New York City's condos and co-ops are more than just apartment buildings—they're part of one the most famous architectural landscapes in the world. Next time you walk around the city, slow down and notice the beautifully designed structures with stunning façades: you might see wrought-iron gates, some as old as 100 years, or decorative metal balconies. Take a look inside, and you're likely to walk across marble floors—some of them with ornate inlays—or an elevator with polished brass walls.
It all adds up to an often beautiful picture—but with all that beauty comes great responsibility. Failing to take proper care of decorative stone and metal in high-traffic residential spaces and structures can result in shoddy appearances and possibly even have a negative effect on apartment values.
"The entranceway is the first thing people see," says Peter Fidelman, vice president and general manager of sales and marketing for Long Island City's Remco Maintenance LLC, one of the largest metal/marble/stone/wood maintenance and refinishing companies in the city. "The value of those apartments, both in terms of the amount people are willing to pay as well as the number of offers one would have, certainly is affected [by the condition of metal in the lobby]."
According to Fidelman, his company maintains metals and stone in places like Grand Central Terminal, the Waldorf Astoria, Yankee Stadium's Monument Park and the Statue of Liberty. While you may not have thousands of tourists and commuters traipsing through your building every day, for residents your lobby and façade are just as important as those landmarks.
"If the values of apartments in buildings are $4 million and up, then one has to ask, what is the value of a lobby to support that value?" Fidelman asks. "What does it look like? And if the metalwork is not bright and not attractive and not rich, does it support a value of $4 million per apartment?"