Brooklyn Life

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Welcome! If there’s one thing that we hope this platform will facilitate, it’s reader involvement. As you explore new features on Brownstoner, we think you will see that its success hinges on what mba’s call “The Network Effect.” That is just a fancy way of saying that the site will become exponentially more useful with each additional participant. Frank but courteous is the rule of thumb around here.

The Services page, where you are invited to post questions about buying, renovating and maintaining your house, is the first of its kind that we know of to focus on the needs of owners of historic Brooklyn homes. The primary goal of the Listings section is to increase the accountability and depth of information in the brownstone market. Please use the Comments sections to fill us in on an address we’re missing, to blow the whistle on a misleading description or to share your general thoughts after seeing a property. To ensure quality control, we’re going to retain posting authority for the time being, so please email us to let us know of new listings. Lastly, we will be photo-blogging the Renovation of our recently purchased brownstone in Clinton Hill. We expect to have our building permits within the next week or so. In the meantime, we will acquaint you with the history and existing conditions of the house. Enjoy.

Brownstoner

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Bedford Avenue, South Side.
Old Churches for Worldly Use [NY Times]
Residential Sales [NY Times]
Why Mortgages Don’t Follow the News [NY Post]
Just Sold! [NY Post]
Home of the Week: Dyker Heights [NY Newsday]
Plowing Equity into Renovations [NY Newsday]
The Gates Take Shape in Central Park [NY Daily News]
Frontrunning the Zoning Change [NY Magazine]
Park Slope’s UFO Landing Strip [Curbed]
Explorer Home Appliances [Apartment Therapy]

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Metalwork, Red Hook. Photo by Lex’s Folly
New Gallery at Brooklyn Museum [NY Times]
Stanhope Hotel Sold [NY Times]
Brooklyn Bridge Park Critics [NY Post]
Can Anything Stop Housing Market? [Washington Post]
Residential Sales [NY Times]
Critics: Park for Rich Only [NY Daily News]
Big Ideas for Small Spaces [Philly.com]
10 Design Rules to Break [Boston Globe]
Shelter: Wunderbar, Wunderbar [Village Voice]
Community Group Keeping Tabs on Cops [NY1]
Red Hook Development in Perspective [Amy Langfield]

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Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies just released its latest report on the home remodeling industry. Homeowners and rental-property owners spent a total of $233 billion on improvements in 2003, with more expensive projects like kitchen renos and new additions leading the way. Not surprisingly given the age of the housing stock and high household incomes, the Northeast and Midwest were the strongest regions.
Home Remodeling Industry [Harvard Center for Housing Studies]