Eye On Real Estate: Dyker Heights Houses Have Hot-Weather Charm, Sell For Big Bucks
By Lore Croghan
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
What is Santa's favorite neighborhood like in the summertime?
Pretty awesome, actually.
So what if the famous zillion-watt Christmas decorations known as Dyker Lights are nowhere to be seen — unless you look reeeeally carefully at 1270 84th St., where an elf statue leaning on a sign that says “North Pole” stands sentinel outside the house?
The homes in the priciest part of the neighborhood, which real estate agents refer to as prime Dyker Heights, are quite the eye candy.
We're talking about the blocks from 80th to 86th streets and 10th to 13th avenues — where come December, homeowners put up holiday displays so elaborate that for the past two years, national real estate brokerage Redfin ranked Dyker Heights the Number One place in America to see Christmas lights.
Even in stifling June heat, the charm factor is strong in the heavily Italian-American neighborhood.
Nowhere else in Brooklyn have we seen so many waterfalls on manicured lawns. Or so many outdoor statues ranging from angels and ancient Romans to lions and tigers and winged goats, oh my!
(Sorry, “Wizard of Oz” fans, there are lions and tigers but no bear statues, or at least none we noticed. But there is a partly bare — pardon the pun — female statue by the sidewalk outside an 11th Avenue mansion.)
Massive homes, many on miniature hilltops, and lush landscaping factor into the equation. Birdsong and bell-chiming at the Shrine Church of St. Bernadette provide a soundtrack.
Demand is perennially heavy for the big houses, which are in short supply, and “the prices just keep going up,” said Geraldine Soldano, an agent at Sarta Realty.
“The Dyker buyer is a Dyker owner who wants bigger — or a Bensonhurst resident who is moving up,” she said.
The big homes sell for $1 million to $5 million — and because of Dyker Heights' desirability, small houses go for $700,000 to $1 million, even if they have no parking, she said.
And there's a potential record-breaker out there. Ben Bay Realty is marketing a mammoth 8,000-square-foot mansion at 1065 83rd St. for a $7 million asking price. See related story.
Soldano and a colleague, Sarta broker Paulina DiAngelis, handled the $1,742,500 sale of 8121 12th Ave. last year — a 6,000-square-foot single-family home on a coveted 60-by-100-foot lot. The buyer, who moved from Bath Beach, has a business in Dyker Heights and wanted to live close by, Soldano said.
The sellers were Vincenzo and Corradina Caravello and the buyers were Kevin M. and Valerie Maguire, city Finance Department records indicate.
Families tend to hold onto the big Dyker Heights houses, generation after generation. Because so few properties change hands, when they do go onto the sale market, “pricing them is hard,” Soldano said. “There are almost no comps.”
One thing appraisers consider in sorting out the pricing of the big homes is lot size. Many are 40 by 100 feet – or 60 by 100 feet. Some are 100 feet wide and 100 feet deep. In contrast, in neighboring Bensonhurst the norm is 25-by-100-foot lots with shared driveways.