I might know as soon as tomorrow whether I will be moving to NYC. The actual move likely wouldn’t happen for 6 months to maybe even as long as a year. I’ll need to save money during that time, as I’m assuming it will be an expensive move! I wanted to ask some input from those of you who have done cross country-ish moves, and to ask for input from NYC’ers:

1. About how much does a half cross the country move cost (midwest to NYC)? I just got new furniture, and I’m not eager to start all over again on that front. I don’t drive, so will likely use a moving company (and then fly with my 2 cats). I’m not sure if my moving expenses will be in any way covered. I don’t have a ton of stuff - I live in a one bedroom apartment, but I like my stuff.

2. If this move happens, I’ll be at Columbia. Any NYCers have any advice on neighborhoods? I want cheap (not sure if any of my housing will be covered - they cover it for some people - I’m not handling the negotiations around this, so am unsure of the details - don’t even know my salary - my mentor is handling all of this as she is going, and I am part of her package), I want to either be in walking distance or easy subway distance (like, not too many transfers and 45 mins or less). I like up and coming neighborhoods that are diverse (if there’s an LGBTQ community, that’s a plus) - I don’t like neighborhoods that are too gentrified. I’ve been looking at Washington Heights because it is possibly walkable and cheaper. Any other options are more than welcome.

3. Are there ideal places to search for apartments? Columbia has some support for this, and I may qualify for their housing, so I will definitely try for that - but in the meantime, I am checking out craigslist.

I have so many feelings about all of this. All of my schooling has been in public schools and state schools - I am beyond nervous about being good enough for Columbia. My mom’s family largely lives in NY, so it will be good to be near extended family for the first time since I was 3! I plan to leverage all possible family connections to help me find a place to live as well.

Thank you in advance!