Upstate Jane: My Latest House Crush

  |  December 6, 2011

Megan Oldenburger, aka Upstate Jane, is the owner of Dichotomy Interiors, an Interior Design and Style firm based in Woodstock, NY. She writes for Upstater about design, home furnishings, real estate and culture.

I get crushes on houses sometimes. I start fantasizing about them, all the things I want to do with them once they are mine, how I would buy it such beautiful things, and treat it so well. How I would spend the rest of my life with it, and grow with it. Well…this time my HUSBAND got the crush. I admit, I did too. This house was something. This home clearly swung both ways and was not afraid to seduce both of us.

Side of house and side entry

It was a chance encounter. We weren’t expecting to meet. Just on a simple Sunday drive when we saw the signs. OPEN HOUSE.

this stone path leads down from the entry over the brook

Sure, we see these signs all the time, and we don’t go pulling down just any old properties driveway. But this one was special. It was on a road we had “travelled” before. We had dabbled with another home down that street. Could it be that same house AGAIN? That previous house was off the market last we checked (had a lien on her, poor thing) Liens are like a leper in real estate. No one can touch you if they wanted, you are on your own island. The only thing you can do is hope for a quick foreclosure. We thought it could only be one other thing, the BIG stone house with the renovated barn.

We took the bait.

front entry hall

We pulled down the looong tree lined driveway with a babbling brook running alongside it with a picket fenced bridge leading down from the entry. Then, off to our left…It stood, just looking at us to come  up and chat. We drove up the curved road past the pretty red barn and saw her original stonework, and multiple chimneys. A large shed, and a screened in slate porch. As we entered we began through what is the dining room with it’s wide original stone and stucco fireplace and beamed ceilings. It just got better from there. I don’t want to “kiss and tell” but I will tell you that my husband was shooting off more pictures and prancing around like he had been kissed for the first time!

OH! This house has a past- in the 40’s and 50’s it was owned by Jane Burr, pioneering feminist, novelist/poet and was used as an Inn for writers. It’s current owners are a well known model and a musician/actor. Like I said though, I won’t kiss and tell.

In the end we couldn’t afford this gorgeous masterpiece, it is a bit overpriced still for the market, and the taxes just killed it for us. Time will tell. We visited again to make sure it was love and not lust, but the luster faded. This truly is an amazing property but there are a few things that need to be taken care of. In the end I needed to find something that was less expensive and less intimidating. For some lucky person though, willing to put the work in, this is going to be an amazing purchase. Oh, and if that lucky person is reading this right now…I would LOVE to help you renovate it!

Here is the listing and stats

Location: Woodstock

Beds:4 Bed (plus the barn studio)

Baths:2 Bath (3 if you count the barn studio)

House Size:2,281 Sq Ft

Lot Size:5.78 Acres

Last years taxes (here’s the kicker): $14,528

Read On, Reader...