Ann Ciardullo has attained the rank of Global Real Estate Advisor at Sotheby’s, yet says that she might like to be a restaurant hostess in another life. She lives in East Hampton’s Northwest with her partner in life and work, Keith Green, and does a lot of work for charity in her spare time.
Where are you from originally?
New York City, born and raised there. Then I moved when I got married to Bedford, where I raised my two children for 20 plus years. After my divorce, I thought, “Where am I going to go now?” If I moved to the city, my children were already living there after college, and I stayed with them, and they were like no-oooo. But now they visit every weekend and they bring their children to visit.
What did you do before you were an agent?
I’ve only ever been an agent. I got married right out of college, had my children, and wanted to be very involved in their lives. And just being a PTA mom got boring fast, so I became an agent in 1979. It’s been very good to me. It was good when I was married and when I got divorced, it supported me and my children.
Had you been to the Hamptons before you decided to move there?
Never! The closest I got was when I lived in the city, we summered at Rockaway. The thing I missed when living in Bedford was the beaches.
The Hamptons are kind of like Bedford with beaches!
I went out to visit a friend who had a house out here, thought, “I could live here,” and got a winter rental. After that, I bought a house.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I like to go to the beach, with my children and my grandchildren. I’ve got three little girls. And I like to play tennis, and after a knee replacement, I want to get back into it. I love going out and being social.
If you weren’t an agent, what would be your dream job?
I’d be a cruise director on one of the largest ships! I could be a hostess in a fancy restaurant. I would love that! Instead of matching people to the right house, I would be setting people up in the right table. For me, being an agent isn’t about the houses, it’s about the people. I just love being around people.
What do you think is the best thing about being an agent in the Hamptons?
I love the freedom. I could work 14 hour days, but if I had a job where someone tells me I have to be in the office from 9 to 5, I would shoot myself. I do not want someone telling me where to be. On the other hand, I work more than I should.
What are some of the drawbacks about being an agent?
We just planned a vacation in Italy with Keith’s family for two weeks. We also convinced two of our listings to reduce the price of their homes. After they agreed, Keith and I looked at each other and said, “How can we tell our clients thanks for reducing your prices; now we’re going away for two weeks?” We had to cancel our vacation.
What do you think of the market right now?
I think the market is spectacular. It was sluggish in June and July, but in August, it’s like suddenly a light turned on. Frank Newbold told me he doesn’t know whether he’s coming or going.
The business used to be much more seasonal, but now you have people looking on the Internet and they’re already educated. And everyone at Sotheby’s is so busy right now. Buyers seems to know now is the time.