2007 Nov
Focus on... Building Systems Maintenance

Interior Restoring Buildings After Emergencies
2007 Nov Restoring Buildings After Emergencies

Apartment buildings, whether cooperatives or condos, are inherently fragile. When that many units share the same plot of land, and the same walls, the same floors, the same elevators and stairways, standpipes and boilers, lobbies and roo…

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Interior Duct and Air System Upkeep
2007 Nov Duct and Air System Upkeep

It creeps in silently and is everywhere at once. It is totally invisible to the naked eye, but often carries potentially dangerous materials. It can cause sickness and discomfort without ever being detected. What on earth could it be? …

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Interior High Voltage
2007 Nov High Voltage

A few generations ago, even the largest residential buildings had basic electrical needs, such as lighting the building and running some washing machines. Residents back then generally only had a TV, a radio, some lamps and a few kitchen ap…

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Interior Management in Crisis
2007 Nov Management in Crisis

Every property manager has a horror story or two—or three, or four, or forty-seven—about the sub-zero winter night when the boiler in a 400-unit high-rise went kaput, or what happened when the sprinkler system decided to turn on for no disc…

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Interior How to Deal with Urban Construction
2007 Nov How to Deal with Urban Construction

Say that you and your neighbors have been living a quiet, peaceful life on your tree-lined city block for years and years. Suddenly, you see construction workers digging in that vacant lot next to your condo or co-op building. So you go dow…

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Board Operations How Boards and Residents Can Reduce Noise
2007 Nov How Boards and Residents Can Reduce Noise

New York City is known as the city that never sleeps��and for good reason: the city noise can be enough to keep anyone awake 24/7. In a city packed with millions of people, who often live in tight quarters, New York City residents experienc…

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Neighborhoods Williamsburg's Most Recent Reinvention
2007 Nov Williamsburg's Most Recent Reinvention

Over the past 15 years, freelance photographer Simon Russell and his wife, Ann Delilkan, worked hard to make a home out of their small basement-level apartment on MacDougal Street. When "Men in Black" filmed in their neighborhood, R…

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Real Estate Trends Automated Parking Makes its Debut
2007 Nov Automated Parking Makes its Debut

In a cramped city crawling with cars, a parking lot or garage is a gold-plated amenity for a New York City co-op or condo. Just as we need a place to lay our heads, we also need a place to stable our precious sedans and SUVs. Adequate pa…

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Real Estate Trends Smart Buying in New Construction
2007 Nov Smart Buying in New Construction

Everyone's heard the old saying about how "They don't make 'em like they used to" applied to everything from cars to appliances. But does the same hold true for residential buildings? A spirited debate surrounds the issue of whether toda…

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Maintenance Creating a Seasonal Plan
2007 Nov Creating a Seasonal Plan

One of the most confusing subjects of property management is maintenance. Engineers make it such with fancy names to various types of maintenance, such as "Reliability Maintenance," "Routine Maintenance," "Predictive Maintenance" and "To…

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Maintenance A Ten Item Punchlist
2007 Nov A Ten Item Punchlist

When a client hires a general contractor to build or renovate property, that company is legally responsible for completing all of that work. The contractor may go out and hire different companies or subcontractors to help execute that wo…

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Q&A Q&A: Sporadic Noise Problem
2007 Nov Q&A: Sporadic Noise Problem

Q From downstairs at times I can hear the kids who live in the apartment above me jumping around. The owner has a rug down sometimes, but not at others. The board president has hardwood floors, even though it says in the bylaws that …

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Q&A Q&A: Shareholder Preventing Sale
2007 Nov Q&A: Shareholder Preventing Sale

Q We have a shareholder who has posted notices around our co-op that condemn the co-op and the board. They are in plain view of potential buyers. When the buyers read these notices, they refuse to even look at the available unit that…

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Q&A Q&A: Elevator Out of Service
2007 Nov Q&A: Elevator Out of Service

Q I live on the fourth floor of a condominium project, and management has advised that they will shut down the elevators for two months. They claim they will arrange to have staff assist people with carrying up groceries, etc. Howeve…

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Q&A Q&A: Past President, Present Blame
2007 Nov Q&A: Past President, Present Blame

Q I’m a past president and current shareholder of a co-op. The current board is saying—that two years ago when I was president—I am responsible for decisions that the majority board decided back then. My apartment is for sale and the…

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Q&A Q&A: Nit-Picking?
2007 Nov Q&A: Nit-Picking?

Q Our condo has prohibited the use of doormats. They say they are a hazard. Is this legal? How can we fight this nit-picking rule? —Annoyed in Brooklyn A “As with so many issues that arise between unit owners an…

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Q&A Q&A: Limit on Fee Raise?
2007 Nov Q&A: Limit on Fee Raise?

Q I have a question about raising the maintenance fees on a condo. Is there any set limit or percentage? Case in point—our maintenance fee has been the same for 17 years. Now the board of managers has raised it 40 percent. I was payi…

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Q&A Q&A: Problem Selling Unit
2007 Nov Q&A: Problem Selling Unit

Q I am a shareholder at a 49-unit co-op in Manhattan. For the past five years we’ve had a vacant unit on the third floor as a result of excessive noise emanating from the apartment above. The past and present boards have not initiated an…

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