BOTTOM FISHING: Ugly Houses, Stunning Views

CAN YOU GET A WATER VIEW in the Hamptons under or around 500K?

Yes, you can! The house won’t be much to look at, though.

Take the view of Amagansett’s Napeague Bay, top, for example. Here’s the house that goes with it, below. At 195 square feet on 1/12 of an acre, it’s barely one step up from a trailer. They’re asking 515K for it, too. But it’s a breathtaking view in an unspoiled area, and the so-called house is right smack on the water.

The beauty of a crummy house is that you can do anything you want with it. No historic detail to worry about. Where is Domino magazine when we need it? Those clever editors could have taken one of these ugly ducks and transformed it into a stylish swan in a weekend.

Have a look at this barn-like structure in the Sag Harbor area, below, on the market for 475K. It’s on .70 acre, with woods in back, water in front.

Awkward on the outside, the interior is more appealing:

And the view, below, is sensational (unless the listing is misleading, which is always possible – I haven’t seen it).

My main aesthetic complaint with these places is the windows. Swapping out aluminum sliders for multi-paned windows and French doors would go a long way toward making these properties more attractive. As for landscaping: think ornamental grasses.

This one, below, is near me, in the Springs area of East Hampton. It’s little more than a shoebox. Asking 425K, the brown-paneled interior cries out for buckets of white paint.

Dig them motorized awnings. They’re to mitigate the glare of the sunsets over Three Mile Harbor (don’t go by that terrible picture, below, from the realtor’s site – it’s more beautiful than that).

A water view, be it ocean, bay, or harbor, is what the East End of Long Island is about, after all.

[Click on live links in this post for more info]

About cara

I blog (for fun) here at casaCARA, and write (for money) about architecture, interiors, gardens and travel for many national magazines and websites.
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6 Responses to BOTTOM FISHING: Ugly Houses, Stunning Views

  1. You and I are on a similar quest. I hadn’t unearthed the Sag Harbor “barn” yet. It has potential. The photos do not do the house justice though and very few people can see through that. Shame on anyone who is still showing listing photos with a sink full of dirty dishes. Get with the program East End Real Estate!

  2. Mary-Liz says:

    Love that barn – inspirational!

  3. Terry says:

    I’ll take the barn please. I’d leave the existing windows as camouflage. Has the great foundation wall too.

  4. sara says:

    I am so there!
    The clever Domino folks are over at !!

  5. cara says:

    @Sara: oh, is that where they are? Thanks for the link. I checked out lonnymag. Liked the Indian-inspired Paris apartment and one of the other features, and appreciate the effort to pick up the slack left by the vanishing shelter mags. But didn’t recognize the names on the masthead – and the writing is absolutely TERRIBLE! Sorry, but I say this as a 30-year veteran of writing for the shelter mags, from Elle Decor to House Beautiful and Met Home.

  6. cara says:

    What about listing photos taken at night, with flash that reflects in bare, black windows? Those are my personal favorites;-)

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