Daily Archives: June 3, 2011

An annual benchmark

St. Paul’s fair kicked off this evening. I have many fond memories of this fair, especially when it was held at Riverside School – my contemporaries will remember the stuffed deer head that appeared, year after year, at the White Elephant tent  – one of us would buy it and a  year later, someone’s mom would insist on its return. I’m pretty sure that it ended up at our house, but memory is a funny thing, so perhaps not.

But I do remember 1988 when, newly fired from a law firm and struggling to establish a solo practice, I had three kids who wanted to go to the fair and I had no money to pay for it. I scraped up $30, ten each, which even back then, wasn’t much. I explained the situation to my children and we set  off, had a great time and quit when our funds ran out. Things improved after that and each year thereafter our fair budget increased, but I, and I hope my kids, remember that impoverished summer and are grateful for what has come our way.

So if you think I’ve grown accustomed to selling multi-million dollar homes and have no sympathy or understanding of plain folk trying to get by and move into a nice town, you’re wrong. I Nancy and I got our kids through college and set on their own paths to success, but I’ll always remember St. Pauls’ Fair.

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Happy days are here again

45 Sound Beach Ave. ext.

Sold for $770,000 in 2004, renovated and resold in 2006 for $805,000, sold today for $775,000.

 

Up the road a bit, 1068 Lake Avenue, 12,000 sq. ft, sold for $4.980 in 2000 (out of town broker, natch), asked $7.180 in 2009 and today is marked down to $4.799. Nice house, if you like Bedford. Assessment is $5.451.

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Finally

18 Ferncliff

1,249 days later, this house on Ferncliff has as an accepted offer, last asking price $1.650. Could have been done years ago and the sellers could have been enjoying their Hawaiian condo, but they listened to a crazy price and went for it. Not wise.

And over at 70 Richmond Hil Road, a four acre lot has sold for $1.6 million – it asked $3. 650 in 2006. Our MLS will record this as a 67 DOM sale but you’ll know that it took five years.

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Tommy Keegan rejoices

 A reader tells me that it’s national doughnut day and I assume that cops all around the country are taking advantage of the occasion t0 step up the pressure on their local Dunkin Donuts for free fare  (kidding, Tommy, kidding!).

But hell, if you really want to participate in this poor-man’s fare, make some fry bread. When I was 11 or 12, I was blessed with parents who could afford to send me off to spend the summer with real Sioux, where we lived in tipis and ran around arrowing porcupines, bullfrogs  and eating frybread. Simple stuff: flour,water and baking soda pretty much sums it up, but definitely tasty. Better than porcupine.

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I don’t mean to pick on our weakest neighborhoods but …

23 Baliwick

Sold for $2.715,500 million in 2004, and $1.750 milion yesterday. I’m no genius and I don’t claim to be infallible – duh – but if you’re going to buy in Greenwich, look for a great neighborhood to raise a family and a solid core to protect your money. There are certainly areas in town where you can achieve that; others are not so secure.

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Our tech savvy GMLS

Once again, it’s dues time for the GMLS and once again, I’m deferring a complaint to the anti-trust division of the Justice Department because why would I want more competitors coming into my restricted field? Hell, that would be as bad as letting non- lawyers into court rooms, and we certainly keep a tight rein on those idealists, eh?

But all that said, I logged in to pledge my blood and first born (didn’t know you’d be working for the Realtors, eh John? Surprise!) and discovered that they aren’t set up to accept a payment from a checking account – credit card only. I’m not privy to either David Ogilvy’s or Brad Hvolbeck’s credit card information and there’s no way I’m charging this expense to my own tattered account, so no payment today. Due date’s July 15th and I suppose I’ll fire off a check around then, but this is a bad business practice – when dealing with real estate agents, grab the money while it’s there.

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One less Armenian

Dr. Death, Msgr. Kevorkian, has died at 83. My own family has a tradition of electing when and how to go, so I had no argument with the man’s general principles but he was … creepy, no?

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Time to step up

On a clear day you can see forever

That mysterious nut case Huguette Clark having died at 104, leaves behind a New Canaan mansion bought in 1952 and never slept in and this 42-room Fifth Avenue “apartment” overlooking Central Park. Estimates of value go as high as $100 million. The woman herself was worthless, merely a dumb-luck DNA inheritor from a 19th Century crook. The woman did nothing with her good fortune, but if you’re of the higher sort, then call me – let’s find the best way to express your unique values.

UPDATE: Hmm – Her father was  Scots – Irish Huguenot, my own exact mix.  Dirt poor, got rich but didn’t impress Mark Twain, among others. Too bad.

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Helicopter hunting

Sarah Palin’s advocacy of hoppityclopters to hunt predators has made her the poster child of animal rights groups – I know this because postcards illustrated with photos of loving wolves and a fanged Palin arrive at our house every week, all beseeching an immediate remittance of funds so that Friends of  Wildlife can stop this woman cold.

So now Obummer has advocated the same technique to eradicate feral pigs. Can I expect a change in those postcards to reflect this latest convert to brutality? I’m not holding my breath, but I’ll be sure to duck if a helicopter flies overhead.

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I’ve been had

There was no greater supporter of my partner Fudrucker’s hard-fought campaign to become Connecticut’s Supremo Lottery Commissioner, yet I get bupkus, while some undeserving nobody wins $200 million over in New York. Fudrucker says I should help him out and buy a ticket, but why should that be necessary? A true friend would … etc.

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