More on Staging

Prowling the internet I came across this video from May, 2007, depicting the Antares boys’ attempting to unload one of their back country houses. They put on a party supposedly for the benefit of that other failed institution in town, the YMCA, borrowed a couple of Rolls Royces from Miller Motorcars, threw flowers around the place and filled the house with, as one participant puts it, “all the important business and social people in Fairfield County.” All that staging didn’t work and the tape should prove a historical curiosity: the house itself sold for half what they asked, they abandoned the rest of the project, the model of “their legacy”, Stamford’s Harbor Point, is, a year-and-a-half later, a cardboard depiction of a project they were kicked off of, and half the mortgage lenders and other important people shown here have either found new lines of work or soon will. But I’m sure it was a nice party, paid for by Antares’ investors. The boys know how to live.


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9 responses to “More on Staging

  1. pulled up in OG

    How could a couple of good Catholic boys not know the St. Joseph statue trick?

  2. RealtorOne

    For years I have been saying, what the hell are these boys thinking they are doing? So many people were giving them terrible advice and since everyone wanted a piece of it, they helped these guys dig a bigger hole. Their condo foray was a disgrace and their Vegas Style Mansions ere destined to fail, particularly in light of the falling market, starting four years ago, which they might have known about had the sought the proper Realtor advice.The video is the perfect example of how ridiculous people are, loved the guy who returns to the microphone to tell us he is William FaFa, the fourth. Get a life.

  3. Monday Morning QB

    At least they were making money when making money building and selling houses actually happened back in the day. I read this blog often and I have to admit there is way too much Monday morning quarterbacking from you. I even remember reading you in the paper but I don’t think I recall any dire warnings about what is happening now. I am not in the real estate biz but I happen to work for a hedge fund that is not in trouble and will survive many more years. I did see this from 2005 and many people who know me know I warned them. My thoughts have not changed and Greenwich real estate hasn’t seen the bottom nor is is even close.

    • christopherfountain

      Well I don’t think the Antares boys were ever making money. Their attempt at condo conversions was a complete disaster; although they probably pulled out some nice management fees, Lehman ate the loan and that firm’s’ creditors will never see a dime. The mansion plan was no good, certainly – the only thing of substance to come out of it was a new mansion for each of the Antares partners – wonder how that happened? Harbor Point? They’re gone. So what’s left? UST,all leased out to hedge funds who, Antares said, “treat rent payments like lunch money”. Maybe so.

  4. Anonymous

    Wasn’t the Milstein family (Ogden Cap Properties, etc.) investors in these projects?

  5. dogwalker

    pulled up,

    I thought it was St. Anthony!?!

  6. pulled up in OG

    Dogwalker – Our local go-to-guy on staging has it down for St. Joe, all three columns worth.
    (Greenwich Citizen 12.19.08 Ken Edwards p C18)

    And it works! A couple of weeks ago he goosed the market by buyin’ a two family house. The secret’s out this week, though – “the house I just bought in downtown Greenwich had not one but two St Joseph statues buried.”

    Makes sense to me.

  7. christopherfountain

    He quoted a skeptical realtor in that article who said, basically, “cut the crap, lower the price”. I know the house in whose yard Ken’s burying poor old St. Joe (head first, no less!) and I agree with the skeptic. I suggested that 18 months ago, too.

  8. pulled up in OG

    . . . and if the market get’s much worse in ’09, it’ll be voodoo and headless chickens. Never mind the breakfast tray on the bed.