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Moving in NYC with family (New York)

Hello everyone,

I am moving to NYC with my family (my wife and two children: 5 and 1,5) for one year from April. I will work next to Union Square (Park Ave) and we are searching flat for rent. Main priorities are: safe and nice neighborhood with good public zoned schools and near to public transport. Our budget would be around Protected content .
We have started just a week ago looking for some affordable solution, mainly in Brooklyn and Queens. We started with the better boroughs but we feel a bit lost…Can you give us some advice where to continue searching? Some specific questions:

- What boroughs/schools do you recommend for us?
- Craiglist seems to me a bit confusing…is there any other site for searching? What about searching with an agent? We have already started to contact some, the flats they offered seems better than the ones we have found until now, and they weren’t necessary more expensive (apart from the agent’s fee…)
- I saw that the majority of the houses is without furniture…How people manage this in cases like ours (living in NYC only for one year)? I saw that there are some companies occupying with furniture rental but it seems still a bit complicated (and expensive)…or if buy everything we should sell it on our departure…
- How people resolve the laundry issue…we are moving with two little kids…at home practically the washing machine is on all the time…I know it is also a cultural question but I cannot imagine going all the time to laundries…is it possible to buy a washing machine and install it in our rental?..or it is completely a strange idea?

I am sorry for the soooo long text, and thank you very much in advance!!!