Storage Options for Your NYC Kitchen

Storage is extremely important in NYC, as the average kitchen here is definitely smaller than it would be in the suburbs. That being said, it is important to have a decent array of storage options in your kitchen, as everyone needs a convenient place to put their kitchen appliances while also allowing them to be readily accessible at any time. Here are some tips to better your storage options in the kitchen.

Change up your cabinets! Cabinets can be custom-made for a relatively affordable price, which gives you a wide assortment of options. They can be made to fit your specific needs, like custom building them to fit into a corner. Sliding cabinets can also allow you to have deep storage, while also providing easy reachability to the back portions. You can also get creative with the doors of the cabinet!

Hang your pots and pans! This saves you a lot of space and also gives your kitchen a modern, chic finish.

Replace your cabinets with shelves! Smaller kitchens can especially benefit from this, as there are no restrictions on where a shelf can be fitted, and shelves will allow a smaller kitchen to look bigger by taking out all the extra space a cabinet would usually take.

Kitchen Islands. If you have room for an island, it is definitely highly recommended you get one, as it will both increase your countertop area as well as increase your storage space, giving you many drawers to work with.

Office Projects Reaching Record High

The New York Building Congress has reported that office projects have accounted for 54% of construction, reaching a new record high for the last three years. Each year has exceeded $2 billion in construction starts, including the World Trade Center and Hudson Yards new developments.

Between 2013 and 2017, commercial construction totaled $23.8 billion, totaling more than 73 million new square feet of space. Although office construction is leading in the industry, other major commercial sectors such as hotels, retail and warehouse are experiencing significant growth.

“As more businesses continue to call New York home, building new, world-class commercial spaces is more important than ever,” says New York Building Congress president and CEO Carlo A. Scissura. “New York City’s economy has never relied on a single industry or sector and the variety of commercial construction across the city ensures our businesses can adapt and thrive in the 21st century.”

Create Space For Your Next Renovation

According to The New York Times article, “Making the Most of a Tiny Kitchen On A Tiny Budget,” Laura and Ian Greig found new ways to create more space during a home renovation. They did this by remodeling their small kitchen. 

Before the kitchen renovation, Laura and Ian did not have space to store a dishwasher. Many of their belongings would block the only window they had in their kitchen. Their kitchen was deprived of natural light. They were also burdened by the lack of space caused by their bulky cabinets and large air-conditioning soffits. They always thought that a kitchen renovation would not help their situation until they were made aware of a few renovation tips that would help any living space look bigger. 

Open The Window 

The first tip is letting in some light. The key to renovating Laura and Ian’s kitchen was to create space in front of their window. Along with rearranging their kitchen appliances, they painted other areas of the kitchen white so that the natural light looks like it’s bouncing off the surface. White and other light colors create space by creating a reflective quality that allows for light to bounce around and make a kitchen look bigger. 

Get Creative 

Laura and Ian were then advised to play with the layout. Playing with the layout of your kitchen is a key tool in creating space. By moving their sink flush against the wall with the window and new refrigerator, they were finally able to fit that dishwasher they’ve always dreamed of doing! For tips on playing around with your kitchen layout, contact us by clicking here

Think Bigger

Laura and Ian then took the final step of looking for other areas where space was being wasted. During the renovation, they realized that soffit around the refrigerator was much bigger than it had to be. Getting a smaller soffit, allowed for them to gain about six inches of overhead space. Laure and Ian made their hove not only look more spacious, also feel more comforting. For advice on your next hove renovation visit:
For more information on the article, click here.

How is NY Real Estate Looking for 2018?

Real estate sales in Manhattan plunged 25% in the first quarter over the past year, as the new federal tax law, stock market swings, and an abundance of luxury condos scared buyers. Sales dropped the lowest it’s been in six years, according to a report from Douglas Elliman and Miller Samuel.

The average sales price also dropped 8% compared to the same quarter last year. The drop was probably caused by the uncertainty over the new federal tax law, which prevents residents in high-tax states like New York from deducting their state and local taxes. Closings at new condo towers have also slowed down, making the decline even steeper. The high end of the market is getting hit harder, as prices for luxury apartments fell 15% and sales were down 24% in the quarter from last year.

It is speculated that the main problem within this market is asking prices, as sellers still have to adjust and lower their prices in order to keep up with the tax law changes and slowdown since 2014.

 

The Hottest Kitchen Trends of 2018

Kitchens have changed a lot over decades and planning for a kitchen remodel is very important. It is important for your kitchen to be modern, as kitchens are now the focal point of a home, the place that brings everyone together at the start or end of the day. In 2018, clean and simple styles have been favored amongst homeowners, with natural light becoming an essential aspect. Here are the top kitchen renovation trends of 2018:

    1. Smart kitchens: technology is now being integrated into every function and appliance found in the kitchen, from the fridge to the lighting.
    2. Cabinet Colors: White is a classic favorite for kitchen cabinets, as it provides a clean look for a space that can get cluttered at times. Grey is the second choice, as it is versatile, allowing it to be paired with natural elements or glamour accents. Dark kitchen cabinets are slowly making their rise this year, however, helping a kitchen look elegant and luxurious.
    3. Kitchen countertops: Quartz is still a favorite for high-end kitchen countertops, as it can last forever and is very easy to maintain. There is now a wider range of colors of quartz as well as a realistic assortment of stone patterns.
    4. Appliances: One of the hottest trends of 2018 is gray-toned appliances in a dark brushed metal finish.
    5. Flooring: Hardwood flooring is still the number one flooring of choice, but ceramic tile is a close second, as technology is now allowing ceramic tiles to look like hardwood flooring, as well as many other materials.
    6. Islands: Large kitchen islands are now becoming a staple to every kitchen, with storage solution cabinets with under-counter appliances as well as seating.

Do I Need an Interior Designer?

If you’re planning to remodel a larger area, it might be a good idea to hire an interior designer. It might seem like a waste of money at first, but it is important to keep in mind that an interior designer will assume many of the roles traditionally assigned to subcontractors. Interior designers can also improve your home in ways that a subcontractor would not catch.

Researching and shopping for fixtures can be very time consuming, and having someone come to you that knows how to select these products can save a lot of time. Hiring an interior designer can design your workspace in a shorter amount of time, and it can also save on extra costs. Good interior designers know how to maximize the qualities of a space, emphasizing positive attributes and downplaying less desirable qualities.

Hiring an interior designer is a good idea no matter what, even if you have a full plan for your room or you have no idea. Hiring an interior designer will allow you to gain the advantage of their expertise and technical knowledge in terms of design, which will help you avoid potential issues and costly design mistakes in the future.

 

Construction Project Ideas

  1. Residential - These types of construction projects includes houses, townhouses, cottages, apartments, condominiums, single unit dwellings and subdivisions. The designs for the housing are usually done by architects and engineers; the construction is completed by builders who hire subcontractors for structural, electrical, mechanical and other specific work. This type of project must adhere to the local building authority regulations and codes of practice. Because of its ease of entry into the real estate market, many new builders are attracted to residential projects. Although it is a highly competitive market with potentially high risks, there are also high rewards.
  2. Building - This type of construction project is possibly the most popular; it is the process of adding structure to a property, including room additions and small renovations. For current homeowners, this is the most common project because they often extend their homes with additional rooms, walk-in closets, garages, and kitchen renovations. 
  3. Institutional & Commercial - This category includes schools, universities, hospitals, clinics, sports facilities, stadiums, shopping centers, retail chain stores, light manufacturing plants, warehouses, skyscrapers for offices and hotels, and more. For these projects, specialty architects and engineers are hired for a particular building design. There a few competitors for this category because of its high costs and greater sophistication as compared to residential buildings.
  4. Highway Construction - This involves the alteration, construction, repair of highways, streets, roads, paths, parking areas, and more.
  5. Heavy Construction - These projects are those that are not classified as building or highway projects, such as flood control projects, water treatment plants and facilities, water and sewer line projects, and more.

Construction Tips for Your Workers’ Safety

1. Getting in and out of equipment:

– Check your boots and gloves for slippery substances and wipe them off to avoids slips and falls
– Get a foot or hand hold before hoisting yourself up
– Use a step ladder if necessary to make sure you can climb on the equipment safely
– If you need help, be sure to ask
– Avoid rushing to hop up or down on equipment

2. Personal Protective Equipment:

– It is important to wear the right clothes for the job, along with protective gear. On the job, your gear and other tools should be stored in a safe, dry place. First aid kits and fire extinguishers should be located near the work area and readily available.

– When lifting heavy objects, you should use a back brace to prevent damage to your body. You should also be sure to wear gloves and goggles on the work site if you’re using dangerous tools. If you’re working on an elevated area and there’s a risk of slipping and falling, you should wear a safety harness.

– Nonskid, rubber footwear is also important if you are working in an area with slippery surfaces, or if you’re lifting heavy objects.

– It is crucial to your health that you wear a mask at work if your workplace has bad ventilation and if you work with dangerous toxins, constant dust or other debris.

3. Staying safe loading/unloading equipment:

– No matter where you’re working, there is always the risk of equipment rolling over when you are loading or unloading it. This is why it is important to make sure the ramps you are using are straight and cleared. You should also be sure to allow plenty of room between you and the equipment in case of an emergency.

– It is always smart to use another co-worker as a spotter while guiding your equipment to make sure the machine is clear of the ramp before turning it. However, you should also make sure the trailer deck and you have proper clearance before loading it, in addition to using correct tie-down procedures.

 

‘Women Building Futures’ Program Trains Women to Work in Construction

A new program in Tampa, Florida, “Women Building Futures,” aims to train women to work in construction. Women fill every job imaginable capably and confidently, but construction is one job where you still might not expect to see many women. In fact, women make up only 9 percent of the entire construction workforce in America, according to OSHA; that’s less than one in every 10 construction workers.

This program helps women learn the skills and knowledge they need to work in the construction industry. “There’s a big demand for tradesmen and workers in the construction field so this class will give the ladies the opportunity to be able to go out and compete in that arena,” program manager Kimberly Kitchen told Fox 13.

Women Building Futures (WBF) became registered as a non-profit society in 1998 as a small group of women (social workers mostly) who set out to fulfill their shared dream of helping women achieve economic prosperity through trades training and mentorship. Working out of an office space ‘borrowed’ from the City of Edmonton, WBF focused on securing small grants to run a series of three-week classes on carpentry.

As of November 2006, the program is now 17-weeks long and includes introduction to six trades - carpentry, plumbing, electrical, steamfitting/pipefitting, welding and sheet metal. The graduate success rate continued to climb and all staff stayed on board during this period; a true display of the tenacity that makes WBF a success.

To learn more about this program, visit https://womenbuildingfutures.com.

Revamping Your Closet

Spring is approaching quickly, and you may be in the need for a closet revamp.

First, start with what's hanging. Place clothes on their hangers in two piles—one for short items, like shirts, and the other for long items, like coats and pants hung full length by their cuffs or waistband. Measure the height of each pile to get the desired lengths for short- and long-item rods. Next, arrange your clothes that could be folded in 10-inch-high stack; each stack needs 14 inches of shelf length. The ideal reach-in closet is 6 to 8 feet wide and 24 to 30 inches deep. Standard double doors are best, assuming there's room to swing them open.

Now, to start planning the interior, beginning with the left wall; measure everything to a T. Sketch a to-scale layout on graph paper, with each wall's width and height as well as details. Make note of sloped ceilings, knee walls, and other oddities. Start with storage for your shoes; your best bet is open shelves without dividers. To squeeze in an extra pair, alternate toes-facing-out and toes-facing-in. Sketch in rods for shorter items, making them as wide as your wardrobe warrants, and a higher rod for longer items. Draw shelves 4 inches above the rods plus a high shelf for less-used items, and mark their depths.

For walls and plaster that's in poor shape, line the closet with ¾-inch hardwood plywood and screw it to the studs. Now you are able to attach rods and shelves wherever you want.

No room for swing-open doors? Avoid sliders and invest in sturdy, solid-core or solid-wood bifolds and heavy-duty fittings. Lightweight doors with bad fittings wobble and constantly fall off their tracks. Decide where you want your off-season items, ideally in the attic or a dry corner of the basement. If you have spare room on the same floor, consider a clothes rack that can be wheeled to the closet when it's time for a swap-out. If this isn't an option, store your clothing pieces in bins and totes; be sure to label them so that you have easy access to something you need, year-round.