The Real Deal New York

Clinton Hill townhouse fetches near-record $2.16M

November 18, 2011 04:03PM
By Leigh Kamping-Carder

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From left: Jerry Minsky, senior vice president at Prudential Douglas Elliman, and exterior and interior shots of 87 Cambridge Place

After only a week on the market, a 3,200-square-foot two-family townhouse
in Clinton Hill is under contract for $2.16 million, the
seller’s broker, Jerry Minsky, a senior vice president with Prudential Douglas
Elliman, confirmed to The Real Deal, making the sale one of the most
expensive residential deals on record for the Brooklyn neighborhood.

The sellers are Shelley Goldberg, a textile designer, and her husband, Tony
Writer, founder of the market research firm Headspace. They signed a
contract to sell the home, at 87 Cambridge Place, Oct. 15, Minsky said.

Goldberg and Writer paid almost $1.4 million for the landmarked four-
bedroom home — described in the listing as “an owner’s triplex over an
income-producing garden rental” — in 2005, according to property records.
She is pregnant with the couple’s second child, Minsky said.

Built in 1863, the residence features a 170-square-foot deck, four marble
fireplaces and a three-sided bay window that extends the full height of the
façade, the listing said. The home was recently featured on the design blog
Design*Sponge.

The sale would be the second most expensive home, with or without tenants,
sold in Clinton Hill since the crash, according to real estate listings website
Streeteasy.com. In July, a 20-foot-wide six-bedroom townhouse at 103
Greene Avenue with a garden-level guest suite closed at just under $2.2
million, while in 2007, pre-crash, a 5,000-square-foot townhouse at 280
Washington Avenue fetched $3.3 million, property records show.

Andrea Yarrington, a vice president at the Corcoran Group who listed the
Greene Avenue home and had seen the Cambridge Place listing, was not
surprised the latter sold so quickly. “A house that is so spot on and attractive,
there’s a demand for that,” she said.

Minsky, who has lived in the neighborhood since 1989, said he initially
wanted to price the home at $2.15 million but acquiesced to the sellers’
wishes to ask $2.05 million. Writer and Goldberg declined to comment.

“I knew the type of buyer we were going to get,” he said, “because the house
was just immaculate. It was in perfect condition. … I felt like honest Abe
Lincoln.”

Writer and Goldberg received four bids for their home, Minsky said, and the
highest also turned out to come from the most financially secure bidders. “It
wasn’t as if the other bidders were exactly poor people, but this particular
buyer made the most sense in the environment we’re in right now,” Minsky
said, referring to the tight lending environment. He would not divulge the
buyer’s identity, and nor would the buyer’s representative, Todd Vitolo, an
associate broker at Corcoran, since the transaction hasn’t closed.

The couple who rents the garden apartment will continue to live there,
Minsky said.

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