What is Bolster?

Bolster is building a smarter way of doing renovations, from the ground up. We're a new kind of general contractor that delivers your renovation exactly as promised. Supported by proprietary technology, our team of expert designers, specialists, and builders is committed to creating the perfect place to come home to.

What type of projects do you do?

Bolster specializes in high-end renovation projects in New York City. We strap on our boots and do most of our work in Manhattan and Brooklyn. Our most popular projects are gut renovations (where we change the layout), apartment combinations and townhouse conversions. Our average project size is $400,000, and costs typically start at $150 per square foot.



What makes your people so special?

Before joining the Bolster family, renovation professionals must meet a few in-house standards: they've got to be good humans, extremely professional, possess a strong ethical compass, and demonstrate technical expertise. We interview our design and build leaders in person and physically inspect their past projects. In other words, we leave no stone unturned. Our entire team is trained in our industry-leading approach and proprietary technology. Bottom line: we only hire people we'd invite into our own homes. 

Do I need an architect or designer?

Well, that depends on your project, and we're happy to talk you through the variables. If your project is design-intensive, we'll match you with one of our amazing architects to bring your vision to life. 



Will working with Bolster be more expensive than hiring a regular architect or contractor?

Nope. And here's why.  

Bolster's team consists only of skilled and experienced professionals with proven track records. We're properly licensed and carry the correct insurances (so you don't have to worry about all that red tape.) We promise to deliver the highest-quality service and craftsmanship in full compliance with all laws and building codes. Our work is beautiful, timeless, and endures for years with minimum maintenance costs. And because we do our homework from the outset, saving you time and money in the long run.

How do I know I'm getting a fair price?

Bolster's radically transparent bids show you each and every itemized cost–from fixture to finish. This means you know exactly what you're getting and precisely how much you're paying. We share retail rates for all materials as well as how our labor rates compare to the market. And if you’ve been shopping around, our data scientists will analyze our estimate alongside those of the competition, ensuring you're hiring the best people for your build.

How does Bolster save me money?

Bolster's investment in people coupled with our proprietary processes and technology fuels everything we do. Also, the success of our solution has given us significant purchasing power and created various labor efficiencies which further helps reduce operating costs. This means our projects run more soothly and more efficiently and ultimately save our customers about $59K on each project when compared to traditional renovations.



Who do I pay for my renovation?

All payments to be made throughout your project are paid directly to Bolster. Our platform then disburses funds to the various parties and transparently records everything on our website. You'll be able to view it all.

How does Bolster ensure my money is being used properly?

One of the biggest causes of friction on renovation projects is managing cashflow and funds. This can cause delays, making it nearly impossible to get the supply chain working at maximum efficiency. The good news is that we figured out a smarter way of doing things. We ask for milestone payments in advance, and we only pay our crew and suppliers upon your satisfaction with the milestone. This plays a key role in helping us deliver successful projects on time–nearly every time. Your payment schedule is also built into the contract and appears on your dashboard. It outlines the work and corresponding payment upon the completion of each stage. We'll give you a heads-up a few days in advance of each scheduled payment, so you can inspect our progress and prepare funds for transfer.

How many payments will I make on my project?

A typical renovation, which lasts an average of twelve months from design to construction, requires around 20 payments. We try to keep these frequent enough so they reflect our progress, but not so often that they become an annoyance!

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Want to chat with an expert?

When you renovate with Bolster, expert advice and support is just a phone call away.

Give it a try and get in touch!

The Bolster Promise

If a Bolster defaults in any way, how much do you pay out and when? 

Schedule. If Bolster is the cause of any delays on your project, we have you covered, financially. Our team will reimburse you on a daily basis to help mediate the inconveniences of falling off-schedule. This reimbursement is based on the size and lifestyle of your family, up to an agreed-upon percentage of your total budget.

Quality. Bolster will pay to correct any faulty work until it meets our standards and your satisfaction.

Budget. Bolster will honor the fixed price in your contract. We will only bill you for additional fees if you change the agreed-upon project scope, add enhancements or upgrades during the process, or if something is discovered during construction that Bolster could not have predicted in advance. (Like a hidden gas pipe that was not accounted for in the building’s planning documents.)


Odds And Ends

What happens if I change my mind about an aspect of my project?

No problem. If you change your mind, for example, about the type of tile you want, or we discover an unforeseen issue that requires an amendment to your scope of work, we'll issue a change order through our website. This form explains the change and its impact, if any, on schedule and budget, giving you time to make a decision about your game plan. 

How did you come up with your Quality Standards?

Bolster's Quality Standards are inspired by those established by the Long Island Builders Institute, which follow existing quality standards for commercial construction projects in New York. We have improved and elaborated upon these standards to suit residential projects. 

What does your web app do?

Our web app is set up to handle the administration of your entire project. From the presentation of our design proposals and construction estimates to contract signing, payments and change orders, our web app makes it easy to keep your renovation in your hands. (Literally.) 

What is a mechanics' liens and lien waiver?

A mechanic's lien is a security interest in the title of your property for the benefit of those who have supplied labor or materials that improve the property. A lien can be placed against your home in the event a general contractor, subcontractor or supplier is not paid for the goods and services they have delivered to your project. Lien wavers are obtained from your general contractor and their subcontractors for every payment you make on your project. This in effect removes their right to place a lien against your home upon receiving payment. 

What does "substantial completion" mean?

This is the stage of your project when the work is sufficiently complete in accordance with your contract. Substantial completion means you can occupy or utilize the space for its intended use. (So, in other words, most everything is complete except for small punch-list items.)