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Communal apartment in New York: 15 roommates, and $2 a month in rent


Alina Prikhodko

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Paying $2 a month for a room in New York and sharing it with 000 roommates is not as bad as it might seem at first glance. Businessinsider shared the story of a girl who found a comfortable way to rent, which few people know about.

Elisa moved from Paris to New York in 2022 when she was invited to work for a French startup. Next story - from the first person.

I tried to look for an apartment back in Paris, but searching in Facebook groups did not give me confidence, and I was also afraid that I would be deceived.

О Cohabs I learned from one of my best friends from France. She just lived in a house from this category. Cohabs are communal housing in cities around the world: both Brooklyn and Manhattan have several buildings.

My friend invited me to live with her for two weeks so I could look for an apartment, but then I fell in love with the people who lived there. This helped me make friends immediately.
A vacancy came up, and I moved into the same three-story townhouse in Harlem where my friend lived.

Check before moving into the apartment

However, before signing a lease, the Cohabs team wants to make sure that you are in the right mindset and come here with good intentions.

The questions were fairly straightforward: they asked about my age, why I moved to New York and how I found out about Cohabs, as well as my previous experiences with roommates and my hobbies. You can sign a lease for six months or a year.

On the subject: Rent in New York is more expensive than in any US city

Rules of residence specified in the contract

There are some things in a lease that you must agree to, but sometimes they go beyond the scope of a normal contract.

Residents agree to pay rent on time, treat other people with respect, and clean their room when they move out in order to get their deposit back. They are required to maintain order in common areas, wash dishes, organize the work of a team of cleaners, respect each other, and inform neighbors when they invite someone to visit. You need to take out your trash and reduce your consumption, reuse and recycle.


I pay $2 a month for my 000 square meter fully furnished room. m. The rental price includes all utility costs.

In my opinion this is fair considering you are renting a room plus huge common areas. Each floor has its own furnished open kitchen and living room. I share a bathroom with one roommate, but there are different layout options depending on your room. The house is very cozy: clean, the furniture is vintage and very beautiful. Cleaners come once a week.

In addition, there is an application for submitting requests for repairs. For example, if you have a problem with your coffee maker, create a ticket and a member of the Cohabs team will come fix it for you.

The common areas are large: we have a huge backyard with barbecue, rooftop with tables, huge room with TV and sofas, gym and laundry room.

House for 16 people

It sounds crazy when I say I have 15 roommates, but I feel like I'm on Friends. I love that I have a small family and friends in New York that I can rely on.

Many of us live very far from our loved ones and have just recently arrived in New York. We have Americans, Spanish, English and French. Age – from 23 to 32 years. It sounds very strange, but it suits me just fine.

Every evening when I come home from work, people in the kitchen prepare food and have dinner together. This makes me really happy.

It's better here than in a regular apartment

I was very nervous when I moved to New York because I only knew one person in the city. Moving into this house was a relief for me. My number one fear is feeling lonely, so this was the perfect solution.

I've lived in shared apartments and houses before, but the sense of community here is much stronger. The Cohabs team makes this a point - they send us a brunch on the first Sunday of every month for everyone to socialize. In addition, they organize events, for example, joint trips to the climbing wall.

It's all about respect

We are adults, so we know how to live in society and respect each other. I didn't see any weird arguments or drama. Living together is easy because we have a similar lifestyle, but if you want to invite someone over, you need to let others know. There is a pre-move-in check.

My family was visiting from Europe and my parents were impressed with the house. They were staying at a hotel, but if my brother had come alone, he probably would have stayed with me.

Own traditions

Last Christmas we put up a tree and instead of decorations we hung up our pictures. On New Year's Day we bought a small bottle of champagne and told each other about our goals for the coming year. And every time one of us reaches his goal, he opens his bottle of champagne.

My friends and family ask me if I would like to move to a more familiar place. But to tell you the truth, I really don't want to.

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