Have you see the latest copy of Philadelphia Magazine? The cover asks- "Want to Buy a Shore House?"- Touting itself as the
"Ultimate guide to Beach Real Estate".
If you haven't seen the article, here's a breakdown on the facts contained inside and our personal take on the responses-
Let's start at the ending, since this is the information you are going to want to see the most!
How goes the recovery? (published in a chart):
For Ocean City, the market is up 5% in the past year with 98 more homes sold than the previous year.
Avalon, the market is up 8%
Sea Isle City is up 10%
Stone Harbor is up 11%
Cape May is up 10%
and Wildwood is up 3% with 43 more homes sold than the previous year.
Did the recession hit the Shore housing market? How is it faring now?
The Shore market is not exempt from having been hurt by the recession, but even so, there are areas of the Shore that fared quite well; prices in Margate are up 43% from 10 years ago, Cape May up 21%, and Stone Harbor up 11%. Other shore towns are recovering at different paces. There is a lot of new construction in Avalon, Stone Harbor, Sea Isle, and Ocean City, which is a great sign that these areas are bouncing back strong.
Where do I start with planning to buy a Shore Home?
The first step is to talk with a mortgage broker about rates, down payments, and ability to loan on a 2nd home or rental investment property. This will give you a better idea of what budget you are looking at. We recommend using a Shore-located mortgage broker, especially if you are looking at a condo property. Many banks and brokers away from the Shore areas are unfamiliar with how these unique-type of Shore properties are processed. And we find that our local rates are not only extremely competitive, but also lower in many instances.
Is it better to buy for location or house?
Location, location, location!! I'm sure you are familiar with this saying, and here at the Shore, is no exception. It is THE rule! The closer to the beach, the better! or on the Bay or lagoon... water and views is key here!
Does buying in Atlantic City make me crazy or savvy?
There is no clear answer on this.. we don't know what the state of Atlantic City will be in a few years or a decade.. it's all a gamble in AC as they say. Personally, we have seen many more people inquiring about units in AC everyday, finding the prices to be the most affordable shore property. Although we warn against high condo fees on some.
Where are the best places for investments? How about some deals?
Personally, we get asked daily about short sales and bank-owned homes. In Ocean City, these are few and far between anymore and most of the huge deals you will find online are actually (too good to be true) under contract already for more than a year, but the lengthy process of those sales is keeping those homes as incorrectly "active" on many sites. You can find more bank-owned homes in areas with a lower home value such as Wildwood city. As far as bargain homes, we recommend Wildwood as the next up and coming area. The recession hit this area of the Shore hardest and their recovery has been the slowest, which also means that as they follow the path of other Shore areas, they will continue to increase in value. Here is this town that is surrounded by areas where median home prices are high. It's the next logical area to see a great increase in value. Wildwood has also improved its image over the years and continues to do so. I'm finding rental returns are also best in this area.
Not interested in Wildwood and want to be in Ocean City, Avalon, Stone Harbor, Sea Isle, or Strathmere? We are seeing great bargains in properties that are in need of a little work. In Ocean City, you can still find properties for less than 300K within a half a block to the beach and boardwalk in desirable neighborhoods!
To view the actual article in the Philadelphia Magazine, please click here: Philly Magazine Shore Real Estate
Remember, for any of your South Jersey Shore Real Estate needs, call, text, or E-mail us anytime!
Jaime Pustizzi, Realtor 609-741-1145 cell
Chris Pustizzi, Realtor 609-741-1156 cell