Original Content by Carl Johnson
Whether it was a dream since your childhood family vacations took you to the coast, or if you are looking for a smart investment that you can get more out of, purchasing a second home at the beach is a beneficial way to use your money and to make your money work for you. Memories of time spent at the Crystal Coast are priceless, the positive effects both physically and mentally by being outdoors in the sunshine and by the water are limitless, and the possibility of your home’s value increasing over time are great. This is why at Carl Johnson Real Estate we take the time to work with our clients to make sure when the time is right for them to invest in a second home along the Crystal Coast, we are there every step of the way! Below are some tips and tricks we suggest to our clients when looking to purchase a second home along the Crystal Coast.
#1 Know Your Goals
Will this home be your permanent residence? Are you planning on fully renting the home out? Will you be spending only part of the year at this location? Are you looking to get a high ROI, return on investment, on the property?
You want to make sure you have a clear idea of what you will be looking for in a beach home before you start house hunting. Some areas of the coast are very popular tourist destinations and will be very busy for parts of the year. Other areas are 4-wheel drive only access and by nature preserves. You can even find homes in welcoming local small towns but may be a bit further of a drive to the beach.
Because the areas of the coast can vary this much, we make sure our clients know their goal and understand how it dictates the areas we will have to find your home in. You don’t want to have a goal of owning the home as a rental property then have a home that is in a non-tourist spot, not close to main attractions, and without the ease of conveniences like restaurants and stores.
The same goal first mentality goes for someone who is looking to only be in their new home for part of a year. Coastal homes take a beating from the weather and outdoor elements which is why a condo style or townhome options with an HOA can be important to look into. Having someone to maintain the exterior of the home when you are not able to be around to keep an eye on it can be priceless when it comes to homes along any coast.
#2 Know Your Neighborhood
Before diving in and looking for any beach property that is in your price range, it is important to know which area of the coast best fits your needs, as stated in our first tip on knowing your goals. At Carl Johnson Real Estate we want to be the trusted advisor for you as you rely on our knowledge of the area to find a home that is best for you and your goals. Below are some neighborhoods which are best to consider for specific needs (some fit multiple needs too!)
Rental Property (homes by tourist attractions, popular restaurants, and beach and sound access)”: Atlantic Beach, Beaufort, Morehead City, Pine Knoll Shores, Emerald Isle, Indian Beach, Swansboro, Salter Path
Small Town Feels (homes with southern charm, school districts, well established neighborhoods): Beaufort, Morehead City, Swansboro, Down East, Newport
Peace & Quiet (homes nature preserves, limited lots): Pine Knoll Shores, Cape Lookout, Salter Path, Down East
#3 Stick to Your Budget
It is important to know your budget and to stick to it while searching for your home at the beach. It is hard to not get caught up in the glamorous style beach properties that pop on the market. We work hard as your real estate agent to make sure each of your goals are met while making your budget the least of your worries.
Your budget affects your rental price if you are looking to use the property as a rental. Your budget also affects your overall over mortgage payment and down payment as well so make sure to have an idea of a budget and stick to it.
If there are key upgrades you see in homes outside your budget while home searching, you can take note of these to add to your home in the future. For example, patio and deck spaces can always be upgraded and utilized more efficiently. Updated kitchens and bathrooms are also things that may price one home outside of your budget but something you can add to your property options over time!
#4 Use a Local Coastal Home Inspector
A home on the Crystal Coast is unique! The properties here withstand wind patterns that are special to the area, homes are built especially for their sand foundations which they stand on, and the home’s roof and siding are made to take on the ocean’s salty air. A home inspector that is not familiar with these elements may miss a major issue that exists in the property.
We will work with you and for you to find trusted inspectors in the area to make sure that you are using the best. We want to make sure you have an inspector that knows the area and coastal style homes to ensure your investment will be long lasting.
#5 Sunrise or Sunset!!
Something fun to consider when buying a Crystal Coast property is if you want to see the sunrise or the sunset while at your dream beach home! The Crystal Coast offers homes both oceanfront and sound front. You have wonderful access to the ocean water no matter where you are on the coast thanks to their many public access docks all along the water. So try to face the ocean if you want to wake up to the slow rise of the beautiful coastal sun or check out a sound side home overlooking the state of North Carolina and enjoy the colors of a dancing sunset while out on our peaceful deck.
We are here for you!
At Carl Johnson Real Estate we want to be your trusted eyes and ears at the Crystal Coast. From your beginning stages of budgeting and researching the area to finding a home inspector after your offer has been accepted, we are here for you! You can lean on our knowledge and skill to be with you each step of the way to ensure you find your perfect coastal home. And soon we’ll be enjoying a drink together while watching the sunset on the deck of your newly closed dream home!
CLICK HERE to read more about the Crystal Coast!