Founder of UK property website buys oceanfront home in Palm Beach

Zoopla head Alex Chesterman paid $1,300 psf for South Ocean Boulevard house

880 South Ocean Boulevard and Alex Chesterman (Credit: The Corcoran Group, ZPG)
880 South Ocean Boulevard and Alex Chesterman (Credit: The Corcoran Group, ZPG)

UPDATED Oct. 25, 3:35 p.m.: The founder of a U.K. property listings website just found himself an oceanfront home in Palm Beach.

Alex Chesterman, founder and CEO of Zoopla’s parent company, dropped $8.75 million for a 6,840-square-foot house at 880 South Ocean Boulevard. The sale breaks down to about $1,280 per square foot.

A number of related brands operate under ZPG Plc, including Zoopla, uSwitch, PrimeLocation and Hometrack. Just this month, the company purchased the financial services comparison website for £140 million, according to a press release.

The seller, Robert J. Dwyer, is a former Morgan Stanley executive who served as the bank’s executive vice president and national sales director from 1991 to 1999. Records show he bought the house with his wife Connie in 2001 for $3.6 million.

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The five-bedroom, seven-and-a-half-bathroom home features a recently renovated kitchen and seawall. Other features include a library, two-car garage, pool and guest suite. Records show the two-story home was built in the 1950’s.

The Corcoran Group’s Jim McCann had the listing. Dwyer’s home has been on and off the market for years, with the highest asking price of $11.9 million in 2015, which means it sold at a 26 percent discount off the original asking price. The home was last listed for $10.8 million in March, and sold for 19 percent off that price, according to Redfin. McCann was not immediately available for comment. Dana Koch of Corcoran brought the buyer.

Just this week, New Jersey-based National Realty Investment Advisors bought a double lot in Palm Beach County for $7 million, a 26 percent discount off its $9.5 million asking price.

The residential market in Palm Beach is recovering from a slow 2016. The island saw a total of 96 single-family sales last year, according to MLS data. This year, the number of single-family homes sales hit 90 by October.

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