Roomster, Craigslist, SpareRoom… we’ll stop there before you get overwhelmed by the plethora of websites offering up housing and roommate listings. Now, let’s be real — great apartments and awesome roomies go faster than hotcakes in the Mile Square, and as people who have plenty of experience snagging apartments via the web, we’re here to share how we found legit housing options that aren’t the literal size of a closet and avoided some of the sketchiness that often comes with finding an apartment online. Below, one of our own Hoboken Girl team members, Tamara — who has moved to Hoboken from Arizona — shares the trials and errors of how she found her great new living sitch (including the secret Facebook page everyone needs to join).
Roomster – Top Pick
This is how I found my new apartment in a very desirable building right by the PATH (so close, the location tagged in photos actually is the PATH!). In the app, you set your location, list your budget, and create a profile to list your interests and wants/needs for a room/mate so you can “stalk” potential roomies, and vice versa, before reaching out. The only downside to Roomster is that you can’t message people for free (there’s a few packages to choose from), so if you see a place you really want, the person you’re reaching out to might not see your message, and that rooming option can be lost. But with the paid version, you can message people through Facebook and other social media apps, so you know they’re the real deal.
SpareRoom – Sublets + Leases
Whether you just moved here or are in limbo when it comes to your next lease, this is the place you have to go to get your housing fix for a short amount of time. And if you’re looking for a longer lease, there’s plenty of those too. It’s free, but some listings are “early bird,” meaning that only people who pay a small fee can see them first. (True story: I paid $7.99 for one week and ended up getting a few leads).
Ghostlight Housing/ NYC Housing – Temporary Rooms
Here’s a hidden gem many interns rely on for last-minute housing — but it’s also a great option for Hobokenites who are in a pinch. You have to be accepted into the group, but it’s by no means exclusive (I’ve never heard of someone getting rejected). While I haven’t looked at any rooms via this method, I have plenty of friends who have found temporary housing here.
Roomi – Least Options
There aren’t too many listings for Hoboken (there are more lower Manhattan options and a ton of Brooklyn ones — regardless of your location preferences), but you may find a couple of promising ones in town. The only thing working against you here is timing… so hop to it!
Craigslist – The OG
While you’re most definitely familiar with good old Craig (we see you rolling your eyes), we’ve all heard our fair share of horror stories, but there is actually a great amount of CL success stories. In fact, one of our editors found her incredible apartment with high ceilings and a view of the water, along with two awesome roommates via Craigslist. So, although it can be sketchy, there’s hope! Just be on the lookout for scams (particularly via email) and always check out apartments during the day or have a friend come with you, just to be safe. I checked out an adorable walk up here but ended up choosing a different apartment because it has more amenities… and a doorman.
LiveWith – Tinder For Roommates
Whether Tinder makes you cringe or you’re obsessed with the dating app, LiveWith is a lifesaver when it comes to finding compatible roommates. Using the app is easy-breezy. Simply put in your deets, some photos, and your next roommate could be just a few swipes away! The best part: it’s totally FREE.