Upper East Side, where it is difficult to renovate an apartment,
but not impossible. Project by Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA
By Ritu Saheb, Architect, AIA
Renovating an apartment in Manhattan is a long and time consuming process, but do not lose heart, everybody is doing it!
1. If it is a Co-op or a Condo, obtain the Alteration Agreement. This document will define everything you need to know- the insurance your Contractor will need to have, how many days you have to finish your renovation, what the elevator charges are, what damage deposit the building insists upon, the drawings to be submitted for building approval, who will sign the permit forms etc.
2. Do I need an architect? Only if you are opening walls, moving doors, adding a bathroom, moving plumbing fixtures, doing structural work etc. You do NOT need an architect for ‘maintenance work’ such as replacing cabinetry, appliances, flooring, painting the apartment, and other cosmetic work. If this is the case, your Contractor can directly apply to the building. Similarly plumbers and electricians can obtain their own permits for maintenance work.