The Hamptons. You don’t have to be from NYC to know all about the summer playground for the city’s elite. With a quick car or train trip east, city dwellers can be in a beachside paradise left only with the memories of the sweltering subway heat or stinky trash come Friday afternoon. If you’re new to the city you may have heard all about summer rentals in the Hamptons, with groups of friends jetting off to the beach every weekend for rosé and inflatable swan floats, but how does one secure a rental?

Where to Find a Summer Rental

It may seem a bit early to be thinking about a summer rental in the Hamptons, but these properties book up fast, and people generally start to make their arrangements in the winter. I mean, who doesn’t want to think about tanned bodies and clam bakes when the wind chill is below zero?

There are plenty of online resources for those looking for Hamptons summer rentals. You can start with websites like Airbnb, HomeAway and VRBO. StreetEasy is also a good option for NYC residents as the city’s major real estate companies use this site for listings and will often handle Hamptons rentals.

If you don’t have a large enough group to fill an entire house – as usually the large homes can fit almost a dozen people – give Craigslist a shot. You can search for shared rooms or housing specifically in the Hamptons and join another smaller group for a summer share.

How Much a Summer House Really Costs

As you would imagine, the costs for summer houses in the Hamptons will vary quite a bit based on any number of options. For instance, are you staying in Montauk or Sag Harbor? Do you want a new home or an older place? Are you looking for a place that can house 12 people or are you only bringing five of your closest friends? Do you need a pool or can you live without one?

As with any type of home rental, price will vary largely on the specifics you’re looking for in your summer house. Prices can vary from $20,000 a season to $1 million. If you’re looking to cut costs, the easiest way to do that is to move further from the ocean or give up those dreams of a swimming pool on your property.

Your piece of summer paradise will also come with certain fees such as a security deposit (usually 10 percent of the total rental price), and utility expenses like cable, internet and pool maintenance. Some landlords may also ask you to carry rental insurance.

In addition to just house costs you must factor in other things like car rentals, entertainment costs, transportation to and from the city, cleaning services, and food and alcohol. Your summer expenses can shoot up quickly if you aren’t careful.

There’s nothing like summer in the Hamptons, with its white beaches, green space, and salty breeze following the bitter cold winters and sweltering summers in our concrete jungle. So, jump on that computer and start researching your summer escape!