Category Archives: Woodstock

UPSTATE JANE: Fixer Upper in Bearsville NY with potential income property 119K

I have been watching this property for a while now…(over a year) and the price keeps going down, it is now at 119K!~

I have peeked around and there are clearly reasons for the price tag. It is a true fixer upper. It appears to have possible foundation problem mainly. Also the siding would have to be replaced, along with  I am sure potential mold problems. It does however have an amazing fireplace, vaulted ceilings, a dining room, grand staircase, and is on a great convenient piece of property with an outbuilding that could easily be converted to an income unit with the addition of a bathroom. (It has a kitchen already) So if you are really looking for a “fixer upper”, and one with potential for income- this may be it.  For full listing click here

Beds:2 Bed  Baths:1 Bath   House Size:1,326 Sq Ft   Lot Size:0.68 Acres

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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!

Upstate Jane: 2 Handmade Woodstock Homes- 1b/2b for 275K and 2b/1b for 139K

For over a hundred years…Long before the famous concert borrowed the town’s name, Woodstock has been home to artists, craftsman, musicians, activists and eccentrics looking to flee the city and live their lives simply and honestly surrounded by other bohemian’s that would celebrate and embrace community living, and passions that main stream society wasn’t ready to accept or fully respect. When the American Dream was still about finding your own way and doing it yourself, many of these people did not “buy” homes when they fled the city, but instead built them by hand with local materials found on the land, and down the creek in the area. With the help of the community and perseverance  (plus a lack of clear town building codes and permits I am assuming) they created some of the most ingenious and interesting homes around. Four generations later, some of these homes still exist today and are even available on the market. You can view these homes in the 1974 published book aptly titled “Woodstock Handmade Houses” by Robert Haney and David Ballantine, available on Amazon.com. I was lucky enough to find this book thrown for the trash on a W. 70th Street curb in Manhattan on our way back from…yes, Woodstock.

The Maverick Concert Hall above

Hervey White was the Harvard educated “grandaddy” of the local handmade house phenomena,  leader of the Maverick Festival and original management team of the Byrdcliffe Arts Colony, also in Woodstock. An idealist to an extreme, Hervey helped build hundreds of handmade homes with and for people, as if scattering seeds across Woodstock’s landscape during the initial years of the  Festival in the 1900’s and beyond.

Below are two “handmade homes” available to purchase currently in Woodstock. There are more though, if you look hard enough.

For 275K, this 1954 handmade home has a warm, rustic and open layout that seems ideal for a couple or single person’s weekend retreat. Full of quirky and efficient details, this is the quintessential handmade house. Featured in the 1974 book, this home is ready for a new loving owner. Click here for the listing. Also available to rent for $150.00 a night.

Beds:1 Bed Baths:2 Bath House Size:1,480 Sq Ft Lot Size:2.93 Acres

Potentially one of the first Maverick Homes, this stone cottage for 139K, is across the road from the Maverick Concert Hall, and was built in 1910. Along with its neighboring Maverick Festival homes, it is once again a quintessential antique handmade home.  I can picture Hervey White placing the stones and mortar of this house alongside his fellow festival attendees. (The likes of Isamu Noguchi and Russell Wright)

Set into the hillside, this adorable 2 bedroom/1 bathroom home is in a convenient location and would be easy to maintain. Click here for the full listing.

Beds:2 Bed Baths:1 Bath House Size:875 Sq Ft Lot Size:0.68 Acres

Holiday Rental: Woodstock, $250/night

Slightly more expensive than a few of the other upstate houses for rent for the holidays, the “Woodstock Weekender” looks pretty promising to me nonetheless. Three beds, two baths — including one with a Jacuzzi tub. The best part may be the pic of the master bedroom, which includes what looks like a stoned 11-year-old hanging out on the bed. Interesting marketing. Got a stone fireplace and a hot tub, and rents for $1750 for the whole week. Has five reviews on AirBnB, all pretty darn good.

Upstate Jane: Unbelievable Home in Woodstock with HUGE workspace….299K and falling….

Okay, I admit…I toured this gorgeous home before making my final button push on a home across the street basically…but when I saw the asking price falling like sweet rain, I admit, I would have taken the bait. This house is gorgeous. It is in Woodstock, has mountain views, a gentleman farm neighbor, and manicured lawns. It has an amazing studio/workspace, heated and with a loo. There is so much potential in this space, the only thing that deterred us before was the price tag. It just dropped 50K.  Having toured it, I will tell you it is worth the price tag now. The upstairs is a bit of a “free for all”. It needs some proper walls and a new bathroom put in. It is completely functional and gorgeous, just not for everyone. The kitchen needs a tiny bit of work, but is mostly done perfectly alone with the rest of the main house. The adjacent work area could house a gorgeous master suite, followed above by a HUGE studio workspace. All of this for 299K or less, and IN Woodstock proper, plus you would be my neighbor??!!

15 Chipmunk Lane, Woodstock NY 12498

Stats:

  • 299K
  • 3 bedroom
  • 3 bathroom
  • 2292 sq. feet
  • 1.1 acres
  •  built in 1954

more photos on the jump! Read the rest of this entry

Woodstock Green Luxury, $915,000

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They’re calling this green home in Woodstock, NY  a French farm house. It was built in 2003, so has modern everything (kitchen, yum) including passive solar heating, radiant heat flooring, organic gardens, VOC-free materials. Just outside Woodstock, on a beautiful stretch of road, two acres of land. Stats on the jump.

Read the rest of this entry

Upstate Jane: My Latest House Crush

Megan Oldenburger, aka Upstate Jane, is the owner of Dichotomy Interiors, an Interior Design and Style firm based in Woodstock, NY. She writes for Upstater about design, home furnishings, real estate and culture.

I get crushes on houses sometimes. I start fantasizing about them, all the things I want to do with them once they are mine, how I would buy it such beautiful things, and treat it so well. How I would spend the rest of my life with it, and grow with it. Well…this time my HUSBAND got the crush. I admit, I did too. This house was something. This home clearly swung both ways and was not afraid to seduce both of us.

Side of house and side entry

It was a chance encounter. We weren’t expecting to meet. Just on a simple Sunday drive when we saw the signs. OPEN HOUSE.

this stone path leads down from the entry over the brook

Sure, we see these signs all the time, and we don’t go pulling down just any old properties driveway. But this one was special. It was on a road we had “travelled” before. We had dabbled with another home down that street. Could it be that same house AGAIN? That previous house was off the market last we checked (had a lien on her, poor thing) Liens are like a leper in real estate. No one can touch you if they wanted, you are on your own island. The only thing you can do is hope for a quick foreclosure. We thought it could only be one other thing, the BIG stone house with the renovated barn.

We took the bait.

front entry hall

We pulled down the looong tree lined driveway with a babbling brook running alongside it with a picket fenced bridge leading down from the entry. Then, off to our left…It stood, just looking at us to come  up and chat. We drove up the curved road past the pretty red barn and saw her original stonework, and multiple chimneys. A large shed, and a screened in slate porch. As we entered we began through what is the dining room with it’s wide original stone and stucco fireplace and beamed ceilings. It just got better from there. I don’t want to “kiss and tell” but I will tell you that my husband was shooting off more pictures and prancing around like he had been kissed for the first time!

OH! This house has a past- in the 40’s and 50’s it was owned by Jane Burr, pioneering feminist, novelist/poet and was used as an Inn for writers. It’s current owners are a well known model and a musician/actor. Like I said though, I won’t kiss and tell.

In the end we couldn’t afford this gorgeous masterpiece, it is a bit overpriced still for the market, and the taxes just killed it for us. Time will tell. We visited again to make sure it was love and not lust, but the luster faded. This truly is an amazing property but there are a few things that need to be taken care of. In the end I needed to find something that was less expensive and less intimidating. For some lucky person though, willing to put the work in, this is going to be an amazing purchase. Oh, and if that lucky person is reading this right now…I would LOVE to help you renovate it!

Here is the listing and stats

Location: Woodstock

Beds:4 Bed (plus the barn studio)

Baths:2 Bath (3 if you count the barn studio)

House Size:2,281 Sq Ft

Lot Size:5.78 Acres

Last years taxes (here’s the kicker): $14,528

Upstate Jane: The Reinvention of Our Weekend Home

Megan Oldenburger, aka Upstate Jane, is the owner of Dichotomy Interiors, an Interior Design and Style firm based in Woodstock, NY. She writes for Upstater about design, home furnishings, real estate and culture.

For the next few weeks, I am going to tell you the story of how the first two years of owning our humble piece of mod pie has unfolded. I will start at the beginning and take you to the current day if you care to hear a real life version of “taking the plunge” and finding a diamond in the rough. Luckily I have my own blog, which I used to document most of our journey, so I have a fun way to look back at what I wrote and felt now.

Almost two years ago to this day, I was in an unnerving place. I was about to purchase a weekend home upstate, in Woodstock, NY.  You can read exactly what I wrote about that moment here. We had passed the inspection stage,  got our loan, and were waiting to close (hopefully by the end of the year.) Today, I am in the exact same place. This time, I am not just buying a home though. I am also selling a home. I am selling that same home two years ago I sat unnervingly waiting to close on. Two years ago I was dreaming of my new weekend life upstate and the ways I was going to make the home beautiful. Why would I sell then? Over the last two years we fell head over heels with the area so much, that we have decided to REALLY take the plunge, and move full time to Woodstock! We needed a larger space than our weekend home could provide. And even though I love it dearly, and put alot of heart and soul into it, I knew it would start getting a bit tight to work out of together. So that brings me to the point where I sit back and reminisce like Grandpaw over his old golden retriever he had as a boy. Kind of.

I hope that reading about my process will help ease the fears and give insight for people pondering the big decision. Especially when so many places in most peoples price ranges don’t start out looking like they belong in DWELL.  So…we begin. More info, more pictures after the jump! Read the rest of this entry

Proposed Affordable Housing in Woodstock: Strife Among the Hippies

A reader turned us on to this article from The New York Times last week, about the feathers ruffled in oh-so-liberal Woodstock by a proposed 53-unit affordable housing project there. I’ve always thought that one of the main differences between conservatives and liberals was their take on poverty issues — liberals actually want to spend money on the poor, to have their tax money benefit the less fortunate. But in this case other standard liberal values, like environmental issues, seem to be clashing with the desire for an economically diverse community.

One problem is that folks tend to be intractable no matter what their values — once they get comfortable with the general state of a place, they don’t much want that to shift. I love this quote from the Times’ piece: “Nobody would tell you they don’t want these people in our town,” said Jeff Moran, the town supervisor, who has been a conflicted supporter of the rental project. “Instead, they talk about the effect on the quality of life, ramping up the costs of services and those kind of things. But there’s a joke in town that the reason The Woodstock Times costs a dollar is because people don’t want change.”

At least, they don’t want change on this scale. They say the 53 units of Woodstock Commons for a town of 6,000 is too big. I’m gonna say the plans sound pretty good, and also sound like they will be bringing in hard-working lower middle class folks. “The current plans, with a green design and geothermal heating and cooling, would set aside some units for households making less than 30 percent of the county’s median income of roughly $70,000 for a family of four; other units would have income ceilings of 50 percent and 60 percent of the county median,” the Times reported. The average listing price in Woodstock at the time of this writing, according to Trulia, is over $600,000.

Saugerties’ Jonathan Dixon Reads in Woodstock, August 13

We wrote about chef and author Jonathan Dixon’s Saugerties life, and his new book Beaten, Sauced and Seared, a few weeks ago. If you’re Upstate this weekend, you can hear him in person at the Oriole 9 restaurant in Woodstock. Reading begins this Saturday, August 13th, at 6PM.

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