Living in New York will require an annual salary of between 40,000 and 100,000 after taxes. Of course, these numbers vary depending on your living expenses, children (if any), and other monthly bills related to entertainment, health insurance, or transportation. Renters insurance protects you and your belongings in the event of disaster, theft, or vandalism. And yes, it's the type of insurance worth having.
Judging by the fact that more than 8 million people live in New York City, I suppose a good number can figure that out. You can do this if you have (or have) roommates, if you live in the outlying districts (or even in New Jersey), or both. Sure, I would love it if it were cheaper to live in New York City, but in the same way, there are more than enough resources available in the Big Apple to reduce expenses and even eliminate entire categories of expenses, goodbye to car payments. I'm based on my monthly grocery bill, which is a combination of grocery delivery and purchases at Trader Joe's for organic fruits and vegetables.
You don't have to pay $3,000 for a decent place to live, nor do you have to submit to living in a windowless basement shoe box to pay your rent. Some of the best neighborhoods for affordable housing in New York are Washington Heights, Inwood and Harlem (my neighborhood) in Manhattan; Astoria and Long Island City in Queens; Bushwick in Brooklyn; and Union City and West New York in New Jersey.