White Plains, NY Real Estate News

By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
In a previous blog I commented on the need to enforce affordable housing quotas in order to maintain a vibrant mix in communities that are rapidly becoming unaffordable for working families.  In an interesting turn of events, Mr. Cappelli, the super-developer of the Ritz Carlton, Trump Tower and City Center, has bowed out of a potential deal withe White Plains  regarding a three acre lot of prime real estate surrounding the metro-north train station. Apparently, Mr. Cappelli  was offended by the stony faced city council when they insisted that 24 units of affordable housing be built before he opens the second tower or the Ritz Carlton. Since he was supposed to have all of the units built prior to opening the first tower, and since Mr. Cappelli has known since the beginning of the Ritz C...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
This post was written in 2008  - for a 2010  version that is continually being updated   Click Here for The Highlands White Plains NY. For the most part, my blogs have emphasized the Cityscape of  White Plains, NY and with good reason.  Over the past ten years the downtown has undergone a revolution of development that has brought in many new residents who have flocked here from more urban areas.  Those who are priced out of Manhattan have moved here as well as those who decided that they could get more bang for the buck in White Plains then in the city.  The downtown has become a favorite destination for those who choose to leave Manhattan.  But not everyone comes to White Plains to live in the city.  White Plains is often roughly divided into two parcels.  To the north, is the downto...
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For those who don’t live in Westchester, NY – and even for those who do but don’t live in White Plains, this is a complex issue. Westchester in general and  White Plains in particular is increasingly becoming very, very upscale. In recent years various attempts have been made to squeeze in affordable housing.  The trouble is that builders don’t seem to have the enthusiasm for the affordable units that they do for high-end luxury housing.  Complicating the situation is the way in which the City Council and particularly our Mayor (Joseph Delfino) seem to cater to the every whim of the developers that are blanketing the city with their “vision” of the future. Inevitably, this vision is always aimed at the high-end buyer. More and more the downtown is resembling a playground for the wealthy...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
One of the primary advantages of living in lower Westchester and White Plains NY in particular, is the shopping.  Sometimes it seems as if there is a shop for just about anything around here.   One all-time-favorite is “The Container Store.” The container store has store loations in 20 states with four stores in the New York area. The store in White Plains is right off of I287 at Exit 8W. It is across from the Westchester Mall, one of prime shopping locations in White Plains and just a short walk from the City Center.   One of the reasons I am taking time for a separate post on this store is that for sellers and buyers, the Container Store is a source of inspiration and ideas.  For sellers, de-cluttering is not a luxury, it is a MUST.  The container store is chock full of storage soluti...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
One of the benefits of living in  lower Westchester is that in many ways, the advantages of living in New York City  have found their way to Westchester County.  This is particularly true of medical care.  As recently as the early 90s if anyone I knew or loved was stricken with cancer I would have sneered at the idea of having it treated locally and insisted that a place like Sloan Kettering was the ONLY game in town.  Since I have a Ph.D. in the biomedical sciences I knew from whence I spoke – but times change. The Dickstein Cancer Center of White Plains, is the only freestanding cancer treatment center in Westchester County, NY.   It is definitely state-of-the-art and so close at hand, that the need to travel into Manhattan for treatment is negated.  Dickstein boasts an outpatient inf...
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The real estate market is different throughout Westchester County.  While in certain areas in Mamaroneck the Absorption rate is 16 weeks it is an entirely different matter in the White Plains area.  These are for single family houses and the absorption rate is in weeks.  A little snippet:  All of White Plains: Year    #Sold        Average        Median      DOM 2004      69        602,271     545,000    120 2005      73        714,023     599,000    108 2006      49        678,671     640,000    128 2007      38        746,426     662,500    126 Absorption Rate 35.22Since White Plains is so diverse I also did $1,000,000- $2,000,000Year     #Sold     Average       Median           DOM 2004      20        1,280,878     1,235,500       154 2005      36        1,341,042     1,316,500       ...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
The Ritz Carlton is located right in the heart of the downtown of White Plains just one block away from the White Plains City Center.  It dominates the downtown skyline as well it should because as I posted previously, it is the tallest building between Manhattan and Albany.  The facade itself dwarfs everything in its path and is sleek and modern in with steel and glass all around.  Standing at 42 stories height it consists of a hotel at its base and luxury condominiums rising into the sky are contained in its two towers. This complex itself provides a new standard of luxury for our city in condominium residences with the lowest priced sold thus far passing title for $718,000. The unit itself was  a large 1 BR/1.5 BA unit  (over 1000 sq.ft.) on the 11th floor.  The penthouse area begins...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
Ah – New Years Eve.  During my childhood, I spent a quiet evening with family and friends and a few noisemakers. Some eggnog maybe some toasted marshmallows in the fireplace…well that was yesteryear – Last night was a different story!The New Year was not ushered in quietly in Renaissance Plaza in the heart of White Plains last night. The City of White Plains, NY rang in the New Year at the foot of the newly opened  Ritz Carlton.  A little less than a block from the City Center Plaza that boasts Trump Tower, at 42 stories, the Ritz Carlton is the tallest building between Manhattan and Albany dwarfing both Trump Tower in White Plains and Trump Plaza in New Rochelle. At the stroke of midnight, a ball was dropped from a crane (a-la Manhattan – or the mini-me version Times Square) and the Ne...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
What can be more frustrating, exciting, rewarding, scary, exhausting, and down right daunting than buying a home?  Try buying one when you have a pet – more  specifically – try buying a condo or coop when your room mate happens to be a dog.  The restrictions and caveats are numerous.  At the very least, they will create bumps in the road – that will severely restrict buying options.  At worst they can be a minefield and a major obstacle to home ownership. The extent to which this impacts a buyers ability to purchase a condo/coop is a varied as the individual client and their situation.  Issues, such as the size and breed of the dog, whether one dog or multiple dogs are involved, the price range,  and how well the dog fares during an interview are all relevant variables. Make no mistake,...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
It’s that time of year again.  The seasons are changing from fall to winter and with that change, a visit the Carlson’s Greenhouse is a “must.”  The Greenhouse is a family-owned and operated with Charlie Carlson and his daughter, Nancy Shellhas being the heart and soul of the business. The plants are nothing short of spectacular.  At this time of year the green house area is literally a poinsettia festival with all the varying leaf color varieties showing their “true colors.” It’s quite a display.  But equally impressive are the arrangements created by Nancy. Many of their regular patrons decorate their entire homes for the holidays with arrangements from Carlson’s.  From subtle to spectacular, Nancy’s arrangements cover the entire spectrum to suit any style and taste.  There is nothing...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
This is a continuation of the previous blog.  The mall photographed in the previous blog on City Scapes is well know for its selection of statues....I will have to add the name of the artists later (I didn't have paper and pencil with my camera.)  I thought I'd share them in a separate posting as there are quite a few of them.....They add a lot of "life" to the rather austere concrete city scape ....   Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial on the left and the Vietnam Memorial on the right.                The Police Memorial.Mother and Daughter                                                            The Tourists               The Poet
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
Here are some photos from mall that includes the White Plains Public Library, the Westchester County Courthouse, the Public Safety Building and the Federal Courthouse. (White Plains, NY has the only fully functioning Federal Courthouse between Foley Square in Manhattan and Albany, NY.) Enjoy the photos - this part of the city has a very urban feel and borders of the downtown business district. It is also just a stone's throw from the White Plains Train Station. White Plains is just 33 minutes from Grand Central Station. The White Plains Library with the Ritz Carlton Towers in the background               Looking from the White Plains Public Library to the Public Safety Building. The "Seasons" Condominiums are directly behind the Safety building with the business district to the right.  ...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
Every Holiday Season I go "Christmas Light Watching" with friends.  Tonight we saw some interesting "light shows" that the kids would really love. To some this is truly over the top - but I have to appreciate the sheer number of man-hours that went into these efforts. My main caveat is - if you are trying to sell your home, this is probably not a good idea.... Here are a couple of photos from last night....enjoy....
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
It has recently occurred to me that I have been assuming too much.  I never truly introduced the City of White Plains or any of the other Westchester municipalities for that matter.  Those who live here and are thinking of moving here (and have down their research) - naturally have an understanding of the area. However, I ran into a new potential client in a coffee shop on Sunday and although he lived in NYC and had been there for some time - Westchester and White Plains were like another planet.  He had no idea how URBAN the downtown was and half expected a sleepy little town.  For, those who have never been to Westchester County,  White Plains can seem rather schizophrenic. Is it a suburb? Is it s city? Does it even know what it is?   Those who have been away for five years or more, a...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
Robert Cuccioli  is staring in the The Man of La Mancha in the new White Plains Performing Arts Center (WPPAC) located at 11 City Place, in the City Center. Cuccioli will appear in the staring role  which is opening Thursday, Nov. 29  and will run through December 16th. It’s the kickoff to a season that is slated to include Ain’t Misbehavin’, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and Ragtime. Click HERE for ticket information.Mr. Cuccioli needs no introduction.  He was first brought to the general public’s attention when he landed the role of Javert  in Les Miserables. Among his many other accomplishments, he won the Joseph Jefferson Award for his role as Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde and a Tony award nomination for the same role.The WPPAC has been struggling with red ink since it fir...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
10 Stewart Place, White Plains, NY is  located in the 10603 zip code just 2 blocks from the White Plains City Center.  It features many of amenities of the more expensive complexes, but being tucked away on the quieter Stewart Place, brings the price tag down significantly.   Built in 1987, the complex sports an exercise room, a pool, sauna 24-hour doorman among other things.  There is deeded parking. One space for smaller 1 BR units and 2 spots for  larger 1 BR units and 2BR units.  The location is perfect for those who want to be close to the center of town, but prefer of tree-lined and quiet street at the end of the day. There are two types of 1 BR units. The 1 BR/1BA units  are roughly between 800-900 sq.ft.  in size.  The larger 1 BR units are the size of 2 BR units (1100-1200 sq.f...
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Westchester County is getting a 5 STAR hotel.  On December 20, 2007 is the Grand Opening of the brand new Ritz Carlton which will be opening in downtown White Plains, New York.  Over the past few years the City of White Plains which is centrally located in Westchester County has undergone a fabulous revitalization and the opening of the Ritz Carlton is the natural outcome of that revitalziation.  White Plains is located 30 minutes by train or driving from New York.The Ritz Carlton will have 122 luxury rooms including 38 suites, a Grand Ballroom, meeting rooms and a 10,000 square foot spa.  It is the tallest structure between New York City and Albany.  BLT Steakhouse (stands for the owners name).  Centrally located in downtown White Plains it is just moments away from the The Westcheste...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
The Gateway is a brand new condominium complex with 30 units at the western end of White Plains, NY – a couple of blocks from the White Plains train station.  The complex boasts 30 2BR units and provides a new standard of luxury for the immediate area. But this complex won’t stand alone for long, Gateway I  will be followed shortly by Gateway II and III.  Although it is located West of the City Center, being right on Central Ave makes shopping a breeze – for day-to-day shopping the car can easily be left behind. The proximity to the train station greatly simplifies commuting. These luxury units feature all the popular amenities including granite kitchens, top-of-the-line appliances, hardwood floors, 9ft ceilings, fireplaces in the living room, laundry in each unit, central air, private ...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
The Westchester Philharmonic has just announced that its new musical director for the next three seasons is to be none other than Itzhak Perlman. The Westchester Philharmonic was born in 1983 as the New Orchestra of Westchester. It obtained its present name after several seasons.  From day-one the Westchester Philharmonic was a fully professional orchestra.  This was not an easy feat given that  White Plains, NY was a shopping Mecca/ commuter destination/ bedroom community with little nightlife during those early years.  Nevertheless, the Westchester Philharmonic distinguished itself quickly and many illustrious guest artists have graced its home stage at the Performing Arts Center at Purchase College.  These include, Isaac Stern, Itzhak Perlman, Frederica von Stade, and Andre Watts.Ret...
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By Ruthmarie Hicks
(Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605)
The recent stats released for Westchester County, NY show that for those who are fence-sitting in anticipation of major price adjustment – will probably have a long wait or become permanent renters.  This was particularly true of the condo/cooperative market which is the major entry point for most first-time buyers.  County-wide single family median home sales prices were up 1.9%, condominiums up 3.2% and cooperatives down 1.8%   over the 3rd quarter of  2006.  The only “bargains to be had were in multifamily residences where median prices went down 0.3%. The volume of sales was also up for single family homes (3.9% ) and condos (1.4%) but down slightly for cooperatives (-2.7%).  The dark spot in the market was multi-family homes where volume was down significantly (-32.6%). I decided t...
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