WHY IT'S BEATING THE BUST Economic diversity, low house inventory, a downtown district and recreational opportunities are some of the popular theories among real estate agents. "The appeal of East Islip is a great school system, plus it's a real family-oriented community with good sports and great parks close by," says David Sanders of Netter Real Estate in West Islip.
WHAT THE NUMBERS SHOW The fourth quarter was healthy, according to Multiple Listing Service of Long Island data. In 2009, there were 25 sales with a median price of $415,000, versus 13 sales with a median price of $385,000 in the fourth quarter of 2008.
THE SCOOP Buyers can find homes from $250,000 to more than $2 million. First-time home buyers tend to gravitate to a development called Country Village, where a mix of styles, including split-levels, Colonial and high ranches, are priced between $350,000 and $500,000, says Tracy Sobel, a sales associate at Eric G. Ramsay Jr. Associates in Bay Shore. Pricier homes can be found in Percy Williams Cove, which has amenities, and in The Moorings, a gated waterfront community. Sanders says since there have been so many first-time home buyers recently, sellers have been able to move up within the community. East Islip Gardens, a private senior citizen co-op complex, has five listings priced from $159,000 to $194,990. House rentals go for about $1,850 to $2,200 a month, says Paul Musso, associate broker of Realty Connect USA in Hauppauge.
ATTRACTIONS East Islip Marina, Heckscher State Park; Islip Meadows County Nature Preserve; Brookwood Hall Park
FAMOUS RESIDENT Sports announcer and former NFL player Norman Julius "Boomer" Esiason grew up in East Islip.
NEXT WEEK University Gardens (Great Neck)
Area: 4.2 square miles
ZIP code: 11730
Median age: 38.4
Median household income: $92,483
Median home value: $415,000*
Median age of homes: 45
Percent owning home: 84.7
Percent renting home: 13.6
Percent homes vacant: 1.7
LIRR time to NYC: From Islip, 64 to 83 minutes at peak
Monthly ticket: $306
School district: East Islip