What’s the number one tip to renting the apartment of your dreams in New York City?  Show up prepared.  Every summer, countless renters go out on a showing with their broker, find their perfect apartment and scramble to put together their paperwork to apply.  Contacting your HR department and digging up those tax returns takes time!  By the time they have all their documents ready to apply, the apartment has already been rented.  The dismayed apartment seekers have to start their search all over again, and quickly realize that nothing is quite like that first apartment they fell in love with.  The best way to make sure you get the apartment you want is to understand the process and be ready to apply before you go out viewing places.  The key is to be prepared to move quickly so that you can lock up your dream apartment right when you see it.

The hardest part about applying for an apartment is getting all the necessary documents in order.  If you do this ahead of time, however, you will be able to move quickly and apply right when you see the apartment you want.  Ask your Suitey representative or your broker for the documents you will need to apply for the apartment and make sure to get them ready before you go out on a showing.  It’s best to start this process at least three days before you meet with your broker so you have enough time to get everything in together and ready to go.


While every management company has different requirements for renting their apartments, the following list of documents should have you set for the majority of apartments:


Last two paystubs


Last two months of bank statements


Last two years of tax returns


Letter of employment


Landlord reference letter (usually only necessary when purchasing an apartment)


All of the above documents for your guarantor if your income is less than 40x the monthly rent (see our post on guarantors for more information)


Finding out that your dream apartment has already been taken is never fun, so make sure to plan ahead.  Be ready with all your paperwork so you can move quickly and be the first application in line.  When summer hits and the best apartments are being rented 3 hours after hitting the market, you’ll be glad you did!