Deciding on your search preferences depends on the amount of resources you have available. Your personal preferences should be measured against the reality of the real estate market in the areas of choice. The length of time you have to search for a suitable share and the amount of money you can spend on rent are the two strongest criteria that can effect your search results the most.

Ample time to search for a situation can be described as the amount of time until your current situation expires. But, giving yourself enough time is based on how you plan for your move in terms of your current situation's expiration and making your decision to move far enough in the future so that you are not in a difficult position. Starting your search one month in advance is an average time frame and in most cases, securing a share takes less time than that. Specifically, searching for a roommate situation in the colder months of the year is usually easier because demand for housing peaks during the spring and summer months. These differences in the demand cycle should be taken into account when you are planning your search. So, a search during the winter can take less then the average one month and a search in the summer can sometimes take longer if the roommate migration cycle is particularly steep. The migration patterns of roommates is ever changing and is directly effected by variables such as the economy, jobs and especially the weather.  

The underlying factor of money has a direct affect on the number of potential matches your search will produce.  You can consider the combination of the average rent for any neighborhood against your rental budget to be the necessary balance you need for success. The average monthly roommate rent in Manhattan is approximately $1,200 and the average for Brooklyn is $1,000,the average for Queens, New Jersey is $800, and for The Bronx and Staten Island its approximately $600. Having more than the average rent available for your search can allow you to focus on a particular area. Otherwise, if you have less money available you should select more areas in your search preferences than less. It is safe to say that a budget of one third of your total income is a comfortable maximum that you can use in your search. 

Lastly, factors such as pets, smoking and gender preferences will lessen a search and the results thereof. Having a pet or gender preference will make a search more challenging and should be offset by your selecting of more neighborhoods to increase the likelihood of success in your search. 

As always, please contact us with any questions that you might have.

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