Asking questions is good. Consider this, a DSLR that is fully adjustable (aperture, shutter speed and ISO on Manual Mode, Aperture Priority Mode, Shutter Speed Priority Mode, Full Automatic Mode, as well as in Program Automatic Mode), has Auto Focus as well as Manual Focus and a recognized good in-camera metering); your hands should feel comfortable (small hands/short fingers vs large hands/long fingers) and the ability to change lenses. On lenses, you want a camera brand that has a wide selection of lenses for future purchases as your needs grow and you gain experience and knowledge.
I will caution you against mirrorless cameras; they crunch battery power like it's going out of style. They's really no Photography advantage, except that they are slightly less bulky.
There are other brand name DSLRs that have really good camera body build but they many lack the wide variety of lenses that Canon and Nikon offer at more affordable prices (and both Canon and Nikon offer great quality glass elements in their lenses, and the lenses are what allows you to capture images; bad, cheap, shoddy lenses will never give you the same quality images as good lenses). Let me caution you on a popular misconceptions, more expensive cameras and sophisticated cameras will not make anyone a better photographer since the person pointing the camera is the one that takes the image and the quality of image is dependent on the person's skills, talents, knowledge and experiences. A camera is only a tool.
Entry level cameras are good since they do not have options, features and options that can or may confuse you; but you will soon outgrow them. You may prefer a mid-range camera, with features, functions and options you can grow with, and are affordable, too. Mid-range cameras mimic more expensive and more sophisticated cameras.
With the holidays approaching, there will be sales and you will find sales personnel trying to sell you bundles with lots of useless add-on gadgetry. Stay clear of these or you'll spend money on useless add-ons.
On your first lens, a good and practical lens is something like a 14-70mm kit zoom lemns; it offers a great variety of focal distances that will allow you to shoot lanscapes, portraits, and short/moderate telephoto capacity.
IF you live in NYC or near enough to travel there, I'd suggest B&H Photo (9th Avenue between 33rd & 34th Streets); they are a reputable and long-established outfit. IF you find a camera brand and camera model you're interested in but it's too expensive for your budget, consider buying it USED (B&H and KEH.com both stand by their sales and will want to keep you as a satisfied buyer, who will recommend others to them). I don't work for either outfit nor have I ever worked for either, but I've had only good experiences along with my friends, neighbors, relatives and students.
Whatever camera brand and model you decide on, READ the instructions manual! It contains descriptions on what, how and when to use the features, functions and options, and WHERE to locate them on your camera. Watch instructional and tutorial videos on Youtube.com and look up words and terms you don't fully understand. read everything you can find on Photography (magazines, books, etc) to help reinforce what you learned. and if There's also a tremendous short cut (what you'll learn in a total of about 14/16 hours will normally take you about 5/7 months) to learning: take a Beginner's Photography class; what you learn will last you a lifetime and it's fun, too, and nothing to memorize. You will learn about lenses, composition, parts of the camera and use of different lenses. You will also get immediate feedback and answers to your questions from your instructor. Good luck and best wishes... and have fun, enjoy the learning process.