West Islip, a hamlet in Suffolk County on the Great South Bay, is home to boating, beach and fishing enthusiasts. The waterfront community boasts its own beach and marina and is close to the Robert Moses Causeway and Robert Moses State Park.
After superstorm Sandy, buyers were reluctant to buy on or near the water, real estate agents say. Now the market seems to be buzzing. "People are not shying away from waterfront property," says Jamie Winkler of Winkler Real Estate in West Islip.
The area experienced population growth between 1940 and 1970. It is mostly residential, with properties that are a mix of Colonials, ranches, splanches and split-levels. An average parcel of land is about 75 by 100 feet north of Montauk Highway and about 85 by 150 south of Montauk Highway.
First-time home buyers can expect to pay in the $300,000s for a house that may need some updating, and those homes don't stay on the market very long, Winkler says. Also more people who already live in West Islip are staying in the area and upgrading to larger homes, she says.
Residents describe West Islip as a tight-knit community, and last year Islip Town Councilman Steven Flotteron worked with the Where Angels Play Foundation to build a park near the West Islip Marina in memory of Madeleine Hsu, who died in 2012 during the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtown, Connecticut.
Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter was part of the ribbon-cutting ceremony. "Everyone in the community pulled together -- landscapers, paving companies, fire department. It was really so moving," Carpenter says.
LaGrange Inn, on Montauk Highway, once a restaurant and stagecoach stop, is undergoing a renovation. "The community wanted to see the structure saved," Carpenter says. "It will function as a community center and museum."
West Islip has its own fire department, post office and public library, as well as Good Samaritan Hospital, and every September the West Islip Bicentennial Committee sponsors a county fair.
CONDOS AND TOWN HOUSES. Three condo listings from $339,000 to $399,000
SALES PRICES. From June 1, 2014, to June 26, 2015, there were 212 sales, with a median price of $370,000, according to Multiple Listing Service of Long Island data. The low price was $200,000, and the high price was $1.265 million. During the same period a year earlier, the number of sales was 202. The median price was $368,000, with a low price of $137,100 and a high of $1.55 million.
ATTRACTIONS. Willets Creek, West Islip Beach and Marina
Area: 6.8 square miles (including .4 square miles of water)
ZIP code: 11795
Median age: 42.1
Median household income: $103,789
Median home value: $372,000
LIRR time to NYC: About 1 hour and 15 minutes. The closest train station is Babylon.
Monthly ticket: $338
School district: West Islip
Sources 2010 Census; mlsli.com; LIRR
ON MULTIPLE LISTINGS
Number of houses: 157
Price range: $179,000 to $1.875 million
Tax range: $8,585 to $27,833
Shadybrook Lane, $850,000
With an original asking price of $875,000, this 10-room Colonial sold in June. It was on the market 138 days. Built in 1974, the house has four bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, in-ground sprinklers and a three-car garage. The house also comes with two deeded boat slips. The lot size is 85 by 251 feet. Taxes are $21,978.
Cedar Point Drive, $535,000
On the market for 48 days, this 11-room high-ranch sold in June for $30,000 below the original asking price. Features include five bedrooms, three bathrooms and wood floors. Other amenities include central air conditioning, in-ground sprinklers and a two-car garage. Lot size is 85 by 132 feet. Taxes are $16,773.
Watts Place, $345,000
Situated in the West Islip Acres section, this seven-room ranch sold in March. The original asking price was $349,000. It was on the market 64 days. Features include three bedrooms, 1.5 bathrooms, a full dining room and an eat-in-kitchen. The house was built in 1960. The lot size is 75 by 150 feet. Taxes are $9,579.
NOW FOR SALE
Built in 1966, this splanch features four bedrooms, a bathroom, two half-bathrooms, an eat-in kitchen, a family room with a wood-burning fireplace and wood floors throughout. Lot size is 75 by 112 feet. Taxes are $11,285. Regina Forcino, Winkler Real Estate, 516-356-7986.
Situated in the Oak Neck Estates section, this four-bedroom, three-bath center-hall Colonial features an eat-in-kitchen, a formal dining room and a den off the kitchen. Additional highlights include a porch with a Jacuzzi and a landscaped yard with mature plantings. The house is on a .45-acre lot. Taxes are $19,544. Cindy Mullen, Douglas Elliman Real Estate, 516-659-7586.
High end, $1 million
Set on a half-acre, this 10-room expanded ranch in the Magoun Landing section is on the bay. It comes with a 135-foot bulkhead and a private beach. Features include four bedrooms, three bathrooms, a new combined kitchen and great room and central air conditioning. Deepwater docking is available. Taxes are $25,446. Geoff Matherson, Coach Realtors, 631-463-9000.