Home > Personal Finance > Moving 15 Blocks Cost Me $2,560

Comments 0 Comments

I found out last month that my landlord was not renewing the lease on my beloved two-bedroom apartment in East Harlem. After a few days of mourning, tearful phone calls, and undignified pleading, I decided to take this as an opportunity to finally get a place of my own. Three weeks and dozens of apartment viewings later, I have settled down in a lovely studio just 15 blocks from my old location. How much does it cost to move one single ZIP code in New York City, you ask?

The Hunt

  • Portable charger to keep my phone alive during viewings, $35.
  • Bottles of water grabbed between viewings, $3.
  • Emergency granola bar to keep from fainting one day in the August heat, $1.50.

The Close

  • Second cashier’s check to replace the one I accidentally dropped in a secure shred bin, $0 (waived by bank). Being employed by a bank is very convenient when dumb mistakes happen an hour before one’s lease signing.
  • Taxi to real estate agent’s office to fill out the application, $7.50.
  • Application fee, $100 (applied to the first month’s rent).
  • Broker fee, $1,500. Though I really tried to avoid paying a broker fee, a few things make me feel better about shelling out the cash: this listing was exclusive to my broker, he helped negotiate repairs, it is priced slightly below market value, and I did not pay anything besides an application fee to sign for my old apartment. Altogether not an unreasonable expense in my eyes.
  • Two copies of new apartment keys, $6.

Move Attempt No. 1

  • Home Depot run for bathroom fixtures and cleaning supplies, $65.
  • Bagels and coffee, $15. My parents drove in from Long Island to help move and I provided the breakfast. However, when we got to the new place, none of the repairs in my lease rider had been made: the bathtub needed grouting, the toilet leaked, the windowpane was cracked, and more. We decided to cut our losses and try again next week when the repairs were done.
  • Consolation drink, $5.

The Interim

  • Long Island Rail Road tickets, $76.50. With my old apartment totally packed and my new one not yet habitable, I crashed with my family on Long Island and commuted into the city for five days.
  • Two days of evening commute beers in Penn Station, $10.
  • Take-out breakfasts and lunches, $45. I would otherwise have brought my meals to work like I normally do, but I was kitchenless.
  • Lunch money for family friends who helped paint my new place, $40.

Move Attempt No. 2

  • Two move helpers for four hours, $150 each ($300 total). The family members I’d conscripted for the first move were unable to make it, so I hired my cousin and one of his friends to help out. They are young strong lifeguards with boundless energy who jogged up and down two flights of stairs, laden with bags or carrying furniture, dozens of times without breaking a sweat. This may be the best money I’ve ever spent. I highly recommend making friends with or marrying into a family of lifeguards.
  • Case of Gatorade, $35.

Settling In

  • Initial grocery run, $75. I tried to use up the food in my freezer and pantry in anticipation of the move, which helped decrease the load. However, that did leave me in need of staples like flour, cooking oils, and canned goods.
  • Initial liquor store run, $45. The new place has a cabinet that is the perfect size for a hobbyist bar, and I am excited to start stocking it.
  • Renters’ insurance renewal, $225. I initially got insurance for the old place because the lease required it, but I chose to renew even though my new landlord doesn’t require insurance for the peace of mind.
  • New rug for new living space, $265. I actually bought it for $295 but noticed that it went on sale the following weekend, so I called and got refunded the difference. I plan to sell my old rug on Craigslist for $150, discounting this purchase to roughly $110 net.
  • Flowers, $5. A quick way to make a new place feel homey!

The generosity of my friends and family helped mitigate the costs of unexpected delays and necessary repairs. Still, this move cost about $2,560, excluding the first month’s rent and deposit that I also put down. Though it cleared out my checking account and caused a lot of stressed-out sleepless nights, waking up in an apartment that is entirely my own is worth it.

This post originally appeared on TheBillfold.

More from TheBillfold:

Image: iStock

Comments on articles and responses to those comments are not provided or commissioned by a bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by a bank advertiser. It is not a bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Please note that our comments are moderated, so it may take a little time before you see them on the page. Thanks for your patience.

Certain credit cards and other financial products mentioned in this and other articles on Credit.com News & Advice may also be offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com will be compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for any of these cards or products. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.

Hello, Reader!

Thanks for checking out Credit.com. We hope you find the site and the journalism we produce useful. We wanted to take some time to tell you a bit about ourselves.

Our People

The Credit.com editorial team is staffed by a team of editors and reporters, each with many years of financial reporting experience. We’ve worked for places like the New York Times, American Banker, Frontline, TheStreet.com, Business Insider, ABC News, NBC News, CNBC and many others. We also employ a few freelancers and more than 50 contributors (these are typically subject matter experts from the worlds of finance, academia, politics, business and elsewhere).

Our Reporting

We take great pains to ensure that the articles, video and graphics you see on Credit.com are thoroughly reported and fact-checked. Each story is read by two separate editors, and we adhere to the highest editorial standards. We’re not perfect, however, and if you see something that you think is wrong, please email us at editorial team [at] credit [dot] com,

The Credit.com editorial team is committed to providing our readers and viewers with sound, well-reported and understandable information designed to inform and empower. We won’t tell you what to do. We will, however, do our best to explain the consequences of various actions, thereby arming you with the information you need to make decisions that are in your best interests. We also write about things relating to money and finance we think are interesting and want to share.

In addition to appearing on Credit.com, our articles are syndicated to dozens of other news sites. We have more than 100 partners, including MSN, ABC News, CBS News, Yahoo, Marketwatch, Scripps, Money Magazine and many others. This network operates similarly to the Associated Press or Reuters, except we focus almost exclusively on issues relating to personal finance. These are not advertorial or paid placements, rather we provide these articles to our partners in most cases for free. These relationships create more awareness of Credit.com in general and they result in more traffic to us as well.

Our Business Model

Credit.com’s journalism is largely supported by an e-commerce business model. Rather than rely on revenue from display ad impressions, Credit.com maintains a financial marketplace separate from its editorial pages. When someone navigates to those pages, and applies for a credit card, for example, Credit.com will get paid what is essentially a finder’s fee if that person ends up getting the card. That doesn’t mean, however, that our editorial decisions are informed by the products available in our marketplace. The editorial team chooses what to write about and how to write about it independently of the decisions and priorities of the business side of the company. In fact, we maintain a strict and important firewall between the editorial and business departments. Our mission as journalists is to serve the reader, not the advertiser. In that sense, we are no different from any other news organization that is supported by ad revenue.

Visitors to Credit.com are also able to register for a free Credit.com account, which gives them access to a tool called The Credit Report Card. This tool provides users with two free credit scores and a breakdown of the information in their Experian credit report, updated twice monthly. Again, this tool is entirely free, and we mention that frequently in our articles, because we think that it’s a good thing for users to have access to data like this. Separate from its educational value, there is also a business angle to the Credit Report Card. Registered users can be matched with products and services for which they are most likely to qualify. In other words, if you register and you find that your credit is less than stellar, Credit.com won’t recommend a high-end platinum credit card that requires an excellent credit score You’d likely get rejected, and that’s no good for you or Credit.com. You’d be no closer to getting a product you need, there’d be a wasted inquiry on your credit report, and Credit.com wouldn’t get paid. These are essentially what are commonly referred to as "targeted ads" in the world of the Internet. Despite all of this, however, even if you never apply for any product, the Credit Report Card will remain free, and none of this will impact how the editorial team reports on credit and credit scores.

Our Owners

Credit.com is owned by Progrexion Holdings Inc. which is the owner and administrator of a number of business related to credit and credit repair, including CreditRepair.com, and eFolks. In addition, Progrexion also provides services to Lexington Law Firm as a third party provider. Despite being owned by Progrexion, it is not the role of the Credit.com editorial team to advocate the use of the company’s other services. In articles, reporters may mention credit repair as an option, for example, but we’ll also be sure to note the various alternatives to that service. Furthermore, you may see ads for credit repair services on Credit.com, but the editorial team isn’t responsible for the creation or implementation of those ads, anymore than reporters for the New York Times or Washington Post are responsible for the ads on their sites.

Your Stories

Lastly, much of what we do is informed by our own experiences as well as the experiences of our readers. We want to tell your stories if you’re interested in sharing them. Please email us at story ideas [at] credit [dot] com with ideas or visit us on Facebook or Twitter.

Thanks for stopping by.

- The Credit.com Editorial Team