Historic Rhinebeck under 400K

512113186(2)THE CHELSEA CLINTON WEDDING EFFECT on real estate prices in Rhinebeck, N.Y., if ever there was to be one, seems like a non-starter. As we head into the best time of year for house-hunting — the dead of winter, when only the most serious shoppers are on the case — the mid-Hudson Valley is still very good value, especially compared to eastern Long Island, where for $400,000 your choices are nil but for the dreaded ranch.
In the Rhinebeck area, venerable architecture is not too much to ask for 400K. Were I in the market for an upstate place at this moment — and gosh, maybe I should be — I’d look at these two, a rare brick Federal-style farmhouse for 379K, above, and an 1830s Carpenter Gothic, offered at 399K, right. The listing agent for both is Paul Hallenbeck.

Brick houses are fairly unusual in this part of New York State (most are frame). To find a stately 1849 farmhouse on River Road, very near the Hudson River and the Bard College campus, is a double-whammy (there are no ‘bad parts’ of River Road). The 1.1 acre lot is high and open; the house has 3BR, 2baths, and original details including woodwork, floors, doors, and built-ins, with updated mechanicals, baths, and windows (pics below). Period barn and wildflower meadow included.



Rhinebeck village has almost exclusively old houses, many with some pedigree. The 3BR, 2-1/2 bath on Montgomery Street (all pics below) is an 1830s Carpenter Gothic reminiscent of Washington Irving’s Sunnyside in Tarrytown. It’s on 1.4 acres, with mature trees and a fenced garden; the house has 9-foot ceilings and a large porch, and there’s a classic red barn. The taxes are high for the area at $8,306/year (twice that of the house above), which is a drag.


For more pics and info on both houses, go here.

Note: I am not a real estate broker, nor do I have any financial interest in the properties mentioned on this blog. I just like spreading the word about old houses on the market and what I feel are viable investment opportunities.

Intriguing Hamptons Houses <600K


PRIME HOUSE-HUNTING SEASON is almost upon us. With cold weather, the dilettantes and Sunday shoppers disappear. Most won’t think about country real estate again until April. Meanwhile, the serious players remain in the game, knowing that winter is the best time to look, find, and negotiate.

I combed the listings and turned up three properties I would check out, were I in the market right now with half a million to spend.

    • This early 19th century house in Springs, above and below, is owned by a young couple in the landscaping business. They bought the house 6 years ago and renovated it, even jacking up the house so its old foundation of locust posts could be replaced with steel. 2BR, 1 bath, 1,100 square feet, 1/2 acre, wood stove, separate studio, 595K.


  • A cedar-shingled 1959 cottage in Noyack, near Sag Harbor, featured in a recent issue of Ty Pennington at Home magazine. 1,500 square feet, 3 BR, 1.5 baths, 1/2 acre, water view, mooring rights, 595K. Taxes: $3,739/year.
  • Got farm animals? A 100-year-old Amagansett cottage on almost an acre has been twice reduced. 1,000 square feet, 2 BR, 1 bath, wood stove, detached garage, 570K. Near the RR tracks, but there are only a couple of trains a day. Anyway, whaddya want for half a million plus? This is Amagansett! (The house is also only a mile from the ocean.) Taxes are $1,008/year — you can’t beat that.