It's almost one year since superstorm Sandy hit the region, battering Long Island. The historic event will long be remembered, especially by those who were affected and by those who are still recovering.
Joyce Coletti, a broker at Douglas Elliman Real Estate and a longtime resident of Long Beach, says, "I've been here 40 years and I never saw anything like it. It devastated me, for sure." Still, Coletti says, Long Island's a great place to live. And Long Beach, she adds, is on its way back up.
"This storm affected so many people, it made a statement," says Justin Galbraith of Eric G. Ramsay Jr. Associates in Bay Shore, noting in part that homes are being renovated and built to better withstand a powerful storm in the future. "Living near the water is more safe now and more protected than it has ever been," Galbraith says, adding, "God forbid there is another one, everyone will be ready for it."
While Long Islanders had their own experiences in the storm, the real estate market can help tell that story. Many who sustained damage renovated their homes and are staying, while those who had their home on the market before the storm had to make repairs before re-listing. Some decided coastal living was not for them, while others were only too happy to find the deal of a lifetime.
Here's a quick snapshot of a few homes that sustained damage, were renovated and are now ready to sell:
129 Prospect St.
Set in the heart of Babylon Village, this Nantucket Colonial-style home had a complete makeover after water seeped into the house. The owner decided she wanted to remodel, says the listing agent. Offering an open floor plan, the house has a spacious entry and living room where south-facing windows allow for ample light. There is a fieldstone gas fireplace and acacia wood floors. The eat-in kitchen, which has a tile floor, is designed with marble countertops complemented by a blue glass tile backsplash. The top cabinets are white, while the lower cabinets are brown and the appliances stainless steel. There's also a center island and walk-in pantry. There are three bedrooms, two bathrooms and storage space. The 71-by-90-foot property is watered by in-ground sprinklers. There is a rear patio. Justin Galbraith, Eric G. Ramsay Jr. Associates, 516-761-2399
1992 Brook Park Dr.
About a half-block from the water, this nine-room split-level suffered damage on the first floor and the basement. Those two levels were completely redone. Sheetrock, the hot water heater and central air-conditioner compressor, as well as all the appliances, are some of the items that were replaced. The owners put in wood floors and designed the kitchen with stainless-steel appliances. The house has five bedrooms and two bathrooms. The property, which is 75 by 112 feet, has new landscaping, too. Jill Sackler, Charles Rutenberg Realty, 516-395-8376
96 Stuart Ave.
It was the view of the Great South Bay from the second-floor kitchen that sold the Mike and Eileen Babich on this 4,800-square-foot Contemporary, which they purchased in 2006. Since one of them had lived on the block before, Mike says he was comfortable with the location. "I knew the area and I knew the storms. We never had damage," he says. However, during Sandy, water came in on the first floor, where the layout includes two bedrooms, an office and laundry room. The couple replaced the wood and tile floors -- the wood had buckled from the water, the tile had not -- with new ceramic tile. New Sheetrock was put up as well. The second level, which also contains the living room, dining room, den, master suite and another bedroom, didn't sustain damage. Other features include three full bathrooms, a fireplace and skylights. The 100-by-125-foot property has bulkhead. (The boat wasn't damaged). Jerry O'Neill, Coldwell Banker Harbor Light, 631-842-8400
74 Farrell St.
Investor Manny Varveris bought this ranch after it had been damaged by superstorm Sandy. Apparently, water from Reynolds Channel had made its way inside. The previous owner had partially gutted the house because of the damage and the builder took care of the rest. The interior is completely renovated down to the mechanicals, insulation and Sheetrock. Featuring an open floor plan with wood floors, moldings, vaulted ceilings (in the living and dining rooms) and Andersen windows, the house has three bedrooms and two bathrooms with porcelain tiles. The L-shape kitchen features oak cabinets, granite countertops and a tumbled marble backsplash. The appliances are stainless steel. Amenities include central air-conditioning. The 80-by-57-foot double lot, which has a driveway, has been landscaped as well. Joyce Coletti, Douglas Elliman Real Estate, 516-313-2700
2477 Freeport St.
After water entered this five-room Cape, the owners responded by renovating the first floor down to the Sheetrock. They even spent $5,000 to shellac the crawl space, says the listing agent, noting that the treatment is used to prevent mold growth. About nine months later, the house was pre-inspected. An infrared test was used to measure moisture levels in the walls and an air quality test checked for mold. The house is completely free of both, the agent says, noting it is documented. As for cosmetics, a Pergo floor was laid, floor moldings were installed and new doors were hung. The kitchen has new cabinets and stainless-steel appliances. The washer and dryer are new, too. The house has three bedrooms and one bathroom. A new roof was put on about six years ago. A detached 1 1/2-car garage is also on the 50-by-100-foot parcel. Kathy Cowden, Realty Connect USA, 516-312-8956