Sat. Apr 20th, 2024
alert-–-stunning-beach-side-nantucket-home-sells-for-just-$600,000,-just-three-years-after-it-was-last-listed-for-$23m-–-but-there’s-one-big-reason-for-the-discount.-so,-can-you-guess-what-it-is?Alert – Stunning beach-side Nantucket home sells for just $600,000, just three years after it was last listed for $2.3m – but there’s one big reason for the discount. So, can you guess what it is?

A beachfront home on the wealthy island of Nantucket has been sold for just $600,000 – a huge discount from its original listing price of $2.3 million.

The average home price on the exclusive Massachusetts island off Cape Cod is $4.43 million – but there is a large catch for living life on the edge in this newly sold home on Sheep Pond Road, with coastal erosion a real concern. 

There is a very real possibility the new owner will get that sinking feeling sooner rather than later with entire property likely being consumed by the ocean within a matter of years.  

It led to the home’s former owner deciding to slash the price tag for a quick sale having only purchased it comparatively recently in 2021 for $1.65 million. 

Last summer, the house was being rented for $15,000-a-week but over the winter, storm after storm slowly ate away at the property’s backyard.

What was 100 feet of dunes sitting between the house and the Atlantic Ocean had dwindled to just 30 feet after they were washed away by the waves.

A beachfront home on Nantucket sold for $600,000, a steep drop from its $2.3 million listing

A beachfront home on Nantucket sold for $600,000, a steep drop from its $2.3 million listing

Brendan Maddigan, managing director at the real estate investment firm JLL, has purchased the new home and is well aware of the risks, but believes there is still potential to be had

Brendan Maddigan, managing director at the real estate investment firm JLL, has purchased the new home and is well aware of the risks, but believes there is still potential to be had

Brendan Maddigan, managing director at the real estate investment firm JLL, has purchased the new home and is well aware that he is playing a real life game of sink or swim that might turn his beachfront bliss into an underwater abyss. 

‘It’s a gamble, but I got comfortable with the risk,’ Maddigan said told the Nantucket Current.  

There are limited options with what can be done to improve its chances as the home is already right up against the eastern border of the property and there is no room to shift it further back from the ever-encroaching shoreline. 

‘It’s a losing battle and I have no certainty around the time that it will eventually – or maybe not – that erosion will take out that house. I looked at it as, if I could have that spot for a few years, hopefully a little longer, and do everything I can to make it last, I’ll be happy. Climate change is very real. I’m hopeful, but I’m realistic.’

Maddigan, 42, is already familiar with the area having grown in Woods Hole, Massachusetts on Cape Cod. 

‘The home is amazing. The location is amazing. And the price mitigates the risk to a good degree,’ Maddigan told the Boston Globe.

‘I’d like to think that it’ll be there for a while, but I was definitely aware of the risk of any particular storm causing a problem in the future.

‘The property has some advantages but I don’t have a crystal ball, and who knows what nature will do. We know what the trends are. There are years with no erosion and other years where it’s significant. I’m planning on doing the best I can to hang onto this spot for as long as we can…But there’s nothing you can do to stop erosion,’ he said. 

Coastal erosion is threatening the property's very existence, with winter storms taking a toll with just 30 feet from the home to the ocean - down from 100 feet

Coastal erosion is threatening the property’s very existence, with winter storms taking a toll with just 30 feet from the home to the ocean – down from 100 feet

This bay window is a cosy place to sit while admiring the sea views which are drawing closer

This bay window is a cosy place to sit while admiring the sea views which are drawing closer

Maddigan was the first buyer to plump for the home with an all cash offer, within hours of the price dropping.

‘I took the chance, and I hope it’s long enough that my children have great memories of being there,’ Maddigan said. ‘And who knows, maybe we’ll get lucky.’ 

‘The floodgates opened, I kid you not’ listing agent, Susan Shepherd, from Shepherd Real Estate told The Current.

‘People called me from all over the country. Not only did I personally field as many as 30 to 40 calls per day, but other brokers were also calling me saying that they were getting inundated. I anticipated it, but not that it would be a full-time job. I did nothing but field calls.’

Those making enquiries ranged from first-time homebuyers to those happy to gamble $600,000 on a house that may not be around that long.

‘Some people said “Oh this isn’t so bad,: and others said “holy crap’!”‘ Shepherd explained.

The open plan kitchen and dining area are bright with plenty of natural light flooding the room

The open plan kitchen and dining area are bright with plenty of natural light flooding the room

‘It was fascinating. There’s so much of the human element and psyche that plays into this. I knew there would be immediate interest, I just didn’t know the volume. 

‘There was the full range: a first-time home buyer to the opposite end – the retirement writer wanting to be away from it all. The full gamut. Someone said “Oh, I’ll put my chef out there. I’ll put my boat captain out there.” For some, it was just “Vegas money”.’

Shepherd also emphasized that beyond the erosion, the price drop to $600,000 also reflected the motivation of the seller to unload the property.

‘I said ‘If we want to sell this in hours not days, where do we price it’?’ Shepherd said. ‘Was there money left on the table? There might have been. But when I talk to people about pricing a property, timing is always a factor. The seller wanted to turn the page, and that had more to do with it than anything.’