image of friends lies nyc real estate

The ‘Friends’ popup exhibit runs through Oct. 6 in SoHo. As the show celebrates its 25th anniversary, let’s look back at some of the lies ‘Friends’ told us about NYC real estate. (Getty Images)

There are so many ways “Friends” is unrealistic — but we’re not here to debate the TV show’s happily-ever-afters or the obvious fantasy of a world in which you grab breakfast at your friends’ apartment before heading to work (assuming the characters ever went to work, since we didn’t see much of that).

We’re here to talk about living in New York City.

And while, sure, there were some things “Friends” got right about apartment life in New York — like how you can often hear your neighbors above or below you — for the most part, it was a lot of lies.

As the show celebrates its 25th anniversary this month, with a popup installation in SoHo and a limited run of theater screenings, let’s look back at the 8 biggest lies “Friends” told us about NYC real estate.

1. That Broke 20-Somethings Can Easily Live in the West Village

In the pilot, after a brief scene (and a memorable entrance by Rachel), we’re introduced to Monica’s gorgeous and gigantic West Village apartment. Conveniently, she has an open room in this massive apartment.

The story sort of explains how Monica can afford such a nice place: The actual tenant is Monica’s grandma, and she’s illegally subletting it. But that doesn’t explain how Joey and Chandler can make the apartment across the hall work financially. And not just any apartment — a gigantic one.

image of the friends apartment building nyc

The building at 90 Bedford St. in the West Village. Look familiar?

2. That Your Friends Will Be There for You … Across the Hall

Listen, we were once young professionals living in Murray Hill, with seemingly everyone we’d ever met living within an eight-block radius. You don’t have to tell us that, once you’re living here, the city becomes incredibly small. But we’re just not buying that your brother’s college roommate (who will later become your husband) can just conveniently rent the apartment across the hall from the one you’re illegally subletting from your grandma.

West Village Studios and 1BRs Under $3,500 Article continues below

3. That You Won’t Know Your Friend’s Roommates

Oh, you mean you don’t know about Denise? Phoebe talks about her all the time!

There’s a moment when Rachel needs a place to live, and Phoebe says that she can’t make it work because she already has a roomie  — the aforementioned Denise. Apparently, none of Phoebe’s best friends had met this roommate. What? As anyone who’s shared a New York apartment knows, there’s no avoiding — or not mentioning — someone who is constantly 10 feet away.

4. That Everyone’s Leases Will Just Line Up

There’s a joke (or maybe not so much a joke) among New Yorkers that the city’s high real estate prices force people to move in together quickly. (What can we say? We move fast in this city, in every way possible.) Even though finances clearly aren’t a problem for this crew, they also don’t seem to have any problems moving, or having openings, whenever it’s convenient.

image of lies friends told us about nyc real estate

A recreation of the Central Park set at the ‘Friends’ popup in SoHo. (ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images)

5. That Finding a Roommate Is Easy

We’ll give the writers of “Friends” some credit here: Not every roommate on the show is found when someone’s high school BFF just waltzes into a coffee shop in a wedding gown. In a flashback, Chandler is shown picking out a not-Joey roommate, who bails after being freaked out by Mr. Heckles; poor Chandler also gets stuck with Eddie, once Joey moves out on his own, and who can forget when Joey invites dancer Janine to move in, after his infamous classified ad: “Wanted: Female roommate, non-smoker, non-ugly.”

But even still: Real New York renters can only dream of a world where you could move in to a place without getting your credit checked and proving you make 40 times the monthly rent.

6. That People Just Have Spare Bedrooms and Generous Relatives

Ross is forced to buy his own apartment after his divorce from Emily; they’d been living in an apartment they were subletting from her cousin, who kicked Ross out after the whole wedding-name-mix-up fiasco. Because, you know, of course Ross’ British girlfriend/fiancée/estranged wife just has a cousin with an empty apartment in New York.

West Village and Greenwich Village Apartments Under $800K Article continues below

And in case Monica’s apartment and Emily’s cousin’s apartment aren’t enough to convince you that your family isn’t doing enough, allow us to remind you that Phoebe also inherits an apartment from her grandma, with whom she lives at the start of the series.

7. That Buying an Apartment Requires Getting Naked

Here are some of the things Ross does while he’s in the market for an apartment: He sends mini-muffins to the Ugly Naked Guy across the street, realizes people have sent much more impressive gifts (like bigger, better baskets of mini-muffins), ultimately strips down, hangs out with the naked guy — and gets the apartment. Ross later tries to help Rachel get a unit in the same building, and ends up making out with a nearly dead lady.

Here’s a tip for Ross: If you want to buy an apartment, get a broker. We know it’s competitive out there, but there are people who will work incredibly hard for you so that you don’t have to put your body on the line.

8. That There’s No Life Outside Manhattan

There are a few moments when the gang leaves Manhattan and ventures to the outer boroughs, but despite the show’s taking place in New York City, we manage to see more of Las Vegas and London than any borough other than Manhattan. It’s not clear whether or not these people are even aware of the existence of Staten Island or the Bronx.

Of course, it isn’t totally their fault that they haven’t branched out; unlike a lot of NYC life, we suspect subways aren’t canon in the “Friends” universe.

Inspired to find your next place in New York? Whether you’re looking to rent or to buy, search NYC apartments on StreetEasy.