your trip, this will still be a great way to gather information and cross options off your list. . If you can’t visit in person, it might even be worth sending a friend or family member to view the house for you.

It will also give potential residents the opportunity to see the city and the neighborhoods they might want to live in. What people imagine neighborhoods to be may be very different from what they actually are. It is important that people actually find out where they want to live. There’s nothing worse than an area that doesn’t live up to your expectations, so having the chance to explore is vital. It is quite possible that potential residents will not like the city at all. If someone comes to New York as a tourist, they are not going to experience the real city. Likewise, if they only discover the city through the media, they will not have an accurate vision of NYC either. So visit the city, and the neighborhoods where you want to live, if you have the opportunity. If you can’t visit the neighborhood yourself, Google StreetView is also a great alternative.

Photos from the ad site

Although this is not always the recommended avenue, and more due diligence is needed if you can pull it off, most listing websites will have descriptions and photos of apartments. Even if it’s the only way to see an apartment, it’s better than nothing. Additionally, the lack of photos is also telling, as it’s usually an indicator that something is wrong with the house. For example, if there are no photos of bathrooms included in the listing, that’s a bad sign. Again, in an ideal world, this won’t be your only way of seeing the house you live in for a while. That said, it can be a great way to see apartments without actually being there.

Use technology wisely

If you have a flexible agent, it would be a good idea to ask them to send you photos of the houses they find. Some might even be ready to film themselves visiting the different apartments. They will need permission from the landlord/landlord to do this, but most will allow it unless something fishy is going on with the apartment. These videos will allow you to see the apartment, or similar, without being there. Just make sure your real estate agent is good. Otherwise, you might end up spending a lot of money on something you don’t like.

Also, some households use social media very well. Estate agents, and even entire properties, have made videos on Instagram, Facebook and TikTok properties they are looking to sell. While it’s not guaranteed that a home you’re looking for will have one of these videos on social media, agents are increasingly using it. In the near future, it’s possible that almost every home in New York will have a video tour on some sort of app. If your agent uses social media in this way, it’s always a good idea to ask if they have any videos of the property you’re interested in.

Even cooler than social media and face-to-face tours, many places now offer self-guided 3D tours of their properties. These 3D floor plans allow you to control your visit and see the home you are interested in from different angles. In an interesting twist, it also allows potential residents to see views from apartment windows, which is a big plus for those who want to see the horizon, a park, or the bay.

Public records

Public records are your best friend. Even if you have the opportunity to see a property in person, the people who show said property may be less willing to react to potential problems with the house. Public records, on the other hand, will tell you how many building code violations a property had, what those issues were, and whether or not those issues were resolved. They will also have information about building owners, as well as what other residents are experiencing with them. This is essential information when looking for accommodation.

Another good tip when it comes to public records is a building energy efficiency score. For those concerned about their carbon footprint, inefficient buildings are the biggest producer of greenhouse gases in New York City. For this reason, the city has started to rank buildings according to their energy efficiency and will eventually find buildings that are not efficient. This means that prices for condo owners and renters could increase depending on repairs to be made in certain apartment complexes. It’s always good to know exactly what you’re getting into, so checking your building’s energy efficiency score should be a priority.


While it’s always best to check out a property in person, some people can’t come to town and have to find another option. Although it can be tricky, there are ways to find information about apartments, as well as pictures of how they look. If you are looking for a house, you deserve to know what you are getting. NYC is expensive, and you don’t want to feel cheated out of an apartment. Fortunately, if you follow these steps, you’ll be in a much better position for your home search. It can be difficult to find an apartment when you don’t live in town, but there are ways to do it so that you end up with the home of your dreams.

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