East side market offers affordable start for young couples

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)- The owners of Red Door Real Estate didn’t think twice before opening their doors in the heart of the Elmwood Village on Buffalo’s west side, but their next move may come as a surprise.

They’ve set up shop at a second location, on the east side.

It’s called Red Door East. Agent Renee Moran is used to showing pricey homes on the west side, but told News 4 this largely untapped market might be the next big thing.

The Santoras have been on the west side for more than a decade, and said the prices are pushing them out.

“They’ve just kind of skyrocketed over the last couple of years,” said Alexandra Santora.

“The mortgage industry is completely different now. Obviously we had a financial collapse, so getting approved now is more difficult and you generally can’t get as much money.”

So they’re turning to the east side in hopes of finding more room and saving a lot of cash.

“What we’re finding is first-time home buyers who get approved for $80,000 to $100,000, it’s becoming very difficult to find them a home on the west side, south side, Riverside, Black Rocks. So more and more buyers are opening their eyes to these neighborhoods,” Moran said.

Red Door offers free home buyer education seminars aimed at first-time buyers.

The home the Santora looked at is being priced at around $70,000. If they were to take it, they’d rent out the second unit for around $600 a month, which means no mortgage.

“The value of the property for what you get over here is way better than what you can get on the west side. Every house out here has a garage and driveway pretty much. More bang for your buck out here, that’s for sure,” Matthew Santora told News 4.

Alexandra feels a lot of the east side has been stigmatized, or glanced over by potential buyers.

Many of her would-be neighbors have been in the area for years; most of the homes are family homes.

“The homes are beautiful, gorgeous detail. Things that a lot of the trendier neighborhoods have lost over time,” she told News 4.

Gorgeous detail like cedar-lined closets; Moran estimates a similar home on the west side could go for almost double the price.

Red Door East is already officially taking appointments, and the inside of their second location is expected to be completed in late July.

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