Quiet morning

Not much happening on this rainy Tuesday morning. That land on Meadowcroft, asking $5 million and reported under contract a few weeks ago, was reported sold today for $5.1 million, showing that there is still a market for exceptional land in great locations.

Other than that, lots of price reductions. I find it encouraging to see house prices lopping off $3-$400,000 because it means that, slowly, Greenwich prices are becoming more affordable. That will bring in buyers who have wanted to live here but until now, couldn’t.

One bit of “wisdom” picked up by a friend who was talking to a band of New yorkers last night. They and their friends all want to move to Greenwich but are afraid to do so because “all” their friends out here plan to pull their kids from private school and send them to our public schools, so Greenwich schools will be too crowded. There’s lots of knowledge out there that isn’t, so I won’t believe this until the tuition bills come due in three weeks. On the other hand, real estate rumors, especially in Greenwich, often have a grain of truth. So we’ll see in three weeks, I guess.


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8 responses to “Quiet morning

  1. anonymous

    Anyone who can’t afford private schools in Greenwich w/the material savings in income taxes and housing costs of Greenwich vs Manhattan may have some serious creditworthiness/ability-to-pay issues that are being revealed…or a lack of basic math/arbitrage skills (not unknown among many IBers, esp corp fin bankers)

    Help ’em out, CF; you’d be amused how useful a basic cost of living/taxes comparo is for some of these clueless folks (and, yes, many of these guys are just as inept in their alleged day jobs)

  2. Anonymous

    I know that you are proud of the achievements of yourself and your children in relation to the schools here. My experience has led me to be more critical of the elementary schools and the observations I have made of one of the middle schools.
    I believe the ‘Greenwich schools are great’ line is again an attempt to unjustifiably maintain house prices by your colleagues. If that is so true, why is it that so many realtors choose the private option. The private schools are full of their offspring. Maybe you could do a spreadsheet to support my hypothesis, as you have the inside info. Better do it quick though, the school fees are increasing but alas the commissions are not.

  3. Mike

    Chris, in your opinion, what does this do for prime lots such as Khakum Wood, or that builder that is warehousing his 2 lots on round Hill and his 1 on Vineyard? there isnt that much vacant land around, and these are pretty substantial addresses, as compared to Meadow Croft ..

    • christopherfountain

      The builder who is “warehousing his lots on Round Hill and vineyard is my pal Dom Devito and I rather suspect that Dom would be delighted to stop warehousing and start unloading them. But as to your question, I am surprised that there were tow bidders for Meadowcroft, nice as it is. I think, however, that there is enough land available that Meadowcroft’s sale won’t affect their prices. Khakum Woods is down from $9 milli8on (ridiculous) to the $4 million the buyer paid for it, and I think it will eventually go for less. The two most recent sales of land on Round Hill were for $3 milli8on and $3.3(ish), respectively, and I think that’s a more realistic floor for pricing land. And even those may look over-priced by the time we’re through.

  4. anon

    These New Yorkers who are afraid of sending their kids to Greenwich schools – where are they currently sending their kids? If it’s private school in the city, they should be able to afford private school in Greenwich. If it’s NYC public schools, I’m sure their kids would be better off here

  5. Old School Grump

    Hmmm … I suspect the private school issue isn’t about ability to pay, but rather whether or not their children can get in to the desirable private schools in town. There can’t possibly be room for all the applicants in all the grades. In my time in town I was always amused at how the Greenwich Country Day parents I knew tried to present themselves as “regular folks” … yeah, right. It was clear that being really rich was not in itself the ticket (and could backfire if you were too obnoxious about it), but whatever their algorithm was, it sure frustrated a lot of friends of mine. (Me, I just moved to a different part of the country.)

  6. Greenwich Gal

    Well that is simply ridiculous. I am sure the schools will pick up more students due to the economy. However, it is a fact that the general enrollment is declining. Smaller numbers are on the way down. The worst case scenario is a break even number situation – i.e. the numbers remain relatively flat. Meanwhile, at the private schools they are seeing many more applicants because people think spots will be opening due to the economy. That has not happened yet – still more applicants than spots.

  7. Anonymous

    Check out this website for very good stats on schools:

    Based on test scores, the Greenwich District as a whole is ranked #44 in the state. The High School is ranked #46. The number of students achieving National Merit status (Finalist, Semi-Finalist, Commended) is not as high as some of the other districts in the area, which have much smaller student bodies.

    I heard people rave about the Greenwich school quality before moving here, but I think if you look at other nearby school districts such as Scarsdale, Edgemont, Blind Brook, Rye, Darien, New Canaan, and Westport, you will find that there is a disconnect between the data and this perception.

    Does anyone think that the elementary school renovations and student dislocations have gone well? Some real improvements need to be made.