Category Archives: Ulster County
Hm, what have we here? I’m not a big fan of the center hall myself — I cotton to open floor plans myself — but this New Paltz center hall colonial has enough to offer that I’d be willing to overlook it. What nice views, gardens, pool. Built in 1840, it’s on 7.5 acres and has over 3,500 square feet. Been on the market for over a year and has already had a $100,000 price reduction. I admit the description has me interested: “A Majestic tree lined driveway leads to this stately, historically significant Schreiber Family Homestead. Original woodwork is intact, wideboard floors, original doors, a beautiful wrap screened dining porch w/ MT. views for entertaining!”
Here’s the puzzling part: Property Shark says it was last sold in November 2010 (which contradicts the amount of time it’s been listed) for $850,000, a price that seems more reasonable considering what this house purports to have. The buyer was Alpenaster Corp, a company based on West Broadway in Manhattan. So, there’s a bit of a mystery, and a steep price cut. It’s also only about a mile from the Thruway, but I doubt you can hear it.
Here is the big bummer: taxes. $17,500. There goes my dream. Stats on the jump.
Is this a colonial? I’m not sure — I always thought eyebrow windows were an ingredient in Greek revival architecture. Regardless, this New Paltz house from 1800 caught my eye. Tastefully renovated, harking back to its early 19th century roots but obviously updated. Route 32 is fairly busy, although it’s far enough out of town that one wouldn’t be affected by the traffic that sometimes clogs downtown New Paltz. One great thing about this place is that it sits far back off that road, which makes it a contender. And it has four fireplaces! A bit cozy at 1,500 square feet but, hey, it has a pool and a chicken coop! Taxes: $8,097.94. That’s Ulster County for you. It was purchased in in 2008 for $310,000 and before that, in 2006, for $325,000. So it went down in value, and is now finally worth more than its 2006 value… or so the seller hopes (last assessed at $310,000, FYI). Stats on the jump.
Yes, that’s right: $59,000 for this handsome New Paltz saltbox. Would you like to hear the catch(es)? “It may not be a tear-down.” Yep, that’s in the description. A dream house begun and abandoned, with 3.9 acres on a pretty wooded road close to town. Seems like a good deal if the place is salvageable and you want to almost build your own house. Stats on the jump.
This week we have another guest-poster writing about her newly adopted home town of New Paltz, giving us the inside scoop from an ex-Brooklynite’s perpective.
Of course, this is not just any ex-Brooklynite. This happens to be my former acupuncturist and doula, so in addition to having discriminating taste in real estate, she has intimate knowledge of, um, me (and the 41 most grueling hours so far of my life). Thus, I trust her with my life…and my Upstater.
By way of full disclosure, Liz is also selling her house in New Paltz (which we’ll put up later in the week), but only because it’s too much house. Sometimes people relocating from 700-square feet Windsor Terrace apartments get a little square feet crazy, and now Liz and her family are looking for something smaller. But they definitely want to stay in New Paltz, and you’ll find out why below.
As far as my own impressions, well, New Paltz has a bit too much tie-dye and a few too many drunken college students for my taste, although the non-drunken students make for a great babysitting pool. I’ve eaten at some delicious restaurants there, especially the Village Tea Room. The real estate snapshop at the time of this writing shows an average listing price of $397,000, with an average of $182/square foot, the same as last year at this time. The average for sale price is over $400,000, but the average sold price is less than $300,000. Pricier than some surrounding towns, but that probably has to do with the amenities, which Liz will tell you about now…
I grew up in Brooklyn with a hundred kids on my block playing kick the can, catching fire flies in jars and going to the football field to tumble with all the neighborhood gymnasts. Life was good and my mom cooked for the neighborhood. She’d open the door and yell my name when it was time to eat and we’d all come running. Our house, which my parents bought in 1977 for a whopping $54K, was filled with neighborhood kids and family from morning till night. That was Brooklyn. And I loved it.
But it was different as an adult and a parent. Prospect Park became the backyard for our kids. Moms would gather and meet at the playground, we’d meet at the zoo and at local kids sing alongs. We were always trying to find a place to go, since no one’s apartment was big enough to play in. There was a great sense of community amongst my mom friends, but as many of them began having a second and even third child, things began to shift. Space, high priced real estate and schools were the issues at hand. Slowly, friends started leaving Brooklyn. They all left for the same reasons, more space, better schools, safer streets and yards to play in.
We visited them. A lot. It was clear that we wanted to go too.
We started driving upstate, looking for towns; I think we went everywhere between Manhattan and Newburgh until we crept north to New Paltz. As we drove through the village and then across the Carmine Liberta bridge in the summer with the cornfields and the sunflowers and the gunks in the distance, I felt a sense of openness and expansion that I have never felt in Brooklyn. New Paltz also had everything we wanted; a walkable village with a good coffee shop, bookstore, and yoga studio. It had the outdoors: climbing, canoeing, hiking and riding. It had health food stores; CASs, organic restaurants and it even had an amazing Waldorf school. We know it’s amazing because our tween now goes there, and believe me… it’s amazing.
We test drove New Paltz. We lived here for a month and completely felt at home. We bought a house 3 months’ later and spent weekends in the country till we were able to sell our Brooklyn condo and make the full move. The transition was not without its hard moments, but they were just growing pains.
One of the first “play dates” our son had here in New Paltz was with a boy from his class. They went out into the woods behind our house and climbed trees. The neighbor’s dog, which is a huge German Shepard, met them in the woods and played with them. I watched from the window, sort of uncomfortable and worried. Finally I went to the office where my husband was working from home and sheepishly asked, “They are playing in the woods and I can’t always see them from the window, that’s ok, right?” He said “honey; they are 12-year-old boys playing in the woods with a dog, what could be more right?”
Yup. We were home.
Back in the day (meaning the 40’s) this was the “Fine and Dandy Inn”, now it is a gorgeous home with a killer lot and a pool. Check out the kitchen, the character, the great room with the fireplace, etc. Now listed for 399K with the caretaker cottage and extra land etc., or listed for 325K without (subject to bank approval) it is finally somewhat affordable. I watched this home start out in the 500K range, so I only admired but never toured it. Someone may get a great home for all of your family holiday gatherings…Rent out the guest house to supplement your mortgage, or rent out the house for weddings when you want some extra cash…It has a bar! Beds:5 Bed Baths:2 Bath House Size:3,733 Sq Ft Lot Size:1.30 Acres
I came across this post over on Dylan Taft’s website — he’s the real estate broker who gave us the inside scoop on Stone Ridge a couple of weeks ago. He’s done a great job picking out modern homes for sale in Ulster County that range from $250,000 to $850,000. Naturally, I love the most expensive one, but there’s a good mix here.
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
This farmhouse/cottage has been on the market since at least this summer…Built in 1903, this 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom home is 1496 square feet and has been very tastefully renovated. It has special outdoor spaces that beg for lounging, gardening, lemonade, and dinner parties.
A total turn-key property for those looking for a reasonably priced cottage with many upgrades in a convenient location. Port Ewan is directly across the Hudson from the Rhinecliff train station and Route 9W runs through the main corridor. Within 5 minutes to Kingston NY, you will have anything you need, within 15-20 minutes you will have vineyards, antique stores and apple picking.
For the full listing click here
Beds:3 Bed Baths:2 Bath House Size:1,496 Sq Ft Lot Size:1.00 Acres Listing Agent: Sharon Breslau of Westwood Metes & Bounds Realty
By complete chance, I happened to drive by this historical looking mansion the other day on my way from Woodstock to Kingston. Just outside Saugerties in Lake Katrine, on Leggs Mill Road I passed an 1800 Edwardian masterpiece with a “for sale” sign. I couldn’t believe I hadn’t seen it was on the market previously! I looked it up, and realized why. It is only 89K and it needs a total re-haul- but for someone with a desire to move up here full-time to run a bed and breakfast, boutique hotel, artist in residency housing, or just restore an old mansion to its glory days- this is a great piece of property to do it. With 17 rooms, 1.80 acres, right near the water, and between Kingston and Saugerties it is convenient but quiet and definitely seems worth a further investigation! Click here for the full listing.
Beds:7 Bed Baths:2 Bath House Size:3,213 Sq Ft Lot Size:1.80 Acres