The real estate market on the East End has been on fire with the amount of people looking to leave New York City during the COVID-19 pandemic. But how is the high-end rental market during what is usually considered the off-season?
“It is an off-season for rentals like no other, or as some may say, the never-ending spring of 2020,” said Barbara Bornstein, an associate broker with Sotheby’s International Realty. “The sale market is more vibrant than any of us who have been doing this for decades have ever seen. I am happy to say I am still able to help buyers and renters find refuges which provide a safe haven for working and learning remotely, while enjoying the beauty and activities that bring us all to the Hamptons.”
“The spring and summer rental craziness has subsided quite a bit, but the off-season rental business is still more active than in years past,” said Bill Williams, a broker with Compass. “The rush for parents to get their kids in schools out east has obviously quieted down because [school] has already started, but there are many people still wanting to spend time out here on the off-season.”
While the demand may be fading, Williams said it is still more active than the normal off-season.
The months of September, October, November and December, individually and as a grouping, have been very active and remain in high demand, according to Williams. “I have brokered over a dozen fall rentals and people are still inquiring. Inventories for quality homes in good locations are starting to diminish, though, and I find myself every morning on the phone with owners who are not listed for the off-season and trying to convince them that a little—or a lot—of extra income is not going to hurt them!”
Bornstein has several high-end homes still available for either year-round or winter rental. The property at 51 Seascape Lane in Sagaponack, set on one acre, is just five minutes from the ocean beaches. The five-bed, three-and-a-half-bath house also has an open-style kitchen with a six-burner Samsung gas stove, Miele dishwasher, and Sub-Zero fridge and a living room with gas fireplace (perfect for cold winter nights). There is a solar-heated saline pool set in the lush gardens, in case you’re up for a swim.
The property asks $345,000 for the year-round rental and $135,000 for just the winter, which would keep the renters in the Hamptons through May 15, 2021.
Winter rentals — for January through April — are bound to be sought after, with no true end in sight for the coronavirus spread.
One of Williams’ available listings include a four-bedroom, two-bath cottage at 200 Ocean Road in Bridgehampton. The south-of-the-highway residence has been renovated and is rather charming with a tastefully decorated, comfortable interior. The 2,200-square-foot house is listed at $85,000 for the winter.
Renters are already looking ahead to the summer of 2021, too. “Many people have already secured a place for the summer, knowing they want to have a safe place to enjoy and as you can see there are still some excellent options,” Bornstein said.
It is never too early to be thinking about summer!