Friday, September 26, 2014

One Sexy Listing! 49 Grahampton Lane - $7,395,000


Nantucket shingle style exterior - inside - there are clean lines - sometimes too clean for some tastes I'm sure...

The most important is that it is on a fabulous street -  one of my favorites - where many would love to be as well...

VERY PRIVATE LAKE SETTING



SPRAWLS
BEAUTIFUL FLOORS

GREAT SEATING AREAS

OPENS TO KITCHEN

LOWER LEVEL - MORE SEATING - MORE TV

MASTER WITH SLEEP ALCOVE  - MORE TV
MASTER BATH

POOL ROOM - PUTTING - PINBALL

PUPPY RELEGATED TO THE MUDROOM - AAWWW! THAT FACE

Thursday, September 25, 2014

THE MARKET IS THE MARKET IS THE MARKET

Although entirely different price ranges, these 2 properties have the similar market stories....and there are many others just like them...

After meeting with owners recently who also bought in 2004, disheartened and not willing to bend to the current market (quelle surprise!), this story is a direct corollary - with one exception. The owners of the 2 properties in contract realized that the market is the market - regardless of what they paid and how much they spent on their home during the time that they lived there. And not only aren't they getting out whole, they are selling below what they paid 10 years ago. Tough pill to swallow for many.

Both sellers bought at the height of the market 2004/2005
Both have over 300 days on market
Both are currently listed below the seller's purchase price 
Both started their listings at a slightly higher price than their purchase price

1 MIDWOOD RD

81 SAWMILL LANE






Built new in 1986,  81 Sawmill's first owner bought it for $1,150,000 in 1989. ...then sold it 5 years later 1994 for $1,340,000 +16%. 5 years after that, in 1999, it sold for $1,850,000 +38%. Then the seismic jump to $2,995,000 +61% in 2005.  

BUBBLES ARE FUN WHILE THEY FLOAT
...NOT SO MUCH WHEN THEY POP

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Say it Up Front? - Or Wait Until They Ask?


In other businesses that I have managed, my clients always appreciated having their expectations managed, therefore, I was always a proponent of giving information up front to save them time and limit disappointment.

With real estate, I see very successful listing agents who list properties with ambiguity or fantasy over plain old truth...not all realtors - some say it like it is....needs TLC etc...

Take this one:

Listing Agent Language: "Once part of the Dunellen Hall Estate - offered for the first time in 30 years"

Buyer Agent Language: Before the Queen of Mean aka Leona Helmsley owned the property historically known as Dunellen Hall, the equestrian parcel was part of the estate. Unique property translates to: unique buyer - exit strategy will be equally challenging.

NORTH OF THE MERRITT BETWEEN ROUND HILL AND LAKE
SHARED GOLDEN POND


Listing Agent Language: 8+ Pastoral Acres with Riparian Rights 

Buyer Agent Language: Paying taxes on 8+ acres with 1/3 of it in the drink, that is also accessed by 6 of your neighbors


BUILT IN 1735 - RENOVATED IN 1998
Listing Agent Language: Colonial Home with gourmet kitchen. 4 Bedrooms

Buyer Agent Language: Really Old House - last renovated in 1998 - claims to have a gourmet kitchen, but the listing agent has chosen not to photograph it. 4 Bedrooms within 1654 SF



MORE MOSS THAN SHINGLE

Listing Agent Language: Equestrian Barn

Buyer Agent Language: Horse Barn the desperately needs a new roof


A more direct way to communicate this listing is to say it like it is. 8+ acres of country living.  Unique horse property on Topping Lake with original barn, stable and country home.
For the nostalgic, restoration may be your path - and for the less sentimental buyer, FAR is XYZ - listing broker doesn't mention what this may be, althouhg he has it listed for both residential and land....there are setbacks and obviously wetlands to consider, so too much homework that he should have done already....in my opinion.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Slim Pickins' Create Bidding Wars


There were obviously at least two parties fighting over a tiny house (2213 SF), on a tiny lot (.228), RA7 zoning (densely populated) with absolutely no air conditioning (the listing excluded the window unit) and an awkward addition. And depending on how you interpret it, it's located on a cul-de-sac, which is a dead end street with a turn around.

9 DURKIN PLACE  - LISTED FOR $1,149,500 - FETCHED $1,170,300

9 DURKIN IS THE PROPERTY RIGHT SMACK IN THE MIDDLE
The market  is what it is - it's slim pickins' in this price so  it's not a shocker....
A FEAST!

and no matter how small 9 DURKIN appears, it is a bit roomier than a couple of others that these buyers must have compared, and with one more closet, I meant to say bedroom :-)

Saturday, September 20, 2014

DOES SIZE MATTER?



There are (35) 12,000+SF properties currently listed on the Greenwich MLS. In the last 365 days there were (15) 12,000+SF  properties that have closed. Among those that have closed since September 2013:

THE MOST EXPENSIVE: THE COPPER BEECH ESTATE - $120M - 13,519SF - 50+ ACRES

THE LEAST EXPENSIVE: 18 PORCHUCK RD - $3,650,000 - $12,330SF - 8.75 ACRES

THE LARGEST: 11 LANHORNE LANE -  $17M - 26,415SF - 8.79 ACRES

THE SMALLEST: 107 LONG NECK RD - DARIEN - $14,900,000 - 12,000SF - 3 ACRES

FEWEST DAYS ON MARKET: 555 LAKE AVE - $25M - 18,954 - 8+ACRES - 4DOM

MOST DAYS ON MARKET: 11 LANGHORNE LANE - 629DOM


 The most recent new 12,000 SF and over listing:

1 MEADOWCROFT LANE - ASKING $16,250,000
Not sure how the listing price is now 42.9% higher than when the sellers bought it in 2010...the market has not improved relative to the increased price. It is now furnished, so perhaps this will be a bargaining chip for an interested party? The space sometimes appears to have a retail sensibility:

THE MEN'S STORE

THE WOMEN'S STORE
 

THE TOY STORE

THE WINE STORE
 

THE GYM



Thursday, September 18, 2014

Contracts Today




12 Cross last sold for $600K in 2007 - Pemberwick - reports a contract today

469 Taconic - all the way out there at the border of Stamford - started at $1,895,000 in July last year...has a newish kitchen, but otherwise a farmhouse... 1.95 acres in 1 acre zoning. Seller bought it in 1998 for $765,000

132 CEDAR CLIFF RD - RIVERSIDE


132 Cedar Hill Rd - is a restored carriage house with water views in Riverside, built in 1870 - nearly 6000SF on .73 acres. 183 days on market, it started at $5,200,000 in 2011 to it's current list price of $3,750,000.

How Not to Photograph a Listing


Wow - a little common sense goes a long way! This listing is added to my Walls of Shame...

DON'T USE A SO SO PHOTO AS THE HERO SHOT

Toys in the fore ground, clutter on the mantel, little frames on all walls...mediocre is the first impression...

MAKE THE BED!
Suggest to the seller that covering the box spring and having a tidy bed, sends a subliminal message that the place is peaceful and clean. The blinds, floor and decor are great - but the first thing that you notice is the bed. Chair in the foreground does not enhance the photograph.
ENTRANCE SHOULD BE INVITING TO VISITORS
The key is to de-personalize the property - the buyer may not have children - pick up their stuff and make it disappear during the showing...at the very least - listing agents should photograph accordingly


GET THE TOYS OUT OF THE PHOTO -
Sellers need the broadest audience possible - this space could be an elegant dining room for the next owner - plastic toys also do not elevate the perceived property value

 
DON'T EMPHASIZE NARROW HALLWAYS
Men in particular find them confining...

PATHETIC FRONT SHOT - WHICH SHOULD BE THE HERO SHOT
Stand away from the building a bit more, unless the door itself is a work of art, and then use it as a second feature to the overall front appearance. A potted plant to the left, a nice doormat and a straight eye, would have done wonders here...