Old doesn’t sell in Riverside except as land

Since a reader points out that my brother Gideon, a/k/a “The Kool-Aid Kid” takes me to task for, he says, erroneously asserting this proposition, I thought to waste a little time this morning to see what he’s been smoking. Result? I know where next year’s “Greenwich Realtor of the Year” award is going.

First of all, let’s dismiss most of Gideon’s “2o sales” in our fine section of town that went to contract since October 1st of 2011. No one – I wasn’t anyway – is talking about antiques built in 1802 or even 1905. I’m referring to the houses that went up in the post-war boom, and what I said about those is that they’ve fallen to land value only, because no one wants to live in them anymore.

Here are some numbers for houses built between 1945 – 1997

October 2011 – March 2, 2012

Yr. Blt.    Address      Sales/contract price

1956      10 Miltiades       $875,000

1952       16 Pierce Rd.     $999,000 (ask)

1954        25 Druid            $1.095

1956        19 Weston         $1.050

1958        25 Hearthstone $1.330

1954        44 Winthrop       $1.250 (demo sign posted)

1954        25 Bramble         $1.399 (ask)

1987        35 Chapel            $1.450 (ask, bank sale)

8 Total

Now let’s look back to a sunnier time, 2002 through 2006 . I chose just 3 streets to compare: Bramble, Druid and Hearthstone because they adjoin each other, they were all built around the same time and I really don’t care to spend my entire morning on this.

1954           39 Bramble         $965,000             2002

1957            31 Druid              $1,070,000          2002   (bidding war)

1957            15 Hearthstone   $1,170,000           2002

1957            48 Druid              $1,235,000           2003

1952           16 Druid                $1,230,000          2003

1952            42 Bramble          $1,540,000          2003   (renovated 1993)

1953             28 Druid             $1,300,000           2004

1956             50 Bramble        $1,354,000            2004

1957              22 Bramble        $1,525,000           2005  (bidding war)

1957              26 Bramble        $1,611,000            2006  (bidding war from $1.495 asking price)

1957              30 Bramble        $1,600,000          2006


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14 responses to “Old doesn’t sell in Riverside except as land

  1. Anon

    “Old doesn’t sell except for land” should be applicable to all of Greenwich (excluding Cos Cob), not just Riverside.

    Chris, why are you limiting it only to Riverside?

    • Lazy. But also, Riverside (these stats are culled from the Riverside School elementary district, by the way) and, possibly, Old Greenwich are our two strongest markets right now so anything that’s happening there is probably happening, only worse, in the weaker sections.

  2. Walt

    Dude –
    Well this can’t be good.
    But Ezra always was a bit of a wimp!
    Your Pal,

    • They’re creeping closer to 175 Round Hill Road, Walt. Got your own colection of Rothko’s stashed away in Brazil, I hope, and not hanging on the walls like this loser Merkin?

  3. Libertarian Advocate

    Ugly numbers those.

  4. Patrick

    Weston hill wasn’t a land sale. The owners moved in as is.

  5. AJ

    My father always used to say that something’s worth what somebody is willing to pay for it; I believe he was right. So whatever your house is worth, now might be a really good time to get what it’s worth and head for the hills, and here’s why: Four US banks hold a staggering 95.9% of U.S. derivatives: The $600 Trillion Time Bomb That’s Set to Explode Source:
    In case you doubt that source here’s Niall Fergusun in “The Ascent of Money Episode 6” pegging that number at $473 Trillion just 43 seconds into this documentary film, but that was made, I think it’s at least, several years ago, now:

  6. Raised in Riverside

    Interesting that you chose the mid 40’s through the 90’s – not exactly an impressive era in architecture. Have you looked at the stats for pre-war homes?

    • There aren’t many left, Raised. But try Gideon’s site for recent contracts on them. But that wasn’t the point of my original post nor this one. I was saying that this era house has no value remaining and is selling for the underlying land value. That’s the issue and yes, they were of dreadful design as you say, but that’s why they have no value. I won’t miss a single one of them as they’re carted off.

  7. Raised in Riverside

    There’s been a decent number over the last several months – not sure how many are still standing, but…


  8. location location location

    This appears to be a pretty unscientific price basis if not poor statisical sampling CF …always like your take on local Real Estate market , even though you appear to be the most bearish realtor to walk Todds Pt . First whether using your stats or Gideons neither takes into account whether a home has been renovated, let alone the actual location (water views ?walk to town, beach etc ) …second i feel realtors have often sited that housing prices in greenwich have fallen back to ( pick your year ) values … which would make more sense that an assumption that housing only has land value..lastly i would think it goes without saying … buyers ALWAYS want new or remodeled when prices are sluggish and bidding wars are not prevalent .. also .. i could be wrong but almost sounds like yu making a case for all these Kaali NAgy builds popping up ! so unlike you ….

    • Ipicked unrenovated houses or houses “renovated” no later than 1988 because regardless of what a homeowner believes, renovations that old have no useful life remaining as far as price/value is concerned. Finally, I chose to lok at Bramble, Hearthstone and Druid precisely because they have no special merits – waterviews, extra large yards, low traffic, etc. to distinguish them. Just plain vanilla homes, typical of the Riverside stock and typical of what was built back then.
      And they’re worth the land they sit on, period.

  9. FF

    Merkin (first use 1617)[1] is a pubic wig. Merkins were originally worn by prostitutes after shaving their genitalia, and are now used as decorative items, erotic devices, or in films, by both men and women.

    Just see here………

  10. Walt

    Francis –
    You little Perv. But I knew that already. But it is a good PSA, because I am 100% sure the other reader did not. Did Chris ask you to sign the release on the treatment? You will LOVE the way I wrote you, but the lawyers are picky about this stuff. So just sign it. OK? You can come to the premier. Who do you want to play you? I am leaning towards Gary Busey. Post motor cycle accident. You agree?
    Your Pal,