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Those who have had the chance to visit the Hamptons and have either been an invited guest or toured some of the great homes here know, there are many amazing homes, built with unlimited budgets and very fine taste. Artists, financiers, writers, retailers, former politicians and those in the entertainment business see creating a great house in the Hamptons as a challenge. Of course, many of these homes are created with the intent of making millions of dollars when they are sold, something that, while not guaranteed, is not uncommon.

Here’s a few worth mentioning…

Former Goldman Sachs partner wants $43M for his Bridgehampton compound

A $140 Million ‘Briar Patch’ for Sale in the Hamptons

Sandy Gallin Already Flipping His Amagansett Six-Bedroom

Values, for the most part have held up fairly well, here in the Hamptons (and Manhattan) during this recent national real estate market meltdown.  One of the problems is, that some homeowners have/had an unrealistic view as to the true “value” of their property to begin with.

Main Entry:   1val·ue 
Function:      noun
Etymology:   Middle English, worth, high quality, from Anglo-French, from Vulgar Latin *valuta, from feminine of *valutus, past participle of Latin valēre to be of worth, be strong — more at wield
Date:            14th century
1: a fair return or equivalent in goods, services, or money for something exchanged
2: the monetary worth of something : market price

Today, although as the attached article discusses, many sellers are holding firm on their prices, there are some terrific deals on the market.

My clients just closed on a property at $1.875M that was originally listed at $2.6M. The seller got motivated and decided to bring his price to market value.  Sure, the buyer wanted to make a 10 – 15% discsounted offer, but I demonstrated to him that the house was prices properly and that, in this instance, offering at (or near) asking price was a smart move. He listened and is now happily in the home. 

Today, an agent needs to know the status behind the offering prices. There may be 3 houses listed at $3M with one firm, another willing to sell for $2.8m and the third willing to let it go for $2.3M.  Only getting behind the facade will tell you that.  The days of “taking orders” for houses, showing five and having buyers pay full price for one is all but gone…it’s time to do your homework.

Check out this NYTIme article. It’s a little bit of the “Hamptons Hype”, but makes some interesting points:


Standing Firm in the Hamptons


Published: October 24, 2008

“This is a resort discretionary luxury market, so it doesn’t look and behave too much like the regular primary residential market,” she said. “Buyers don’t have to buy and sellers don’t have to sell. As a result of those two things you get a flat market, not necessarily a depressed market.”

Sad, but true, there are those who don’t know (or care to know) the ‘value’ of anything. Value takes into consideration, not only the cost of replacement, but the benefits of the experience one gets from possession.

Here, on these final days of summer, where so many are sadly thinking about leaving the beach and returning to the concrete jungle, the value of a Hamptons beach house is certainly on many minds…md

In Wall Street’s playground

Published: August 30 2008 03:00 | Last updated: August 30 2008 03:00

Well, as we know, Hamptons and Manhattan real estate lag in a downturn and lead in a recovery, so if Lampert is betting big on the recovery (not that he’s done so well with Sears), then that’s a cue…


Lampert Puts Money
On Housing Rebound

Stakes Being Taken
In Battered Builders,
Lenders and Retailer
June 12, 2008; Page C4

Billionaire hedge-fund manager Edward S. Lampert is placing new bets on a U.S. housing recovery, buying stakes in beaten-up home builders, mortgage lenders and a home-improvement retailer.

Mr. Lampert’s ESL Investments Inc., which owns half of department-store giant Sears Holdings Corp. and 40% of car retailer AutoNation Inc., has previously focused with mixed success on retail and bank stocks.


Recently, the Greenwich, Conn., hedge fund, which controls investments it valued at about $11.6 billion in its most recent government financial report, began picking up shares in hard-hit housing-related stocks. ESL acquired small stakes in U.S. home builders Centex Corp. and KB Home, according to its latest Securities and Exchange Commission filings. At recent prices, the stakes in the two home builders are valued at $10.4 million and $10.8 million, respectively.

ESL also is tip-toeing into mortgage origination and servicing, acquiring about four million shares of CIT Group Inc., a struggling subprime home and commercial lender, as well as 1.4 million shares of PHH Corp., a mortgage originator and mortgage-service company. The shares are valued currently at about $35.5 million and $25.2 million, respectively. ESL spokesman Steve Lipin declined to comment on the investments.

Mr. Lampert’s purchases come as some analysts think the housing market’s decline may be nearing an end.

In another bet on a housing turnaround, Mr. Lampert this spring increased his stake in Atlanta-based home-improvement retailer Home Depot Inc. ESL now holds about 22.7 million shares valued at $590 million, up from 16.7 million shares last year.

Write to Gary McWilliams at

Charter helicopter service to Hamptons takes off


“After taking an occasional copter to East Hampton last year, this year she bought the 10-trip pass, which amounts to $2,800 per one-way trip. That compares to $21 for a peak train ticket or $29 for the Jitney (known as an “air-conditioned luxury bus” in other parts of the country).”

see the complete story here


Committee for a Green South Fork
April 29, 2008
Dear Concerned South Fork Resident,

Please note CORRECTED email address for Supervisor Linda Kabot:

On Monday, State Supreme Court Justice Peter H. Mayer ruled to deny the Town’s Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against LIPA’s construction of the above-ground portion of the powerline route in Water Mill (huge poles).

Judge Mayer did not vacate the Town’s Stop Work Order (SWO) against LIPA’s above-ground portion, and delayed his ruling on that.  It is not clear that LIPA will abide by the Town’s SWO, as LIPA had scheduled to begin erecting poles in Water Mill this Friday, May 2.

The Town and LIPA Are at an Impasse.  LIPA demands to be assured of payment for burying all the cables.  LIPA management is willing to make the deal, but the LIPA Trustees must vote to approve this decision.  LIPA wants assurance that…IF they bury all the cables before the LIPA Trustees vote…and IF the LIPA Trustees vote not to accept the residents’ surcharge covering the cost…then Southampton Town will pay.

The Town is reluctant to make that assurance, as the expense might have to be borne town-wide in the absence of a special Tax Assessment District (for the East End of the Town).  The proposal of a new Tax Assessment District would take time to work through the approval process in Albany, and might not be approved.

YOU CAN HELP – Send an email to Supervisor Linda Kabot and the Southampton Town Board.  Let Supervisor Kabot know you want the Town to make sure there are No Huge Poles in the South Fork!  No matter what!  One way or another, the Town must agree to cover LIPA’s financial liability to bury all the cables – No Huge Poles!  Email Supervisor Kabot and the Town Board today at:

Thanks to those of you who have already contributed to our legal defense fund! If you have not contributed to our legal defense fund, please do it NOW!  You can make a credit card contribution securely on-line via PayPal on our website at by clicking here: Go to Donate Button.

Steve Abramson, Chair
Committee for a Green South Fork

invasion of the urban Long Island Power Authority into the Country

Committee for a Green South Fork
April 18, 2008
Dear Concerned South Fork Resident,

Town Files a Complaint  v. LIPA on April 18
LIPA Agrees to Temporary Hold on Huge Poles
Temporary Restraining Order – Judge to Rule April 25

Following our two complaints against LIPA, the Town of Southampton filed a complaint v. LIPA and today the Judge issued a stipulation of a Temporary Restraining OrderLIPA is now prevented from any construction of the above-ground portion of the transmission powerline until the Judge rules next Friday, April 25.  The same judge has been assigned to the Town’s complaint as to our own two previous complaints in Suffolk County Supreme Court.

Two days ago, the Town also issued a Stop Work Order against LIPA, preventing LIPA from working on the above-ground portion.

Previously, LIPA Was Served Two Complaints on Our Behalf aimed at blocking LIPA from proceeding with the massive poles and cables on the back roads.  The first action alleges that LIPA, as a governmental entity, did not perform a sufficient environmental impact study regarding the above ground cables. The second action alleges that the installation of the new electrical towers will create: (1) a risk to a hurricane escape route and (2) a nuisance [and a loss in property value], and seeks a permanent injunction preventing LIPA from installing the towers. 

In addition to the above complaints, CGSF also filed a complaint with the New York State Environmental Protection Bureau. 

Negotiations Continue between the Town and LIPA, and we can take satisfaction in that our pursuit of legal remedies has helped to motivate LIPA to come to the table.

Again, we have received contributions from many who joined our petition list, but we are asking everyone on our list to please contribute something to our legal defense fund – NOW!  We are opposing an adversary with deep pockets.

You can make a credit card contribution securely on-line via PayPal on our website at

Thanks to those of you who have already contributed to get the litigation under way.

Steve Abramson, Chair
Committee for a Green South Fork

UPDATE 3/1/2009 – things have changed…these words don’t taste so good.

Hamptons dollar volume down 66%

Hedge Funds’ Paulson

Trades Up in Hamptons

April 11, 2008; Page W8

Last year, hedge-fund manager John Paulson pocketed billions by betting the housing market would collapse, but in the Hamptons he’s just listed his three-acre retreat for $19.5 million, more than 50% above what he paid for it two years ago.

[See more pictures.]
Hedge-fund manager John Paulson purchased this 10.4-acre Southampton, N.Y., compound for $41.3 million. It sits on Lake Agawam.

The founder of Paulson & Co., managing roughly $32 billion, recently bought a 10.4-acre lakefront compound less than a mile away for $41.3 million. The seller was Rodney Propp, chairman of a Manhattan property firm.

Last year, Mr. Paulson made as much as $3 billion to $4 billion for himself — thought to be a record one-year payday on Wall Street. This year the former Bear Stearns Cos. investment banker bet against the financial sector and profited from weakening among banks, including Bear.

[John Paulson]

The Southampton, N.Y., house he’s listed is a seven-bedroom “cottage” on three acres with an enclosed pool and sauna and a detached garage. He bought it two years ago from Jurgen Friedrich, a director of clothing company Esprit Holdings, for $12.75 million, records show.

The trader’s 15,000-square-foot new house was built in 1911 and fully renovated, and comes with separate staff quarters, two other houses, a three-car garage and a pool. The property, called “Old Trees,” has about 450 feet on Lake Agawam and ocean views. It was listed for $48 million in 2006.

Bulova Project Sag Harbor

It’s very exciting news that the Sag Harbor Village Boards are, one by one, approving the plans that have been put forth by Cape Advisors for the Bulova Residential Plan. It’s been said that the project will take 5 years, and the economic rewards to the village will last for at least 100 years.

Peter Neely and did a video of local merchants here 

For more info, also goto:

Euro vs the Dollar

Word has it (or at least the newspapers are reporting) that due to the difference in the US Dollar versus the Euro and the Pound, that foreign buyers are keeping the market up. 

We’ve always had a good number of foreigners buying here. I think it’s just the in fashion hype to say that “the europeans are simply breaking the door down”… makes one seem so “in the know”. had a post about the subject today – see it here.

Ito the Box TV had a video on it as well, see it below. md 

Into The Box TVclick HERE to se the video

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