Category Archives: Beacon

Car-Free Country House in Beacon $274,500


It doesn’t get much better than this (and believe me, I looked HARD): This home is a brisk ten-minute bike ride to the Beacon Metro-North station, yet set back just a wee bit out of town and right on the edge of a more rural landscape.  The lovely Madam Brett Mill Park is a breath away, and the Dia Art Foundation and the waterfront are nearby, too.

There’s a glut of lovely real estate in Beacon, ripe for the picking.  Frankly, a lot of it is fancier and therefore pricier than this home.  But I’m spoiled.  I want it all.   I want sufficient space inside the house (look at the size of that bedroom in the picture to the left there), but I need to have some outside, as well.  In the summer, I treat my yard like another room, and I want to be able to walk or ride my bike to at least 50% of any given place I want or need to be during the week.  That’s why I like this place.

Oh, and there’s a really cool store in Beacon called Dream In Plastic.  I don’t get to Beacon a whole lot these days, but when I do, I make a bee-line for this shop.  I won’t spend a lot of time talking about how awesome it is, because I think that’s pretty evident from the website.  Just be prepared to spend some ducats, for their wares, though quite irresistible, are not cheap.

Long story short, you should live in Beacon.  You should live in this house right here, and then you should go buy some cool stuff at Dream In Plastic.  After that, you should grab your spouse/significant other/dog/tolerant cat and take a walk on Long Dock park, and then you should have some pad thai.  You can thank me later.

The stats:
70 Howland Avenue, Beacon (Kristie Alexa Difrancesco – Prudential) GMAP
Asking Price: $274,500
Beds: 3
Baths: 1.5
Square Feet: 1400
Land: .44 acres
Year Built: 1925
Taxes: $5241
Features: 2 car detached garage, wood burning fireplace, hard-wood floors

Downtown Beacon Live/Work Loft, $399,000

Hm, maybe I’ll be a painter after all. I mean, for less than four hundred grand, I can get this rather extraordinary creek-front downtown Beacon loft, with a deck, great light, mountain views. It’s a renovated 1900 factory building (nice touch, leaving up the blue masking tape) called The Lofts at Beacon Falls — five were on the market, there are two left, per the broker. They’re built LEED certified, which is a huge plus for me — they probably used everything from VOC-paints to mold-resistant sheetrock, and, who knows, maybe they took energy- and water-saving measures, as well. Only one bedroom, but over 1,700 square feet. Would be kind of an interesting weekend place (even though it’s downtown), but obviously designed to lure starving artists from Brooklyn full time. Any takers? HOA fees are  $184/month, but yearly taxes are $5,600. Seems like a lot to me, although I always say that. Stats on the jump.

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1870 Beacon Home for $315,000

This nicely updated Beacon home boasts a lovely garden as well as mountain views. As with many of the properties you’ll find in Beacon, this one wouldn’t be about bucolic country living but rather relocation to an artsy little town where you can get a nice house for your money.

And this house is nice, though not extravagant. I like the spacious yard, the gleaming white moldings and the clawfoot tub. The attic has been converted into a studio for work-at-homers. According to public records, the house was bought ten years ago for $176,000, so the price jump shows the big upswing in the Beacon real estate market. That said, the sellers originally listed this one as $339,000 six months ago, and they’ve come down on the price twice. How much do you think this one is worth?

Stats on the jump.

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Big Plans for Beacon: Restoring the Funicular

from Wikipedia

This is really just an excuse to write funicular in a sentence! No, but really, turns out Beacon has more to offer than just good, cheap housing stock, public transport and culture; it has nature, too, in the form of Mount Beacon, a peak offering panoramic views of the Hudson Valley.

Once upon a time (that is, until 1978), a funicular hustled folks to the top of the mountain, and the NY Times reported last month that a group is raising funds to restore the ride. In the meantime, until the end of this month, the Mount Beacon Incline Railway Restoration Society is leading hikes up the mountain along the former (and future) funicular path. I’m trying to find some homes for sale close to Mount Beacon, which seems like where I’d wanna live.

Town of the Week: Beacon

Beacon, New York is like a living laboratory of a Richard Florida book:if you build an art museum (or rather, house one in a former cracker box factory), they will come—and by “they,” we mean creative class expats fleeing increasingly pricey New York City neighborhoods. Even before Dia: Beacon actually opened its doors, news of its arrival spurred a revival of this once-depressed Dutchess County town. The revival isn’t complete—much of Beacon still looks like its post-industrial East Coast brethren—but it’s definitely farther along in the cappuccino department than nearby Newburgh, and safer to boot. At the same time, it’s cheaper than posher spots like Cold Spring or Cornwall, with average home sales hovering around the $200,000 mark.

I find it pretty hard to take that Metronorth ride up the Hudson to the Dia and not fantasize about moving to Beacon, especially when you hit that point in the trip where you pass Bannerman’s Island and that great expanse of river, fjord, and green mountains. Beacon is far enough away to assure yourself you’re not moving to the suburbs, yet it’s still just an hour and twenty minutes rail ride from Manhattan via the relatively cheap Metronorth. It offers Hudson Rivers views and a surprising number of public parks, visibly active civic improvement efforts, delicious-sounding food festivals and farmers markets, a historic Main Street with some appealing new businesses, and of course, a burgeoning art scene. No wonder it’s such an appealing day trip on the cheap for city dwellers. This week will be exploring options for those who might want to stay longer.

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