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February 24, 2024
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See what $1M will buy

What kind of house will $1 million buy you in Westchester, Rockland and Putnam?

It varies across the region and from town to town, but we’ll give you an idea, according to data from Houlihan Lawrence, based on the median prices of houses sold in 2023. 

In White Plains, you can nab a 2,315-square-foot, four-bedroom, three-bathroom home built in 1945. In Scarsdale, you’re looking at a 2,147-square-foot home built in 1944 with three bedrooms and three bathrooms.

What $1 million will get you, in terms of the condition and size of homes, has changed significantly since the pandemic, thanks to persistent low inventory and the rising costs of renovation.

In 2023, the average home sold in Westchester was 2,542 square feet, down from 3,055 square feet in 2019, according to data provided by Sotheby’s International Realty.

In fact, the tight inventory and soaring property values in Westchester have prompted buyers to expand their search to neighboring counties where there were “less competition and more affordable options,” said Elena Schloss, a realtor at Sotheby’s International Realty. While sales in Westchester have remained stable since 2019, the numbers of homes sold in Rockland and Putnam have jumped by 172.7% and 286.7%, respectively.

Schloss said Rockland and Putnam counties offer more space and lower taxes than Westchester. The shift to remote work also enabled buyers to prioritize their quality of life over proximity to the workplace. She predicted the trend of increased sales in Rockland and Putnam to persist in the new year.

Although inventory remains low across three counties, the recent decline in mortgage rates seems to give the housing market some hope for the new year. 

Average 30-year mortgage rates closed out 2023 at 6.61%, down more than a full percentage point since rates peaked at 7.79% in October.  

More: What kind of house will $1.2M get you in Westchester, Rockland, Putnam? We checked

Gino Bello, real estate broker at Houlihan Lawrence, said he hopes interest rates will keep dropping, and eventually will spur more homeowners to put their homes up for sale.     

We looked at what $1 million will buy in six communities across the region — Eastchester, Mount Vernon, Bedford Corners, New City, Pearl River and Brewster.       

Bello, who curated the houses, said winter is always filled with opportunities for buyers. 

“When a home is on in the winter, there is less competition, and a homeowner is very serious about making it for sale,” he said.

Here are the six homes for sale in the $1 million range that we reviewed. It is possible one or more could have been sold or taken off market by the time of publication. 

27 Summit Street, Eastchester: Listed at $1 million, taxes at $22,212 

This three-bedroom, two-bathroom, 1,587-square-foot Tudor house is on the market for the first time since it was built in 1943. It has a bedroom with an en suite bath on the first floor that can be used as a home office or guest room. According to the listing, the home has the potential for subdivision or expansion as it is attached to a flat lot.      

4 Magnolia Avenue, Mount Vernon: Listed at $925,000, taxes at $19,906   

Built in 1912, this four-bedroom, four-bathroom, 2,600-square-foot colonial house is situated on a tree lined street with gardens and multi-tiered grounds. “Renovated from top to bottom,” this home has a chef’s gourmet kitchen, a primary en suite with separate sitting area, a guest suite accompanied by a separate office, and a finished basement with game room, family room, laundry room and powder room. There are solar panels, an electric vehicle charging station and a detached garage with upper and lower driveways.    

61 Cliffside Lane, Bedford Corners: Listed at $978,500, taxes at $18,782  

Built in 1983, this four-bedroom, three-bathroom, 2,200-square-foot contemporary home is situated on a 2-acre property surrounded by farms and woodlands. It has an updated kitchen, a primary bedroom with walk-in closet and en suite bath, and a two-car garage.  

23 Lowell Drive, New City: Listed at $1 million, taxes at $25,271 

This four-bedroom, four-bathroom, 3,052-square-foot colonial home has amenities for year-round entertainment — heated pool, koi pond, outdoor kitchen bar, built-in burner stove and firepit. The basement with sliding doors embraces natural light and a master suite looks onto manicured landscaping.  

501 Gilbert Avenue, Pearl River: Listed at $929,900, taxes at $20,056  

Built in 2009, this five-bedroom, four-bathroom, 3,216-square-foot colonial property is branded as the first certified energy star home in town. Located within walking distance to schools, it has a finished basement with separate entrance, a loft area that can be used as an extra bedroom, an attic with windows and electric, two laundry rooms, and a basketball pad paved in the backyard.  

188 Joes Hill Road, Brewster: Listed at $999,999, taxes at $13,232 

Built in 2002, this five-bedroom, five-bathroom, 5,792-square-foot contemporary colonial home is situated on a 14-acre hilltop lot. On the first floor, there are soaring ceilings, a two-story great room, a chef’s kitchen, a library and a family room with separate office and balcony. A spiral staircase in the hall leads to an observatory and a possible pool site.  

Helu Wang covers development and real estate for The Journal News/lohud and USA Today Network. Reach her at hwang@gannett.com.

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