Dating, Living, Eating: Money Savings Tips In NYC
If you’re part of a couple in New York, you know it isn’t easy to live lavishly, especially if you’re not bringing in the big bucks! It came up a few weeks ago for my boyfriend, Dave, and me when we starting scouting out new apartments. We searched craigslist for hours on end only to be disappointed by either size, price or location! GEEZ! So, I decided to do some research on my own. My mission: find a way to live like a millionaire on a budget. Mission accomplished? You’ll have to be the judge. But I definitely dug up some great resources for couples in the city!
1) Date Night
I love getting out of the apartment, especially when cabin fever sets in! So, I started digging for fun ideas. I found out NY Magazine’s best restaurant list isn’t the only thing to explore. Dave and I are pretty adventurous so we usually want something more than just a dinner. And why not? It’s New York!
If you’re looking to get out on a Friday or Saturday Night — start the evening off with taking in a little culture. The Whitney, The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) and Guggenheim, just to name a few, all offer free or ‘pay what you wish’ admission between 5 and 8pm . It’s amazeballs! If you go to the MoMa, you can grab a cheap and yummy bite at the Burger Joint at Le Parker Meridien.
Not Artsy? That’s ok. For $10 you can cha-cha the night away at Tango Porteno at South Street Seaport AND get a free lesson! If you live in Brooklyn, you can burn some calories bowling at The Gutter (thegutterbroolyn.com) — just $6 a game. Then grab a pie for two at Fornino. These are just a few date options I know we enjoy — but if you want to check out other incredible and affordable ideas check out Time Out NY’s: 75 great cheap dates.
2) Mi Casa es Su Casa?
Whether you’re looking to rent or buy — it’s going to become the fight of your life to find the perfect spot. Am I being dramatic? Perfection may be hard to find in NY but I found a site that may help you get pretty darn close. I can’t take the credit for this though. We were going door to door in the West Village, checking out buildings when we experienced the unexpected kindness of a stranger who must have noted what we up to. And he was privy to a hidden gem. We could do it all from home. StreetEasy gives you the tools you need to tour every New York neighborhood and building from your computer THEN it breaks it all down by location, price, rent history and more. It’s all free, but for $10 dollars a month you can become an “Insider,”which allows more access to the site — and for couples looking to buy, it actually lists comparable properties to the ones of which you are interested. You can use StreetEasy to scout out spots in NYC, Northern NJ and the Hamptons.We used it to find our fab new place!
3) Get Your Inner Chef On!
I’m not a professional chef but I can say I learned from the best. My mom is straight off the boat Italian and if she opened a restaurant it would put Giada’s creations to shame. Dave also happens to be slick in the kitchen so on weeknights, we swap cooking days. What if you can’t cook you ask? Well, I challenge you to try. Each week during every season, the city has amazing farmers markets where you can purchase fresh, in-season fruits and veggies for half the price of the corner supermarket goodies… and 1/100th the price of Whole Foods! Luckily, the farmer’s market is on my block. I buy our weekly supply of fruits, vegetables, eggs, bread and sometimes, grass-fed beef all for $50.