It’s now official, the Hamptons are now the sixth borough.    When you pick up your land line phone, you now have dial the area code for local calls.   It’s not that it’s a big deal but I kind of think it’s the tipping point for something.  I’m not sure what… but it’s definitely a tipping point for something.

New Technology is coming to the Hamptons!

Meanwhile, I never realized it but when you sell real estate on the East End you start to speak a language all of it’s own.   A few months ago I started noting the terms I use with some of my other friends in the biz out here to describe the people and places in our humble little neck of the woods.   So here they are in no particular order or significance, additions to the lexicon of selling Hamptons real estate.

TMS or Taj Mahal Syndrome – this is when a home seller thinks their particular property is the best of the best.   Yes, it involves an inflated price tag on their home and total denial of the realities of the market place.    While they love their gilded fish faucets in the downstairs powder room, very few consumers will put a value on such a luxurious fixture.   It doesn’t matter how much they cost.  It’s really a frustrating affliction for realtors because how do you not insult your sellers while explaining, “everyone thinks your #@#***%  gilded fish are hideous?”

Catfished – this term is actually used more often when discussing Facebook profiles  but can also be used to describe when some customers actually see an advertised listing in person.     Thanks to

Catfished:  photoshopping happens

modern technology and overseas sweat shops, it’s easier for property photos to be “enhanced” without spending a fortune.    A gaping hole in the roof?   No problem, it’s solved with a click of a mouse and a wave of a pen.   So imagine, the buyers delight when they actually see the house in person!?  They’ve been “catfished.”

A Kobe –  Remember when Kobe Bryant got tangled up in a sex scandal a few years back?  A few nasty headlines and the next thing you know is his wife got a brand new bauble the size of Texas?   Well it happens here too. So, while diamonds are a girls best friend, real estate is many a girls BFF (rings can get lost).   Now, I don’t want to sound sexist.  There are more than a few men out there getting their “kobes” too. But while I’ve also noticed it’s usually spouse #2 who gets these 8000 square foot multi-million dollar baubles, there really is nothing wrong with it.    I’m happy to helps someone “kobe” anyone, anytime.

Earhardt – Yes, I’ve written about this before but a great term is worth repeating.   This one was shared to me by one of our local cab drivers a few years ago.    This is a person who is renting a home in the Hamptons but can’t remember where it’s located.    A reference to the pioneer and missing aviator Amelia Earhardt.    These particular folks are usually spotted wandering around early in the season on the streets of the east end looking for the cedar shingled house with the pool in the back yard.

Yes it’s fun being here in the playground of the rich, famous and sometime clueless… where we have a lifestyle and a language all our own!


Are Rich People trying to Impersonate Me?! I Smell a Scam in East Hampton!

What can I say, it’s been busy in the Hamptons lately and this weekend will be no exception, even in the middle of WINTER!   Yes, WINTER… the Winter Warlock is working overtime this weekend; there’s snow, the winter Olympics .. very little day light….
Winter Winter Everywhere!

and Sag Harbor hosts it’s Third Annual Harborfrost.    It’s relatively new tradition with fireworks, parties, art exhibits and the locals coming out of hiding to celebrate all things cold and frosty.  But if you really want to know what Harborfrost is really like, let me quote what a friend of mine calls it, “Spring training for St. Patrick’s day in Montauk.”   Anyway, here is the schedule and web site for HarborFrost 2014!   Go have fun people and be safe!  Also, take heart, EH Village beach passes are now on sale!  Winter will soon be a thing of the past like “Beliebers.”

Meanwhile, It’s been a weird couple of days.   First, there was the angry man calling from “Microsoft” who wanted me to give him access to my computer, apparently there getting error message from my “windows computer.”  As he demands,  “Push the Microsoft Flag key and control,” I inquire who exactly he wants to speak to… I mean he has my computer registered in his files, right?    Once again he demands I listen to him but he still doesn’t know my name!  If you’re really interested, google it apparently it’s a common scam.  I actually find these scammers kind of fun to tease, I’m lonely!

Then I got an e mail from someone saying, “I hope you don’t mind me e mailing you at this address?   I googled real estate, hamptons and Patrick and I found your business contacts.    Apparently the e mail we’ve been communicating on has been redacted!”  REDACTED?   I had to look that word up to find out it basically means deleted.
After I emailed saying, “refresh my memory, what were we talking about?”   The nice gentleman figured out he had been had.     Apparently some clown from god knows where took my photo and my name and proceeded to list a summer rental on Air BNB for a home on Lily Pond Lane, East Hampton!!!   Now call me wacky but do you really think anyone who has an oceanfront on Lily Pond lane is going to list on Air Bnb?    Is Jon Bon Jovi or Martha Stewart perhaps impersonating me on the
The Air BNB ad , I didn’t place!!!

Interwebs?  What, can’t they just send unwanted pizzas or ring the doorball and run away to the neighbors they don’t like?!   I mean this is crazy!!!  Anyway, the nice people at Airbnb.com caught this before me and the ad was taken down.   But how weird is this   (See it below).    So buyer… or renter beware when you’re surfing online!     This is almost as weird as when Amex asked me if I bought 10 cases of horse feed in Kentucky!   Besides if you’re going to steal anyones identity… I mean really… you couldn’t pick someone more glamorous than me!?
Also, don’t mind if I rub this in… DON’T WASTE YOUR TIME FOLKS USE A BROKER OR AGENT!

A “Ruffarendum” in the Hamptons, plus some rental advice for the landlord!

Well some interesting things have developed with me in the past few weeks.    I have decided after almost a decade with Douglas Elliman real estate in a management position to become a full time agent with the company.  So what does that mean to you?   It means I’m going to have more time to blog and help buyers and sellers with their needs in the Hamptons.  So, if you or anyone you know is looking to buy or sell out east , make sure to let me know!

Anyway, rentals seem to be on fire lately.  I personally am up by about 30% more year to date on the number of rentals I’ve done.   But its funny so many people in the Hamptons will put their houses on the market for rent but not understand how it’s done.  So, I’m doing a little beginners guide here for the potential landlord and some terms you should know!

The open listing – Many rentals in the Hamptons are what they call open listings, meaning each company has their own data for summer rentals and that information is not shared electronically, like an exclusive sale.   That’s not to say that agents don’t talk and share information but it’s not coming from one central source.    This is why you may see the same home listed for different prices and time periods on varying web sites.    You can indeed make it an exclusive and make sure access is limited but often this may discourage some agents from showing your house over another where they will make the lion’s share of the commission.    My suggestion is give your rental listing to an agent you trust and ask them to send out a “courtesy” listing to some select agents at other companies.     This way you’re competitive and the agents are all getting the same information.

Permits baby! –  As with anything in life you have obligations and responsibilities when you become a landlord.   Claiming ignorance if you should be sued is not a defense and they have a tendency to go all “Judge Judy” when you go and try to use this as a defense.    Make sure you know the rules before you decide to sign that lease.   Make sure you google the regulations for what is acceptable and when renting in Southampton make sure you have a permit.  I’ve heard stories of tenants suing their landlords for silly reasons at the end of the season and getting their entire rent refunded because the landlord didn’t have a permit.  Yes, people rent without permits but is it worth the risk?  That is your call.

Credit Call – Remember those stories about the guy who was renting Hamptons houses for High School proms only to trash them and leave the landlords holding the bills.  You don’t?!  Then you want to make sure your prospective tenant isn’t hat guy has the funds to pay the rent and pay any potential damages.  It’s really no big deal and doesn’t take much time at all.   Here is one (tenant screening report)  I just googled as I was writing this blog!   It’s not an endorsement but just an illustration of how easy this is to obtain.

Call the Pros!!! – When it comes to insurance, the tax liability and the legal rights within your lease, call the prospective professionals.   The lawyer, the tax professional and an insurance broker are your best friends when it comes to keeping your self protected.  While many agents will give you advice, do yourself a favor, call a pro!!!

Meanwhile, the fur is flying in the Hamptons over all things… poop!   In case you missed it in the NEW YORK POST last week (even my sister in Florida saw it), there is new push to ban dogs from the beach!   So who has a bone with Russell and Bella???   Well recently I had a few friends stop by and we discussed the issue at hand.