Tom Wexler explains his real estate specialty: “I was always attracted to townhouses, their character and architecture. Unlike apartments, which are the same from one floor to another, every house has its own situation and personality. You can have the cohesiveness of a neighborhood and the privacy of your own home.” A Senior V.P. with The Corcoran Group is Director of Townhouses in the Carnegie Hill Office, specializing in Upper East and West sides.
“People who like townhouses are looking just for townhouses,” Tom continues. “They want a different lifestyle. Most are buying them for their own residency, because they can put in all their own touches. I show the special features of each house and I know about restoration. Maybe somebody famous lived there or the neighborhood is special. For example, there’s a house on 95th Street between Park and Lex — and there are 26 single-family homes on that block, with a wonderful Block Association and fabulous block parties. Features like that can add to the value of a home.”
Why would a home-buyer need a townhouse specialist? “When you’ve got a knee problem, you don’t go to an internist and you don’t go to a dermatologist for intestinal problems,” Wexler says. “You need a specialist for real estate too — and I live, breathe and sleep townhouses. The paperwork for a townhouse is difficult — you don’t have the co-op Board to deal with, but you have Zoning and Certificate of Occupancy issues. I can give help with that, for example by pointing out ‘You have asbestos in the basement.’
As to market conditions, Wexler notes,”I see the market in Carnegie Hill as positive. People come here and stay 10 years, depending on how long their kids are in school. The top private schools are here and the typical townhouse buyer has three kids and wants them to walk back and forth to school. And many people don’t realize when you buy a townhouse, you get more square feet per dollar than any co-op or condo.”