TX Gulf Coast Affordable

Discussion in 'Real Estate' started by Carter, May 20, 2005.

  1. Carter

    Carter Beach Comber

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    For all of you who love the gulf, but missed your chance to buy a slice of it like me.

    First, I'd like to thank whoever it was who said on this site sometime in 2004 something like "Check out Mustang Island in TX, reminds me of Grayton Beach 20 years ago" or something like that.

    I am sad to say i am priced out of the Emerald Coast Market. I live in CA and love the EC. I have been traveling there for years and in fact will be there in Dune Allen rental in June with my young kids, wife and 14 other family members renting gulffront - and that sure has gotten expensive too). i am sure i will continue to come there - hopefully at least 1x/year. But i can't afford to buy my little slice of waterfront,waterview or stumbling distance walk to beach). i missed my opportunity 3 years ago when I almost made an offer and chickened out.

    I am kicking myself for not moving faster when I saw that Port Aransas/Mustang island post here last year. The word is sort of out on Mustang Island, and the gulf front props that were a mere $$400K last year appear to be scarce and more like $700K-$1MM now. And the dune is so wide there, beachfront is often a heck of a hike to the actual beach

    So i literally arrowed my way around the entire gulf coast on mapquest looking for somewhre on the gulf within an hour drive of a decent sized airport. I found Surfside Beach, TX. www.surfside.org 45 mins drive from Houston Hobby airport and 45 mins so. of Galveston. With the exception of some somewhat remote parts of LA, i think this may be the last place on the gulf that you can buy at a 'reasonable' price.

    I learned a painful lesson in FL gulf coast. There is only so much gulf, a lot of people have a lot more money than me, and i would up on the wrong side of supply and demand.

    I just purchased a 4BR/3BA built in 2002 beach house that is in the rental pool and fully booked for 11 weeks in summer at $2K/week. I paid $320K.

    I am also in contract on a gulf front lot that includes the two contiguous lots behind it (i.e 2nd and 3rd row) for a grand total of $145K on the 3.

    I am not a large land investor, in fact the only property i ever purchased prior to these is my 1st and only primary residence.

    This is NOT emerald coast beach. The water is not aqua-marine. The beach is not fluffy white. You drive right through ugly industrial to get to it. But it is the gulf. Gulf front.

    If I can figure out how to post a picture, I will.
     
  2. Today

    Today Beach Comber

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    Check out the article entitled, the search for the last affordable beach house, Money, June 2005. It list five areas it defines as affordable, they are as follows: 1) Prince Edward Island, Canada; 2) The Outer Banks, North Carolina; 3) The Forgotten Coast, Florida (this area is from Port St. Joe to Carrabelle); 4) North Padre Island, Texas (this area includes Mustang Island), and; 5) Central Coast, Oregon. Since I like warmer weather, I would limit my search down to #'s 2,3, and 4.
     
  3. Bob

    Bob SoWal Insider

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    Good post, Money magazine's article about "affordable" is dubious. Affordable for whom? I'd say areas 2.3.and 4 are not affordable, and areas 1 and 5 are moderately affordable because 9-10 months of the year, the waterfront is miserably cold.
     
  4. BrettMan

    BrettMan Beach Comber

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    There is also a great development called Beachtown Galveston going in on East Beach in Galveston, TX. It was designed by the same architects that did Seaside and Rosemary Beach, Duany Plater-Zyberk. Like someone mentioned previously - the beach are not like the Emerald Coast, but neither are the prices. I just bought two gulf front lots. I think it's going to do really well. They are supposed to be breaking ground on the town center this summer. All the roads and utilities are in, but that's it. Here is the URL:

    www.beachtowngalveston.com
     
  5. GraytonBound

    GraytonBound Beach Fanatic

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    Anyone have an opinion on Gulfport/Biloxi area? Lots of mom & pop's being torn down & replaced by large condo complexes. Good investment ??
     
  6. Carter

    Carter Beach Comber

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    Brettman- May i ask how much the Gulf-front lots at beachtown Galveston are going for? I saw a full page ad for that in a local beach mag when i was down there and it looked well thought out and nice from what little i saw, and i did note with interest the claim of 'same designers as Rosemary'.
     
  7. Paula

    Paula Beach Fanatic

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    I went to the web site listed above and it said that the real estate developer "visited and studied similar projects designed by the town planning firm of Duany Plater-Zyberk, namely ?Seaside? and ?Rosemary Beach? in Florida. " So, it didn't seem clear to me that architects of Beachtown Galveston and Rosemary and Seasidethat are the same, although I may have missed something when I read the information on the website.
     
  8. BrettMan

    BrettMan Beach Comber

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    Carter,

    I think we got the last of the gulf front lots, but I've heard that there might be a couple of resales. I'm not sure what they are going for. If you are interested, contact Vicki Bird at (409) 762-2222. She is the agent we dealt with.

    Paula,

    We thought the exact same thing before we bought. The ad that we saw actually said that DPZ did the design, but the wording on the web site made us think that may not be the case. So.. I called the offices of DPZ and asked about the Beachtown Galveston development and they knew what I was talking about and referred me back to their sales office.
     
  9. Paula

    Paula Beach Fanatic

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    Thanks. I'm not pursuing any property in Texas but I did look at the link out of curiosity. If I was looking for property, though, I'd be looking further into this because it seems interesting. Certainly, a weekend trip to the area would be my first step.
     
  10. Cil

    Cil Beach Fanatic

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    Me too, Paula.
    Would the winters there be similar to SoWal? Or perhaps not as mild?
     
  11. kurt

    kurt Admin Staff Member

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    Quite a bit further South. More like Tampa, unless the water temps are radically different from currents.
     
  12. Carter

    Carter Beach Comber

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    I have only been to/in Surfside Beach TX/Galveston (or anywhere very near it) for 5 days in early May, so I am a dubious authority on weather/water temp there at best, but can tell you the peak beach rental season there is the 11 weeks of Memorial Day through mid-Aug.

    I did see one picture on the web somewhere along the line of glaring white snow on the Beach on xmas day. Picture was annotated something like: 'No that is not Destin, it is Surfside Beach on Christmas day!' ;-)
     
  13. BrettMan

    BrettMan Beach Comber

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    That picture must have been taken this past Christmas. My mom lived in Houston (just North of Galveston) for 8 years and never got to see snow in any quantity (they get less than Atlanta - which is darn near none), then in October of last year, she moved to Naples, FL to be near my sister and they had a white Christmas! She was bummed :sosad:
     
  14. Carter

    Carter Beach Comber

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    Yep, you are right. Found my way back to the link. Christmas 2004.

    http://www.surfside.org/christmas2004.htm

    It does look like emerald coast sand...

    If I could figure out how to post a (512kb) picture here I would show you all a picture I took of surfside beach from the deck to give a sense of what the beach there really looks like (when it is not covered in snow...)
     
  15. RiverOtter

    RiverOtter got any pics?

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    My brother is down there right now and says the gulf looks like a "Muddy Lake"
     
  16. Carter

    Carter Beach Comber

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    I just read today and highly recommend the current issue of Fortune Mag (May 30). "Real Estate Gold Rush" cover article. Really good/fun read on the speculative frenzy from Las Vegas to AZ & Miami with some suggestion some of the frenzied herd may be moving in the direction of TX next (Austin specifically mentioned with ref to SA and Dallas).

    One quote from the article:
    'Sometimes they are here for maybe six hours total. They don't even look at the houses. They get here, look at the prices, and say, "Two-Hundred and Fifty Grand? I'll take two of em!".' (Phoenix, AZ)

    ....aint America great?
    :cool:
     
  17. Camp Creek Kid

    Camp Creek Kid Christini Zambini

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    Some friends had a contract to buy the last two gulf front lots in the DPZ Development in Galveston. They cancelled the contract after seeing the muddy water and and dirty sand (mud). My friends are from Houston, and the price for two lots was great (300's), but they passed. They had forgotten how unappealing the water and beach is in Galveston. They've been in SoWal for a year now. Sounds like Brettman picked up their contract.
     
  18. RiverOtter

    RiverOtter got any pics?

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    Is the water as or more murkey than Port St Joe?
     
  19. Cork On the Ocean

    Cork On the Ocean directionally challenged

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    Just read an article about Port St Joe.

    http://money.cnn.com/2005/05/11/real_estate/re2005_beach3_0506/index.htm

    The beach at Cape San Blas is still a nice one but they've got a tremendous erosion problem which is what brought me to come up here and I'm still trying to figure out what they're gonna do about that stinky Arizona chemical plant. Anybody know if that's ever gonna go away? JOE sold all those lots at Watermark(?) on the bay a couple of years ago but theres still only 1 or 2 houses there.

    Also, MExico Beach seems to be growing with at least 8 precons but I still can't stand the poor design of the streets going down to the beach. Everybody looks at each other's house instead of the beach. What's with that? This area just can't compare to the Emerald Coast and I don't think it ever will.
     
  20. BrettMan

    BrettMan Beach Comber

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    As far as the beach at Galveston goes... here's my two cents. I made a trip to the area to look at the development. There is no doubt that these are not Emerald Coast beaches, but neither are 99% of other beaches in the US - and neither are the prices. I went for a walk on the beach and the sand is very fine and it is tan - not white like in South Walton. So... the water right where the waves break does look dark because that sand is constanly churning and that fine tan sand colors the water. The water is not dirty and the beach is not "muddy" at all. If you look further out, the water is blue.

    The other factor is it's proximity to the greater Houston area. You can get there in about 45 minutes from Houston, even less time from Hobby airport. That is a huge market of vacationers and potential buyers.

    My wife is from VA Beach. VA Beach is very popular, but the beaches aren't even in the same ballpark as the Emerald Coast. The sand is tan and course and the water is murky. The same can be said for North Carolina beaches. I think that those that are lucky enough to spend time on the Emerald Coast get spoiled by the exceptional beauty, but that doesn't mean other beaches aren't still very desirable.
     

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