Our Margaretville correspondent has compiled a list of local real estate agents that she finds above board–not so easy, as those of us house-shopping can attest to.
In the UK they joke about realtors like we do lawyers. No one trusts them. Everyone thinks they’re pushing something shoddy. And if there’s anything we have in the sticks, it’s a copious amount of real estate agents. And properties. So to weed wheat from chaff and keep you from spending a day in a car with someone you can’t stand, here’s a list of a few (five, in fact) I think good.
All but one are downstate transplants – with one a Mark Twain-quoting ex-graphic designer, another a ex-airline exec, and a third who worked in interiors. The last manages to use the word “puissance” with one of his listings – a bit of linguistic jujitsu that would land him on the list even if he weren’t so knowledgeable. Our broker (the ex interior designer) John Tufillaro had the patience to show us our house more than five times as we dithered making up our minds. (We looked at nearly 30 places in all).
All of them are willing to show other agent’s and agency’s properties, while John gave us boxes of Haagen Dazs after our closing because we met while eating ice cream outside his office. Coldwell Banker Timberland Properties (the local realty powerhouse with the most agents and offices) is across the street from the Bun & Cone, and they have a line that ice cream eaters aren’t buyers. We proved them wrong and also happened to luck out with a good relationship.
Jean Orr has been in the business the longest and other brokers revere her knowledge and willingness to play well with others. She says you should interview brokers like you would a brain surgeon. (I was thinking more of a shrink myself). Jeffrey Ashton agrees simply because for so many downstaters, this can be the first time they’ve ever bought (as Alia pointed out last week).
He worked with close friends of ours and managed to find them their perfect house that wasn’t even on the market yet. (It’s got views that look like Maine, towering over the Pepacton Reservoir.) Lynne Resch has her own agency – Two Stones Realty (the name comes from a saying here that you get two stones for every bit of dirt – something to consider if you want a hobby farm). Once with Coldwell Banker here, she put out her own shingle to focus on a select and curated group of properties. Also like me she once lived in Carroll Gardens. Before the good restaurants.
On the jump: a list of offices and links.
Coldwell Banker Timberland Properties
607 746 7400 ext 12
845 586 3321 ext 14
917 670 2207
555 Main Street Margaretville, NY 12455
845 586 6220