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Dec 4, 2018 3:12 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Town Board Purchases Home In Westhampton For Affordable Housing Program

Southampton Town Board members approved the purchase of a home on Hamilton Avenue in Westhampton, to put back into the town's affordable housing inventory. GREG WEHNER
Dec 4, 2018 3:47 PM

Southampton Town Board members quickly jumped at the opportunity to snatch up a Westhampton house that was nearly in foreclosure, paying just $200,000 to be able to continue to offer the property through the town’s affordable housing program.

The house, located at 752 Hamilton Avenue in Westhampton, near Francis S. Gabreski Airport, was abandoned by the homeowner nearly five years ago, and foreclosure proceedings were getting underway. But the property owner agreed instead to a short sale to the town.

Diana Weir, the director of housing and community development for Southampton Town, said on Monday that the home was originally built as an affordable unit by the town in the late 1990s, and stipulations were included when the contract was signed with the homeowner that it would be kept as an affordable home if it was ever sold.

“We always have the right of first refusal,” Ms. Weir said. “We don’t want it to go out of the program. If sold outside, it would go to market value.”

According to Zillow.com, the 1,184-square-foot home has an estimated value of $248,383.

Under an agreement between the homeowner, the town and the mortgage lender, the town will purchase the property and cover closing costs, titling and a property survey for no more than $200,000.

“What we do … we purchase it back and do any cleanup, and then put it back into the program,” Ms. Weir said.

The cleanup will be conducted by a not-for-profit organization, Ms. Weir said, adding that the hope is that Suffolk County will provide grants to help cover the costs.

A resolution to purchase the property, which the Town Board approved on November 27, states that the property “shall be sold to and occupied by a moderate-income family,” and if the mortgage holder obtains a judgment of foreclosure, the town’s right to purchase it is terminated.

Town Board members did not discuss the matter, and only voted to approve the resolution.

The home on Hamilton Avenue was built in 1997 by Water Mill-based PERT Construction, as part of an 11-unit affordable housing project in Westhampton known as Northern Sites, in which three-bedroom, one-and-a-half-bath houses on half-acre lots were sold for $84,000 each.

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