HobokenLife™

The Guide to Moving to Hoboken

So, you’re moving to Hoboken, or at least thinking about it—that’s great! Hoboken is a fantastic little town (although not as little as it once was). Close to Manhattan, small enough to feel cozy but large enough to avoid a “small town” vibe, and possessed of a fantastic waterfront and nightlife, Hoboken is aces. Whether you’re fleeing the crowds and costs of New York City or getting out of the sleepy ‛burbs, Hoboken’s got what you’re looking for. We here at HoLi may be biased.

But, you’ve got questions. While the Internet has made researching places to live a breeze, there’s nothing like boots-on-the-ground intelligence, so here are some of the common questions people ask when planning a move to Hoboken, and our answers.

Skip the Broker, Maybe

When looking for a rental in Hoboken, a broker can be incredibly helpful, of course—but also incredibly expensive. If you’re looking to move into one of the larger buildings in town, check and see if they have their own rental office. Often a direct call to them can bypass the brokers—and their fees—entirely.

Rents in Hoboken average about $3400, from $2500 for your average studio to $4400 for your average 3-bedroom. But there are deals to be found if you’re flexible on neighborhood—the further back you go, the cheaper things get, but you’re also further from the main drags and likely in older housing stock—and if you connect with a landlord who values peace of mind (in the form of reliable tenants) over profits. A broker can help you dig up those deals.

Safe

People always wonder if Hoboken is safe, and the answer is complicated, but boils down to this: Hoboken is as safe as any other urban area, possibly safer. There’s actually very little violent crime in Hoboken. People will suggest that the southwestern area of Hoboken, where the Housing Authority apartments are located, is sketchy, but in reality there’s very little crime in that area either. In 2017 there were just 128 violent crimes in Hoboken, and just 32 cars were reported stolen here last year. Generally speaking, any place you live in Hoboken you’re going to be fine.

Parking/Getting Around

Hoboken is one of the most walkable cities in the country—you don’t need a car to live here, unless you have to commute someplace for work. If you work in New York City, you can get by without a car very easily. Hoboken offers a bikeshare program (and plenty of bike lanes), has several buses that will transport you up- or downtown, has a free shuttle service for cross-town travel, and $5 cab rides anywhere in town (though note you can’t hail cabs like in Manhattan; you can grab one at the PATH station or call one).

Parking is often a challenge. If you’re moving to a building with parking, you’re golden, of course. Street Parking is cheap ($15 for a resident sticker annually) but actually finding a spot can be challenging. There are municipal lots that are pretty reasonably priced, but depending on which one is ideal for you there might be a waiting list. Also, keep in mind that Hoboken is in Hudson County, and so your insurance rates will be among the highest in the known universe.

Residents can park on either side of the streets anywhere in Hoboken. Non-residents can park on the side of the street with white signs, for 4 hours at a stretch. And the Hoboken Parking Authority does not kid around. Luckily, there are some tools you can use to help you.

Noise

Hoboken can be noisy. We’ve got a college campus (Steven’s Tech) bursting with undergrads and more bars than is probably healthy. The end result is that if you live near the hotspots—mainly downtown near the PATH, but seeded liberally all over town—you may experience loud people shouting and cavorting outside your window at, say, 2AM. The garbage collection also happens overnight, and those guys are not quiet. If you’re used to sleeping in the total silence of a deer-infested suburb you are in for a rude awakening, literally. Invest in a white noise machine.

There are, of course, quiet spots, but they’re not easy to find and mainly involve getting high up off the street. If you need quiet in your life, look at a map of bars in Hoboken and target the driest areas you can identify.

Dog Friendly

Hoboken is an incredibly dog friendly place. You’re allowed to bring your dog into bars if they don’t serve food, and most of those bars welcome pooches. There are dog runs everywhere, and plenty of stores and dog walking services and other pet businesses, plus the tens of thousands of people who already own dogs here.

Movie Theater

Hoboken has a Bow Tie movie theater, so checking out the latest movies doesn’t have to involve a drive or a train ride. It’s a pretty new and comfortable spot.

We could go on. But it’s better if you discover your own favorite restaurants, bars, and other aspects of this town. Welcome!

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Jeffrey Somers

Staff Writer • Jeff Somers (jeffreysomers.com) is the author of 9 novels including We Are Not Good People (wearenotgoodpeople.com) and the publisher of The Inner Swine (innerswine.com). Jeff may be reach at [email protected] . Follow him on Twitter at @jeffreysomers .

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