Why did you decide to look for a home in the Catskills?
We’d been visiting the Catskills for a number of years and fell hard for the scenic beauty of the region. We knew we needed to be close to New York City but not in the city, nor did we want some dull suburban home. A beautiful turn of the century farmhouse in the mountains was just the ticket!
How did you end up here?
We suddenly both had jobs that allowed us to work remotely. So we rented out our place on Airbnb and took Airbnbs at places all over the country. After a few months of that neither of us wanted to get back to NYC so we started looking around for a place we could afford.
How long have you owned your home here?
We moved up here April of 2014 and have loved every minute of it (except maybe when we broke down and booked a week in the Caribbean, this really was the worst winter in decades, but we took it in stride).
How is full-time living here as a young couple?
We thought we had a social life in the city. In the country it’s definitely not going to a bar after work for drinks or meeting up with friends in the neighborhood. Instead it’s weekend visits from our dear friends where we get to spend real quality time with the people we cherish. It’s a higher quality social life. And with our new friends and neighborhoods here in the Catskills we’re meeting other awesome young creative people who are working to make the jump to the full time Catskills life. We are constantly meeting up for dinners in each others homes, going out for hikes, sharing intel on secret swimming holes. And we’re meeting a diversity of people we’d never really meet in the City. Our social life there was just hanging with other 20/30-somethings. Here we’re meeting the fascinating neighbor who’s in a famous band, or an awesome film director, or witty writer, they all just kind of come out of the woodwork and it’s really a different level of socializing here. Again real genuine quality time.
What do you love about the Catskills?
Vast amounts of untouched wild life and nature. The extreme sense of seasons. The community—the people who seem to gravitate upstate are unpretentious and pioneering.
What are your favorite things to do here?
We love to take our dogs for hikes as much as possible. We love to garden. Every weekend, when we aren’t hosting friends, usually involves a day in the garden and a day outdoors. We’re trying really hard to just spend a whole afternoon sitting around and enjoying the property.
Name one thing you love about your house or property?
I think our house looks like a children’s drawing of the prototypical family house. I love learning more and more about the history of the home and its connections to some of the older families in our valley. But the land it sits on is so beautiful and just the right scale for us to do some interesting projects like a meadowland and wetland restoration, planting native pollinators. To be able to walk out the house and have this little paradise surrounding you, situated in protected Forever Wild land is pretty sublime.
What advice would you give to people who are beginning to look for real estate in the Catskills?
Well number one, call Peggy & Meade! Number two, spend a few weekends up here staying in homes, chat with the locals, and find your valley. Every bit of the Catskills is unique and there’s a distinctive character from one valley to the next. Find the area that fits your lifestyle and what you’re really interested in. Do you want something more secluded and off the beaten path? What does that mean in the dead of winter? Do you want something more social and connected? Even something on Main Street in one of the towns and hamlets of the Catskills will be calm compared to the city life. It is really nice being able to run errands on Main Street and get to know your neighbors. But most of all, find a place you fall in love with.