There’s no place like home?

Our first weekend in our new home.

Day 1: Living Room – Welcome to our little shoebox.

Imagine walking into your first home and having that sudden urge to weep. Most people would be overwhelmed with pride in their purchase and excited for this new phase of life to begin. Not us. We wanted weep for very different reasons.

When we first viewed the apartment the curtains were drawn and an extra bed was in the living room (not unusual in NYC for families in a one bedroom unit). The family was eating dinner, so we were quick to peek around and not interrupt their evening. It was spacious for NYC standards (at 699 square feet – I know) and even had a view of the city and the East River! We wanted it, and we couldn’t wait to put in an offer.

The next time we walked in, we felt a little sick. The place was a disaster. Our contract for the apartment was “as is” so we couldn’t do much about it. Naturally, (being the positive thinker in the family) I started taking ‘before’ photos. I knew we were going to transform this place, even if all my husband could do was lie on the floor and regret his purchase.

First off, we hired a cleaning crew so we could see what we were really dealing with. The kitchen and bathroom were terrifying.

Day 1: Bathroom -Check out all the Mildew!!! Gross!

Day 1: Bathroom -Check out all the Mildew!!! Gross!


Day 1: Kitchen - Notice the beautiful floors.

Day 1: Kitchen – Notice…just everything is awful.

Next, we talked to a contractor about our lovely parquet floors. They were oh so tired (and filthy) and had quite a large patch of water damage that was hiding underneath that sneaky living room bed – UGH. We could replace the whole thing with new flooring for thousands or remove the damaged portion and refinish the floors with a darker stain to blend the old and new parquet together.  We opted for the less expensive option and picked a Walnut stain for the whole apartment – best choice we ever made!

Day 1: Floors - the last owners were so tidy

Day 1: Floors – the last owners were so tidy

Day 1: Bedroom closet

Day 1: Bedroom closet

Day 1: Bedroom windows and floors

Day 1: Bedroom windows and floors – notice the window tape residue

Luckily, our broker recommended a contractor that was our one-stop shop. His company could deep clean the kitchen and bathroom, paint our walls and doors, remove the moldy popcorn ceiling in the bathroom, clean our windows from that unsightly tape residue (leftover from the Hurricane Sandy preparation), and patch and refinish our floors. Hooray!!

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