Last week, 11 residential closings were reported to the Greenwich Multiple Listing Service as having been sold. These properties are listed here along with the nine closings from the prior week, which were inadvertently omitted from last week's column. The sales price at closing is listed for each property, along with a sales percentage calculated from the original asking price when each listing went to market.
Included in last week's closings were the $11.9 million paid for a Conyers Farm estate owned by Bard College and, at the other end of the spectrum, three one-bedroom co-op units at Putnam Hill's Building 3 that sold for about $300,000 each. Put another way, that's about 40 of the co-op apartments for the Hurlingham estate off North Street.
In reviewing the sales, my "Buy of the Week" is a backcountry Greenwich estate at 29 Cliffdale Road. On the market for 1,164 days, it went through five asking-price reductions, stepping it down from $6,895,000 to $5,245,000.
Selling for a 31 percent reduction off its initial asking price, it represents good value even in this lofty price range. Of note is the primary photo, which is probably the most dramatic photo I've seen on our MLS in quite a while. An artist couldn't have come up with a more spectacular sky for a background!
My "Sale of the Week" selection was the Colonial ranch at 120 Meadow Road in Riverside. Although it took 193 days on market to sell, it sold for its full initial asking price of $3,450,000. With some nice renovation in 2002, it sold for $2 million more than its $1,450,000 purchase price 15 years ago.
With seasonal water views of Greenwich Cove and located next to significantly more expensive, newly constructed estates on the water, this property shares the end of a cul-de-sac with its pricey neighbors. Location, location, location -- that's the story here. Also having a neighboring house five or six times its price helped to achieve its asking price in this sale.
The town of Greenwich consists of five geographic ZIP codes -- 06807, 06830, 06831, 06870 and 06878. It turns out that for the convenience of the post office, part of the city of Stamford which borders on the northeast corner of Greenwich and located on the west side of the Samuel J. Bargh Reservoir has its mail delivered by the Greenwich post office and is assigned to the 06831 ZIP code.
What's the significance of that in real estate terms? A great deal, as it turns out. For those homes, many on East Middle Patent Road just off Taconic Road, it means that they have a Greenwich address, but pay taxes to Stamford and are served by the Stamford Public Schools. Home values are quite a bit less than they would be in Greenwich, even though they have the Greenwich address.
With a Greenwich address, they are entitled to use Greenwich Parks Department facilities including town beaches, tennis courts and our renowned Griffith E. Harris golf course. Here are five Greenwich/Stamford properties currently for sale in this backcountry estate area and are heavily discounted due to this anomaly:
0 E. Middle Patent Rd. 2.02 acre building lot with 6 BR-approved septic for $595,000
60 E. Middle Patent Rd. 4 BR on 2.02 acres for $1,100,000
166 E. Middle Patent Rd. 4 BR on 3.09 acres for $999,000
286 E. Middle Patent Rd. 5/6 BR on 2.21 acres for $1,297,000
303 E. Middle Patent Rd. 5 BR on 2.25 acres for $1,049,000
If you're looking for a real estate bargain in Greenwich and haven't checked out these properties, you're missing a great opportunity. According to the U.S. census, 40.8 percent of 06831 elementary and middle school children go to private school and 32.5 percent go to private high schools. With an $800,000 or more discount on your Greenwich-addressed home you could join this group and have your children get a great education in the bargain.
This Week's Success Quote
"Whoever said money can't buy happiness simply didn't know where to go shopping." -- Bo Derek
Ken Edwards is the principal Broker for Edwards & Associates and has lived in town since 1974. All opinions expressed in this column are entirely his own and not those of this publisher. Comments, questions and suggestions may be sent to K_W_Edwards@Yahoo.com or by phone or text at 203-918-4444. Questions of general interest will be addressed in this column, while others will receive individual responses.