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The building is improving, but that is a bad thing as far as you are concerned?
And is it the fault of the building that there are "outside building sites"?
not much for a quiet enjoyment of your apartment in this building. There is constant construction noise from outside building sites as well as from apartments within the building. There is extensive renovation going on and will last for very long time. this is probably due to the majority of the units being sold these days.
My friend chose to put sheetrock over popcorn too, and it turned out to be much cheaper and easier. Like raddoc said there could be minor loss of ceiling height depending on sheetock thickness and whether furring strips are needed (on concrete ceilings). Also there will be a risk of sagging
Raddoc, that's so informative... Knowing that only about a 1/2" of ceiling height would be lost by using drywall to hide the popcorn. I really appreciate everybody's comments and time that you took out to share your knowledge !
My relatives had this problem and found it was easier, cleaner & much cheaper to just put new drywall over the popcorn.
They lost 1/2" ceiling height (out of standard 8'), but it is not at all evident .
My least favorite thing to do is remove popcorn ceiling, I cannot charge enough. The mess is a nightmare but it is also a nightmare to remove it. I try to encourage my clients to laminate the ceiling with sheetrock, less expensive and much easier
Thank you all for weighing in! Your insights are very helpful!!!
I would try to find a contractor that is working in the building presently. It is much more cost effective and they might be able to send a guy for a day.
So, does anyone do "small jobs?" Change a vanity, sink, faucets.......change the shower head, handle (trim)....paint?...in a co-op?
I know. just didn't want you to think I forgot about you. If you are in the city tomorrow I will be at the site that you could shoot at 10am.
Email me. firstname.lastname@example.org
I was just busting your chops bud. Call when you're ready.
Sorry I do not
I only want to replace the vanity, sink, faucet....keeping the same 24" footprint, don't want to disturb the existing tile. It's "old fashioned" but now, very "in." Also change the shower head and handle (the trim). The tub and toilet are fine. I can re-grout the shower tile. Does anyone do a small job like this?
Most bathrooms in Manhattan are 5 x7 so your bathroom will cost more. Not necessarily more for plumbing or electric but tiles and waterproofing, etc
Primer05 estimates are pretty accurate for a NYC bathroom. We usually give a $28-32K estimate for a complete bathroom reno. It all depends also if you are not changing things to significantly and the finish products you chose. Also condo and coop boards can be very stringent with bathrooms and might require some work that was not originally intended to be included in the renovation.
NYC10007, Curious: What was the size of your bathroom? I'm looking to do a renovation where the bathroom will end up being 8' by 16'.
Once you add major plumbing and electrical the price hits 30K easily. If just redoing look (tiles, fixtures) the cost is really up to you for materials. Labor is pretty well fixed.
Oh, sorry, I forgot to add: this 40 watt Xenon/Krypton he said is the equivalent of a 60 watt bulb.
UPDATE: Hi, all. Went to Just Bulbs and it turns out the socket does allow a screw-in bulb. The guy said to use a 40 watt Xeon/Krypton frosted halogen bulb. ($13.95). However, every light in the joint is 2700Kelvin and he says halogens are 3000 kelvin. From your experience, when you have recssessed lights and desk lamps, etc. all at 2700, will the 3000 be a noticeable difference? If yes, the store said they would take the fixtures back, and we found ]other sconces that take regular incandescent 2700 bulbs.
Thanks, Aaron, that's what I'll do.
If you're in NYC, go to Just Bulbs, 220 E 60th St, show them the sconce and they can help find suitable bulbs. Huge on-site selection, and friendly.
Sipplemc, yes, good call. It's the Lovell sconce from Barnlight. Website and spec sheet now does say 40 watts max, but in mid-January when I ordered them, the website and mfg spec sheet said 60 WATTS max. They took several weeks to get here, arriving a few days ago. Clearly in the meantime,someone flagged the mistake and they've updated the spec sheet now.
I ordered thru the professional rep for Barnlight because my designer gets a discount, so have now been going back and forth with them. They acknowledge that their info was "misleading," so if I can't find a satisfactory bulb, I got the impression that I could return the sconces, even though they were custom order. I'm trying to get THEM to tell me exactly what the socket is and what bulb will work with it. The rep promised to stay on the case, but no answer yet.
A toupée made of real hair
Thanks everyone, these are great suggestions to take out. I agree with the comment about the need for it to be reclaimed/ real and that's what we wanted to look for. If we decide to go forward with the accent wall, I'll share our experience, but I think we have to do some research.
These look pretty good. And they have the return cut for use at corners which is where I see the most glaring install fails.
A useful website. However I would really consider the alternatives. I have never seen brick veneer look right.
It is the humidity
Hardwood and engineered both shrink and expand. There is also prefinished which shrinks even more
curious... you guys having this problem, is it solid hardwood? or engineered flooring?
is it the lack of humidity from the heat that makes them shrink or is it the actual cold?
Gap between the floor planks is how I'd describe some of the posters on Streeteasy.
You know the answer. All comes down to one thing...$$$$$$$$$. You have the money do the gut. KH?
We are buying the studio next to our one bedroom to make a 2 bedroom. We're getting all different kinds of advice from do a complete gut renovation right away and make it beautiful to just combine the spaces and make them liveable. What is the best option?
Mid-Hi End: $500k and up.
Thinking of making an offer to buy a prewar in need of renovation:
Lead painting removal and new painting, baseboard, molding
New galley kitchen
Three new small bathroom
New electrical panel
Any idea of costs and times needed?
I think it might be time to run. YES it appears that banks will not loan on the building. This is a more recent problem.
In fact their has been a stop on sales in the building. Well I think there has. None of the recent sales have closed. Furthermore, there seems to be a lot of sellers in a small building ( about 10% of the building). And apparently another 10-20% are renters. Of the sales w mortgages none have gone through. The taxes seem paid, but they might be defaulting on the mortgage.
I maid an extremely low offer, and asked to see the financials. The realtor got back to me and said the purchase was as is. Of course I already knew that. She didn't even counter offer.
They're just looking for someone desperate or stupid.
The important distinction is if banks won't mortgage the building or this particular unit. If it's the building, run. If it's only the unit (because it doesn't have a kitchen or is considered inhabitable), then you could assess the value of the unit in marketable condition, less the cost (carry labor) to bring the unit to a marketable condition, less the costs to close on the purchase and future sale as a starting point for what you may be willing to bid.
Question - how is it REO if banks don't loan on the building? Some kind of private lender?
It doesn't sound like a good investment if the banks won't make loans on the building. People I know who "flip" foreclosures would hesitate on this one, especially with all the renovations. I agree with Aaron2 on your reno budget being a little small.
I did mean it wouldn't be a bad idea. Alanhart does have a pop t that many agree with. I still would not take the chance but that is just a personal opinion.
We used t21 Sikabond. It also acts as a sound barrier. Use a trowl to spread over , then plywood. We used natural wood floor, so we glued plywood on top nailed into concrete. Belt and suspenders approach since we were using white oak, wanted to make sure floor stays down because the black stuff is friable. We had black stuff tested and no asbestos.
Would it be safe to skim over it with Featherfinish Patch & Skimcoat? I figure it's better to skim over it, then put the sound/moisture underlayment, then plywood, then floor. I've heard that putting the underlayment directly below 3/8" engineered floors makes it feel a bit soft?
It WOULD be a bad idea to check.
The whole asbestos thing is nonsense. It's a natural material that was mined from a mountain. Unless you spent decades working daily with asbestos in its free form, WHILE CHAINSMOKING all the while, you are highly unlikely to be affected.
Fresh basil poses a greater carcinogenic danger to you than does the mastic under your 1960s faux parquet.
Primer I'm not sure if you mean "it would NOT be a bad idea" to check for asbestos.... except for the fact that checking is going to lead to a possibly expensive abatement if you go that route. For the OP, I would just recommend not disturbing that area any more until you have a plan to abate or cover it.
@Earo.....your electrician was wrong......
The wiring is only "jumpered" in the basement (actually inside the meter panel) so the "wiring has nothing to do with this".
here is some history in 2008 we combined two apartment together and I was told the same thing.......my builder basically lied their ass off saying you would need to replace all the wiring from the meters up to the apartment and major problem so for the next 4 year I paid $30 extra a month as the original poster said.
In 2013 we combined a third apartment to our original two, when I told the "new builder" about this he laughed....and said no problems basically some people haven't done it before so don't know whats involved.
Basically the electrician needs to file with coned for a meter removal, they come out and inspect, then approve the proposed jumper then have the electrician come and do the jumper (inside the meter they splice them together so its routed via a single meter), then coned come back and pull the surplus meter.
If you want my electricians contact details shoot me an email, contact details are on the website where the photos of the renovation are located -- http://www.collins.net.pr/Photo/House photos/135 Henry St, Brooklyn/photo.htm
I wish I knew about this in 2008 as would have saved me $360 a year......
All that agita to save $30 a month?
Interested in any replies here ... trying to get a sense of how screwed I'm getting. In the middle of renovating a pre-combined apartment that the previous owner never bothered to combine the meters. Once I have a data point I will post and let you all know as well.
If you can get the rest of your building to agree, you could just set up a master meter for the whole building, and then submeter out to each of the owners. That would probably be less costly to set up than combining only two units, and you would also benefit by getting charged at bulk rate pricing.
Anyone have any recent experience with regards to this issue of combining electric meters?
I emailed my managing agent when I was thinking about refinishing my bathtub. They said this is considered to be decorating rather than renovating. However, they would charge me $250 for processing the appropriated application, checking the contractor's license and insurance. However, they requested a REFUNDABLE $5,000 damage deposit.
We changed our minds when we found out refinishing only lasts a few years. Also, our faucets would continue to erode the enamel because they were 65 years old and dripping. (That opened a can of worms. If we replaced the faucets, we found out we had to add a valve to maintain the water temperature. We'd also have to install a shut off valve for the entire bathroom. )
Great idea, thanks uptown_Joe
It depends on your co-op, but you're right, in most cases this would be more of a "decoration" or "maintenance" type activity which should be controlled by a less stringent oversight process and a smaller (or no) fee. Don't call it 'renovation work' -- ask about a decorating agreement instead.
However note that if the co-op chooses, they can generally set whatever deposit or fee they want -- $250, or whatever the board determines.
I'm planning to have an insured and licensed bathtub refinishing contractor to re-pain my 11 year old bathtub. The fee of service is $300 and the contractor also as me for co-op insurance. I contacted my Co-op board, and the co-op representative send me 3 form to fill out including $750 security deposit (refundable) and $250 (non-refundable) fee. I went over the alterations house rules and believe this is just a simple renovation work, therefore I'm not quite sure why do I have to pay $250 fee. Please advise.
At http://www.nyc.gov/html/dob/downloads/pdf/fuel_code.pdf the city says the range must be installed per the manufacturer's specs. Those always say a minimum of 6" from the wall. Somewhere else in the code, the city specifies different clearances depending on combustibility of the wall.
But, as jelj13 says, up against the wall means half the burners aren't usable.
Do you mean a side of the stove? You wouldn't want the side to be flush against a wall because you need some swing room for your pot handles.
I was told NYC code specifies a gas range/stove must be a certain distance from an interior wall -- it cannot be up against the wall. Does anyone know if this is true or where I can find out?
Hi, I have been reading these forums for years and hope you can advise me now that I'm finally moving into property ownership. I'm looking at 1br/1ba Co-ops in upper Manhattan and of course they tend to be designed and built using some basic parameters, to make them as attractive as possible to the widest market. But I am comfortably and permanently single and very home-based so Kitchen and Bathroom are important to me.
I'm looking at places which have floor plans conducive to enlarging the bathroom and accessing it only from the bedroom, so that I have space for a free-standing tub and a separate shower enclosure, and walling off the toilet so that it becomes a powder room accessible from both the bathroom and the living area, including adding a small sink.
There are many many variations and possibilities but my main concern is this: I would have to re-purpose built-in closets to claim their real estate for my bathroom, thus creating wet space over dry.
Forgive my ignorance, but is this what the rule refers to, and is there no way around it? For example, is it simply necessary that the plumbing remains within the same area? What if, theoretically (but practically pointlessly) I made the bathroom bigger but kept the fixtures in exactly the same locations. Would that be creating 'wet over dry"?
Thank you, in advance, for any help or advice! I've been reviewing DOB records for the buildings I'm interested in looking for precedents but while I find evidence of renovations the details are lacking.
Very odd. I have been doing this for 15 years and never have had to give more then my company's license. One person does need a home improvement sales license but that is not required by management companies. We are usually required to supply the home improvement license, epa certificate for lead paint, liability insurance, workers comp insurance and the licenses from the plumber and electrician. That's is. It is also rare that the management company refuses to talk to the contractor. I would suggest your in laws call them and ask what exactly they are looking for
My contractor for my kitchen reno was president of the company. They took one license from the Dept. of Consumer Affairs in the company's name and another in the contractor's name labeled "Renovator - Initial", really lead base handling certification. Perhaps she means the lead based certification. The package from the managing agent was very clear about the required licenses.
By the way, the license is under a corp. and he is the only employee of the corp.
After my inlaws submitted their reno agreement to the mgmt co, the lady in charge said their needs to be TWO general contractor licenses, one from the company and one from the contractor.
Based on the NYC consumer affairs site, it states either the person or entity needs to be licensed. We are talking about just redoing the kitchen, not moving gas pipes and electric wires.
The contractor was confused and the lady refused to talk to the contractor. Any one here knows what she is talking about?
I think it will takes 2 weeks for architect to prepare the plan if the design is pretty much determined. Then the plan goes to your board for review, this part really depends on your board and your building architect/engineer. Once your board signs the paperwork for filing, you can go ahead to file to DOB. This sounds like a minor job, I believe most architects will agree to file as professional certification, in that case, the DOB application will be approved right away and the permit can be pulled as soon as the same day you file. However, some boards don't allow professional certification. If your building is landmark building, you will need to wait for another 2 weeks for landmark preservation commission approval.
This article may be of interest on this topic...
I think it's important to add in who and how knowledgeable your architect/expediter is when talking timelines to pull permits and close out/sign off jobs. Every person/company involved in the renovation needs to be vetted and trusted to minimize the overall time-frame.
Depends on the building dept. If you can find an architect to self certify it would be a whole lot faster.
Curiosity and Karhu are both right. You should always submit a scope of work to your building and see what they want you to do
Thanks, Uptown Joe and Karhu. Never having done renos before, we are grateful for the sound advice.
Generally speaking, how long do permits add to a project? We understand the coop/condo board have their own timelines, but ballpark, how long can the city take?
My alteration agreement states that I need to submit a check for $600 processing fee to the management company, 2% of the total contract amount to the co-op, and a minimum $1000 to maximum 7.5% of total work order as a refundable security deposit. I don't mind submitting the 2% to the co-op or the security deposit, but what annoys me is the $600 that the management company takes for every single work order you submit. So if I need to submit an alteration agreement for the dishwasher, that's $600. Then a few months later if I decide to change the floors, that's another $600.
Yep, that's what's happening now in my building. Until this year, my coop charged 10% deposit of the renovation, but didn't deposit the check. They held it until the renovation was completed and then gave it back. This year they changed the agreement, stating they WILL deposit the check and give you the money back afterwards, plus whatever interest it earns. So frustrating.. I wrote the check a few months ago and ..... amazing, they still haven't deposited it. Shhh-- don't tell them!
Each building has different fees and deposits, many are now charging 10% of the contract if the project is of decent scale
$5K is not bad, jelj; I think my condo just raised the equivalent deposit to $10K.
Your super should know what paperwork is required. You'll need a licensed plumber and possibly an electrician for the installation. Some coops that originally did not have dishwashers in all the apartments impose a maintenance surcharge for this; so they require paperwork. Some coops require a decorating agreement.
I am surprised that your board requires you pay them a percentage of the cost of the work. Mine charges a non-refundable fee for processing the application with a sliding scale based on the scope of the work. HOWEVER, the require a $5,000 refundable check to cover potential damages. This is besides the contractor's insurance. They return the check after the super signs off on the completed project.
has anyone done a loft conversion of a loft with 12 foot ceilings?
I have seen it done ( with 2 lofted bedrooms) and the bottom main floor is a really big open living room / kitchen dining area.
How much have these kind of conversions cost and can somebody recommend a contractor / architect?