Log In   ·   Become A Member

Bishops Pond Southampton Village: From Work Site To A Luxury Condominium Community

John A. Viteritti

A view of the Bishops Pond Clubhouse. (Courtesy Photo)

In my previous two articles, I discussed the technical differences between residential cooperatives and condominiums, and the opinions of Hamptons realtors regarding their marketability. For this article, I looked to the condominium development Bishops Pond in Southampton Village. What I found particularly intriguing was the size of the venture (72 units over 113 acres), its location (previously a 20 foot hole in the ground gravel pit abutting railroad tracks), and its commencement date (2011, when the recovery of the real estate market was still in question). For the facts, I interviewed Steven Dubb, whose firm the Beechwood Organization took on this challenge, and Mary Slattery, an Associate Broker with the Corcoran Group who "partnered" with Beechwood to market the units.

I started the conversation by finding out from Steven how many of the 79 units had been sold and are occupied as of the date of the interview. "We have sold 73 units between the original site and an additional ten in what we call the Enclave," he shared. "67 are already occupied." I thought that was an impressive number, especially when he answered my question regarding final certificates of occupancy regarding the units. It is not uncommon for the developer to occupy based on temporary certificates of occupancy, which means there are still items outstanding before the building department will issue final certificates of occupancy. "We have final C.O.s for all of our units," noted Steven. I was also very impressed with a statistic Mary shared. "We started our sales in March 2013, out of a storefront on Job's Lane, and between Memorial Day and Labor Day, we sold 52 units," noted Mary. "In the summer of 2014, the first ten weeks, we saw a buying frenzy."

A Bishops Pond living room option. (Courtesy Photo)


What are the sizes of the units and what were the prices, I asked? "We started at $750,000 to $1.6 million and the sizes are three to five bedrooms," Steve responded. "We raised prices six or seven times and now we are at $1.9 to $2.5 million." I then asked Steve, who is buying these units? They don't meet the profile of the typical condominium buyer who is looking to downsize. "No," he agreed. "These are people typically over fifty years of age, cash buyers who have sold homes on the North Shore of Long Island, Northern New Jersey, and Southampton for $10 million and are looking to "downsize" their maintenance responsibilities, not their living space. We will finish off the basement if they so desire and all of the units have a garage." Slattery added, "They like the idea that here you can get a basement, garage, and a first floor bedroom, all included in the unit. That's not typical with condominiums. Just to give you an idea of our buyers, we have seven year round residents. It is not uncommon for them to have a home in New York City, Palm Beach, as well as the Hamptons. They are people who want to travel and not be tied to a home with common charges of approximately $650 a month."

That brought me to the question of investor units. A concern among purchasers of condominium buyers is the fact that it they attract investors rather than those who wish to make it a home. I asked Steven how he addressed this issue. "We were very sensitive to that issue and one of the steps we took was to require that the purchaser not resell the unit less than a year from taking ownership," noted Steven. "We also have restricted rental to no fewer than 30 days and no more than three times a year. I don't think that we have any more than 10 percent or 15 percent investor units."

A seating area at the Clubhouse of Bishops Pond. (Courtesy Photo)


Normally, a developer will do a market analysis of what comparable homes in the area are selling for before deciding to proceed with incurring the up-front costs related to development. I asked Steven, given the fact there weren't any comparable developments, (Watchcase in Sag Harbor wasn't completed yet), what made you confident that you could make a project of this scale work? His answer, "You're right, there weren't any large scale condominium developments that we could use in the Hamptons homes, but we did build condominiums all over Long Island and we did feel that we knew the value of condominiums. We felt comfortable making a bet that there were people who wanted the opportunity for the carefree luxury living that condominiums could provide in the Hamptons. We took a leap of faith." Considering the risk, did you get the return that justified the risk, I asked? "Yes, it's been a good experience," he said. "A lot of my real estate friends who knew the Hamptons didn't think we would succeed." But it wasn't just a leap of faith, I assume you did your market research, I offered. "Yes. Mary [Slattery] and I monitored the market for years before we took the plunge." Mary added, "I have never seen the market so carefully watched as has been my experience with Beechwood."

I then asked the question that I asked of other brokers in my first article. Do you think the rate of appreciation for condominium resale is competitive with the historical single family home, given the fact that we don't have a history of these sales? Steven's answer, "I think that what is selling for $2.5 million today will be selling for $3.5 in a couple of years. Also, there are not many pieces of property that can be zoned for condominiums, so as the lifestyle choices for condominium living increases, so will the rate of appreciation for existing units."

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day of 2013, 52 units were sold. (Courtesy Photo)


My next issue had to do with the subject of affordable housing. The state requires a developer of a major subdivision to set aside a certain number of units for affordable housing or make a contribution to a fund for the development of affordable housing. I inquired how this impacted Beachwood. Steven noted, "We had started our project before this became a requirement, but we voluntarily did make a contribution to the Town and Village of Southampton for this purpose."

Mary Slattery, whose real estate experience in the Hamptons provides special insight from the human factor buyer perspective said the following, "The disadvantages of the sight - a 20 foot gravel pit, the railroad tracks, a dirty blight on the community - ironically worked in favor of the development. People were so glad to see what was going to be developed that they cheered us on. We weren't taking away farm land."


John is a St. John's University graduate, licensed Real Estate broker, lecturer, teaches real estate license classes at LIU, NYU, and Cook Maran Real Estate School, and is a well-respected consultant to the real estate industry. www.johnaviteritti.com




Related Articles:

Be the first to comment on this article. (Just fill out the form below)
 

Submit Your Comment

Please note, you are not currently logged in. Your comment will be submitted as a guest.
To submit your comment as a member, please click here.
Your Name:
Location:*
Comments:*
* Comments will be reviewed and posted in a timely fashion
* All fields are required
Question:*
What color is the sky?
(For spam prevention, thanks)
 
 
 
http://www.hamptons.com/gallery/ads/2143.gif
http://www.hamptons.com/gallery/ads/1824.gif
Gary R. DePersia, Corcoran Real Estate
With over $2 billion in transactions on the East End and since 1995, Gary DePersia is consistently ranked among the top producers in the Hamptons. A year-on-year member of The Corcoran Group President’s Council, he has qualified as a national list maker since 2007. In 2008 he was Corcoran's top broker on the East End by sales volume and rental units; and ranked as the nation’s 4th top broker. In the 2017 REAL Trends & The Wall Street Journal list of America’s top real estate professionals, he was designated #26 nationally, #4 in the Hamptons and #3 at Corcoran overall by volume with nearly $200 million of transactions for the past year. His office operates with four licensed assistants allowing him to build a business stretching from Southampton to Montauk and Sagaponack to Shelter Island. gdp@corcoran.com

East End Tick Control
The East End's only New York State licensed dedicated tick and mosquito control specialists!

Bridgehampton National Bank
For over 100 years Bridgehampton National Bank has been the East End's hometown bank. Many success stories...one bank, BNB!

Advertise on Hamptons.com - Have your business be seen by over 2 million viewers including NEW searches
Hamptons.com- Our exclusive online magazine has 2.6 million Page Views YTD for 2015. Contact us to join our elite group of clients that benefit from having a presence on the Hamptons award winning publication www.Hamptons.com

Hamptons Carpet One Floor & Home
We pay less,and so do you.With over 1,000 stores in our buying group, we can get the lowest prices from the best flooring manufacturers — and pass the savings on to you.Visit our other locations: Hamptons Carpet One Floor & Home, 675 North Sea Road,Southampton, NY 11968

CP Complete- Landscape Design & Construction
Paul Guillo And Chris Hall Two Of The Most Respected Names In The Community Together, they are partners in CP Complete. They bring their years of experience and integrity to creating and renovating luxury backyards.

CP Complete- Landscape Design & Construction
Paul Guillo And Chris Hall Two Of The Most Respected Names In The Community Together, they are partners in CP Complete. They bring their years of experience and integrity to creating and renovating luxury backyards.

D+J Concepts is known for a high-end cutting edge approach to design.
D+J Concepts is known for a high-end cutting edge approach to design with a balance between functionality and imagination. We skillfully and tastefully transform ordinary spaces into classic modern styles, which are understated, and luxe. We’re known for our modern transitional style incorporating antiques and modern elements for an unexpected edge.

Hamptons luxury real estate specialist for 33 years, Andrea Ackerman offers outstanding expertise in the field.
Hamptons luxury real estate specialist for 33 years, Andrea Ackerman offers outstanding expertise in the field. Trusted, experienced and successful, Andrea has solidified herself as the go-to broker of the Hamptons and a wholehearted advocate for her clients. A pioneer in the real estate industry on the East End of Long Island, she is driven by her passion for the business. Andrea is based in the Bridgehampton office of Brown Harris Stevens as a licensed real estate associate broker and consultant. Formerly, a principal partner and Senior Director at Brown Harris Stevens, Andrea now assists in developing their corporate strategy for the Hamptons region, advising other brokers and sales associates, as well as being one of the top producers and listors.