The Landing Lifestyle | Dobbs Ferry, NY

Dobbs Ferry, NY is a village located on the eastern shore of the Hudson River, 20 miles north of Manhattan and part of the Town of Greenburgh. In that village you will find The Landing in Dobbs Ferry, an enclave of attached single family homes or townhomes. It offers a very carefree vacation-like lifestyle. It is a great community with a pool, tennis courts and clubhouse. The exterior maintenance, snow removal and landscaping are all taken care of for you.

It is a great commute to Manhattan, beautiful, convenient and relatively quick. Just walk or drive from your home at The Landing to the Ardsley-on-Hudson train station, just minutes away. Board the Metro North Hudson Line and enjoy the beautiful views of the Hudson River as you travel south about 40 minutes to Grand Central.

You can also enjoy the Old Croton Aqueduct path that is at the entrance of The Landing complex. The Aqueduct is actually a park that connects all of the Rivertowns together. It was once the pathway for the NYC water supply that flowed from the Catskills to New York City.

Downtown Dobbs Ferry has an array of different shops and restaurants for every occasion. On Cedar Street check out the Dawg House for a delicious and exotic hot dog, Tomatillo for a fresh Tex-Mex option. The Parlor has spectacular pizza and The Cookery is amazing as well, just to name a few. Half Moon is another Dobbs Ferry option along the Hudson River and has a patio where you can enjoy a great meal, good company, and beautiful sunsets with the Manhattan skyline in the background.

Dobbs Ferry has a special service that not many other communities have, a community shuttle that will give you a ride home from the train station during the evening commute. It is run and managed by the Dobbs Ferry Police and it adds to the great sense of a small town community you experience in Dobbs Ferry.

Other Dobbs Ferry assets include a community pool at Gould Park, an 8 acre park located on Ashford Avenue. In addition to the pool it includes a basketball court, playground, softball/baseball field, football/soccer field, volleyball net and bathroom facilities.

Additional Park Options:

Juhrig Park is another wonderful park, a 75 acre pristine nature preserve which offers residents an area for biking and hiking.

Memorial Park is at 105 Palisade Street. This 3.5 acre park contains a basketball court, playground, wading pool, little league field, bocce ball court and bathroom facilities.

Waterfront Park, the most recently updated park, is a 10 acre recreation area overlooking the Hudson River containing a playground, covered stage, fishing pier, bathroom facilities, exercise equipment, boat dock and picnic area.

Additional School options:

In addition to the Dobbs Ferry public schools, The Masters School is a coed day and boarding school for students from fifth through twelfth grade. It is located on a majestic 96-acre campus, just 12 miles from Manhattan.

One of Mercy College’s campuses is located in Dobbs Ferry. Mercy was founded in 1950, and is currently home to over 5,000 full-time undergrads and over 11,000 part-time and commuter students. With strong NCAA Division II sports teams, Mercy brings another sense of community to the already unified Dobbs Ferry.


Closing Costs to Consider When You Are Buying or Selling a Home

Your bank and attorney will give you more accurate numbers but this is a start just to get a sense of what some of the costs are.

Don’t be overwhelmed, just take it one step at a time. Your agent, your mortgage/bank contact and your attorney will be there for you as you navigate the home buying process.

Approximate Buyer’s Closing Costs:

  • Appraisal Fee: $400-$1,000
  • Bank Attorney Fee: $500-$1,000 (In some cases your attorney can act as the bank attorney and save you a bit of money)
  • Bank Application Fee, Origination Fee & Processing Fees: Could be as much as $200-$500 for each fee
  • Buyer’s Attorney Fee: $1,200 – $2,500
  • Real Estate Taxes: Prorated based on what has already been paid by the seller, you pay back the seller or escrow money for the upcoming taxes.
  • Mortgage Tax: 1.05% of the Loan amount in Westchester County
  • Mansion Tax: 1% of purchase price on properties over 1 million dollars. $ 1.2 Million dollar property would owe a $12,000 cost at closing.
  • Title Insurance Expenses: Approximately .6% of the purchase price (Includes searches, endorsements & recording charges)
    • To give an example of title insurance costs, a 1 million dollar purchase has an owner’s policy rate of $4,508 and with an $800,000 mortgage at the time of the purchase would have a lenders policy also paid by the buyer of $931.
  • Survey Costs: If the seller does not have a current survey the buyer will need to have one done at a cost of $600-$2,000.
  • County Recording Charges: $350-$650
  • Other Expenses: The lender will require a full year of insurance. Property Insurance $750-$1200 depending on the size of your house, may need flood insurance which would be an additional expense.

Approximate Seller’s Closing Costs:

  • Transfer Tax: $4 per $1,000 purchase price for NYS.
    • NYC, Mt. Vernon, Yonkers & The Hamptons have a higher amount
  • Realtor Commission: Usually is 5-6% of the selling price of the property.
  • Recording Fees: The mortgage satisfaction fee is approximately $95 per mortgage
  • Legal Fees: $1,200-$2,500
  • Title closer fee for paying off any mortgages: The range is $175-$300 depending on the title company/closer.

The Yard Gods are Calling!

I work with many buyers moving to the Rivertowns from Manhattan. Often one of the first items on their new home “wish list” is a yard. They often comment “If I am going to leave the City and all it offers, I want a yard”.

I have the fortune of being the listing agent for an amazing Irvington property that has THE best yard in the area. 297 Riverview Road in Irvington, NY is a rare property. It has a flat fenced-in backyard with lush green grass, large enough to add a pool if that is your desire. The Rivertowns tend to be hilly so you don’t see a yard like this very often.

It is nestled adjacent to the Irvington Woods, a 400 acre nature preserve. The unrivaled location affords a walk to school and is just minutes to all Village amenities including the short commute into NYC via Metro North train. This elegant and well-maintained home sits at the crest of Riverview Road, one of the more sought-after locations in Irvington. Very private, perched above other homes and surrounded by mature trees.


Over 6000 sq. ft. of living space consisting of 5-6 bedrooms, 6 baths and a full finished walk-out lower level. A fabulous great room along the back of the house is complete with a family room, wet bar and fireplace, breakfast room, open kitchen with a center island and high-end appliances – the perfect stage for great entertaining! Gatherings with your family and friends continue, as you step outside the great room onto an expansive bluestone patio and as I said earlier, a yard unlike any other – private, lush- THE best yard in the area!

Stone Mansion Overlooking Hudson River…In Yonkers!

GetMedia.ashx170 Shonnard Terrace – It’s not everyday that you get to step back in time to the late 1800’s! When that opportunity comes about, you would jump right on, right?

That was completely my mentality when asked to view a Yonkers’s mansion over the weekend. From the moment I made the appointment to view this house, I was anxious to see what we were in store for.

MLS Remarks: THIS HOUSE LITERALLY PAYS FOR ITSELF…. Magnificent stone mansion overlooking the Hudson River. Featuring 6 bedrooms, 7 baths, 11 fireplaces, this grand but very livable manor house also includes an octagonal Ballroom, uniquely detailed main Kitchen with Subzero/Miele/Garland appliances adjoins a Breakfast Room which in turn gives onto a formal Dining Room fitted with hand-carved French Rococo panels. On the ground floor, a marble Entry Hall opens onto an oak-paneled Living Room with an adjacent Conservatory as well as a charming Morning Room, Billiard Room, and upholstered Turkish Room/Library. Upstairs, the spacious Master Suite opens onto a marble terrace and a split-level Observatory with sweeping river views. Three additional beds/flexible-use rooms and 3 full baths complete the upper floor. The lower level houses laundry, wine cellar, storage rooms, staff quarters, a two-story 3-car garage, even a private chapel. Established film and photo location with a six-digit income.

9 GetMedia.ashx5 GetMedia.ashx56From the mother of pearl fireplace to the piano converted kitchen island, my clients and I were in awe! The view of the Hudson River was breathtaking – no wonder this property is location for many famous films and photo shoots.

Only 30 minutes from NYC – where else would you be able to step back in time like that!

~ Debra

An Elegance Only Irvington Can Deliver: 28 Derby Lane

derby 28 Derby Lane is one of only four homes perched high on a private cul-de-sac, on over an acre of wooded property in sought after Legend Hollow in Irvington, NY. The Knickerbocker is one of the largest models complete with a grand foyer, lavish master bedroom suite, mid-level custom built library, double height living room with windows on three sides, elegant dining room with bay windows, chefs kitchen with breakfast room and cozy family room with beautiful stone fireplace. Covered porch and deck off the breakfast room with access to the back yard and pool area.

Just off the kitchen you will find a huge pantry, mudroom, laundry room and back stair access to a finished bonus room with bedroom, sitting area and full bath perfect for an in-law or an aupair suite. So much room to expand for your family and friends.

One of the really attractive features of the master bedroom suite is a 2 sided fireplace. You can gaze at the fireplace while you are relaxing in bed and you can also see up and into the lovely separate sitting room on the other side. The sitting room would make a great nursery or even a second home office. Custom his and her closets and lavish master bath in addition to the master bedroom and sitting area I just described, make this master suites one of the nicest and most complete I have ever seen. Enjoy seasonal views of Halsey Pond and distant Hudson River views from the master bedroom. Three additional family bedrooms, one with an ensuite bath and a Jack & Jill bath serving the other two bedrooms completes the second floor bedroom level.

There is also a walk out basement with a full bath, bedroom, exercise room and recreation area. Plenty of storage in the lower level as well. The house is simple, functional, yet elegant.

What makes living in Legend Hollow so special and unique? The neighborhood is set against a back drop of wooded conservation land, the fairways of the Ardsley Country Club, water features such as Manor Pond and a natural path to Halsey Pond. You will feel the sense of nature, peace, quiet and all the comforts of home that a Legend Hollow lifestyle has to offer.

Irvington, NY is one of the most picturesque villages in the Rivertowns. I have lived here for over 15 years and really love it. My children go to school in Irvington as well. It’s our home, it has a small town feel yet has such easy and quick access to the greatest city in the world, NYC. There are wonderful restaurants, parks and local theater. The Village itself is quaint and charming and is considered one of the most sought after places in Westchester.


Yes, Bidding Wars Still Exist!

ar134008445023868I recently closed on a property in Hasting-on Hudson, NY and one in Tarrytown, NY. Both had received multiple offers, the listing agents asked for highest and best offers (highest price and best terms) and these homes each received approximately 8-10 offers.

Just to give you a sense of why there is so much demand for these homes I will give you a bit of background on each of them.

The property in Hasting-on-Hudson was an old and charming Village home walkable to all. It was priced reasonably but because of the convenient location, the size of the property and the strong demand for homes in Hastings-on-Hudson, the property sold for almost 10% over the asking price and was appraised for over that. The house in Tarrytown was beautifully renovated, fairly close to the Village on a very nice piece of property. It also sold for about 8% over the asking price and appraised higher as well. Both Hastings-on-Hudson and Tarrytown are very hot real estate markets. Many people who are moving out of Manhattan or Brooklyn have heard that both of these communities, though very different, have a great Vibe!

My Hastings client was able to compete because of the price he offered but more importantly he was able to drop the one contingency that is usually in every deal, he dropped his mortgage contingency. (Buyers still may get a mortgage but the deal is just not contingent upon it.) What that means is that the buyer committed to buying the property whether or not he was able to get a mortgage. How does that benefit the sellers of this property? They didn’t have to worry about the deal appraising or the buyer getting a mortgage commitment, two elements of a deal where things can get complicated or even fall apart.

The terms are as important as the price offered. You do not have to drop your mortgage commitment to win a bidding war. I have had clients win a bidding war with a mortgage contingency. The deal I just closed on in Tarrytown was a case where I represented a buyer who did not drop their mortgage contingency but ultimately ended up with the house.

The first time around we did not get the house. We waited to see if the first deal the seller took moved forward. What often happens in bidding wars is that buyers fight for a house, they get the house and when the dust settles they have buyers’ remorse and back out. We were next in line and my buyers stepped up and got the house.

The best advice I can give, when it comes to bidding wars– be tenacious, patient and make sure you are working with an agent who knows the values in the area. You do not want to lose the house but you do not want to over pay either.

~ Deb


Keep Calm And Call An Agent! The Selling Process

The Process of Selling Your House and When Should You Call A Realtor


You have come to terms that it might be time to expand, down size or even relocate. Now what? Where do you begin? I am about to take you through a small process that will allow the anxious task selling your current home, pleasurable.

The first thing you should do is call a realtor, this will save you time and money. They have the resources you will need to make this transition a smooth as possible

  1. To begin the process you need to clear out and create space. Go through the house and throw away, give away or store items that are taking up space or detracting from the space you are trying to sell. This could take weeks so start early!
  2. Determine what repairs need to be done; maybe your house needs a fresh coat of paint inside and out or maybe just a few touch ups. You may need to hire a contractor and they are usually booked weeks in advance as well.
  3. Set a budget so you have something to work with. Nobody wants to spend money on a house they are leaving, but not spending something now to put your best foot forward is foolish. Consider how much one more month on the market will cost you in terms of taxes and carrying costs, or the lost money if the house doesn’t sell and you have to reduce the price.
  4. Do you need to stage any rooms in your house to make it more appealing to your target buyer? Remember you only have one chance and just a few seconds to make a good first impression.
  5. You may need a yard clean up or add landscaping depending on the time of year. Curb appeal is very important for that first impression.
  6. Make sure you have professional photos taken, the majority of all home searches begin online and that is where you will want to get buyer’s attention.

Once the listing of your house is active and on the local Multiple Listing System (MLS), your realtor will hold a broker open house to expose the house to the local broker community.

In general, the weekend following the broker open house a public open house is scheduled. Public open houses are optional, depending on the house, the location and how you as the owner feel about it.

The marketing plan is now put in place.

Hopefully you will get an offer quickly, it can be a fairly quick negotiation or it could even take up to a week.

Once you have an accepted offer, the buyers will do an inspection.

Your attorney will send out the contracts to the buyer’s attorney, this could take a week, it just depends on how quickly everyone does their part.

The buyers sign, the sellers sign and now you are “in contract” which can also take about a week. You have a fully executed contract so your buyer now will be able to start their mortgage process. This could take 60-90 days.

Now that you have a signed contract you can move forward to buying or renting another place to live.

Almost everything is negotiable so remember having an agent that is your advocate and who negotiates for a living is critical. Planning ahead and meeting with an agent months before you think you want to sell will save you time and money.

Thinking of selling?