Whether your apartment is a condo or a co-op, you must first apply to your building for permission to do your renovation.

The rules for renovating will be outlined in a document called an Alteration Agreement. This document lists all the rules and procedures for renovation projects, covering topics such as work hours, insurance requirements, and security deposits.

Generally there are small nuances, which vary from building to building. The completed Alteration Agreement application is submitted to the building management with the set of plans and the scope of work for review.


Owner/Operator, Element Design Group

“Since the building corporation (co-op) is technically the owner, they are legally responsible for the permit.”


When you buy into a co-op, you are buying shares in the building corporation (not actual real estate).

Buildings generally care that the planned work is: legal, will not negatively impact building systems or other residents now or in the future and follows best work practices.

Any renovation beyond what is considered decorative work (painting, wallpapering, floor refinishing, and built-in millwork) will require permits from the city’s Department of Buildings (DOB). Once your building approves the renovation, it will sign off on permit applications to the DOB.

Note that if you live in a landmark district, your application will also need to be reviewed by the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), even if no work is being done to the exterior of the building.

Creative and sophisticated thinking, combined with in-depth knowledge of city codes and building regulations, are essential to solving these challenges and designing to the maximum potential of your space.

With its fresh, integrated and full-service approach to home remodeling, Element Design Group projects are completed more efficiently and with better results. Recognizing that every project is unique, the firm tailors its design process to meet the specific requirements of each client.

To get started with your home renovation project, visit elementdesignnyc.com/contact or call 212-537-6173.