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Family of 12 shares how they live in NYC apartment

‘I don’t want to know the cost,’ commented one viewer

Meredith Clark
New York
Wednesday 12 April 2023 06:36 BST
Julia Fox gives tour of one-bedroom New York apartment

A mother of 10 children has gone viral after sharing how her family of 12 lives together in a New York City apartment.

Amber de la Motte is an influencer with nearly 400,000 followers on TikTok, where she shares daily videos about her musical family of 12 living in Manhattan. Recently, Amber received 5.7m views when she revealed how her 10 children – all ranging in ages, from one year old to 20 years old – share bedrooms in their 3,000-square-foot brownstone.

“How we sleep as a family of 12 in our NYC apartment,” she captioned the viral clip, adding that their family lives on the top three floors of a brownstone building with two floors beneath.

The mom begins the apartment tour in the first bedroom where her two eldest sons, Elijah and Josiah, share a bunk bed. In the second bedroom, her daughters Anna and Chloe share a bunk bed with their sister Melody in a separate twin bed off to the side.

In one of the smaller bedrooms, the family set up a Murphy bed that folds down into a bunk bed, where her sons Enoch and Noah sleep. And her two eldest daughters, Pearl and Naomi, share a room with another bunk bed.

As for the parents, Amber and her husband Marc have their own bedroom where their one-year-old son Moses sleeps in his crib. There’s also a sixth room that doubles as a practice room for the family’s instruments and storage for their Lego collection.

Unsurprisingly, Amber’s video instantly went viral as thousands of TikTok users wondered how their family of 12 could afford living in Manhattan. According to CNBC, median rent in New York City hit an all-time high in January 2023 at $4,097, while the average monthly cost of a two-bedroom apartment was $5,142.

“Five bedroom apartment in NYC I don’t want to know the cost,” commented one TikTok user.

“I can’t even imagine the price of such a large apartment,” said someone else.

Another asked: “Wait how the legos got their own room?”

In the comments, Amber revealed that they initially paid a prorated amount of $4,900 but now their rent has been raised up to $9,800 per month.

“In this city that’s not a bad rate…kinda crazy!” she wrote.

She also explained in another TikTok that the owner of the three-floor unit had bought it several years ago and renovated it for himself to live in with his family, but he was forced to rent it out after receiving a job offer in another state.

“We told them we’re a big family,” Amber shared. “The landlord heard our story and even though we were probably not the most qualified applicant, he decided to rent to us anyway because I think he had compassion for us.”

Amber de la Motte and her family of 12 moved to New York City last summer to pursue her childrens’ music education. The family moved from San Francisco – where they were living in a two-bedroom apartment – to the Manhattan neighbourhood of Harlem because it was close to The Juilliard School and Manhattan School of Music, where their childrens’ lessons and teachers are based.

In a separate TikTok video, titled “Why is our family moving to NYC,” Amber explained that three of her children were accepted into Julliard’s music program, but the entire family moved along with them “because there are just a plethora of music programs there to fit the wide range of our family’s abilities and where they’re at musically”.

Last year, the family of 12 went viral once again when they shared a video of the 30-foot trailer they were living in while moving from San Francisco to the Big Apple. Since it was posted in June 2022, the TikTok now has nearly 12m views.

The Independent has contacted Amber de la Motte for comment.

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