This Depressing Map Shows Where New Grads Can Afford To Live In NYC

Photographed by Gunnar Larson.
Bad news, education majors: You can't afford to live in New York City. Seriously — according to a new study by NYC real estate site StreetEasy, if you majored in education, want to live alone, and don't want to shell out more than 30% of your income for rent, not a single apartment on the market in the entire city will work for you.

For other majors, the prospects are still pretty dismal. Social science majors can afford only 2.7% of all the one-bedroom and studio apartments in the city. Business majors can afford 5.1%. 

To illustrate their point, StreetEasy created an interactive map you can search by major, percentage of income devoted to rent, and number of desired roommates. If you're a fine arts or psychology major, you may want to sit down for this one: There are fewer than 30 apartments in the entire city that you can afford on your own. 
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It's not all bad news, however. There are neighborhoods that StreetEasy considers "grad-friendly" — meaning the areas have high rental inventory and low asking rents — namely, Crown Heights, Bedford-Stuyvesant, and Bushwick in Brooklyn, and Astoria in Queens. (Sorry, Sex and the City fans: If you want to live in Manhattan, you'll need to venture a lot farther north than East 73rd Street.)

"The fact of the matter is that income growth is far behind rent growth in New York City," StreetEasy data scientist Alan Lightfeldt, the brains behind the study, tells us. "Whereas rents have increased by 12 percent since 2005, incomes have increased by only 2 percent. Until income growth accelerates, expect rent to be even more of a burden for recent grads, and all New Yorkers, in the long-term future."

If this news is making you rethink your decision to move to New York after college, we don't blame you. There are a lot of wonderful things about NYC life; affordable housing just isn't one of them. 


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