Gurney's Inn
May 30, 2007

Realty Takes

Market Analysis, Wild Turkeys and Agents Run 'Amok'

Well, what is it good for you, too? The inaugural weekend. Is there still an inaugural weekend? Was it good for you anyway? My guess is there was very little real estate action on people's first "summer" holiday.

This from Melanie Ross, former CEO of CookPony Farm, and then a senior executive with The Corcoran Group: "Was just reading your column in The Independent. Glad to know that folks are sharing their team-up experiences. Too bad some teams don't work out because of ego and money . . . but that's how some of our real estate professionals approach the concept. When they have a true team spirit and keep their egos under control, buyers and sellers and brokers all win.

"Your column has become a place for anyone who has a real estate story. Loved the Ellen Dioguardi/Dottie Chrystal tale. Since real estate is the # 1 industry here, most everyone is interested in those stories. I know you will keep it under control, and always interesting. All of us who work in the business have lots of stories . . . funny, sad, gratifying, [horrifying], etc. I remember one of our brokers putting potential purchasers out of his car because they were obnoxious, and another who had a kid throw-up in his back seat! There are [thousands] of real estate stories."

Thanks Melanie! (When are we having lunch?)

Judi Desiderio, of Town and Country Real Estate, tells us her First Quarter Analysis is ready. "These real estate statistics are once again in a simple chart form along with my Market Analysis or interpretation of the figures as they relate to what is actually occurring in the field. Drawing upon my 25 years as a broker in the Hamptons and on the North Fork I provide insight to the current market conditions. In your business, as in mine, access to timely information is essential."

So call Town and Country and get one if you want to see the Desiderio point of view.

Ellen Silverberg writes that she very much enjoys our real estate articles in The Independent. "I think you would be interested in speaking with partners Robin Kaplan and Josiane Fleming (consistently two of the top producers on the East End), presently with Prudential Douglas Elliman, but together through their relationship with Allan Schneider Associates and The Corcoran Group. They have some great stories!"

We asked her to have them give us a call. Guess they are in a lot of action, because it has not happened. We're still ready and waiting, Robin and Josiane.

A real estate tale non-attributed from a veteran broker: "A few weeks ago a realtor and a very dear friend narrowly escaped serious injury, possibly death, when her car struck a wild turkey in flight. The impact shattered her windshield. Thankfully, the only casualty was the turkey.

"Like the deer, the local turkey population and the ensuing problems, ranging from inconvenience to danger are about to become a frequent topic of conversation about town. While both the deer and turkey 'population explosions' are indeed relevant, this most recent incident also points out another growth issue we are not dealing with.

"Why isn't anyone discussing the continued, uncontrolled, poorly planned and potentially devastating effect that the increase in the amount of wild real estate agents running amok in every nook and cranny in each of our hamlets has had on our beloved East End?" . . . Hmmm, is all I can say.

From George Simpson, of Suffolk Research: "Cool column – you are a cool lady. I will be interviewed on Bloomberg TV tomorrow about RE in Hamptons – don't know when it will be aired. Also on Bloomberg Radio."

Elva Guerra and Susanne Stock sent some interesting information from their European brokerage firm, Engel & Völkers, with one of their branch offices in Southampton Village on Main Street, there since 2005. They have interesting news as to their global operation and the dominance of high end properties on the market. More coverage in a later column. The press release reads that Engel & Völkers was "a highly respected, international real estate company with over 300 offices on five continents in 25 countries . . . In Germany they look back on a 30 year experience."

Jim Miller, president of Miller Publishing who puts out Homes of the Hamptons Magazine and Homes of Eastern Long Island Magazine, says, "I wanted to let you know that we are celebrating the 20th anniversary of Homes of the Hamptons tomorrow night at Wild Thyme Restaurant from 5 to 7 p.m. I don't know if you remember, but you were on the front cover and center spread of our first issue!" Another "do" I didn't attend, but flattering to be remembered. How can I have no recollection at all about a front cover and center spread? Not a good sign!

Talking about high end market, with that touted landmark $103 million, 40 acre, East Hampton sale from DeMenil to Baron – I think that's more than the town budget this year (including capital of course!) East End real estate? Still a very strange business!

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