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Hamptons Agents Sum Up 2014 in Real Estate, Part I

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We asked a number of prominent local agents their conclusions about the year that just passed and make some predictions for the future. Today we have Enzo Morabito and Harald Grant.

Enzo Morabito, Douglas Elliman

What neighborhood saw the most change this year?
I'm truly the only broker who has a large presence on both sides of the Shinnecock Canal. So west of the canal, I'd have to say Quogue wins that title. Buyers recognize the old-fashioned yet hip charm of the village, its real estate values, and the ability to open the door of their summer and weekend home after only a 90-minute drive from Manhattan. They can definitely get the party started earlier. And east of the canal, I'd say south of the highway from Wainscott to Water Mill. The land value continues to appreciate and development is booming.

Your favorite town this year?
Just like I don't have a favorite child, all the towns in the Hamptons are my favorites. Just like children, a town has its pros and cons, but they're all wonderful! I wouldn't want to live anywhere else in the world.

Biggest building trend in 2014?
I'd have to say it's the continuing trend of architects and builders focusing on sleek modern designs. Post Modern designs are becoming a thing of the past. Especially when designing for waterfront lots, the flat roof modern home allows for a higher elevation to maximize ocean and bay views. It's all about the views.

Trend you'd like to see go away in 2015
Real estate has become such a hot topic, fueled in part by the reality-based TV shows you see on HGTV. Although they're fun to watch, they sometimes give a distorted view of what real brokerage is about. I say this lovingly to my clients and customers, but let me do my job. I have 30 years of experience and know what I'm doing.

Any predictions for 2015?
There are no crystal balls in real estate, but if 2014 is any indication of what 2015 is going to be like, I'd say we're in for an exciting ride. Although most of our luxury buyers pay cash for a home, mortgage rates are so good that money is cheap to borrow. Prices are going up and we're seeing more bidding wars for homes that are hot and priced right. Buyers realize the values are still out there, but the time is NOW to move--both in the literal and figurative sense.

Harald Grant, Sotheby's

What neighborhood saw the most change this year?
Southampton Village: west of South Main Street to Wickapogue Road.

Sum up 2014 in three words.
Really great year.

Your favorite town this year?
Southampton Village (Town of Southampton).

Biggest building trend in 2014?
New builds, ultra-modern conveniences and finishes.