Wednesday, May 25, 2005


It is 5:40 in the morning at Myrtle Beach SC. The sun is trying to peak through the clouds that hang like pictures over the ocean. The moon was full a couple of days ago so the tides have made huge shifts daily. Twice each day the beach is almost gone with water lapping the dunes and twice each day the beach is as wide as you will ever see. One couple is walking hand in hand on that very wide, long and beautiful beach this morning.

I don't blog as much while at the beach but it is more fun. My Mom and Sister are here with me and my wife. We have eaten too much but we have walked 5 miles or more each day. The weather has been fantastic but the high today will be in the low 70's.

Marilyn and I met with a real estate lawyer yesterday. He continues to close properties at a rapid pace. Recently, he has closed hundreds of undeveloped lots. Boomers who are five years or more away from retirement are buying empty lots along the inter-coastal waterway. The price of undeveloped land 5 miles from the ocean but on the waterway has soared in the past two years. The lawyer sees no slow-down any time soon. He says the demand from 50 year old couples to own a second home is no where near satisfied.

My belief is that investors should pay up to buy ocean front property. The demand is strongest year after year for ocean front locations. Even in a tough economy beach front property is in demand. Careful shoppers are finding older properties at significant discounts to the price of new properties. A dual market has developed.

Developers are marketing new properties to boomers who live all through the northeast and Midwest. Many properties are being sold sight unseen. This makes some sense because those who travel to the beach see only the empty land where the property is being constructed.

The average every day vacationer who shops for a beach condo to buy is taken aback by the price of the new construction- new three bedroom ocean front units are typically priced between $600,000 and $1,200,000 and new four bedroom ocean front condos are typically priced from $900,000 to $2,000,000. Careful shoppers willing to renovate an older property can save $150,000 to $500,000. Many of the 10 to 20 year old buildings look great after renovation and in many cases the units offer more space in addition to the lower price.

The couple I mentioned has turned and is headed back up the beach. It is quiet except for the sound of waves crashing into the shore. Beach Blogging is as good as blogging gets.