Category Archives: Kingston

Ulster County Property Taxes On the Rise

Has anyone been following the story about the New York State Property Tax Cap? As far as I understand it, Cuomo ushered through some legislation late last year that caps the increase in property taxes at 2% or the rate of inflation, whichever is lower. Sounds good, right? Here’s the catch: municipalities can vote out the cap (which doesn’t apply to NYC, by the way). “Communities may raise or lower property taxes according to the needs of the community. If the taxpayers want to pay more taxes they can, and they can override the cap with a 60 percent vote for schools and by a 60 percent vote of the governing body for local governments.”

In Ulster County, all but two municipalities opted out of the cap, according to the Daily Freeman. Here’s the skinny:

“According to the  Real Property Tax Service Agency, 2012 county tax rates per $1,000 of assessed property value will be as follows.

• Denning: $23.34, up 8.4 percent from $21.53 in 2011.
• Esopus: $4.25, up 8.4 percent from $3.92.
• Gardiner: $4.85 per $1,000, up 2.3 percent from $4.74.
• Hardenburgh: $6.39, up 8.3 percent from $5.90.
• Hurley: $4.02, up 0.5 percent from $4.
• Kingston (town): $4.69, up 1.5 percent from $4.62.
• Kingston (city): $4.24, up 8.4 percent from $3.91.
• Lloyd: $4.24, up 8.4 percent from $3.91.
• Marbletown: $3.95, up 1.3 percent from $3.90.
• Marlborough: $4.27, up 8.4 percent from $3.94.
• New Paltz: $4.23, up 8.5 percent from $3.90.
• Olive: $4.21, up 8.5 percent from $3.88.
• Plattekill: $4.27, down 0.6 percent from $4.30.
• Rochester: $4.23, up 4.2 percent from $4.06.
• Rosendale: $4.25, up 8.4 percent from $3.92.
• Saugerties: $4.27, up 8.7 percent from $3.93.
• Shandaken: $18.30, up 8.3 percent from $16.89.
• Shawangunk: $21.35, up 3 percent from $20.72.
• Ulster: $5.24, down 0.2 percent from $5.25.
• Wawarsing: $257.92, up 8.3 percent from $238.05.
• Woodstock: $4.43, up 3.7 percent from $4.27.

That means that for lower taxes, head to Plattekill or the town of Ulster. Upstater will check those towns out soon!

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Five Figure Fridays! Double Your Pleasure

This week on Five Figure Fridays we’ll feature properties that are suitable for sharing.  Each one has either two buildings (or, you know, trailers) or at least a 2-family layout.  If you have friends you really, really like, maybe one of these will catch your collective fancy – or, if you’re hoping to rent out your property to defray costs, this could give you more options and eliminate the “I don’t want people touching my stuff” factor.

That said, to stay under 100 grand for two properties requires a compromise or two.  Details and more pictures of each property are after the jump.  From highest to lowest:

West Shokan - 2 Cottages, $99k

Two modest cottages, but for weekenders they’ve got great charm and potential.  Looks like a lovely front and back yard as well.  Some terrific paneling and rustic built-ins.  The real quandary would be fighting with your co-buyers over who has to live above the garage.  $99.9k.

Livingston Manor - Cottage plus Duplex, $99k

Same idea but with noticeably less charm.  Largeish Tudor main house, plus additional duplex for a total of three separate properties.  Need at least major cosmetics, if not more serious work – but the utility-to-price ratio is great.  Livingston Manor has a lovely creekside “downtown” area.  $99.9k.

Kingston 2 Family - $95k

This is a 2-family duplex in Kingston.  Not the best pictures but looks altogether livable.  Fenced yard and in-town location with all municipal utilities.  Kingston, right off the Thruway with easy access to Rt-28, makes a great gateway to Woodstock, Phoenicia, etc.  $95k.

Olive - 2 Mobiles, $75k

Sure, it’s hard to lower your sights from Upstate Jane’s architect showplaces and Lisa’s astonishing stone real estate porn, but I say neither has the Boogie Nights appeal of these two trailers in Olive.  Garage, carport, central deck and a full acre, with taxes still reported below $2,000/year.  Park an orange ‘Vette out front and tell everyone they’re not old, they’re vintage.  $75k.

Liberty 2 Family - $59k

Finally, can someone please explain prices in Liberty?  Is it the taxes ($5,800 for this in-town duplex)?  Is it the proximity of the old resorts now being perpetually flogged on Craigslist as “luxury condos”?  There are a ton of lovely old houses for astonishingly little money.  Case in point, this adorable two-family with beautiful wood floors for just $59k.

After the jump: links and stats for each, plus a big gallery with a bunch more photos.  Happy sharing!

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This Weekend: A Healthcare Fest for Artists

O+ 2011 Trailer from O+ Festival on Vimeo.

Here’s a selling point for upstate New York: there, local health care providers will offer medical assistance in exchange for art or music. Imagine that happening downstate. Read all about the O-Positive Festival on the Watershed Post. Starts tonight in Kingston, with bands, parades, and a Lady Gaga impersonator.

Friday Real Estate Porn: Kingston Second Empire Mansion, $2.1 mill

Crikey. What a place. I’ll live in the gazebo.

This National Register historic site is on the Hudson, my most favorite place to be in upstate New York. And look what two million gets you in the city of Kingston: seven beds, five baths, 30 rooms, ELEVEN THOUSAND SQUARE FEET and almost 12 acres. The place is called Edgewood Terrace, and it’s been on the market since February. If you buy this glorious piece of Kingston, N.Y. real estate because you saw it here first, you really owe us a weekend up there, don’t you think? Stats on the jump. Read the rest of this entry

Rare Rondout Offering: Center Hall Colonial in Kingston for $319,750

I think this center hall Kingston Colonial is a pretty house, but what really caught my eye was the location. The Rondout neighborhood in Downtown Kingston is desirable for all the right reasons—-right on Rondout Creek with its water sports and beach access and chock-a-block with pretty historic homes—but housing stock is tight. This is one of the few Rondout homes we found during our Kingston week. It has some good period detail and a lovely, though small, backyard. It’s also well suited for home office life as well rocking in country retirement: note the drum kit in that great attic!

The ceilings look a little low and the bathroom could use an update, but the house is pretty turn-key as is. It’s been on the market for five months, with a small dip in price. Here’s hoping the owners are open to negotiation.

GMAP
Beds: 4
Baths: 3
Square feet: 2,342
Year Built: 1875
Land: .11/acre

Kingston Victorian, $329,900

I concentrated my search for Kingston property on places near Forsyth Park, a very sweet city park with a great playground and a lovely little nature center. Well, there wasn’t much under $400,000, unless you want a place on a very busy intersection or a late 60s ranch house, and — not to sound too snobby — that’s not exactly our cup of tea.

This Victorian-era house, however, piqued our interest. Four beds, two and a half baths, a quarter of a an acre city lot, the cutest little outbuilding. Needs some different decor, but the kitchen looks pretty nice and I love the arch above the stairway. This is a pad for the permanent NYC escapee, or other folks looking for a full-time residence in Kingston, N.Y. It’s been on the market almost a year, and has already had one $15,000 price cut. I’d take a few thou off for the vinyl siding alone. Stats on the jump.

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Pedigreed Victorian in Uptown Kingston for $395,000

There’s something bittersweet about seeing a home for sale that’s been in the same family for over one hundred years, such as this grand Kingston Victorian currently on the market. With any historic home, part of the appeal is buying a piece of history, but with this particular house, you’re also buying a century’s worth of one family’s heritage.

And what a heritage it is! According to the broker’s notes, this house belonged to Charles Grant Ellis, the foremost “Oriental Rug Scholar” of the twentieth century. Note the gorgeous rugs in every room as well as the antique-per-square footage ratio. To my taste, it’s just right. At least from these pics, the house doesn’t look bed-and-breakfast fusty or antique shop crammed. Rather, I get the sense that Aunt Edith brought over that chiffonier on the Queen Elizabeth, or that Cousin Fabian won that tapestry in a game of whist. And if only those rugs could talk.

Sadly, the house doesn’t come furnished. However, it does come with eleven rooms, including a library, and more moldings than you care to count. It’s on a corner lot, in desirable Uptown Kingston, in an area with similarly impressive historic homes. The lot is rather small, though, and without off-street parking or the space for a garage. Oh, there is only 1.5 baths—-in a house with six bedrooms! I’m guessing, though, that the person who wins this one will appreciate the house’s greater charms and hopefully, keep it in the family for another one hundred years. Fabulous pics and stats on the jump. Read the rest of this entry

Town of the Week: Kingston

A lot of Upstate weekend visitors overlook Kingston, the Ulster County seat and one time capital of New York State. Granted, many parts of Kingston don’t have that immediate postcard-worthy charm of smaller Upstate towns, especially if you’re coming to Kingston to do your shopping at one of the big box retailers or the mall.

The suburban sprawl you find once you leave Kingston’s lovely downtown area (more on that in a second) probably isn’t going to win any converts, but if you do end up moving Upstate, and you’re not planning on becoming a homesteader, you may find you want to be within a close driver of the bog boxes as you’ll eventually end up in need of them from time to time. (On a related note, I don’t think I could overpraise Kingston’s superb local supermarket, Adams Fairacre Farms on the 9W strip. Stocked full of local produce and products at very competitive prices, it also has suburban-sized wide aisles, a great garden center and amazing selection. For Adams alone, Kingston is worth a second look.) Read the rest of this entry

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