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HERE’S A NEW YEAR’S GOODIE. Yep, with the turn of the calendar, it’s time to start thinking about…summer houses! The listing says this sweet and unpretentious 3BR, 2 bath  (bigger than it looks at from the outside) dates from 1847, and that seems about right. The symmetry, porch columns, pilasters on either side of the front door and six-over-six windows, all say Greek Revival to me. At the same time, the front porch and picket fence say farmhouse (they’re not mutually exclusive). It’s in the village of Greenport,on Long Island’s North Fork, where nearly all the houses are of similar vintage (see more of Greenport’s architectural charms here).

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The price has just been reduced by 30K. The still-upwards-of-400K ask reflects the tip-top condition of the house, the optimism of the sellers, and the market being pretty strong.

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Except for the dated kitchen, the house appears immaculate — renovated perhaps to a fault (recessed lights in old houses are a particular peeve of mine).

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Check out the listing, with lots more photos, here.

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Anyone local have insight to share about the Main Street location?

HERE’S A BRAND NEW-TO-MARKET foreclosure, looking mighty cute — a classic Victorian farmhouse with a front porch and gabled attic. Makes me want to run right out to the East End of Long Island and take a look. It’s at the very end of a road, heavily wooded, a block from Long Island Sound.

Would somebody who knows the area well please let us know what’s wrong with it;-)?

There’s a coffered ceiling in the living room, right, a mantel if not a working fireplace, wood floors, French doors. Nothing wrong with any of that. In another photo, however (the room with red walls, below), there are recessed lights in the ceiling, a symptom of misguided reno somewhere along the line. Making me wonder why there’s no kitchen shot. With luck, the kitchen is “unimproved” since at least the 1930s!

The dining room, below, shows nice high ceilings and more of the dreaded recessed lights.

An overhead of the property on the listing sites reveals a bunch of random outbuildings that might be demolished for more vegetable-gardening space.

See how fantasies begin? Doesn’t take much for this old-house addict in springtime.

For the full listing, go here, or here. You might have to register for all the details. Or do your own Google search: the address is 975 Anderson Road, Southold, NY 11971.

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IT’S BEEN SITTING ON THE MARKET for a year, with price drops along the way. What’s wrong with it?! It’s an 1890s house in pretty decent shape, in the impeccable Hudson River town of Rhinebeck. On a tiny lot, true — I would find the lack of gardening ops very frustrating.

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But sweet it is. It can only be the overall lousy market conditions that keeps this place from being snapped up, as it would have been in years and markets past.

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For all the deets, go here.

And thanks to Upstater, the Hudson River Valley/Catskills real-estate blog with taste, for zeroing in on this charmer.

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HERE’S A FRESH HOT LISTING FOR YOU — it just came on the market two days ago. It’s a classic, cedar-shingled 1920s house with a farmhouse-style front porch, 4 bedrooms, wood floors throughout, and some interior details.  

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The house is in Greenport on Long Island’s North Fork, a great little town with a Main Street full of mom & pop stores, a vintage carousel, ice cream parlors, an Art Deco movie theater, antique shops to explore, and a few good restaurants — but Greenport’s main appeal, IMO, is that it’s made up almost exclusively of older homes.

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This one seems to have a lot to recommend it, including an attractive garden and a location a block from the Peconic Bay.

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On the minus side, it looks like the taxes are high and the lot is small (7,000 square feet). Still, if you’re in the market, it’s worth a look. For more info and pictures, click right here.

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THE 4th OF JULY found me on Shelter Island, chillin’ in 100 degree heat at my friend Debre’s extraordinary Carpenter Gothic farmhouse.

Somewhere between the Jamesport Vineyards sauvignon blanc and the Wolffer Estate rose (we like to support our local wineries), we decided to re-arrange furniture. We were sitting on the wraparound screened porch, which Debre added, along with new bathrooms and many other upgrades, since buying the house about three years ago.

There was no shortage of furniture to re-arrange. Debre is an avid yard-saler, and the porch — a U shape, 8-10′ wide around three sides of the house — is well stocked with vintage wicker sofas and chairs, a sectional rattan set, and various occasional tables. Our re-decorating frenzy began because there was a carved wood 19th century mantelpiece, originally out of a house in Harlem, behind one of the wicker sofas. Only I never knew that, since it had been hidden under a dusty plastic drop cloth since my first visit to the house over a year ago.

We pulled the plastic off so that I could see the mantelpiece, and discussed various possible placements for it. We decided there really isn’t any place for it in the house, style- or space-wise (the mantel is for sale, therefore; e-mail caramia447[at]gmail[dot]com for more pics and details.)

Then we started moving stuff around for the hell of it, switching out some of the wicker, top, for more modern rattan, below, in one corner of the porch, then styling it up with fronds cut from a stand of bamboo in the yard.

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It’s not really a matter of ‘before’ and ‘after’ — just different. We both have interior design backgrounds, and this sort of thing is our idea of fun. Debre’s three cats seem to like the results, too.

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To see still more pictures of Debre’s house (in addition to the link at the top of this post), go here.

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