In this first video of the series, I just want to establish how I’ll do things differently than many YouTubers that I’ve encountered. Although I touch on the topics of food and rent prices, this is not a video about food or rent in New York City. It is an introduction to my evidence-based style of video, and I look forward to producing dedicated examinations of various discrete topics within New York City personal finance. Whether you live here or want to move here, I hope these things are helpful.

Resources to use to follow along with the video, and for further detail:

  1. Album of Trader Joe’s prices
  2. Album of Key Foods prices
  3. Album of city Target prices
  4. To view the YouTube video with the bad budget that I reference in my video, follow this link. It was produced in 2017, and a related video on the same topic was produced in 2019 (link here). The 2019 video nominally touches upon some of the issues I bring up with the 2017 version, but it actually winds up producing more errors in the process. Perhaps I’ll do a more in-depth post about it.
  5. You can estimate your tax burden in New York City by going to this calculator. You’ll need this estimate (plus ~5% for health insurance/other benefits) for the budget calculator below.
  6. This is a simple budget calculator that I made in Excel to give you a quick idea of what you (or you and roommates combined) would need to make to afford certain rent prices, and vice versa. This calculator keeps in mind the general rule most landlords in NYC use: your pre-tax income has to be at least 40x your monthly rent.