I’ve been poking around this veteran Sullivan County broker’s site — a good one, in my opinion — and came across his lists of lakefront properties, divided into under $500,000 and over it. For less than $20,000, you can get a lakefront studio with a hot tub and a deck in Liberty (a faded beauty of a town, full of potential but struggling with joblessness and poverty). I’m partial to this completely gutted Victorian in Lake Huntington for $165,000–an enormous rehab job, but it’s already so beautifully haunted-looking. I think it could be had for far less than the asking price.
A happy medium might be this place in Smallwood, next to Bethel, for less than $200,000 and with a lovely stone patio, heated by woodstove, nice gardens. There are many more, from A-frames to ranches, the humble to the ostentatious.