Editor’s note: Just is case you were wondering how the other half lives….
The emerald hedgerows that are a natural euphemism for Hamptons exclusivity (out here, good hedges, not good fences, make for felicitous neighbors) are hanging tight.
Most of the double-decker dunes that define the East End’s ocean coastline ar
e hanging tight, too. That unfortunately can’t be said for patches of Long Island, Fire Island, New Jersey and Connecticut, where the extraordinary weather events of autumn 2012 transformed undulating beaches and waterfront homes to sodden pancakes. On the South Fork of Long Island, where the array of villages and hamlets includes Southampton, Bridgehampton, Sag Harbor and Montauk, agents and town officials say only one home, owned by the Lauder family and precariously perched at water’s edge in Wainscott, drowned in the maelstrom created by Hurricane Sandy. But erosion is a perennial enemy, and efforts to rebuff it, continual.
Otherwise, it’s back to business bolstering the bulkheads and merchandising the seductive strata of housing stock (from darling shingled cottages to resorts-masquerading-as-mansions), with brokers forecasting yet another pricey summer season. “Nobody really suffers from Hamptons sticker shock anymore,” said Judi Desiderio, the founder of Town and Country Real Estate.
Harald Grant, a senior vice president of Sotheby’s International Realty, has already rented out an oceanfront house in Southampton for $550,000 for the month of August alone and has a stack of 14 contracts and purchase memos on his desk representing pending sales of $4.5 million to $25 million. Not to worry: the most expensive oceanfront property in the Hamptons, on East Hampton’s Lily Pond Lane and co-listed by Tim Davis of the Corcoran Group and Diane Saatchi of Saunders & Associates, is still available for $40 million.