LINDENHURST, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — The first of hundreds of state-owned storm-damaged homes are ready for auction on Long Island.
In all, 150 of 700 Superstorm Sandy-damaged homes will go to auction in May, some at starting bids as low as $28,000.
They are all homes purchased by the state under the New York Rising program.
The houses are in both Nassau and Suffolk counties, some with pre-storm values as high as $1.2 million, according to auction officials.
Many are labeled “fixer-uppers” and “tear-downs.”
One waterfront lot in Lindenhurst was worth $750,000 but the opening bid is now around $250,000, CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff reported.
“I believe this is a deal of a lifetime, if not a once in a generation opportunity. It’s very rare that this many properties are sold at auction in one place at one time,” Misha Haghani with Paramount Realty said.
Homebuyer Maryann Spalter is eager to see what’s up for grabs.
“Definitely an opportunity, just look into it and see. Most of these houses will have to be knocked down completely or knocked down and gutted,” she said.
Still, some are melancholy on streets where under-insured homeowners packed up and left.
“Some of the people were elderly, they didn’t want to go through the whole process of rebuilding again,” Lindenhurst resident Richard Walsh said.
Winning bidders may repair or rebuild, but all homes must be elevated and comply with strict new building codes.
“These homes will be built in a more storm resilient manner. That was the whole purpose of this program,” Haghani said.
There will be open house viewing opportunities during the last two weeks in April.
The auction will be held May 19 and 20 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Hauppauge and bidders must register in advance.