New York is a huge place, so before you move there, you need to put some effort into understanding its different boroughs. It can be hard to know whether your best option is finding one of the many Brooklyn homes to rent or buddying up with a roommate in Queens. This guide will help you to weigh up New York’s different neighborhoods and make the best decision possible. If you know someone who lives in New York you could also ask them for some advice, but this list is a brilliant starting point.

Pick one: cost, location, or space

Before comparing any of the areas in New York, it’s important to identify your priorities. Cost, location, and space are typically people’s main concerns when moving, but you need to decide which one is going to be the most important to you. Spend some time thinking about this and order these factors from most important to least. If you really shop around, you might be able to get two out of three, but getting all three is very unlikely.

Because New York can be so expensive, most people focus on cost. If this sounds like you, you should think about looking around in the Bronx, Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens.

Quiet or hustle and bustle

Sometimes people that move to New York think they want to be in the heart of the action all the time, but this isn’t always conducive to sleep and relaxation. If you think you might need a peaceful place to unwind after a hard day at work, consider moving to Bayside, Borough Park, or Upper East Side. It’s a good idea to explore areas before you commit to living there just in case there are any construction works in progress.

Consider your workplace location

While you might have always dreamed of living in a particular borough, if it’s on the other side of the city to your workplace, your commute is going to be a nightmare. While the subway is typically efficient, nobody wants to spend more than an hour commuting each day, especially if you’re standing shoulder to shoulder with others. You may be able to live further away from your workplace if your manager allows remote working at least part of the time. However, this may mean looking for a bigger apartment so you have space for a desk or office.

Proximity to nature

If you’re someone who loves seeing a bit of green, think carefully about where you live in New York, because there might not be very much of it. Central Park is one of the most accessible green spaces, but if you’re craving something more, consider the Bronx, which has beaches and a sanctuary for wildlife. In Manhattan, look at places close to Inwood Hill Park such as Washington Heights.

Moving to New York is a thrilling experience and, no matter where you choose to live, know that your experience in the Big Apple will be one you’ll never forget.