“In the midst of winter, I found there was within me an invincible summer,” wrote French philosopher Albert Camus — a feeling that surprisingly relates to today’s renter looking for a Hamptons summer spread.
Despite frigid temps and falling flakes, smart New Yorkers are braving the wintry drive along Route 27 to score their sweet warm-weather East End escapes.
“People are coming out in vehicles that are getting stuck in streets that haven’t been plowed,” says Tim Davis of The Corcoran Group. “It’s been brisk — houses are getting rented.”
This means one thing and one thing only: Others better act fast to do the same.
“You either come early and get your pick, or you play Russian roulette,” says Paul Brennan, Douglas Elliman’s regional manager for the Hamptons, of the rental property scramble that typically begins this month.
This doesn’t mean that early action provides a bargain — rather, inking early leases provides peace of mind.
“Make your offer and get it over with,” advises Anthony DeVivio, Halstead Property’s managing director of the Hamptons, adding that his office already has 12 rentals on the books, which he says is a good pace this early in the season. For last summer’s season, they had roughly 100 total.
‘You either come early and get your pick, or you play Russian roulette.’
As for rental prices, brokers agree that they are now generally on par with the big ones witnessed last year. And while 2014 wasn’t a record year for rentals like it was for sales (think Barry Rosenstein’s $147 million buy at 60 Further Lane), it was still a strong one. Brennan, for example, noted a property in Southampton that rented for a staggering $1 million for just one month.
And speaking of short-term rentals — homes available for a month or two — Hamptons brokers are noticing a recent increase in these leases.
“I think we live in an expensive world and people want to cut back,” says David Zazula of Halstead, of renters looking for shorter-term stays.
Also of note among brokers is a continuing move farther east — but among a certain demographic.
“The nightlife is better in Amagansett and Montauk,” says Susan Green of Sotheby’s International Realty. “It’s more of a singles-type situation.”
Another benefit? Better prices. “Amagansett is one of the few areas out here where you don’t have to be an oligarch to live on or near the beach,” says Zazula.
Any way you choose to do the Hamptons. have your checkbook in hand.
“The next eight weeks are going to be havoc out here,” says DeVivio.
Here, 13 listings to snatch up now:
This five-bedroom, 5½-bathroom modern home just off Further Lane features newly redesigned interiors and a heated pool on 1.35 beautifully landscaped acres.
Agents: Lynn and Stuart Epstein, Halstead, 631-771-5303 and 631-771-5304
$200K, MD-LD; $80K July
Photo: Halstead Property, LLC
An oceanfront home with three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a den/fourth bedroom, gourmet kitchen, deck with hot tub and garage.
Agent: David Zazula, Halstead, 631-771-5305
Wednesday, February 11, 2015