Friday’s New York Times ran a piece headlined “Catskill Home Prices: How Low Will They Go?”, which pretty much corroborated what I wrote in my blog entry of last week, “End of Year Bargain$ in Columbia County Cheap Cheap CHEAP!!!” That is, the housing market in upstate New York is in a funk, with no end in sight, and many houses are selling — well, not selling, but priced — in the $200s. These are the same houses that a year ago would have been in the $300s, and there are even some under-$100,000 houses on the market for the first time in years.
For those of you who may be thinking of jumping into the market and paddling around, but don’t know where to begin, let me offer my thoughts on the Catskills vs. the Hudson Valley. Admittedly, I know the mid-Hudson Valley intimately, and I know Sullivan County (heart of the Catskills) hardly at all. My experience with it comes mainly from long-ago trips to and from my kids’ summer camp near Liberty.
So this is only one woman’s opinion, but I’ll take the Hudson Valley over the Catskills any day for the following reasons:
- The Taconic State Parkway (into the HV from NYC) is a masterpiece of modern landscape architecture. The New York State Thruway to Route 17 (into Sullivan County) is an ugly, truck-filled nightmare.
- The Hudson River Valley is a valley, with a feeling of openness and big sky. The Catskills are woodsy and dark.
- The Hudson Valley has a 21-mile-long strip of historic mansions along the river, all open to the public, including Boscobel, Wilderstein, Montgomery Place, Clermont, and on and on. The Catskills has a string of dilapidated Borscht Belt hotels.
- The view of the Catskills from the Hudson Valley is stunning. There IS no view of the Catskills from the Catskills.
Am I being unfair? Feel free, as Rachel Maddow says, to talk me down on this.