Apps save the day
The New York Times recently wrote an article about choosing where to live. Once again, apps come to the rescue. This is a decision many of us face repeatedly during our lifetimes. Relocation can happen when you leave college, when you settle down with a significant other, or when children arrive. Retirement or downsizing is another time that can often bring on a change of location. If you decide or need to move, how do you figure out where to live, or where to live in an unfamiliar area?
With the increasing opportunities to work remotely, freelancers and contract workers can often choose where they want to live before they have a job. More and more employees are shedding the confines of traditional office jobs and negotiating working from home. On average people in the U.S. change residences once every 5 – 7 years. Relocating is a huge life change and these apps are here to help you get it right.
Teleport lets you browse the basic details of over 100 cities. For anyone scoping out a new location, click on a city and you can learn the average cost of housing including median rent, affordability of healthcare, tax information and the everyday costs of living like groceries, coffee and gas. If you sign up to Teleport it will recommend and rank cities based on the preferences you have entered. You will also receive details about each city. They include international cities in the search results.
Suburban Jungle gives you the down low for the suburbs of New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago and Boston. They specialize in moving families from urban to suburban, and it is a free service. You are assigned a ‘Strategist’ who designs a home search strategy. You then have a Concierge who carries out the plan, including tours of towns, movers and everything in between. They set you up with a local resident of the town you’ve chosen who can give you all the inside scoop. It sounds like an amazing experience!
Place I Live has researched five cities thoroughly – Chicago, San Francisco, New York, Berlin and London. Their portfolio of neighborhoods is vast. For instance, for New York City they offer information on 288 neighborhoods. They have devised an interactive quiz called Match. It asks your lifestyle preferences, then it will recommend 10 top neighborhoods for you.
PicketFencer is a brand new site and app founded by David Leibowitz after he became frustrated trying to move out of Brooklyn to a suburb. He felt that while there were hundreds of towns to choose among, he couldn’t do all that research himself. PicketFencer has done it for you. Right off the bat you learn the average home price, the rating of the schools, how long the commute to NYC is, and how walkable the town is. There are over 600 towns in their data base. If you need extra help finding the perfect hometown, PicketFencer offers a free concierge service with 1–on-1 service.
Once you choose a town, there are local apps that will give you more detailed information. StreetEasy for New York City is one example. It has all current residential listings for sale or rent for about 30 New York City neighborhoods. Naked Apartments is another listing site for New York.