Where to Stay While You Are a Student in New York?

student in newyork

Finding the perfect neighborhood can be one hard task.

Being a student is pretty hard when you consider how life in the dorm would look like. However, you are not alone. A lot of students would rather avoid such facilities and settle somewhere in the city at a co-shared apartment they can afford.

Around 57 percent of students in New York live with roommates in shared apartments. With the kind of income that a student has, you should look for an affordable apartment away from the center, but with access to certain services. 

A typical 16sqft student-friendly room is the perfect example of furnished rooms for rent in New York. Three-bedroom apartments with these standards can be rented for less than $5,000 per month. 

However, here you have some of the most preferred places in NYC that are perfect for students.

Morningside Heights

Morningside Heights is located south of Harlem and north of the Upper West Side just near the Columbia University campus.

This is the largest student neighborhood in NYC. 

Rent Details

Morningside Heights offers many options to students, from affordable rents, to access to services that are for students. Based on renter data in New York, you could expect to pay around $1400 for a room in a shared three-bedroom apartment in this area.

Washington Heights

This is considered one of the safest Manhattan neighborhoods, located just above 179th Street. 

The community here is diverse, the rent is affordable, and most of the residents in the area are millennials between the ages of 20 and 34.

Rent Details

One of the best things about living here is the room size where you can pay only $1000 for a 20 sq ft room in a shared three-bedroom apartment. 

The rooms are big enough to have a bed and other studying furniture plus a closet and sometimes even a separate kitchen. 


Inwood is not as populated with Millenials as Washington Heights and it is famous for being an older and sleepier neighborhood. 

If you like spicy food then Inwood has some of the greatest Latin American restaurants in town. If you have to get to class at the New York University then prepare one hour early as you are particularly far. 

Rent Details

South of Washington Heights, Inwood offers affordable rooms that come in a shared three-bedroom for less than $1,000 per month on average.

And, you are still technically in Manhattan here which means there are a lot of student services around the area.

Roosevelt Island

Even if you’re new to NYC, you may still have heard about Roosevelt Island.

This is literally an Island located in the middle of the East River with a lot of people living here. 

If you are wondering how to get to this island there are two main ways that people use starting with the tram which is mostly used by tourists and the F train which starts from the Roosevelt Island Station, located 100 feet below ground level. 

You can also drive to go to the island, but not a lot of people do so.

Roosevelt Island has a lot to offer for a student like yourself. Besides the relatively affordable rents, the island itself also has a lot of student-focused services.

Since not a lot of New Yorkers go to Roosevelt Island this is one neighborhood that is worth exploring.

Rent Details

The rent here for one room at a three-bedroom shared apartment is around $1,658 a month.

You will have to ride the Roosevelt Island Tram every day to get to Manhattan or the university.


Bushwick is a place famous for its soaring rents and flourishing condo culture.

People usually use the crowded L-train to get there.

Bushwick does offer you affordable apartments and a lot of student-focused services. Not to mention that this neighborhood is full of artists and musicians.

Rent Details

Here you can expect to pay $968 for a room in a shared three-bedroom apartment,

Close by you will find a lot of vintage clothing shops, coffee shops, and after-party clubs.


Bedford-Stuyvesant is known to be a diverse neighborhood with subway access to the 1,2,3, L, and C lines subways covering the whole neighborhood.

Houses here usually have fireplaces intact but not a lot of young people live around the area.

Rent Details

In Bed-Stuy, you can expect to pay somewhere around $1,100 for a room in a shared three-bedroom apartment.

The neighborhood is preferred by the students due to its possibility of getting the subway to different places in the town. 

Crown Heights

Crown Heights, once a Jewish middle-class neighborhood has now started to shift to a student preferred place due to its very affordable rental units. 

The main food chain restaurants here are West Indian and the neighborhood is mainly filled with families and weekend barbeques. 

Rent Details

Crown Heights offers shared three-bedroom apartments where you can expect to pay $1,100 for a room.

You will live in an affordable neighborhood where you will get to taste the best Caribbean cuisine in NYC. 

Final Thoughts

Finding a place to live as a student in New York City can be challenging but not impossible. There are some pretty good neighborhoods around the city that offer cheap rents and good student services. 

Let’s do a quick recap on all of the areas we mentioned in this article from the most to the least expensive:

  • Morningside Heights: Average monthly rent for a room, $1400.
  • Roosevelt Island: Average monthly rent for a room, $1600
  • Bed-Stuy: Average monthly rent for a room, $1100
  • Crown Heights: Average monthly rent for a room, $1100
  • Washington Heights: Average monthly rent for a room, $1000.
  • Inwood: Average monthly rent for a room, $1000
  • Bushwick: Average monthly rent for a room, $950

Pro tip: Hunt down for shared apartments with a common kitchen as they can be as cheap as $500 a month.

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