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    North of NYC North of NYC By Houlihan Lawrence By Houlihan Lawrence by

    There's no denying that 2009 has been a challenging year in real estate especially for luxury properties. Many luxury properties - defined as properties selling for $2.5Million or more - languished on the market with few showings to prospective buyers. Regionally, sales were dramatically down vs. 2008 but recently we've seen renewed interest in many high-end properties.  In fact, a number of top-tier properties have either sold or gone into contract since September.  While the record luxury sales seen in 2005- 2007 are not likely to return soon, this recent activity points towards a more stable luxury marketplace for 1st Quarter 2010.

    Highlights of the 2009 luxury market

    • 77 Properties sold throughout Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties for $2.5 Million or more, a 47% decrease vs. 2008 unit sales.
    • The highest reported sales price was for a newly constructed estate in Purchase, which sold for $9.2 million.
    • Southern Westchester markets were most popular among luxury buyers

    Rye Reigns  With 18 sales for the year, Rye ranks #1 in Westchester County luxury sales. Always a favorite community among luxury buyers, Rye's combination of a vibrant town center, well-established neighborhoods, Long Island Sound shoreline and close proximity to Manhattan have been particularly alluring this year.

    Milton PointOur sale of a Milton Point manor, last offered at $6,995,000,ranked among the highest sales in the marketplace. Brokers Donna McElwee and Diana Plunkett of our Rye Brokerage represented the seller and buyer respectively on this sale.


     Scarsdale Sizzles  Another hot luxury market is Scarsdale, which captured a close 2nd to Rye with 16 sales.  Always a luxury market leader in years past, Scarsdale's large selection of priced-to-sell homes, nationally-recognized schools and diverse recreational and cultural amenities created intense interest among homebuyers. Houlihan Lawrence listed the top selling properties in the market this year.

    Reimer RoadRecently closed, this impressive stone Colonial in Murray Hill, last offered at $7,000,000, achieved the highest selling price in Scarsdale for 2009. Listed by Lucy Luciani and Michele Lilly from our Scarsdale Brokerage, the property was sold by Jan Quartner, also from our Scarsdale Brokerage.

    Cooper RdAnother record sale in Scarsdale, which closed in late October, was this majestic 1910 Colonial represented by Leslie Dorf  from our Scarsdale Brokerage. Interestingly, this home was re-designed by architectural firm, Alisberg Parker, who also created the top-selling Murray Hill residence.

      Additional top luxury markets in Westchester County included Bedford (7 sales), Bronxville (6 sales), Larchmont/Mamaroneck (6 sales), Purchase (6 sales ) and Armonk (5 sales).

    In northern Westchester County, Armonk kept pace with the long-time top luxury market, Bedford, this year.

    SoundviewRecently closed, this 1907  stone castle in Armonk listed by Brian Milton in our Armonk Brokerage was last offered at $5,495,000 and represents the highest sale in northern Westchester County this year.



      The luxury market in Putnam and Dutchess Counties, both popular weekend destinations for luxury buyers, was especially slow with only a few sales higher than $1.5 million in 2009.

    Garrison HouseThis 1780s farmhouse in Garrison represented the highest sale in Putnam County this year. Last listed at $1.95 million, Leslie Uribe from our Cold Spring Brokerage and David Bergstein of our Bedford Brokerage represented the seller and buyer respectively in this sale.


     In Dutchess County, Trout Walk Farm, a 253-acre farm in Amenia sold for $6 million, one of only 8 sales in excess of $1.5 million in the area. Most of the higher-priced transactions were concentrated in the Millbrook area.

    Shad Hill

    Represented by Susan Perry from our Millbrook Brokerage, Shad Hill, a 133-acre country estate last offered at $3,750,000, was Millbrook's highest reported sale this year.


    Shady DellShady Dell, a classic Millbrook country house last offered at $2,350,000, also recently sold. The property was represented by John Friend and Deborah Montgomery from Houlihan Lawrence's Millbrook Brokerage.