How The Right Design Build Partner Simplifies your NYC Gut Renovation

Penthouse Remodeling
Making a Prewar Apt a Traditional Gem – W 81st St, NYC

Gutting a property and creating a luxury apartment in NYC is no small task. In fact, it is a daunting process. There are three or more separate disciplines and agencies that have to be aligned and in agreement to reach approvals necessary before any project can proceed or start construction. You have the vertical reality of living in NYC and apartment legal ownership – is it a Condo, Co-op, or Townhouse? Multifamily Dwelling? If you don’t know how to navigate the complicated process and even if you do have experience in renovating your home, Manhattan is another world of regulations, codes and red tape. The three parts of knowing what has to be done architecturally, designing what the desired space should look like and how it should function and then getting this approved by building legal entities and managers as well as approved to start construction really is an integrated, not separate, process by different firms. If they are not then timelines, and budgets go out the window.


Fortunately, there is an alternative and possibly better solution with a Design Build Firm. You can avoid these hassles and make your NYC apartment renovation project run smoothly by choosing the right design build partner to work with. Here are just a few of the benefits.


Gut Renovation
Contemporary Apartment Renovation on Madison & 62nd St, NYC


We Can Help You Understand Your Vision

Often, when someone starts the process of undertaking a NYC apartment renovation, they have lots of ideas but really need a reality check on what can and cannot be done, as well as a plan to create the best possibilities for your vision of the space. And, then there is cost versus the budget. This is where an experienced design build specialist can be a huge help, helping to refine these inspirations, and that’s where I find our expertise truly sets us apart from other firms. Understanding timelines, and your objectives needs to be defined from the start. How long are you planning to stay in your residence? It helps save time and money to have a plan for what you want to create, and what you can afford which cannot be done in a vacuum.  We often create the plan and budget professionally with a retainer before we commit to our labor agreement and filing for approvals and permits.


We’ll Plan the Project with You

It’s one thing to have an idea of what you want your renovated apartment to look like, and another thing to get there. NYC is complicated to manage and execute residential renovations in any building! It’s a process that needs expertise to help you change the space you have to the one you want. First, building approvals and what’s required to get them can take months. Second, the permits, historical Landmark approvals, asbestos removal, and scheduling logistics for not only the building, the contractors and the deliveries are overwhelmingly complex. This is another part of the process where having someone with the right tools and experience can make an overwhelming task manageable.


Kitchen Design Firm
Traditional Kitchen Design & Ground Floor Patio Transformation – 31 W 93rd St, NYC


We’ll Work with You to Create a Realistic Budget

There are two aspects to creating a realistic New York apartment renovation budget. The first is that it needs to be realistic in the sense that the work and materials can be completed for the amount that has been allocated. The second is how to manage the expectations of how to achieve the goals when your budget is not enough. A great design build specialist can help you prioritize what can be done given your financial limits.


Necessary Building Permits or Building Limitations

It would be nice if renovating your home was as simple as creating a plan and having the work finished, but that’s never the reality – particularly here in New York City. Co-ops and Condos, and for that matter Townhouses all require the work to be approved by building owners and DOB so that the work is “formally” legally permitted. Otherwise, it jeopardizes your sale of your property and for Co-ops can violate your proprietary lease, resulting in eviction. That’s the first thing a smart buyer’s attorney checks and it is a nightmare to fix after the fact. Sometimes it cannot be! It’s critical that you have someone who knows what they are doing, and who can get the permits, inspections and final close outs of the job with DOB to get your completion letter issued for closure.
Planning Foyer Tile Flooring Layout

Ordering Materials Needed for the Job

Design Build firms’ expertise directly benefit the owner, from streamlining the process and purchasing of the hundreds if not thousands it seems of items that have to be delivered when they are needed from finish materials, custom made cabinetry, kitchen appliances, tile, and construction materials. Even more importantly, the integrated process of building what we design ensures that the items purchased and received match the design decisions that were previously made. This is a benefit that’s easy to overlook until you realize how many different products have to be selected, quantified and delivered and returned, if needed! Having relationships with vendors makes a big difference for service.


We’ll Organize the Workflow and Manage Contractors and suppliers.

If you want the job done right, besides hiring the right Design Build firm, you have to have the right Contractors and sources to get the job done. That’s what a Design Build company does best, since they execute building what is designed. If you want your renovation finished on time and within budget, you need someone with New York City apartment renovation experience to supervise the various contractors and suppliers and work with the building in a seamless way.

Gut Renovation
Prewar Master Bed/Bath Transformation – 6 W 77th St, NYC


Need Help Planning and Managing Your NYC Apartment Renovation Project?

Paula McDonald is the best at working with NYC apartment renovations – including gut and renovation projects. Contact her today to schedule an initial design consultation and see how she can help you bring your vision for changing your living space to life!

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