Ok full disclosure - I haven't yet signed a lease (tomorrow, knock on wood!) but I'm so excited about Royalton Realty that I'm posting something now.
WHAT a breath of fresh air. I can't tell you how many people told me that apartment hunting as a single woman in NYC is like car shopping as a single woman anywhere - EVERYONE tries to con you b/c they think you're dumb as hell. True story - I now know they were right. The man-eating psychotic feminist in me has reared her crazed head more in the past week than I think in my entire life.
Adam at Royalton Realty, however, single-handedly saved my sanity. I don't think I've ever even had boyfriends more responsive to text messages than this guy, seriously. I don't know how he types on his phone that fast. He was super quick to tell me what was available and what wasn't, and he very quickly got an idea of what I was looking for. Because of him, I was in the right place at the right time to get an AWESOME one bedroom for the price of a studio in a fantastic area half a block from the train station I wanted to be near. After I submitted all my documents, he told me I'd know by next evening if I was approved, and he called me at 11:45AM, hours earlier than I was even daring to hope. Yes, that's partially the building being on the ball too, but he was the one who told me the building was that fabulous to begin with.
The only con I can even think of is that they still have listings on their website that have already been rented out, but I can't even consider that a con because Adam was so quick to tell me what was available. Also, I met a couple of the other people at the company when I went pay my deposit, and they all seemed equally friendly and capable. I swear, I'm not even ever going to search Craig's List if I have to move again within NYC.. I will go straight to Royalton
Pros: SAVED $$$
I came to their office in LIC. A really nice broker took me around to the buildings then gave me a tour of the neighborhood in the snow. He really didn't have to and he just went the extra mile. I loved what I saw I took an apartment right then and there. I have had some NIGHTMARES with brokers. This has BY FAR been the best experience I have ever had. I recommend them to anyone.
Pros: Easy and painless
Whatever you do, do NOT use this company for any real estate help. Their agents mispost ads on craigslist stating they have apartments at a certain price, but when you meet them that are offering a price higher than stated. YET, they will continue to post this so called low-rent price, so that you will call them. I had confronted them that what they were doing was wrong, and they just ignored it and stating not to communicate with me. THEY ARE LIARS.. PLEASE TAKE MY ADVICE AND DO NOT USE THEM.
Cons: THEY ARE LIARS