It’s been a while since we’ve checked in with the Maoists who edit the New York Times Styles and Real Estate sections, so:
In any renovation, there is the dream and then there is the reality — and the two are often worlds apart. Such was the case when Josh Lapidus and Tara Consi bought a three-story brick townhouse in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn, built in the 1890s, with plans to add a fourth floor for a new master suite.
After closing on the home for about $1.7 million in April 2013, they called in an engineer who delivered a stomach-churning report. [This is well above my pay grade, but don’t you generally have an engineer inspect the house before closing? –ed.]
“The whole south-facing wall was crumbling,” said Ms. Consi, 45, a stay-at-home mother who once worked for the interior designer Miles Redd. “All the beams and joists were cracked and bowed. The brick in the party wall had become like flour.”
Mr. Lapidus, 44, a high school teacher at the Urban Assembly Maker Academy, added: “We basically found out that the house was falling down.”
At 18 feet wide, it offered the generous spaces they longed for and appeared to need a renovation that was mostly cosmetic, along with the addition. But after they discovered the structural problems, their renovation budget of $900,000 ballooned to about $1.3 million, and the timeline grew to more than two years.
Problems anyone can identify with, really.
(djw)….if you missed last week’s Maoist provocation, do go back and check out this wedding announcement for Milton Friedman’s grandson, which would be rejected as an effort at parody for being far too on the nose. The writeup is a masterpiece of the genre in many ways, but I particularly appreciate the juxtaposition of the deadpan reportage of their plans for an unusually lengthy wedding (“We were committing to marriage to multiple human lifetimes if we have that opportunity,” said Mr. Friedman, taking cryogenics and life-extension technology into consideration. She added: “Two hundred years of being married to Patri isn’t enough. I’d rather have 1,000.”) with the earlier passive aside about how the couple met (“Toward the end of his marriage at the time,). Also: SHESTEADING.