Hamptons native Richard Doyle, Vice President at Douglas Elliman Real Estate in Southampton, might be relatively new to the real estate, taking home “Rookie of the Year” honors in 2009, but he understands the Hamptons market telling us, “If the price isn’t right, well then, let it sit. We have to be realistic as buyers and sellers to comprehend there is a fair price for every location.” He followed up the Rookie nod with President’s Circle in 2011, Chairman Gold Circle in 2012, and was named one of the Top 10-Hamptons, Long Island, & Westchester also in 2012.
What is an easy way to increase the value of a property?
RD: Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and just pretend. There are certainly many easy fixes that are over looked that can effortlessly help sell a property in maximizing the curbside appeal. The most important factor is having the right broker to represent your property that can properly expose, highlight all the selling points, and work outside the box to get the job done. Price it right is most crucial aspect in order to get top dollar instead of chasing the market and letting the property sit, decreasing in value.
Which towns or villages are the most sought-after right now?
RD: This can be considered case by case. I hear, in the numbers, that Montauk, further east markets, are on the rise, but I have personally dealt with a lot of buyers this year taking focus strictly to Water Mill. There will always be a premium with waterfronts, but after the Hurricanes and rules/regulations, open farm land is right atop the list.
What’s the most extreme thing you’ve done to make a sale?
RD: Recently, I paid a lot of money out of my personal pocket to get renters out of my sale listing into a better home, with the risk of not having the sale go through. There was no guarantee the sale was to go through, even though it did, I certainly had to get creative. The situation was beyond tricky, but there is only one way to stay ahead of the curve in this business and it deals with thinking outside the box.
What are the emerging trends in architecture?
RD: More modern and unique architecture are starting to take notice in new construction, however the open-spaced floor plans with white marble, cedar shake traditional always has a place in the Hamptons. En-suite bedrooms up/down and more salt water pools.
How have buyers and sellers changed over the past two years?
RD: With where technology is, buyers and sellers have become more consumed with information. Of course this can be a worthy notion, just as long as the information is accurate. Brokers have the tools to advise both sides correctly to price right!
What is your forecast for the fall/winter real estate season in the Hamptons and North Fork?
RD: Although there is no factual answer at this point in time, we can only hope that business continues to thrive in this recovering economic/real estate market. We have been steam rolling before the fiscal cliff 2012 talk cliff right into this summer. I expect this busy market to endure. In my opinion, we need more inventory to hit the market this fall/winter for all of us to keep riding the wave. Fall is always a demanding stretch.
What is a sure sign of a “Hamptons” home?
RD: Home is what you make it and what you love about it, not about chasing the “Hamptons” home. The majority seems to still be the cedar shingled traditional of new construction phase. However, there is a butt for every seat, and it’s all about understanding and listening closely to the details of the customer’s needs in their own “Hamptons” search because every buyer is different.
When it comes to unique features and amenities, homes in the Hamptons and on the North Fork have it all. What feature has surprised you the most?
RD: Buyers are just as concerned with amenities outside as well as inside their potential Hampton homes. The outdoor fireplace and pool houses for entertainment are popular novelties as well as elaborate media rooms.
Tell us about one of your favorite listings on the market right now.
RD: Listings come and go, but currently one of my favorites is 249 Sebonac. Located privately between the world ranked golf courses and the Peconic Bay, this rare Hamptons beauty is a unique Post & Beam pine-framed with room for tennis, and is yours for the taking.