- I sent Valentine's Day greetings to my copious industry email list, mentioning that I would love to get some back. Replies (reported below) could be counted on both hands. Don't bother writing about what that means. I know.
Jackie Dunphy, The Corcoran Group
: "Happy Valentine's Day! Yes, we all need a good virtual hug. Seems all brokers are busy this weekend - rentals and sales. I'm showing this listing twice today and once tomorrow for sale. Plus, I'm taking out buyers this afternoon. I think people with money are tired of not spending and see real estate as a good place to park their dollars. As always, so good to read your column!"
Bob Scribner, CEO Hamptons Realty - Westhampton Beach: "Just to report I have had three contracts in last three weeks, two oceanfronts, 5.1 mil, 3 mil, and one land side at 995k. None of these folks were Wall Street - one doctor, one business owner, one lawyer. April is going to be a joyous month [as to commercial transactions] our space is lagging in rentals, sales are non-existent." (Don't know if that one counts because Bob did not say he loved us).
Leslie Reingold Sotheby's International Realty
East Hampton, New York, lovely beach view card.
Jude Lyons broker - Westhampton Beach: "You too, of course, but ever since I have been in real estate out here this weekend has taken on a new meaning - the beginning of the season! In New York City
it meant a three-day weekend but nothing special. It's hard to tell about this season. I feel the weather has hurt us more than the economy. Phones are ringing. I'm booked solid for the weekend, more buyers than renters but who knows? It's a matter of seconds before Barak loosens the mortgage requirements and that is truly what we all need."
Just a question: wasn't it loosened mortgaged requirements part of the mess? Maybe Jude means reasonable mortgage requirements.
Lori Barbaria, Prudential Douglas Elliman
: " I send you so much love back. You are good and kind and funny, so here's a ton of love. Here's what's going on in the market - not much. People looking and some great deals like not in a decade. It will happen in April - there will be rentals and sales. We'll get through it."
Georgica Pond front property courtesy of Sotheby's International Realty
Judi Desiderio, a Valentine thought, plus some interesting stuff. Town & Country
Report of the Top 10 Most Expensive Sales in 2008 on the East End and the median comparisons for the top 10 sale writing, "the median sale price for the 2008 Top 10 is $23,625,000, a 26 percent drop from the $32,000,000 median sale price of 2007."
Desiderio adds, "2009 will be the Year of the Deal. Deals will be had on every level and in every market, making opportunities abundant for the savvy, well - capitalized investor. The fortunes of the future shall be made from these markets."
A Top 10 List Of Area Sales
1. 104 Gin Lane - Southampton Village
, $60 million, 1776 Investments Corp. to South Lane Properties LLC.
2. 120 Meadow Lane - Southampton Village, $27 million, Lauren and John Veronis to James M. Nicholson.
3. 338 First Neck Lane - Southampton Village, $26,608,701, 338 First Neck LLC to Whitehampton LLC.
4. 29 West End Road - East Hampton Village, $26.5 million, KT Trust to West End Fun LLC.
5. 338 First Neck Lane - Southampton Village, $25,250,000 FNL Land Trust to 338 First Neck LLC.
6. 39 Fairfield Pond Lane - Sagaponack, $22 million, William Spier to Fairfield Pond Partners LLC.
7. 57 West End Avenue - East Hampton Village, $21,450,000, Peter Morton Lifetime
Trust to West End Partners LLC.
8. 94 Apaquogue Road - East Hampton, $20 million, Suzanne J. and John G. Cartier
to County Wexford LLC.
9. 2170 Meadow Lane - Southampton Village, $20 million, Van & Amy Adele Greenfield to Kandinsky Escape LLC.
10. 22 Crescent Avenue - Water Mill, $19.5 million, Michael Picozzi to Carol Hertling and Frank Nickell.
Yes, well, when I would try to diet, often I would watch food shows and read recipes with calories I couldn't afford for some vicarious comfort. Maybe reading about those big bucks can give some solace to the rest of us that have more immediate needs.
In any case, if they have the money to buy out here, doesn't it follow that they have that money to spend out here? Because one way or another East End real estate is a very strange business.