With the closing behind us and our dream of owning a Brooklyn brownstone a reality, we’re ready to transform it into our home! Truth be told, I’ve spent a lot of time working on the floor plan myself the last 2 months while we were waiting to close. I used an app (Magicplan) for free to put it together. Although the building is a 3 story 2-family, we’re only renovating the upper duplex.
Now we just need an architect to take that plan we put so much thought into and make drawings that the Department of Buildings will approve. We also pretty much have all of our finishes nailed down so we don’t need the services of a designer. We needed an architect who technically knew what they were doing, has experience facilitating DOB approval, moves quickly (first mortgage payment rapidly approaching), and is highly communicative. I spoke to an architect/designer combo who gave me a $28,000 proposal, with other DOB filing fees on it as well. Since I feel like we just needed someone to translate our floor plan to DOB drawings we were paying for more than we needed. I found a forum on Brownstoner where someone spoke of architect who did what seemed like a similar job, Dick Boschen from Boschen Design. I called his office and was immediately transferred to Dick himself. I had a great conversation with him. He understood what we wanted to do (technical experience), had a lot of experience in our type of project (including DOB approval), he loved that I already had a floor plan put together (I can see an architect not liking that), and in addition to immediately taking my call at 5pm he gave me his email for me to send over my notes (highly communicative). I sent my notes and he sent back a proposal for $7,000 plus DOB filing fees and likely some hourly fees along the way. We would expect the final bill to be around $15,000. So with an additional $12k in our pocket with the savings from the original architects proposal we moved forward. We already have a first draft of the plan and the asbestos inspection is done. Drawings should be filed within the week and expect a post shortly on dealing with the DOB in NYC .