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With all due respect to your husband's skills, 'fixing things' in a 100 year old multi-family building is likely going to require skills, tools, and time that may be beyond what he's willing to put in (or require professional licenses that he doesn't have). I keep lots of little things fixed in my co-op apartment, but for many things in my 150 year old house need to call in professionals (and I spent 25 years in a brownstone prior to the co-op) -- and that's just to keep me warm and dry. Add multi-family, and you're now responsible for all your tenants' problems. Add landmark status, and it's a whole additional layer of hassle. I find maintaining a brownstone / house far more work and more expensive than an apartment, but also more rewarding. It's definitely a labor of love.
I am interested in purchasing a multifamily home that was built around 1900. It looks to have a good frame and was renovated about 7 years ago. I've lived in condo/apt all my life. Am I getting into a big headache by purchasing a brownstone? My husband is pretty good at fixing things... I would like to hear from people who are living in NYC brownstones..!
jamesco -- did you consult an architect or attorney experienced in this sort of discussion with the local authority? It seems you are going to have to contest the administrative decision in some way.
And in any case, if this isn't in New York State, we aren't interested. This board covers up to C0lumbia C0unty.
State? We need more detail than that - what neighborhood??
I cannot comment on which state the house is in.
In terms of the county denying the plans to demolish, they argue that the house must be almost falling apart before they can approve demolition. At present, the house is in a very poor condition and it is unlivable. If it remains in its current condition, it will probably fall apart in five years, however, I would like to hasten the process.
We don't know if this is New York State, and we don't know who is turning down your plans. What you want is a variance to demo or to file an Article 78 proceeding if this is New York, and depending what kind of paperwork you've gotten back from the city/village/county at this point. Personally I'd go for a variance. What I would not do is behave in fraudulent ways, that's just never, ever a good plan. Plus you must have money to be considering demo, so you can hire the pros you need to do things the right way.
Contact Pepe at firstname.lastname@example.org or (347) 531-8812 He removed a damaged floor in my bedroom (220 sq.ft.), discarded the old wood, installed plywood underlayment and soundproofing, and a Turman 3.5" oak strip flooring for around $6,300. This also included extending the wood flooring into some very odd shaped closets. He could not install the flooring over the existing flooring because it was warped and buckled. This included hand crafting a new door sill into the bedroom. He also had to cut down 3 doors in the bedroom because the new flooring with the plywood was thicker than the old one.
This is a small firm that subcontracts on many very large jobs. They did an excellent job and were very orderly, assuring that deliveries and work did not impact the rest of our apartment. The owner visited twice before the job started: once to scope out the job and show us samples; once to show us exactly what we would get. He and the crew were very professional and respectful.
This firm also refinished the other floors in our apartment, not an easy job because many areas had stains more than 4 feet in diameter, and we did not have 230 amps. for his regular machines. You could still see some of the stains after sanding, so he blended colors for the floor so they appeared a uniform color. Excellent job there also.
I want to put a new hardwood floor over existing woodfloor in a prewar 2 BR. I went to a local shop they wanted 17k for 800 sqf of floor. Any recommendations for a reliable flooring company? Thank you!
I'm wondering what the ballpark figures are for a mostly cosmetic on a huge apartment. Everything is in working order and the bones of the place are great, but it has sort of a heavy look and we just want to brighten everything up. We're looking for mid-high end work. Ideally we'd redo:
Floors in a 3000sf place
Cabinets in a very large kitchen (current cabinets are custom, and we'd also be willing to just repaint them if this is possible and not a terrible idea)
Doors and moldings for 4 bedrooms
Tile in 3 bathrooms
All the fixtures and appliances are great--we wouldn't replace any of that or touch the plumbing or electrical. Approx. what range are we in for each line item?
Thank you bramstar. I will try them and post back to the forum if successful.
By the way you can still go thru Skyline--they'd be the installers and would help you with the order. They may have other manufacturers to recommend if you need something very specific.
our coop in Brooklyn heights is also interested in replacing the old metal windows with timber double glazed double hung windows.
we called 3 vendors and were only able to get "vague" quotes as we only have 11 windows to replace :(
if you do find a vendor you like who does landmark style windows please post back to the forum.
Most will give you a lot more leeway for windows not visible from the street.
Thanks, all! Fieldschester, it is in the (broadly defined) Gramercy area and the delta is several thousand dollars.
Smart smart smart.
What neighborhood is this in, and what is the delta between high and low bids?
Go with the building's plumber. I'm planning to use mine in my bathroom renovation because he knows all the quirks on all the lines in the building. For example, he knew that the shut off valve for my bathroom is in the next apartment. I have to straighten that out. He also comes quickly if you've had the work done by him.
Smart. The high bidder knows what kind of problems can crop up in your building, and his bid reflects that. The low bidder probably doesn't know, and is hoping for the best.
Remodeling projects rarely go as smoothly as you hope. No matter how much planning goes into a home remodel and no matter how prepared you feel, it never goes exactly as you have it down on paper. Here are five of the most common oversights homeowners make when remodeling their homes and some tips for avoiding those oversights.
Don't forget the landscaping
Many homeowners use up all of their remodeling budget on the interior of the home leaving the exterior feeling neglected. There are a number of good reasons why you should set aside some of your budget for your home's exterior, and particularly, your landscaping.
If you're doing an addition for your home, or any major work on the exterior of your home, be assured that your yard is going to be trampled on by construction workers. Even when all of the remodeling is taking place inside your home, contractors often use the driveway or yard as a staging area where supplies for the project are stored. When the project is complete, you'll be left with a yard in poor shape and no budget for fixing it up if you didn't plan ahead for this.
Even if your yard is completely untouched by contractors, it doesn't make much sense to spend a considerable amount of money updating your home's interior if your home's exterior is bland or outdated. So plan to spend some of your remodeling budget on landscaping regardless.
Think quality over cost
Remodeling projects, even simple ones, can be quite expensive. Homeowners understandably try to cut costs where they can to get the most out of the remodeling budget they've spent. But it is possible to take penny-pinching too far. When picking out materials for a remodel, don't base decisions on cost alone. Choosing whatever is cheapest will lead to you having inferior materials. Going with the most expensive materials isn't necessarily wise either. Instead of basing decisions entirely on cost, consider the quality of the product and how long you want it to last. If you've got products of a similar quality, then you can start thinking about cost in deciding which to buy.
Imagine using the remodeled space
You'd be surprised how many homeowners make all of their remodeling decisions based on appearance rather than functionality. Don't forget that at the end of a remodeling project, you have to live in and use the remodeled space. Ask yourself some important questions before you begin a remodeling project. What is the purpose of this remodeled room? What activities will you or your family be doing in this space? Try to visualize yourself in your remodeled room doing whatever it is you'll be doing in that room. Is it functional? Are there any problems with your intended remodeling plans?
A remodeling project is the perfect excuse to make your home more energy efficient. If you're already tearing open walls, you might as well replace your old insulation, with newer, better insulation. If you're doing a kitchen remodel, you might as well replace your appliances with ones that are more energy efficient. Whatever remodeling project you're doing, think about how you can make your home more energy efficient in the process. There may even be some tax breaks in it for you.
Have a contingency fund
Perhaps the biggest oversight homeowners make is failing to have a contingency fund. Despite all your planning, things can go wrong and there may be unexpected costs in finishing your remodeling project. It's important that you set aside extra, at least 10% of the cost of the remodeling project, so that you're prepared for any setbacks.
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Should you need another estimate.. Please email us at email@example.com
You can contact Manhattan Renovations 212 685 6358 or firstname.lastname@example.org
1. your question cannot easily be answered because the work you want to do is too unique
2. but I have an excellent and relatively inexpensive contractor tenant who might be able to help you
3. if you want to discuss that please e-mail me at email@example.com
Looking to buy a duplex apartment in UES. What would be my cost if i were to change the following (all major changes):
1. for a loft stace, raise ceiling by about a foot
2. build stairs from loft area down to living room
3. update 2 bathrooms and put a shower into one of them
4. get rid of mirror walls
5. build in more storage
please feel free to reach out to us for a free estimate on any work that you may need done
archivesid.com / firstname.lastname@example.org / 212 685 2715
Do not ruin the space by adding loft bedrooms. You will get 5 foot ceiling in the bedroom at best if you leave 6.5 foot lower floor making both areas somewhat useless.
Hi. We are architects and engineers and are currently working on 3 loft conversions which we would happily show you. Please feel free to contact me: Andres. www.agenciegroup.com, email@example.com
I'm in the same boat. Not sure how much it would cost but if you find out let me know..lol
Hi, double sided bathtubs looks very classy. Even now, you can use powder coatings on bath tubs to make it looks like you wish. There are wide varieties available in powder coating. To know more, visit http://www.decoralamerica.com.
Hi there Andrew,
If you need any help with install work, please feel free reach out to me as I would love to come by and provide you with a competitive quote.
WetStyle ....but might be too modern for what you are looking to replace.
Great thanks Aaron and niece_sport.
There are several readily available two sided tubs. Duravit makes such a tub ("Happy D" line), which can be purchased most anywhere. Waterworks also makes one, that can be purchased for an arm and a leg.
Hi There, I am a licensed contractor in NYC.. I would love to come and provide you with a competitive quote and give you a better understanding of what you will be paying. Is there a number or email I can reach you on?
snezanc - I wish you were right. However, this appears to be the going rate. YET I'm not sure what the end product of something like this really looks like. I've been in sponsor-renovated units that were fine. They weren't going to end up in Architectural Digest, but I don't want nor need that for this unit.
$200 a square foot ? $200 p/sq foot is what it costs to build, not to renovate.
$150 per square foot is more like it in Manhattan.
Thinking about making a bid on a 900 sq co-op that needs a total renovation. This would be a 2nd home - no need for top of the line - really low mid-range is OK.
Knock down walls to reconfigure LR/DR to LR and 2nd bedroom
New bathroom (one)
Probably new electrical and plumbing or at least some upgrading
Skim coat and paint walls
New hardwood floors
I've read enough on here to know that the ballpark figure is $200 per sq. However, I've also seen $150/sq. I'd love to aim closer to $125. This would not include the cost of hiring an architect and permits, which I realize can add another 10-12%.
If you talk to others who have remodeled their homes, you will find that remodeling projects are either completely successful, or a complete disaster. Often times when a remodeling project becomes a nightmare, it is usually because the homeowners did not understand what they were getting into. In order for your home remodeling project to be successful, you need to know what upgrades your home needs before you spend a lot of money on upgrades that are not necessary. Here are three reasons why homeowners usually choose to remodel their homes.
Remodeling to create space
A major reason for remodeling is to increase living and storage space, but before you go knocking down walls, utilize the space you already have. Most often the problem of little space is because of all the unnecessary clutter that has accumulated, so get rid of clutter and be amazed at how much space opens up in your home. Buzzfeed gives several ways for homeowners to use underneath their staircases as storage by installing unique shelving, or even drawers to hold items that take up space and need a home. If you are short on bedrooms, or you need an office, consider turning your attic into one of these spaces.
Remodeling for convenience
We live in a world that demands convenience, so many homeowners remodel simply to make their lives a little easier. Walk-in showers increase convenience because you do not have any glass to clean. The kitchen is one of the places where homeowners need the most convenience, so consider installing chutes for your trash and recycling. Pull out cabinets are nice for instant counter space, and they can be easily hidden away when you no longer need them. Pull out drawers are also nice for keeping your kitchen drawers organized and your items easy to access. Convenience is not a bad reason to want to remodel, as your home should be everything you need in order to make your everyday life as easy as possible so you can spend more time with the ones you love.
Remodeling for style
Once your home has all the necessary features, then you can remodel simply for a new look or style. Your home should be unique to you and your family, so do not be afraid to think outside the box. Install magnetic panels in your walls that are strong enough to hold shelves or even TVs. Lower a section of the living room and surround that section in seating to create a conversation pit. Lastly, consider installing accordion glass windows so when the weather is nice you can open them up and feel like you are outside. There are several other remodeling projects that can make your home unique, so spend time researching different projects, and have fun letting your imagination soar.
Interior decorating and remodeling news brought to you by baseboardradiatorcover.com
In the past we have installed wood flooring over existing if the floor was in good shape. We have never had any complaints
We had parquet. We spoke to a number of contractors and it was like 50/50 dont lay over existing. Its possible if current floor is "solid", but long term you may have issues. We ripped out old (get an asbestos test on black glue), put in new 3/4 plywood over concrete sub floor and nailed glue (belt and suspender approach to possible warping/cupping) with 4 inch maple
Hi- We are currently in contract on a 950 sq ft apartment on the UES. The apartment currently has old parquet which looks to have been replaced in certain spots with non-matching parquet, which means we need to redo the floors. The existing parquet was glued on with no subfloor. Has anyone installed new hardwood floors on top of existing parquet (using parquet as the subfloor)? If so, what is your experience and do you like it? Or do you recommend ripping out the parquet, installing new subfloors and then adding the new floors? Thanks!
Selling a home can either be a great experience or bad experience, and it all depends on how you prepare to sell your home. While the market can determine how much you actually get for your home, you also have a lot of say when it comes to the price of your home depending on what you do to prepare to sell your home. Here is some advice to successfully selling your home.
Upgrading to increase value
Making certain upgrades in order to increase the value of your home is smart, but it is important that you make the right upgrades because there are upgrades that can actually decrease the value of your home such as installing a pool. Upgrades that make your home more energy efficient will definitely increase your home’s value, and fortunately do not break the bank. Give your home a fresh coat of paint in a neutral color that looks nice, but is easy to cover up if the new owners choose to do so. Update light fixture on the interior and exterior of the home in order to give the home an upgraded feel.
Advertising your home
When placing your home on the market, understand that most potential buyers are first going to search the internet for listings, which means it is vital that you take good pictures of the home to post them online. How to Nest for Less encourages homeowners who are selling their homes to take pictures of every area of the home. The more pictures, the better. Make sure the lighting is good so the house doesn’t look dark and gloomy. Capture important features like kitchen appliances, closets and other features that potential buyers are most interested in. Once your online listing is posted and appealing, post appealing signs around the neighborhood to drive traffic your way, and make sure your yard is well kept so when people drive by to see the home they are instantly drawn in by the curb appeal.
Preparing to move
Moving is often messy, and moving while trying to sell your home can be frustrating because you are trying to keep your house presentable for walk throughs, but packing often leads to clutter throughout the house. Before putting your home on the market, get rid of all unnecessary clutter by hosting yard sales or donating items to thrift stores or donation centers. Purchase several cheap laundry baskets that you can quickly throw items in when you don’t have time to deep clean before people arrive for a walk through. Mess can make or break a sale, so make it easy for yourself to keep the home clean while trying to sell your home. Lastly, consider putting unnecessary items in storage to keep your home from looking cluttered, and give the illusion of more space.
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Source: howtonestforless .com/2014/05/22/15-best-tips-selling-home/
I am doing a gut renovation of a pre-war apartment. The apartment is about 2k sqft, and I am considering installing either Central AC or going for a ductless system. The latter seems cheaper to install, operate and maintain. But the drawback is that they are noticeable on the walls, and temperatures across rooms are equalized (which of course is why they would be cheaper to run). I was wondering if anyone could opine on his/her experience with ductless systems.
Prior to selecting the contractor for our ongoing renovation I asked to see an existing project. The contractor positively embraced the opportunity to show off his work. Seeing the work and the openness of the contractor made my choice easy.
What neighborhood is the contractor's prior work in?
for sure....never hire contractor without doing it.
Is it appropriate to ask a prospective contractor to see an example of his work in person? Thanks
Thanks a lot.
Try Little Wolf. A friend of mine just had custom work done by them. The work was outstanding.
If you dont want expensive custom I would try little wolf or gotham.
Here we go again.
Remember the last couple times someone made a recommendation to 300mercer...
Will appreciate recommendations for good quality but not ridiculously expensive work. Thanks.
A new bath would have to be built to current code... which follows local law 58 (I think) which is basically following ADA. If you demo a bath then technically it's supposed to be re-built to current code if possible (in a lot of cases it's not possible because you can't make the bathroom larger). The number of baths doesn't matter, anything new will have to be done to code. You should speak to an architect. Just because it looks like a bath can fit doesn't mean it will, it depends on where the water and waste lines are, venting, if the building even allows it, etc.
thanks jasonl. why does a new bathroom have to be ada compliant? is that always the case if you are creating a new bathroom? what if you are getting rid of one and adding one so that the number of bathrooms stays the same?
Talk to the managing agent to see if wet over dry is even allowed, then talk the super about what's been allowed/done in the past. Most buildings don't allow chiseling into the slab from the top (plumbing), or even the bottom (for lighting/electrical). If it's allowed then talk to an architect. If it's basement below, or some sort of commercial space below with a drop ceiling you might have more options for working from below. Wall hung toilet is the way to go and if it's a full bath I'd go with shower stall, which like Primer says would probably have to be raised. Keep in mind a new bathroom is going to have to be ADA compliant... which means large (probably much larger than you think), so I'd talk to an architect. Even if it is allowed it might not be possible. Good luck!
When you say first floor do you mean ground floor? You may have a lot more options if you have a basement and access to plumbing below
@alan, he's worth it.
I would assume you have already found an architect but if you are still looking for some reason email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
archhivesid.com / email@example.com
Several factors may impact your total cost including the condition of the electrical (and the potential need to replace your electrical panel or increase the service to the residence), selected finishes, and if the building imposes a time constraint on the length of a project.
I advise you start your research by viewing kitchens on websites such as Houzz. Having a set of precedent images will greatly help you explain your expectations to a potential architect/designer/general contractor.
We've completed the same project type, and some images may be found on our website - www.hirshsondesign.com. Feel free to contact us if you'd like to discuss the design and renovation project - firstname.lastname@example.org.
Best of luck with your renovation!
We performed a gut renovation on a classic six on 5th Avenue. Happy to refer the architect or others to you. Good luck,