Sometimes it seems like New York City apartments are either the size of closets or mansions, and not much between. While apartment living in New York City is certainly full of luxury and micro apartments, seemingly not leaving much else at first glance, there are many affordable, and roomy options for students and families. Many of these are close to restaurants, shopping, nightlife, and all the things that make New York one of the world's great cities.

Apartments in the East Village or Union Square can be affordable options for apartment living in New York City, especially for students. Close to Chinatown, apartments in the East Village are some of the cheapest in Lower Manhattan and also a great option for young professionals hoping to enjoy some of the city's most underground nightlife spots.

For a step up in luxury, check out apartments in SoHo or Tribeca, where some of the most chic restaurants and shopping opportunities are located. In these neighborhoods, you are also not far from the notorious New York nightlife in the Meatpacking District. However, as far as Lower Manhattan apartments go, SoHo apartments are among the most expensive.

Many families choose to live in apartment complexes on the Upper West Side far from the center of Manhattan, although there are some potentially affordable New York City apartments that are a little closer to the center of it all. Clinton on the West Side can have some bargains, as can Chelsea, depending on how far you go from the subway. Harlem, while suffering from a poor reputation, is increasingly full of young professionals hoping to live the Manhattan lifestyle on a budget, and is another option that should be considered.

While it may not be realistic to expect to be living in Times Square apartments in Midtown Manhattan, New York's size and diversity mean that it truly offers an apartment living option for everyone. And if you do get one of those Times Square apartments, be sure to invite your jealous friends over as much as possible!