designnerd's Profile

Display Name: designnerd
Member Since: 1/18/08

Latest Comments...

I'f you're looking for next year you're not going to see much until 1 month before your move. That's pretty normal around here. Pick a neighborhood and monitor what the current listings you like are going for, so you have some bargaining numbers. Also, know what you want and what you are willing to sacrifice. What's standard everywhere outside NYC like laundry and dishwashers in the apartment are few and far between here. Personally my big things were space and quality of the apartment. I chose pre-war over new construction because I wanted architectural detail, huge rooms and beautiful hardwood floors.

I found mine through a small local broker, but out in my part of Brooklyn (Bay Ridge) which is considered "far" from Manhattan, fees are only 1 month's rent rather than the standard 15% of your year's rent.

It's ok to spend that fee if you're going to live in the place for more than 3 or 4 years, if you can find a broker you trust, they will actually save you a bit of time and legwork.

Never accept the first few apartments they are going to show you. They are usually leftovers that nobody wants.

As for Manhattan, well, I suggest you start reading religiously, you'll see how tough the market is and what you're dealing with. I managed to get one apartment in Manhattan at Peter Cooper Village/Stuyvesant-town for no fee, but the catch was after I lived there for a few years they started raising my rent by 200-400 a year, I had to decide every year whether to re-sign my lease or move and which choice would be more expensive. I finally moved out after 6 years and the rent was $1100 MORE a month than when I moved in.

Also, it's not an easy process. You will need to make at least 40-50 times the rent to qualify--you may also need a few references, letter from employer, tax returns, etc to actually get an apartment so have all your paperwork and finances in order.

Strategies for Finding a NYC Apartment?
Good Questions

9/20/10 09:43 AM

Mid-toned gray for walls, curtains with throw pillows with burgundy, cream, camel and gray stripes or pattern. New table in dark brown wood.

I'm kind of tired of seeing all the home design shows with beige and burgundy color schemes...I think gray would be a fresher yet still neutral option.

Or light gray, dark gray, burgundy and white.

Cheery Wall Colors to Suit Roommate's Burgundy Sofa?
Good Questions

8/2/10 04:37 PM

Wow. That is much nicer than any of the accommodations I've had in Ibiza. Very inspirational.

The only thing missing from the scene is the view out the window, depending on the location on the island, could be a spectacular contrast. I've never seen a sea so blue and green.

Summer Rental Lust in Ibiza The Style Files | Apartment Therapy San Francisco
6/16/10 03:01 PM

Might be interesting if you jazz it up with some intense red, orange or fuschia accessories, paint the walls something a bit closer to white than current color, and keep the rest the neutral that it is.

Apartment Therapy New York | Color Advice for Traditional Kitchen? Good Questions
9/4/09 10:57 AM

I have the same chairs, but in light tan leather, I think they were from Workbench a few years back. The leather has ripped on all 4 of them. I recommend if you use leather you pick a very strong one and have it sewn professionally.

Apartment Therapy New York | Replacing Canvas on Tubular Metal Chairs? Good Questions
8/26/09 11:12 PM

How about some straw beach mats hanging with clothespins from a line? You can put them up and take them down easily.

Apartment Therapy New York | Good Questions: Solutions for Patio Privacy?
6/16/09 12:57 PM

I live in a Brooklyn neighborhood that only has a few supermarkets (all about 15 minutes walk or bike ride), therefore it was more important to have a simple produce store and a meat store within a block or two of my apartment than an actual grocery store. The produce store is open 24 hours and also doubles as a convenience store. I can get by on salads with protein most of the time, and I hit up Fairway (a large supermarket in Red Hook, a 20 minute drive) for specialty cheeses, groceries, seafood, cereals and staples maybe twice a month.

Apartment Therapy The Kitchn | Apartment Hunting: Is Proximity to a Grocery Store Important?
6/16/09 12:50 PM

Definitely the Verrazano. Connects Brooklyn to Staten Island.

Apartment Therapy New York | Update: Laidback Home on MTV Real World
1/13/09 09:33 PM

I have a tv, in an armoire that can close, in my bedroom. It doesn't get used much, but is certainly nice to have there if I am sick or working at my desk across the room. I can close it off when not in use so it is not an eyesore.

I'd say it would be important not only to have comfortable linens/sheets, but also comfortable bedding. It is annoying to have to remove a stiff top blanket and tailored pillows every night just to get to the pillows and blankets you actually use.

Apartment Therapy Los Angeles | 10 Common Mistakes Made In The Bedroom
1/13/09 09:20 PM

For glurf: Simon's Hardware and Bath (in Manhattan) for modern or contemporary styled hardware — they also have a website (which doesn't even begin to show the range of what they carry):

Apartment Therapy New York | Open Thread 677 New York
1/13/09 11:19 AM

^ Research comforters. A duvet is a fancy word for comforter.

Try Macy's (or any other department store) on a sale day, Bed Bath and Beyond or even discount stores like TJ Maxx and Century 21 (if you're in NY).

For online shopping, I've ordered bedding from and been pretty happy with my orders.

Apartment Therapy New York | Open Thread 677 New York
1/13/09 10:53 AM

I have the pop-out earrings and necklace, they are beautiful and I wear them all the time.

Just a warning—the metal edges are sometimes very sharp—especially the points that are popped, and it's best to try to file them down with a jewelry or metal file in order to prevent getting cut or having them snag fabric (maybe not so much an issue with ornaments as much as jewelry).

Apartment Therapy San Francisco | Pop-Out Ornaments by Melissa Borrell
12/4/08 07:25 PM

This company makes all sorts of tiles, sold in craft stores like Pearl paint and Michael's, but if you know the size and color you would be able to order them online.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | CHI Good Questions: Replacement Tiles?
4/21/08 06:23 PM

I have been to the NYC store, and I don't like how the floor samples have held up.. That's all. I'd rather wait a long time to save up to buy something of higher quality that I know will endure over time. I like their accessories, but as for their cabinetry I have some concerns after seeing it in person.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Gray Finish Furniture
2/2/08 05:58 PM

Being a beige-hater myself, I love my gray sectional sofa. Currently I have a blue-green-gray (Benjamin Moore's Soft Chinchilla) paint color theme going on, with everything else brushed steel, frosted glass. light maple and gray. I love that I can change the walls one day to a warm color and everything else will still fit.

I'd be into gray finished furniture...but not from west elm.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Gray Finish Furniture
2/2/08 12:06 PM

I don't have any pets (sadly I'm allergic) but can recommend this site for decent-looking cat furniture (the Lotus looks way nicer than a carpeted "cat condo") and "hidden" litter boxes:

And for dog furniture:

Apartment Therapy San Francisco | SF Survey: Do You Have Pets?
1/30/08 07:25 AM

Boltz makes sturdy sleek steel LP shelving:

Or you could do what I did...I went to a custom furniture builder in NYC and had them make a maple wall unit to spec: center console, with a mixing height countertop to fit the turntables, a rack sized angled center console for the mixer, drawers for cds below, and below that 2 levels of cubbies for records. They also built a hutch for above-head storage and 2 side cabinets to store more records, and space on top (ear-level) for the monitor speakers.

Apartment Therapy Los Angeles | Good Questions: Shelving Records?
1/26/08 02:08 PM