Lavrinoff Strategy and Solutions LLC

Your ‘for hire’ confidante and strategic advisor

Helping you navigate through the jungle of risk, liability, and crisis

Nik Lavrinoff

I can help you avoid risk and liabilities, mitigate them while in the thicket, and mitigate them as you emerge from the jungle.

I am battle tested and experienced with skin in the game as an owner. I cumulatively borrowed nine figures, been a plaintiff and defendant for eight, paid out legal fees in the sevens, and always avoided trial.

If only you had more time or peace of mind, i.e., more of an undistracted you, could you focus and solve your current challenge, and then direct your professionals to wrap up the jungle scenario, and grab yourself a piña colada and go relax on the beach.

I can help you assess, strategize, and originate out of the box solutions, vet, hire, fire, and direct professionals to accomplish a successful plan.

Success means preventing, mitigating, and exiting problem situations asap, while minimizing risk, liabilities, and loss.


Real Estate

Detours, Road Bumps, Speed traps, and Regaining the Wheel

Samples of personal business detours, strategy, and outcomes


© 2022 Lavrinoff Strategy and Solutions LLC


As a kid I experienced the jungle adventure of three epic family road trips, one every five years, driving a vintage VW bus (twice) and a Thing (jeep; once) for months at a time from California through Mexico, and all of Central and South America, through tropical deserts, the Andes, and Amazon jungles, mile by mile, camping roadside.

I watched natives in Lake Titicaca negotiate with my father to buy my baby sister.  I caught and played with venomous frogs and reptiles.  I swam in piranha, leach, and eel infested rivers.  I’ve stepped in quicksand (quickmud), and been bit by poisonous spiders, bullet ants, and huge jungle wasps. 

I fought off a military thug attacker in Buenos Aires and even got shot at and arrested when I was but 15 years old by a Bolivian military outfit who suspected that my family was complicit in the assassination of Anastasio Somoza, the exiled former president and dictator of Nicaragua, who was hanging out with another fellow dictator, General Alfredo Stoessner, the Paraguayan president.

I survived the high Andes, wild Amazon jungles, and the streets of the Mexican cartels, the Nicaraguan Contras and Sandinistas, the Peruvian Sendero Luminoso (countryside revolutionaries who used violent terrorism), and even the Argentine ‘Dirty War’ that disappeared thousands.  I experienced military and police checkpoint harassment and shakedowns in many countries, and even survived a murder attempt and arrest in Bolivia, but all that was child’s play.


I discovered the real jungle was doing business in New York City. 

My career path started in California in the aerospace industry in quality control and the manufacturing of aerospace components.  I switched industries and in 1992 earned a BS in engineering and construction management.  I worked for a  real estate developer in California, then a developer in Israel to build a mall, and in 1997 got married and moved to the Big Apple.  

I started out conducting due diligence on the purchase of three iconic NYC downtown buildings covering over a million square feet, planned their redevelopment, and worked concurrently as a project manager for the developer of the Textile Building at 66 Leonard Street in Tribeca, NYC, a 130,000 square foot office conversion into luxury loft style condominiums.  

Architecture, engineering, design, asset and finance analysis, project management, and doing deals was all kind of fun.  I soon realized though that these fun vocations were really just processes that I knew a lot about, and that my main vocation and skill and that of every owner or business leader is twofold: 

1) Creating and running a profitable business, and

2) Anticipating, avoiding, and regaining control after unexpected obstacles and detours.

In short, “Make money, but don’t lose it”.

My first NYC development project soon meant strategizing in the face of the unexpected and unpredictable:

  • Vetting, hiring and managing the expert landlord tenant attorney to evict the building’s tenant (a NYC agency) who was freeloading in the space without paying rent and didn’t want to leave, and attempting to limit billing charges without hindering the law firm’s performance,


  • finding and paying an undercover lobbyist to get the mayor to induce the tenant to vacate faster,


  • managing the squabbling and litigation that erupted between partners on this deal meanwhile trying to keep the project on track all the way through completion,


  • Dealing with labor unions and other community labor groups, their protests, and mafia like intimidation to force payoffs, and get their people and companies hired,


  • Staying clear of Landmarks, the DOB, OSHA, DEP and all the government agency enforcers who ravish and penalize, not unlike the south of the border thugs that I encountered in youth.


Upon completion of the Textile Building, I founded a firm brokering construction financing, consulting, cost engineering, and problem solving projects for developers and owners, managed significant litigation efforts, as well as invested in and developed my own real estate.

I look back over the last twenty five years in New York and realize that real estate was a backdrop to my career.  My main vocation is problem prevention, risk and liability mitigation, strategy, solutions and the ability to go granular in most fields so that I can understand whether a professional is on the right track, and then directing them.

I’ve hit bumps along the way and taken many detours.  I’m all the better for it.  Carpenters say “measure twice, cut once”.  If you are doing business in a hostile and aggressive environment like the streets of New York, I say “look both ways, even on a one way street”.

I am a single father with a gaggle of children nine to twenty-four years old, one who had Marfan syndrome and valiantly lived into his fourth year.  My kids and the time spent with them are the greatest part of my adventure.

I am lucky to have entered the fray in so many areas of life and look forward to helping you and your organization.



NYC down zoned an eighty-unit condominium project during construction, top zoning attorneys offered no hope, and I then created a ridiculous work around that succeeded and grandfathered the project, restoring millions in value and saving the project. 

AG Investigation

I sold out a newly built condo project, and the new Condo Board filed a multi million dollar claim against me with the NYC Attorney General because of alleged faulty construction.  I negotiated, scoped out, and settled with a remediation plan that cost about $200k, did the work, and satisfied the NYC AG preventing fines, penalties, and a multimillion-dollar payout.

Tax abatement

A Condo Board from a project that I developed and sold out, sued me for millions for an undelivered tax abatement.  I had hired a top firm to obtain the benefit, but they didn’t deliver.  I found a precedent legal case which became the tool to push a settlement right before trial and settled the case for $100,000 instead of many millions.


The 2007/8 financial market crashed, and because my lender became a failing bank, the FDIC stepped in and forced the lender to foreclose on a $8.4 million dollar construction loan which lead to extensive litigation through 2011.  I settled before trial, inducing the bank/FDIC to waive all interest and penalties, and sell back the loan at a significant discount.  This was a lemons to lemonade situation.


I co-developed the 630-foot NY Wheel in Staten Island.  My partner cut me out of the deal, and signed a partnership agreement (with entities controlled by) Lloyd Goldman, Jeffrey Feil, and Joseph Nakash.  I sued the partnership and my partner. I hired a highly skilled sole practitioner.   We first beat Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP on their motion to dismiss my case, which lead to a quick settlement.  We continued litigation against my former partner going up against  MorrisonCohen LLP and settled before trial.  This case was chockfull of intrigue, private investigators and surveillance, expert witnesses, and dramatic depositions.  I learned a tremendous amount from the experience and came out a winner.


My contractor started foundation work for my seven-story building in Brooklyn.  I saw the workers in the field drilling down the first pile for foundation shoring along the lot line, five feet from an  adjacent building and immediately stopped the job.  The engineering design looked good on paper, but I saw a real possibility of the apartment building either settling or worse, possibly collapsing.  I eliminated the shoring, and went with a unique solution.  The risk reward of following the engineer’s original plan was not worth it.  I saved much on the new design, averted millions in liability, and more importantly avoided the risk of bodily harm to workers and those who lived in the apartment building.


I repeatedly thwarted receivers from taking over my property during foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings.


Rogue private lenders, a possessed judge, crooked attorneys, and a mortgagee who sought to gain possession of my building, force a sale, get designated as the selling agent, and credit bid my building for pennies on the dollar, led me to fight hard, hiring and firing three different law firms in nine months, meanwhile I accepted the stark reality of the situation and the severe divine decree that was at play.  I sourced an off market strong buyer fast, sold at a substantial discount, and got out of Chapter 11 asap.  I mitigated an even larger potential financial loss and regained my peace of mind, one’s biggest asset.

Pro Se

Loeb and Loeb LLP represented me during the last five weeks of a single asset bankruptcy case and billed nearly half a million dollars.  This was an outrage.  I analyzed Loeb’s 76-page application for payment, identified the legal billing matter ‘buckets’ and recategorized and placed each line item from their bill into it’s proper legal billing item bucket, and summarized it all on one page showing legal billing matters, the attorney who did the work, and hours spent.  I filed my fifty-page analysis along with a Lodestar analysis; the gold standard of fee evaluation, a twenty-five-page objection, and later filed a thirty-seven-page reply to Loeb’s reply.  During arguments, the judge slashed Loeb’s fees substantially.  

Problem Prevention and Solutions

I use a systems approach to prevent and solve problems and lean on professionals, especially in areas that are new to me.  I decipher the most elemental aspects of the situation, constantly asking the question, “does this make any sense?”, and stitch the essentials into an integrative solution, culling the pertinent parts of what’s important to all the involved parties.  Every project has unique liability potentials, but all projects share common risk and liability traits.

Foreclosure, Bankruptcy, Litigation, Probate

I like to avoid litigation, but once started, the goal is to end it asap, as the collateral damage, brain space, time and costs of most cases create a poor investment risk.  De-escalation, mediation, negotiation management, and reigning in one’s legal and professional team are all key tools to stop the equity and cash bleed from your asset or venture.


Whether it is a partner, business, family, or inheritance issue, or issues with your professionals and advisors employed for the issue at hand, I can help you assess, strategize, and resolve.

Asset Management and Disposition

Asset organization and management in the anticipation of sales or a split of assets; I can help assess the situation and facilitate the path toward shoring up the asset or with it’s disposition.


Your professional entourage could be a huge source of mismanagement and capital loss.  I can help you evaluate the merits of your entourage. 

Development projects before or during

There are so many moving parts from so many different fields of expertise to pull off a project successfully.  That means a lot of liability potential every step of the way.  I have been an owner, engineer, general contractor, subcontractor of many trades, expeditor, borrower and personal guarantor of substantial construction loans. I hired and managed architects, engineers, safety managers, and design teams, hired and directed average and expert attorneys and consultants, and fired any of the above who were not performing.  I employ and rely on the expertise of professionals, but certainly cross examine their conclusions and thought processes, adjusting course as needed.

Team assessments

I have paid millions in legal and professional fees and understand the dynamic and disappointment of wasted money and the liabilities created by the poor performance of these firms.

Some firms earn what they charge, many do not.  I like to minimize the gratuitous professional fee bleed that often takes place during a walk in the jungle.


It’s a time of danger, difficulty and doubt.  Problems must be solved and important decisions made.  Crisis stress makes it difficult to evaluate one’s options.  I can work along side you to decipher, strategize, and alleviate some of the stressors to facilitate a quicker crisis exit.


Airing out and exploring one’s situation, whether business or personal, in a judgement free and fiduciary setting, with a trusted advisor, with your interests alone in mind, will lead to a clearer path and a quicker resolution.