Home Fairfield Developer says Stamford housing complex ‘already 71% sold’ as of ribbon-cutting

Developer says Stamford housing complex ‘already 71% sold’ as of ribbon-cutting

Stamford Mayor David Martin (with scissors) and developer Randy Salvatore to his immediate left.

With new apartment complexes seemingly rising every day in Fairfield County, how hungry are people to buy – rather than rent – dwellings within a new enclave?

If Ainslie Square, consisting of 37 townhouses and 25 single-family detached houses on 4.5 acres at 159 Colonial Road in Stamford, is any indication, they’re practically ravenous.

“We’ve sold 71% already,” developer Randy Salvatore, founder and CEO of Stamford’s RMS Cos., said at an Oct. 2 ribbon-cutting ceremony. “Forty-four of the 62 homes are either sold and occupied or contracted for. It’s been very gratifying to see.”

Salvatore said he was taking something of a gamble in December 2017 when he purchased the property – formerly home to a long-derelict school building and several baseball fields owned by Congregation Agudath Sholom next door — for $6.2 million. While there’s been no shortage of rental buildings going up in Stamford – BLT’s Harbor Point being a prime example – offering up houses for sale in what RMS is touting as “a neighborhood within a neighborhood” is unusual.

“I’ve been looking to do something similar around the county,” Salvatore said, “but I haven’t been able to find the right property.”

That Ainslie Square is within walking distance of many of Stamford’s downtown attractions – including its Glenbrook train station – has helped draw a crowd made up largely, but not entirely, of millennials, according to the property’s sales manager, Donna McNamara.

“Millennials are buying,” she affirmed. “Some of them are getting tired of renting studios for exorbitant prices in Manhattan, when they can commute to work from Stamford and own something where they can start a family.”

Designer Sheila Bajaj, founder of New Canaan’s SMB Interiors, said Ainslie Square was her first commercial project. “It went really quickly,” a little more than a year, she said of completing the project. “It was a great team to work with – there were never any sour moments, though of course there was some stress.

“There are a lot of young professionals interested in what we’ve done here,” she added. “Some are looking for starter homes. Sometimes it feels like ‘Melrose Place’!”

There are plenty of “downsizers and empty nesters” as well, McNamara said.

Three-bedroom townhomes, measuring 1,864 to 1,908 square feet, start at $569,000. Detached 3-bedroom, 2,496-square foot houses start at $749,999, with 4-bedrooms – in 2,997-square-foot and 3,090-square-foot options — starting at $819,999. McNamara said that a number of options – including types of materials used for kitchen counters, cabinetry and the like, as well as finished basements – are also available.

Onsite amenities include a 20-by-40-foot pool, fitness studio, firepit, and children’s playground; Salvatore noted that a cocktail party was scheduled for residents after the ribbon-cutting.

What’s happening with Ainslie Square “is reflective of the fact that people want to come and live in Stamford,” said Mayor David Martin. “And we’re doing everything we can to make this city a city where they want to live. The reason rents are so high here is because we still don’t have enough housing.”

Salvatore said that the development’s apparent out-of-the-box success proves that “despite what we keep hearing about the state and the economy, this is a really strong environment when it comes to real estate.”

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