Here is a rare look inside a recently updated Newburgh home. This is the new residence of Markus Hartel and Bridget Hayes, new Newburghers from NYC. You might remember this home from past posts. Just a few years ago this home was a complete shell. It was totally renovated then put on the market. Markus and Bridget have done many upgrades that they have fortunately decided to share.
– Where are you from originally?
I am originally from Germany, but have lived in Manhattan for the past 12 years, Bridget has lived in NYC for the past 20 years with a short stint in LA
– How did you find Newburgh?
Last year, during X-mas, we vacationed in the Catskills at a friend’s cabin and spent New Years in New Paltz, and I joked around that I could live in a town like this, with close proximity to the city. Bridget came across an article about Newburgh in a local paper and we started doing our research. We also looked at a couple of other places, but went back to Newburgh and we found the house on 267 Liberty Street for sale in February. We immediately fell in love with the place, and also looked at a few other properties in the historic district, but we kept going back to 267… We closed early June and started renovations in mid July.
– Why did fall in love with this home and what work have you done?
We love the historic exterior accompanied by the modern interior, which we tried to keep coherent and adequate to the history and location… Our house was a burnt out shell at some point, and the previous owner had built a new interior with a modern, spacious layout, which appealed to us. With that also came new electric, plumbing and central air. Also, the (half) basement is finished, which was a big factor in our decision, as I work mostly from home, and the basement is now my studio/workshop (I work as a graphic designer & photographer).
Essentially, we have reworked the entire interior, and while it had a solid core, the detail work was either non-existent, or builder’s grade, as the previous owner turned the house into a rental before we took ownership…
At first, we thought, we would do everything piece by piece, but our workload and busy schedules would turn our house into a decade long construction zone and we decided to invest our life savings into this house. We have designed everything ourselves with some guidance from or awesome contractor’s team.
First, we ripped out the entire kitchen – I was stumped by the washer and dryer tucked into a corner by the window, which was an utter eye sore and we moved everything into a dedicated laundry closet.
The kitchen now has solid cabinets, a farmhouse sink, and a soapstone counter top with drain grooves. We decided on a beadboard backsplash, as we couldn’t settle on a tile that didn’t compete with the gorgeous soapstone. The island sports a wine fridge, and a reclaimed wood countertop from a 1860’s Jersey church and we have decided on a carrera marble inset (I enjoy making pizza and bread in my spare time).
The dining room table and benches are made from the same antique wood as the island counter top. I’m also in the process of creating a light fixture from a reclaimed wooden beam (sourced from Newburgh by After The Barn) for the dining room, pretty much the only light fixture that’s missing…
We have replaced all the doors with solid three panel shaker style doors, which were hollow core before, and equipped them with style appropriate hardware… We created craftsmen style moldings all around the doors, windows, baseboards, ceilings etc. We also replaced the tin baseboard heater covers on the first and second floor with solid aluminum shaker style covers.
We gutted the master bathroom, and it now has a custom full glass panel shower, 12” subway tile with metallic décor inlays, and period appropriate hardware. We also discovered the brick from an old chimney on the second and third floor and decided to expose the brick, which adds a lot of warmth and character, and ties in the inside with the ca. 1880’s exterior nicely.
We replaced the 3rd floor carpets with hardwood floors, which we stained white, and it gives the 3rd floor a very lofty feel. We refinished the 1st and 2nd floor hardwood floors and stained them dark ebony, which creates a stark contrast to the white moldings.
We also added recessed lights and ceiling speakers on the 1st and 2nd floor.
We remodeled the master bathroom, and we created closets in the master bedroom and in the basement. We also created a closed coat closet under the staircase on the first floor.
The only thing untouched, besides paint and doors, is the 3rd floor guest bathroom and the basement bathroom… The powder room on the first floor by the kitchen has a reclaimed wood counter top with a porcelain bowl and I have created the wallpaper, piece by piece, from type specimen books.
Early during the renovation process we detected water in the basement due to a leaking foundation, and we addressed the issue by sealing the foundation from the outside. To prevent future issues we laid ceramic tile in the basement and replaced the moldy sheetrock with water resistant material.
Thank you Markus and Bridget for sharing your home! If you’d like to share renovations done to your own home, email me.