Homes in the Hamptons and on the North Fork offer the best of everything—award-winning architecture, beautiful surroundings, waterfront vistas, manicured gardens and even neighbors who have Academy Awards on the mantel. But there’s always that little something extra—or, in many cases, that big something extra—that buyers simply can’t seem to live without. With visions of infinity pools and private staff quarters dancing in our heads, we turned to the local experts on our Real Estate Roundtable with the question…
What are the hottest amenities buyers are looking for on the East End?
“Today’s high-end buyer wants their dream home to have every amenity that they have seen in a magazine, friend’s home or movie set. The following is a list of some of the ‘must haves:’ State-of-the-art kitchen, all bedrooms with en suite baths, first-floor guest master, high ceilings and doors, double-height ceiling in entranceway, elevator, large outdoor gunite pool and spa, pool house, tennis court, gym, theater, wine cellar and staff quarters. Keep in mind, whatever the home does not have, that’s what they want.”—Alan Schnurman, Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker, Saunders & Associates
“Today’s buyers’ wish lists are so individualized, that’s what makes it so much fun. No two criteria are alike—besides maybe a pool, some want ocean, others prefer the bay for boating or fishing, while others love the ocean for surfcasting and that’s dinner. I have some buyers who must have tennis, be close to the beach or town for their kids to bike ride, and others to be secluded. That’s the challenge—fulfilling their dreams and making the entire family happy.”—Lynn November, Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker, Douglas Elliman Real Estate
“Hot tubs seem to be high on my customers’ list right now, media rooms, pool house with guest space, wine cellar and butler’s pantry…I think we can blame Downton Abbey and Longbourn for this.”—Maz Crotty, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson, Nest Seekers
“The most important feature on every buyer’s mind is the home’s CO [certificate of occupancy], meaning, are each of the structures that the buyer is looking at legal pursuant to Town/Village Code. Buyers are becoming more and more educated about the need for COs and are willing to walk away from properties without this requisite document. Also, lenders often will not lend without a CO, and attorneys will want an informed consent letter before they let their client buy without a CO. So, before discussing any other must-have feature, the first question is whether that feature (i.e. pool house) is legal or must be stripped (i.e. shed) in order to avoid a ticket as a housewarming present.”—Andrew M. Lieb, Esq., MPH, Lieb at Law, P.C.
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