I am a Realtor in Santa Cruz, CA , where buyers come to fulfill their dream of moving to the beach! We have a long coastline that runs along the “bucket” of Monterey Bay and there are some pretty big mistakes that Buyers make, when buying their dream beach home. Here are a couple:
This is a big one. Beach neighborhoods are, to be expected, vacation locations, and that can mean short-term vacationers or second home-occasional vacationers. One client fulfilled their retirement dream of living at the beach. They bought a beautiful, recently renovated home just steps from the beach, in a very sought after neighborhood. They were looking forward to meeting like-minded beach loving homeowners, expecting a beach-cohesive neighborhood. The first couple of weeks after they moved in, they commented how quiet their street was. They hardly ever ran into anyone on their daily walks. They thought that everyone was on vacation, as it was summer, and when school kicked in they would be able to meet the neighbors around their home.
After a couple of months, when nothing changed, they did a little research, discovering that their street, the streets on either side, and the majority of homes in the niche neighborhood they bought into are vacation rentals! At certain times of the year, the ‘hood is overrun by hordes of vacation renters packing into the houses around them; and other times of the year, the ‘hood is deserted. They are one of only three permanent residents in the five street enclave into which they bought.
Buyers need to research public records carefully. Vacation Rentals in Santa Cruz requires a Rental Permit. Finding out the culture of the beach location is so important! Work with a local Realtor who knows these neighborhoods… good, bad and the “I can’t put up with that” issue.
We all know location is the mantra of a buyer. But, in a beach setting, location can become a nightmare. Around Monterey Bay, facing to the sea changes from South facing to full on West facing. The weather that comes with the facing to the sea makes a huge difference in weather and storm patterns. A recent client moved to south Santa Cruz County, finding a beach property at a great price. He was ecstatic and ready to roll in his new beach life! The storms of this past winter have been an eye-opener. They were battered by intense westerly winds, a storm surge flooded the streets of their neighborhood, and their beautiful beach was littered with an unimaginable amount of debris… much of it huge trees brought to the Bay by flooding rivers inland. Their beach dream turned into a beach nightmare. They are presently looking farther north on the Bay with a South facing orientation. They had no idea! But your Realtor knows!
Sereno Group Santa Cruz, CA