Room for Improvement

Room for Improvement: A secluded den, no more gloopy paint

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Five New Yorkers share their home improvement dreams, which include carpet-free floors, less paint and a den. Girls (and boys) can dream.

  • Pet-friendly floors We have wall-to-wall carpeting in the bedroom, and I’m tired of it! Especially since we got a rescue dog a few years ago, it’s been tough to keep it clean and clean-looking. I’d love to get rid of it. But the landlord is too cheap to invest any kind of money into this apartment. I’d rip the carpet up myself, if only he’d pay to have the wood floor refinished! - Ken, Harlem
  • Chill space I’d love a den. Growing up in New Jersey we lived in a house with an eat-in kitchen, a dining room, a living room, and downstairs den. Of all those rooms, we used the den the most because that’s where the TV was--where we could play video games and watch movies with the volume turned up without bothering the rest of the house. That’s exactly what my boyfriend and I need now. Two separate rooms where we can unwind individually. - Nicole, Midtown West
  • Lightly painted walls I wish we could rid the entire apartment of all the thick, gloopy paint layers that’s on all the trim, doors, walls, and radiators. It looks horrible and can’t even be made better by another paint job. The doors don’t close properly because the layers are too thick. I don’t understand how all the previous owners and renters left it this way. It’s chipping in some places and I know there’s lead paint there. - Brian, Fort Greene
  • Architectural overhaul What I could really use in the apartment is a second bedroom and bathroom! I know one couple in my line have managed to squeeze that into their apartment somehow with the help of a clever architect. It’s not in the budget right now, but someday it may be the right investment to make to maximize every square foot in this place. - Neil, Harlem
  • And, of course, the washer/dryer fantasy I love living in the city so much that I actually sometimes ask myself, “What more can a girl possibly want?” And then I remember: a washer/dryer. - Marissa, Upper West Side

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