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How to make moving in New York suck less

By Roberta Bernstein, September 28, 2016 | 6:52pm

 

Robert Galanti (center) settled into his new Upper East Side apartment this week, thanks to luxe planners NouvelleView and crew of movers. Photo: Stefano Giovannin

Robert Galanti (center) settled into his new Upper East Side apartment this week, thanks to luxe planners NouvelleView and crew of movers.

Photo: Stefano Giovannin

Moving is a minefield of lists and plans and packing, texts and emails, emotions and mistakes. And it’s something we willingly repeat. The average person in the US moves 11 times in his or her life, U-Haul estimates; some 40 to 50 million Americans will move this year alone.

So why make it harder than it has to be? An entire industry has sprung up to help you relocate hassle-free. Its offerings include countless apps that keep your clutter in check (cost: as little as zero dollars) and white-glove moving services that won’t let you lift a finger.

Now you can direct your move like a carefully choreographed ballet, from creating the earliest checklists to plumping up the throw pillows as a finishing touch.

“Moving never goes perfectly,” says Lauryn Gorli, who recently moved her family north from Georgia and used the app SwatchPop!, which matches users with an interior designer, to fix up the new place.

Upload photos to the SwatchPop! app and get decorating advice ($49.95 and up). Photo: Brian Beider Photography

Upload photos to the SwatchPop! app and get decorating advice ($49.95 and up).

Photo: Brian Beider Photography

“My husband’s an executive who took a day off. That day off means a lot — a truck can’t break down, and it did. But there were services to make it easier.”

If you’re looking for a head start to organize your belongings, try multiple-function apps like free Sortly (iPhone only with Android on the way). Among its useful hacks are detailed to-do lists (before boxes are packed) and printable labels to keep track of their contents (after they’re stuffed).

The labels sport a QR code, which, once you scan it with the app, calls up a list of what’s inside — so you’re not ripping them open looking for the colander after move-in.

“I’m using it to prepare for a move and [I think] it is a great app,” says Sortly user Victoria Chase, who lives in New Hampshire. “I use it for cataloging 30 years of accumulated possessions, exporting PDFs for my grown children so they can claim things if they want them — this is a great feature — and printing the QR codes.”

Sortly’s thorough pre-relocation checklist starts eight weeks out (get the kids’ school records transferred, find the mover) and takes you week by week up through the day itself. We especially like how it remembers the small stuff, like the food in the freezer (start polishing it off six weeks before the big move).

Other helpful apps include: Moving Day (free, iPhone), which also utilizes bar codes; MoveAdvisor (free, iPhone and Android), which can get you price quotes for movers, calculate your shipment weight and more; and MoveMatch (free, Android), which also determines box weight and coordinates with your mover what goes where in the new place. Or if you’re looking to purge possessions – and make some extra cash — digital consignment company TheRealReal has just launched a division that will pick up, store and sell your designer furniture.

As for the move itself, extra perks — like having your stuff packed for you — can actually be yours for a very reasonable price. Take national chain Flatrate. The difference between merely moving a basic 900-square-foot Manhattan pad and also packing up its entire contents is less than 20 percent. Companies like Flatrate, Brooklyn-based U.Santini Inc. and Manhattan-based Scanio also offer “luxury” services to give clients valuable added TLC.

Mario Sosa of Brooklyn’s ace U.Santini movers, in business since 1930.   Photo: Lark-Marie Menchini

Mario Sosa of Brooklyn’s ace U.Santini movers, in business since 1930.

 

Photo: Lark-Marie Menchini

“Even with a basic move, we’re going to unpack things into your new closets, unpack the TVs and large artwork. We’ll do a full-service move,” says Dan Menchini, president of U.Santini, which will charge anywhere from $1,500 to $3,000 for a basic move. To both pack and move someone can cost $3,000 and up.

Those extra perks include computer and home entertainment setups, and assisting licensed contractors, electricians and interior designers.

If money is no object, then a) lucky you and b) high-end services that can function as full-fledged project managers, or “concierges,” are a phone call away.

NouvelleView curator Rigel Angelina (standing) directs unpacking at Galanti’s UES pad — so he can chill. Photo: Stefano Giovannini

NouvelleView curator Rigel Angelina (standing) directs unpacking at Galanti’s UES pad — so he can chill.

Photo: Stefano Giovannini

NouvelleView, for instance, based in New York and the Hamptons, manages all details, coordinates with contractors, and can meticulously set up every inch of your place — think shoes lined up by heel height in the dressing room.

“Pamela [Muller, co-founder and principal] did an extraordinary job of being me without me being around,” says client Louise McAndrews, whose move to Florida was recently handled by Nouvelle at a cost of some $25,000. “If something can go wrong, it did, but Pamela was there to fix it. When the company bringing our car said [last minute that] it couldn’t do it, Pamela called them, and I don’t know how, but it was delivered.”

This week, in fact, NouvelleView moved Robert Galanti into his new home off Madison Avenue. Curator Rigel Angelina took care of unpacking his funky furnishings while he relaxed.

Meanwhile, one-percenters with valuable collectibles and fine art tend to go with movers who specialize in transporting such priceless works. But those services don’t come cheap: Prices can vary, but it’s not uncommon to start the ball rolling at around $12,000.

“Every job is different,” says Thad Meyerriecks, co-owner of New York’s Bourlet ArtLogistics. “It can be a minimum four-hour job, or a two-month project like one we just finished.” But, he notes, “there’s no cheap road to security.”

The first step, he says, is to have your art appraised by an insurance company. “Some things are surprisingly valuable, though something that might be of lesser value to an insurance company can be of supreme value to a client, a beloved artifact of their lives,” he says.

“That’s the kind of thing we can’t put a value on. I always tell our art handlers, ‘It doesn’t matter if something costs $5 million or five dollars — treat it with care.’ ”

Relocation experts at Greystone handle everything from tech installation to hanging art to new neighborhood tips. Photo: Chris Vanderwall

Relocation experts at Greystone handle everything from tech installation to hanging art to new neighborhood tips.

Photo: Chris Vanderwall

Then there are luxury relocation experts like Greystone ($10,000 and up) who drill deep and do the move itself. Greystone can deal with IT work, the hanging of expensive art and more. The company even helped an executive moving to Manhattan from the West Coast find an au pair and then created a neighborhood guide for the family, explains David Hauslaib, Greystone’s chief concierge officer. “We want people to feel like locals as soon as they walk into their apartment,” he says.

Of course, there are less expensive ways to feel right at home. The aforementioned SwatchPop! app offers users designers, who can either decorate a whole house or just help fix specific problems. (Pricing is $49.95 for what SwatchPop! called the first “dilemma” and then $25.99 for each additional one.)

“I went from having four giant built-ins that held all these great knickknacks and pictures that I wanted to keep in the new house, but it only had one built-in,” says SwatchPop! client Gorli of her move. “So I took a photograph of all our stuff and sent it … and they showed me how to [arrange] it.”

A before-and-after project from SwatchPop! — founded by Kristen Yonson (left) and Jessica McRae — which gives recommendations to dress up a room. Photo: James Paul Photography; Brian Beider Photograph

A before-and-after project from SwatchPop! — founded by Kristen Yonson (left) and Jessica McRae — which gives recommendations to dress up a room.

Photo: James Paul Photography; Brian Beider Photograph

Interior design app Homestyler (free, iPhone) lets you design your home in 3-D so you’re ready to place furniture when the movers gets there. The Magic Plan app (free, iPhone) also creates 3-D floor plans.

And don’t underestimate the power of having even the smallest household jobs done for you — sometimes post-move, feet finally up, the last thing you want to do is get out the tool box. Keep in mind resources like Task Rabbit and Handy.com, which can quickly accomplish tiny tasks that might otherwise drive you nuts.

Surviving a move may seem like a miracle in itself, no matter who or what is helping. But there’s still the new neighborhood to navigate, and Next Door (free, iPhone and Android), an online social community for specific areas, can go a long way in connecting you with new neighbors and important information. You can find a babysitter, reach out with questions, find the best painter for your new kitchen and more.

There now — that wasn’t so bad, was it?

 
 

Renovating Versus Building: Hamptons Real Estate Experts Weigh In

Moderated by Michael Braverman | July 28, 2016 | Home & Real Estate

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When creating a Hamptons dream home, is it better to renovate an existing property or tear it down and start anew? A panel of East End brokers, builders, and designers discusses the options.

 

Listed by Cody Vichinsky for $27.9 million, the new home at 500 Old Town Road in Southampton combines state-of-the-art interior design with a traditional silhouette.

Listed by Cody Vichinsky for $27.9 million, the new home at 500 Old Town Road in Southampton combines state-of-the-art interior design with a traditional silhouette.

Our subject is "build or renovate," but since there are so few vacant lots these days, I’d say it’s “tear down and build or renovate.” Am I correct in that?
SARAH MINARDI: It’s very correct. Because there are so few pieces of vacant land, and people are really specific about looking for a certain location, they’re more apt to find a home that they don’t necessarily want and tear that down and build new. I have a project in the Amagansett Dunes where it was an old cottage on about a third of an acre, and the person who bought it said, “I’m just going to start new.” It took almost 18 months for him to get all the permits before he could even demolish the house, so you should be ready for the time that it takes to get to that point.
CHRISTINE CURIALE: We’re seeing a lot of people who are looking to either renovate their home to sell it for a higher value, or they can’t find what they’re really looking for in their price point. We’re probably seeing about a 25 percent increase in people looking for renovation money.


PAMELA MULLER: We find that the majority of our tenants are longtime residents of the Hamptons and choose to renovate rather than build because of their prime locations. [My company] NouvelleView not only provides a temporary relocation moving service but often holds moving sales for existing furnishings, so they can have a fresh start when they return.
CODY VICHINSKY: Teardown is actually not a bad thing in the eyes of a sophisticated buyer, particularly when you get towards the higher end of the market. It’s an asset, and [homeowners] can borrow against it much easier. There’s rentability in a lot of them. A piece of land is hard to really take advantage of while in the interim process of building a new house.

The Elizabeth II project’s large central space combines kitchen, living, and dining areas and features custom light fixtures designed by Bates Masi + Architects.

The Elizabeth II project’s large central space combines kitchen, living, and dining areas and features custom light fixtures designed by Bates Masi + Architects.

What type of guidance do customers look for in deciding?
PAUL MASI: Most of our clients tell us that for homes built in the ’70s or ’80s, the value of construction was commensurate with the value of the land. Now the values of the land are so high that the homes built there don’t support their lifestyle, so they ultimately take down the house to build something for them. There are exceptions. You can identify whether it’s of historical significance, a lot of homes that are on the beach don’t meet the separation requirements—there are a lot of different factors to think about.
CHRISTOPHER STEWART: Tax ramifications are huge in construction versus renovated properties. In East Hampton, they’re basing new construction on recently sold comps, so your reassessment only happens when it’s torn down. If you apply for a building permit, it’s done by square footage. You may have gutted your house, but your taxes won’t be reflecting that.
KYLE MESSINGER: We’ll have customers that will mix, too. We’ll have a house that will be taken down, but there might be barns on the property that they want to preserve.
MASI: Sometimes it costs just as much to renovate as it does to build a new house. But at the same time, sometimes the renovations are more interesting than the construction. We’re working on the Methodist church in Sag Harbor. It’s being converted into a home. You open up the walls and there are portions of it built from boats; there are inscriptions on the beams from the 1860s. Having that as a part of the story of the building is great, and it makes it just so much more interesting.

 

East Hampton’s 75 Toilsome Lane (listed by Sarah Minardi) was designed to resemble a classic shingled summer cottage, but with all the modern amenities.

East Hampton’s 75 Toilsome Lane (listed by Sarah Minardi) was designed to resemble a classic shingled summer cottage, but with all the modern amenities.

What are the places where you should or should not compromise?
MASI: That depends on each person. If you’re talking to a chef, it’s all about the kitchen. Someone who’s just out to be at the beach, it would probably be amenities, the outdoor showers and things like that. But really, the bones, the mechanical is something that’s worthwhile—from an energy perspective, performance, for sure, but also safety.
ROXANE MOSLEH: You’ll see so many structures that look as though they’re on their last leg, but they just need paint. We actually own what was the Southampton Hunt and Riding Club. It was sound. It needed new wiring; it needed to be updated as far as becoming a residence. It was mostly cosmetic; it just needed a lot of paint and a new kitchen.
MASI: What we tell people if they’re really serious about renovating is to live in the house for a little bit, if they can. Spend a summer in it. See what works. See what doesn’t work.
CURIALE: The best advice I could ever give anybody is to talk to the builders, the real estate agents, the architects, the accountants, the mortgage company, and not talk to their cousin Joe who did it in Maryland for half the price. It’s really valuable to make sure that people are getting advice from professionals in the area who are familiar with the property, who are familiar with renovating in that town, and getting the information they need to actually make something that is going to be of value later.

What kinds of details are trendsetting now in renovations?
MOSLEH: Modern interiors are definitely back, and that’s my forte. That’s where my passion is. Clients are looking for very clean environments, very minimal living, smart houses, and organized living.
MESSINGER: Everything is light and bright; no more of the traditional dark floors. You’re seeing thin moldings, bringing indoor out, floor-to-ceiling glass, bi-folding. You’re still seeing the traditional Hamptons shingle, but you’re seeing mixes now of stucco finishes with metal roofs.
MINARDI: There was a home that I had for sale in the Northwest Woods where it’s very traditional on the outside, but the inside is super modern. It wasn’t until I switched pictures to put the modern kitchen layout as the main photo that we really found somebody who just fell in love with it.
MOSLEH: A lot of people come to me with hotels as references. They like the textiles, furnishings. The other factor that we also discuss with our clients is the kitchen and the open living plan, because most clients do not want a formal dining room. Most clients do not feel the need to enclose their kitchens.

Cody Vichinsky stresses that “tear-down” may not always be a bad thing in a high-end market.

Cody Vichinsky stresses that “tear-down” may not always be a bad thing in a high-end market.

Do you think that’s related to the growth of modernism in Manhattan?
STEWART: A lot of my younger clients have something ultramodern but very high-end in Manhattan. Here, if they’re not on the ocean, they envision a country house; if this is a beach house, they’re going super modern.
MOSLEH: I have one client who believes if he’s going to own an old home, it should really be old, and nothing in the US is old to him. He feels that if he’s going to buy something older, he’ll buy something in Europe, so when he looks at something new, he really wants it to be new, and new is ultra-contemporary today.
MASI: Everyone has their preferences, and that’s what makes our area so interesting. But it’s about quality and being well-thought-out— that’s the most important thing, because those are the houses that are going to last. I have a deep respect for a lot of homes out here that I personally would never do, nor could I do, but I look at it and say, “Wow, this is done really, really well.” That’s what will enrich all of our lives.

Christine Curiale, Wells Fargo42 Hill St., Southampton, 204-2529. Paul Masi, Bates Masi + Architects132 N. Main St., 2nd Fl., East Hampton, 725-0229. Kyle Messinger, Farrell Building Company2317 Montauk Hwy., Bridgehampton, 537-1068.Sarah Minardi, Saunders & Associates26 Montauk Hwy., East Hampton, 237-3920. Roxane MoslehPomme New York, 94 Main St., Southampton, 353-3700. Pamela Muller, NouvelleView26 E. 81st Street., NYC, 212-876-6008. Christopher Stewart,Douglas Elliman Real Estate, 20 Main St., East Hampton, 329-9400. Cody Vichinsky, Bespoke Real Estate, 903 Montauk Hwy., Water Mill, 500-9030

CALL US TODAY AT (877) 862 - 9397

 
 
 
 

Buying a luxury home is expensive enough. Moving into it can be costly, too.

Many wealthy homeowners hire traditional moving companies for household goods and retain specialty movers to handle things like rare paintings, antique furniture and other high-value items. These “white glove” services cost more because the items may need delicate wrapping, climate control and custom crates, for example. Some companies, such as New York-based Roadway Moving, offer concierge services to help plan and supervise the move, says Roadway CEO Ross Sapir.

For a move from Austin, Texas, to Manhattan, one recent Roadway client requested special vaults constructed to transport his rare paintings, sculptures and musical instruments. The company complied with an additional request that the vaults be sealed so that only the client could open them, Mr. Sapir says.

After five vaults were loaded onto two trucks, the client insisted on following them in his car. “At some point, however, he gave up following and switched to his private jet,” Mr. Sapir says.

Forklifts were needed to unload larger items and the vaults out of the truck to the door of the client’s Fifth Avenue condo building. In the end, this move cost the client about $35,000.

Using photographs from the homeowners’ previous property, Roadway’s concierge can also walk through the new home to mark where the audio system needs to be installed and ensure that closet layouts are reproduced exactly, Mr. Sapir says.

“On the high end, planning is everything,” says Nir Shuminer, owner of New York-based Scanio Movers, which specializes in luxury moves. Wealthy clients value careful packing over speed. While a traditional mover might provide six to eight people to pack up a home in a day or less, Scanio typically sends no more than two or three skilled packers who may take up to three days to ensure that fragile items, such as chandeliers, artwork and crystal, are packed so they won’t get lost or damaged. Scanio recently completed a move that cost the client about $27,000 and included chandeliers, expensive artwork and some historical artifacts.

In addition to the moving company, the homeowner may retain a personal assistant or personal organizer to work on the move. This person may inventory and photograph every item that is packed and oversee the finer details of unpacking so that everything ends up in the right place in the new home, Mr. Shuminer says.

Project managers, such as New York-based NouvelleView, may also perform such tasks as calling utilities, arranging a cleaning crew, and hiring a contractor to wire a home-theater system, says Pamela Muller, the company’s owner.

Helping clients sort through 35 years’ worth of possessions can be emotional, Ms. Muller says. She compares her role to that of a “move therapist,” as clients decide what items to take and how they should be organized, she adds.

Management fees vary based on the scope of the move and services performed, Ms. Muller says. Last year, her smallest project cost the client $7,000, and four other moves cost more than $25,000, she says. These prices are on top of what the movers charge. In one case, the client paid NouvelleView $15,000, a traditional mover $30,000, and a fine-arts specialty mover an additional $25,000.

There’s another essential expense when moving rare and valuable items: insurance. Traditional moving companies typically provide insurance by weight or volume of goods transported, not full replacement or market value of individual items, says Matt Davis, a collector specialist with Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based Chubb Personal Risk Services.

Homeowners’ insurance policies may extend coverage to include moves, but policies vary. Check to see if any special riders are in place and what types of damage or loss are covered, he adds.

 

                                           Philanthropist and business owner Juliana Terian (right) and her partners                                              in celebrity moving company NouvelleView at Yankee Stadium's Opening Day.

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Haute Services: First Class Moving Services by Nouvelle View

BY HAUTE LIVING

FEBRUARY 18, 2011

A Room with a Nouvelle View

A Room with a Nouvelle View

It’s an old story; You’re moving into that swanky new apartment on the Upper East Side or you got promoted to a new job out in L.A. Quick–what do you do first? Call the movers, schedule the mail forwarding, or deal with your collection of art and antiques (how do you handle those?)

So was the situation of Julianna Terian and Pamela Muller, founders of moving specialist company, Nouvelle View. In 2007,Julianna needed to move out of her  15- room New York apartment, and fast. With no time to do it herself, so she hired the help of her good friend and trusty mover, Pamela. She needed to be gone and out in one week and this was no easy task with over 700 pieces of artwork and eleven chandeliers. Yet, the job was done and efficiently at that, two days early. Pretty impressive, no?

So it became their shtick–a meticulous planning and coordination service to make sure your move is in good hands, literally. From start to finish, Nouvelle View will pair you with with professionals to make sure everything just that much easier, an no worries there are no referral fees to be scared of.

With home offices in Manhattan and the Hamptons and affiliates both nationally and internationally, they can pretty much get you relocated just about anywhere. They have an endless amount of resources as far as contractors go, so each move calls for a different company. Whether it be a move from the Upper East Side to Tribeca or from Surrey, England to Los Angeles (one of their furthest moves–literally around the world.)

Services include inventory, art and antique specialists (Sotheby’s and Christie’s), and cataloging, etc. Over time they have even established the NV System, which is their packing method. With it, they are able to ensure a safe move and an easy transition with a genius label and tracking system.

So if an expert, delicate, and precise change of scenery is what you are in need of, don’t look further than  Nouvelle View.

For more information visit www.nouvelleview.com.