- Renters Guide
- For Owners
What is a Two Bedroom Apartment?
Two-bedroom apartments are probably the most desirable of all New York City layouts, both because, most obviously, of the additional square footage, but also for the flexibility it affords all manner of apartment living. A true two-bedroom apartment must have a two separate bedrooms, each with at least one window (this is the law in New York City, that every room defined as a bedroom have at least one window), usually at least one closet, and a door that closes, with room enough for, at a minimum, a bed and a dresser.
Two-bedroom apartments also have a separate living room, a kitchen, and at least one bathroom. Though the kitchen may be a separate room, in many NYC two-bedroom apartments, the kitchen is within the living room area, delineated by a counter-top island.
Two bedroom apartments, especially those found in contemporary, luxury rental towers, or within the more elegant pre-war buildings, frequently have more than one bathroom, with at least one being of the "en -suite" variety, which simply means that this bathroom is only accessible through the bedrooms, making it, in effect, a private bath for whomever's lucky enough to get that room.
Two-bedroom apartments are most especially coveted by families living in New York City. There is generally a larger (or, "master") bedroom and a smaller bedroom in these units, and the individual family dynamic often determines who gets which room. If there are two or more children involved, single parents or divorced parents often give the larger bedroom to the kids and hunker down in the secondary room.
Even couples sometimes decide to allow the children to move into the master bedroom after a certain age, though that decision is sometimes made less out of benevolent sacrifice and more simply to make sure there's enough space somewhere to keep all of the toys and games and books and art projects and the rest of it from taking over the living room.
Two-bedroom apartments are also ideal for roommate living situations, which, given the often higher-than-average rents in New York City, are common among college students, graduate students, and, often, young professionals in their mid- to late-twenties, just starting out in their careers. Of course, many roommates make do with less expensive one-bedroom apartments, either sharing the bedroom or turning the living area into a second "bedroom" each night, with a futon or pull-out sofa doing double duty.
But the two-bedroom apartment is the ideal option for roommates, who, if the bedrooms are fairly equal in size and desireability, split the rent and all other expenses—cable, wireless, Con Ed--in half, or, if one bedroom is clearly superior to the other, arrange to pay whatever percentage of the monthly rent seems fair.
Many rental buildings allow roommates to co-sign a lease on a two-bedroom apartment, so that each person is equally responsible for their share of the rent each month, as well as the security deposit (usually one month's rent) due upon signing.
A co-signed lease is also preferable for the roommates themselves, because it significantly lessens the chance that one roommate in a two-bedroom apartment will suddenly walk out on the other before the lease is up, leaving their former flatmate holding the bag on a suddenly over-budget apartment.