Category Archives: Germantown
I’d live in a shack if it came with pool. Even if you’re not a swimmer, there’s something about looking outside and seeing a square of chlorinated blue that makes the world feel so expansive, or at least Cheever-esque.
This week, I tried to find something better than a shack with a pool on the side, while keeping the price tag around $300, 000. In very pretty Germantown in Columbia County, we found this 1970s split-level on a rolling property with great mountain views for $310,000. The house isn’t much to speak of—textbook ’70s middle-class suburban—-but the 2.0 acre property is idyllic.
Across the river and farther north, we found a show-stopper of a historic home in Ravena in Albany County for $295,00. I’m not crazy about the mauve exterior and the home is in desperate need of some thoughtful landscaping, but if you’ve always dreamed of owning a rambling nineteenth-century farm house with a Edith Wharton-novel worthy name, the Vanderzee House could be your chance.
This one also comes with a pool as well as nearly 5 acres. You’d be further afield than in Germantown—at least an extra twenty minutes in the car—though Ravena is right off the 21B thruway stop. Comes with a pool, too—but how much house is too much house?
Stats and pics on the jump.
Although we generally cover affordable-ish real estate on Upstater (after all, I’m looking for something I can buy on a freelance writer’s salary), from time to time we will put some things up just for drooling purposes. Hence: this Japanese architecture-inspired estate in this week’s spotlight village, Germantown. Hey, it’s under four million bucks!
The place was written up in the Times a few years ago (that alone ought to add a couple hundred thou to the price) and in Hudson Valley magazine last year. I like that it’s not full-on Dwell-ish (much as I love Dwell)–has some warmth to it along with the austerity. Of course, I’d be way more comfortable in the guest house than the fancy mansion, myself.
It’s a funny location. This house is very close to the Hudson River and also to my old storage space (the storage space with the world’s greatest view), but also a little too close to the busy 9G for my taste. The address is Main Street, but it’s at the end of it, where is disappears toward the water. The reason for the price is right here in the description: “A perfect house for renovation.” Nuts. The broker says new kitchens and bathrooms are needed, and that the buyer will decide if anything else is ripe for reinvention–nothing else is needed.
It doesn’t have much land–three-quarters of an acre–but it’s quite fetching, isn’t it? I even like the rainbow assortment of colors on the inside. I like the size. I like the light. I like the kitchen. Some things that make me a little nervous: well water and private sewer. Anyone have thoughts on those? Stats on the jump. Read the rest of this entry
I love the look of this place, and a complete sucker for carriage houses (my hometown, Saratoga Springs, was full of run-down mansions and carefully tended carriage houses when I was little). There are some obvious downsides, like it’s right on the main road, has a lot size of .229 acres and nothing-to-sneeze-at taxes of $6,050 a year. (Am I being unrealistic about this? $500/month seems like a lot to me for no acreage.) Good stuff: three-car garage, 2,112 square feet, cool-looking place, though carpeting is mentioned in the description–a no-no for me, but easy enough to take out if wood floors are promised beneath. I drove by this weekend and was impressed with the beautiful fields fanning out behind it. No, those fields wouldn’t belong to you, but it doesn’t feel like a cramped village house because of them. Readers? Thoughts? Stats on the jump. Read the rest of this entry
There are quite a few properties for sale along Main Street in Germantown, including what looks like a lovely carriage house a few doors down from Otto’s, and a super cool live/work industrial building. They range from $229,900 to $460,000 and are all pretty darn cool (I’ll go into detail of each in forthcoming posts). Despite the name, Main Street is not particularly busy–the stretch of it west of 9G is very quiet– and though these are small city lots, close to the road, some of them abut big stretches of field so don’t feel too urban.
Possibilities abound here: a few nice live/work spaces, an opportunity for several friends to buy places right near each other, or a slow transition for a city person into country life.
This week, we’ll put a spotlight on properties for sale in Germantown, a tiny hamlet just on theborder of Dutchess and Columbia Counties and along the Hudson River. A few years ago, I rented a double-wide trailer there with friends for the summer. At the time Germantown’s main selling point for me was its proximity to Tivoli (where my brother lives) and the beautiful estate of Clermont. For a buyer, those attributes remain, but so does the fact that this is the southwestern-most spot in Columbia County, which has lower property taxes than some spots in Dutchess County, just a nod to the south. It’s about 20 minutes south of the Hudson train station, and has beautiful river views if you can get your hands on the right property.
It has another big plus: the amazing Otto’s Market, which is like a small town Dean & Deluca, somehow made unpretentious. There is still little else in the “downtown,” although there’s an Indian restaurant (haven’t tried it), a Stewart’s Ice Cream (tried it all too often) and a diner along 9G, just off Main Street. There’s also a push to get local folks to shop locally, a kind of BID called 12526.biz… although I’ve always heard that the largest employer here was the rodent-breeding facility known around town as the Rat Lab.
If you’ve bought or rented or hung out in Germantown lately, send us a note or leave a comment below or in forthcoming posts, and tell us what you think.