Waterfront, Inland Homes Go To Highest Bidders; Suffolk Homes Up On Wednesday

HAUPPAUGE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Dozens of Hurricane Sandy-damaged homes in Nassau County will soon have new owners.

First-time home buyers, investors and others looking for a bargain attended the auction at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Hauppauge on Tuesday.

Families joined realtors,  speculators and builders, some with cashiers’ checks in hand for damaged waterfront “McMansions,” inland bungalows and everything in between.

“These are not homes that are turn-key ready to move into,” Misha Haghani of Paramount Realty told CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan. “Anyone who buys these properties is going to have to do a lot of work to bring them up to code before they can live in them.”

Rebecca Sinclair of the governor’s Office of Storm Recovery said the highest bid was $525,000 for a property in Bellmore on the bay.

“It’s a four-bedroom, three-bathroom, raised ranch,” Sinclair said.

Bill Romeo of Massapequa paid $485,000 and got the house he wanted.

“There’s a beautiful piece of property next door. I said, ‘What the heck? We’ll take it and we’ll adjoin it to our house,'” Romeo told 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera. “We’re going to make it a family compound and maybe down the road, who knows, we’ll build something on it.”

Jason Reis of Roslyn put in the winning bid on a Massapequa home.

“We paid $325,000 for it. We thought it was a pretty good deal, maybe overpaid a little bit but in these auctions you gotta get it right away when you can get it,” he said. “It’s waterfront. It’s right on the canal. Hopefully buy a boat one day and sail away. You never know.”

A Manhattan husband and wife, who wished to remain anonymous, were thrilled to get a Long Beach home for $385,000.

“It’s on the water and we’re excited to build our dream home,” the wife said.

There are a total of 150 properties in Nassau and Suffolk counties that are being auctioned off.

Many of the properties are along the South Shore from Long Beach to the Hamptons, with minimum bids from $28,000 to $400,000. Some have pre-storm values as high as $1.2 million, according to auction officials.

The homes were purchased by the state under the NY Rising program. Many are labeled “fixer-uppers” and “tear-downs.”

“The community gets the tax revenue again. The community gets brand new housing stock. Developers and local builders get some more business. Everybody wins,” NY Rising’s Jon Kaiman told McLogan.

Eighty-one homes in Nassau County were auctioned off Tuesday.

Nearly six-dozen properties in Suffolk County were to go up for auction Wednesday.