Best of NY
Q: I finally replaced my grandmother’s timeworn settee with a custom-made convertible. The catch is, I just can’t get it through my skinny doorway. Is there anyone who can temporarily bring my furniture down to size?
A: Call Z Brothers Furniture Service of Thornwood, New York (914-769-3839), one of the oldest disassembly services in the area. Owner Joe Zeolla has been taking apart couches in the five boroughs for a quarter of a century. A basic disassembly and reconstruction costs around $225. The operation can usually be performed incredibly quickly-in less than a hour for most models. For pricier custom-made models (which are fastened with dowels rather than nails), the price starts at $400.
Featured on Eyewitness News – June 2004
House & Garden
Trade Secrets – Sofa: “Crate & Barrel called a company for him that took apart the sofa and put it back together in the apartment. I couldn’t tell they did anything to it. If you’re in a similar predicament, don’t fret. In New York City, there are companies that cut and move sofas: Z Brothers.”
“Big sofa, small hall? You need a sofa disassembler. And a family that’s ‘been in sofas’ for three generations is our pick: Z Bros., 914.769.3839. Joe Zeolla’s grandfather used to build sofas and his father started Z Bros. nearly 40 years ago.”
A standard sofa breakdown costs in the $250 range (it’ll cost more for more complicated jobs). Their work is guaranteed and they’re bonded and insured. They do the work in your apartment whenever that’s possible, but they also have a warehouse to disassemble and reassemble. If you buy a couch that you know is trouble, you can have it shipped directly to their warehouse. If you buy a couch that you don’t know is trouble and it’s currently wedged into a staircase, Z. Bros. will make an emergency call (for an additional fee).
One way to avoid S.U.S. (Sofa Uncertainty Syndrome) is to ask the sofa retailer if they will make a “fit call” as it’s sometimes known. That means they send someone out to check halls, doorways, and other potential tight squeezes and determine whether the couch will fit. Room and Board, for example, will do a fit call for $49. Z Bros. will also come out for an estimate. That’s $75, but the fee gets deducted from the final price if you use their service. And if you’ve got a ginormous bookcase or armoire, Z Bros. can break that down for you, too.”
YES, IT WILL FIT – HOW TO GET THAT COUCH IN THE DOOR
BIG couch. Not-so-big door. What to do? Call a couch-disassembly service, of course.
In New York, where there’s a service pro for everything, there are a host of people who will do whatever it takes to get your sofa into (or out of) your apartment.
Companies like Z Brothers Furniture Service ( 769-3839) will do everything from taking the legs off the couch to dismantling the entire thing. “We can take apart anything,” says Joe Zeolla, owner of Z Brothers.
Say you’re moving – and getting the couch out of your walk-up in one piece is too much for you.
A couch-disassembly service will take it apart for anywhere from $225 to $700, depending on how intricate the job is.
And, of course, they’ll reassemble it in your new home.
Though Z Brothers can often deal with rush jobs in the same day, standard operating procedure is to call a week in advance.
New York Times
Overcoming a Door Jam
“Four years have passed since Barry Tesser plunked down $1500 for a sofa bed at Jennifer Convertibles. It had deep cushions, a high upholstered back and heavily padded armrests. This was one fat couch. Mr. Tesser’s apartment, however, had a skinny Manhattan doorway, and presented a delivery problem. Say hello to Z Brothers, a furniture disassembly service, which for 25 years has been doing a good business getting big couches through small city entryways. At first I was extremely leery of buying a couch that had to be taken apart to deliver, Mr. Tesser said. But that was the couch he wanted. It took the Z Brothers about 20 minutes to disassemble the sofa bed, right on the street, and about half an hour to reassemble it inside Mr. Tesser’s Murray Hill apartment. Joe Zeolla, who owns Z Brothers, said his company takes apart and puts together 150 couches a week, mostly for delivery in the five boroughs. A typical disassembly, reconstruction and move costs $225, said Mr. Zeolla, adding that expensive custom sofas held together by glue and dowels instead of nails start at $400.”
Wall Street Journal
“Fat Furniture is stylish, but it often doesn’t fit. Enter: disassemblers. Specialty upholsterers who take apart and reassemble big, high-back sofas are swamped in some urban areas. Joseph Zeolla, president of Z Brothers Furniture Service in Thornwood, N.Y., is even busier with 100 rebuilds a week. Mr. Zeolla, who serves several New York-area stores, figures 5% or so of store sales have to be rebuilt.”