Tips for affording New York

- Online cost-of-living index Expatistan ranks New York City as the most expensive city in North America.

A Quinnipiac University poll found that 47 percent of New Yorkers felt they couldn't afford to live in the city. Yet, more than 65 percent said they wouldn't want to leave.

While many likely save and need and many more spend and wait for larger-scale changes to legislation and policy at the city, state, and federal level to reduce the costs of their lifestyle at the personal level, personal finance author Stefanie O'Connell sees one's ability to save as a matter of which trade-offs they're willing to make.

"Move to a cheaper location, different neighborhood," O'Connell says. For a dramatic cost-reduction, one can add a roommate or two.

"You cut your housing costs in half and not just your rent but also your cable bills, your utility bills, anything you need to sustain your living situation," she says.

For a less-drastic lifestyle change, spenders looking to save can trim their second-greatest expense: food.

"Packing your lunch to go to work, $10 a day, let's say 300 days a year you go to work: That's $3,000 in savings," Stefanie says.

For those hoping to not only spend less but also to save more, O'Connell recommends investigating perks through one's employer or community bank, any 401(k) contributions, and health care discounts.

"We can automate savings from our checking account to happen every month, paying ourselves first so we don't see that money sitting in our checking account tempting us," she says.

Saving helps us have more money but so does making more money. In a city like New York where everyone outsources everything, those willing to hustle and find more opportunities to add secondary or tertiary incomes to perhaps improve their quality of life.

"Babysitting, walking dogs, anything that's a service industry is going to be hugely popular in New York because what is the No. 1 thing people need? Not necessarily money, but time," she says.

Connell wrote the e-book 66 Ways to Save Money in New York City

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