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Apartment/flat rental in New York. Recommendations of places/websites to use please?

(21 Posts)
PancyFants Wed 07-Jan-15 21:13:45

Looking into the possibility of a break in New York during the summer, however hotel prices are quite high and reviews for some of the lesser expensive ones and mixed.

It will just be me and Dd so would like fairly central.

Seems to be loads of holiday rental websites out there so just looking for recommendations of any people may have used before.

I had a pretty terrible experience of booking directly with an owner in London previously which is making me a bit wary! grin

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 08-Jan-15 07:12:01

I am sorry but you will need to stay in a hotel. At least then you will have some comeback with the hotel if things go wrong. NYC is known for high prices anyway due to demand.

Have a look at somewhere like the Doubletree Guest Suites or Marriott. Both are in Times Square and both can offer great deals.

NYC is not at all like other cities to rent apartments in; short term lets of under 30 days are illegal in practically all NYC apartments and condos. Other residents really do not like tourists traipsing in and out of their own residences all the time so they complain to the building superintendent who then investigates.

There are also many scammers out there even on those websites and some people have lost a lot of money and they do not get this back. These do not also check whether such listings are actually genuine. You've already had one bad experience, would stay well away from NYC apartment listings.

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 08-Jan-15 07:15:26

This also explains more:-

www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Travel-g60763-c147344/New-York-City:New-York:Vacation.Apartment.Rentals.html

mummymeister Thu 08-Jan-15 10:49:38

Attila is absolutely right. if you find a "holiday apartment" to rent in New York then chances are it isn't legal. so you will either have been scammed or could have all sorts of problems when you get there. try and find a budget hotel with reasonable reviews. after all there is so much to do in the city that you really only need a place to lay your head.

OldBeanbagz Thu 08-Jan-15 10:55:33

Have you looked at Airbnb? The owners are reviewed on there so keen to sort out problems straight away to save getting bad reviews (and therefore less bookings).

I've had nothing but good experiences of the service and will be booking via the site for New York later in the year. It's especially good when you've got children and want more home comforts than a hotel can offer.

3nationsfamily Thu 08-Jan-15 11:13:09

Air BnB is not legal in New York due to the 30 day rule above and there have been serious issues around it so beware.

FunkyBoldRibena Thu 08-Jan-15 11:16:21

Agreed, it is not legal in NYC any more. Shame as we've had a couple of really good apartment rentals out there.

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 08-Jan-15 12:20:35

Sorry but AirBNB really should also not be used for NYC Oldbeanbagz. Please reconsider your decision to use them for NYC in particular. NYC have different rules to other world cities when it comes to such rentals I am sorry to say.

Many such listings can be scams or are not as purported to be. Also many of these sites do not check whether these listings are infact genuine or legal, they rely purely on the person making the listing.

Longdistance Thu 08-Jan-15 12:25:14

Oh. When did the rules change? We stayed in a studio apartment back in 2007. Is this a recent rule now?

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 08-Jan-15 12:38:34

The rules changed a couple of years back (around the end of 2012).

PancyFants Thu 08-Jan-15 14:39:36

Thanks all for the info, much appreciated! Back to the hotel search! smile

OldBeanbagz Thu 08-Jan-15 15:27:08

I didn't realise that Airbnb wasn't legal in NYC any more sad

Will have a look at hotels in that case though dates/plans are pretty vague at the moment.

I'm suffering from post-holiday blue. Hence the looking around for ideas.

AyMamita Thu 08-Jan-15 16:02:50

Bit surprised by the responses here, as I've stayed in an AirBNB apartment in New York City within the last few weeks. It wasn't as clean as I'd have liked (I made the owner refund the cleaning fee) but otherwise everything was fine. I had taken a risk in picking a place with no reviews as it was only for two nights and I booked at the last minute! I'd do it again, but next I'll pick a place with lots of recent positive reviews. I say go for it.

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 08-Jan-15 17:28:02

I really would not pick an apartment rental in NYC because short term lets under 30 days are now illegal. Also many residents of such apartments can become get fed up with tourists/strangers going in and out of the building in question and they do complain to their Super who then investigates.

People have been conned financially by such listings; scams are ten a penny and such sites do not check that the listing posted on them is actually within the letter of the city's zoning laws. Its all reliant on honesty and that is also where such sites fall down badly.

PancyFants Thu 08-Jan-15 22:49:26

Definitely going for a hotel, thanks for the advice, I wasn't aware of the apartment rules. The last time I was in New York was almost 7 yrs ago, so must have been different then.

AyMamita Fri 09-Jan-15 17:29:05

I stayed in a walk-up. No super or porter etc, never even saw the neighbours, and I can't see what it matters that it's illegal! How will anyone find out? The NYPD aren't going to kick the door down and drag you out of bed...

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 09-Jan-15 18:16:26

Of course it matters because the person who is renting it out is breaking the law. Tenants have been evicted for doing the same; it is against their contract conditions and ignorance of the law is no excuse as they have discovered.

Most people who rent vacation apartments here rent illegal or violative ones without even knowing it and without incident. But since you asked the question you will get honest answers. You can choose to ignore those answers or not. But here is an example. Lots of people purchase pot without any problems. That does not make it legal. While almost everyone knows that pot is illegal here, most people are unaware that vacation rentals are almost always illegal or violative of building rules. Now that you know only you can decide if you want to ignore this information or not.

Am glad that nothing untoward happened to you (apart from having your cleaning fee refunded) but many people have been scammed by unscrupulous people showing properties that are not at all theirs to rent or as advertised. Such sites do not check the legality of such listings; you are taking a real risk when booking. How do you know the listing you are looking at is both legitimate and legal; short answer is that you do not.

AyMamita Sat 10-Jan-15 14:07:01

I am aware of the pot analogy, it's in the tripadvisor article linked above! And personally I'm happy to ignore the law when it comes to staying in an NYC apartment for half the price of a hotel grin

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 10-Jan-15 15:33:21

Of course you are well within your rights to "beat the system". It is hard to be told "well no you cannot" as well and I accept that.

You will get no sympathy from the authorities if you are scammed or are kicked out of your accommodation. The person whom you rent from will also cop it in terms of being fined for breaking their tenancy agreement and they also run the risk of themselves being evicted.

How do you know such listings are legitimate and or lawful, the short answer is that you do not regardless of what letting site is used.

mummymeister Mon 12-Jan-15 08:47:57

agree with Attila - if that's the rule then you need to abide by it or take the consequences. if you are a lone traveller or couple then perhaps it isn't too bad to be kicked out of somewhere at stupid oclock. however if you have kids it really wouldn't be nice would it. plus as time goes on they will crack down on this more and more. as you go into NY at the airport you will be asked where are you staying and have to give an address. if its a private apartment they will know that this is what you are doing. joined up thinking doesn't take for ever and pretty soon I can see people not staying in "approved" accommodation being denied entry. and why not? the law is there for a reason and should be kept to imo.

AyMamita Mon 12-Jan-15 22:32:55

You already have to give an accommodation address on your ESTA application. I usually put down the Mandarin Oriental Hotel because it makes me feel fancy. They don't check! And if you did give a private address, you'd more likely be visiting a friend or family than staying in an illegal holiday let. Broadly speaking, the law is not enforceable. I'm happy to break it and risk the consequences, although I agree that travelling with DC is a different kettle of fish.

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