Room for Improvement

Room for Improvement: New Yorkers aren't happy when the noise comes from inside or the outside

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2020
BRICK UNDERGROUND’S
Holiday Tipping Poll
Holiday Tipping Poll
How much do you plan to tip the building staff this year?

Peace and quiet is hard to come by in NYC--and sometimes the worst disturbances come from inside your apartment.  Six New Yorkers share the things they wish their New York City abodes would do without--from noise, to appliances, to perma-scaffolding.

  • Rattling radiators I can’t stand how noisy our radiators are. When they go on in the middle of the night, there is always a really loud knock that startles me out of sleep. Then there’s some rattling, and then really loud hissing. I don’t understand why this can’t be fixed by the landlord or the super, but they tell me that’s just how it is in old buildings. I like old buildings but why can’t they update the heating? - Margit, Upper West Side
  • Creaky floors Our floors are so creaky that it actually wakes me up when my husband gets up to dress in the morning. Also, there’s a spot in the bathroom, under the tile, that creaks. I would fix the floors in this whole place because I’m starting to worry that the bathtub will fall into the apartment below soon. - Selena, Harlem
  • Stressful streets It is so damn loud here. The windows are already really thick. But it’s a corner unit at the corner of two very busy streets. Buses, trucks, sirens, you name it. My nerves are shot. Ear plugs would help, but with a new baby, we don’t really want to use them. We’re probably going to move soon, that’s how bad it is. - Ibrahm, Upper West Side
  • No Venetian plaster I’d love to skim coat our whole apartment. I’d especially like to fix the ceilings! There’s this strange Venetian plaster type design in the plasterwork. I think they put that there because they didn’t have the skills to get the plasterwork completely smooth. I don’t like the look of it.  It’s not too bad when you look from afar, but up close it’s like an old movie star: all cracks, lines, and signs of failing cosmetic work! - Clayton, Clinton
  • Solve the scaffolding mystery There has been scaffolding on our building for over ten years, and recently they put netting over my windows. I don’t know what’s going on but whatever it is on the roof that needs fixing, that’s what I want fixed. ASAP. - Dot, Harlem
  • The must-have appliance I would kill for a washer/dryer. It’s ridiculous we’re not allowed to have one (I know some people in the building have one anyway, by the way)  and it’s a must-have when I look for a new apartment when my lease on this place is up. I can’t wait. - Elena, Harlem

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