Sunday, May 08, 2005

Jersey Shore Mentioned in Philly Paper

"Atlantic City-Cape May's average price was $299,800, and the affordable price was $191,600, making the average price 56 percent higher than the average income in that area can support.

For Monmouth-Ocean Counties, the average price was $316,500, the affordable price was $222,200, and the difference was 42 percent.

The North Jersey Shore has traditionally been more expensive than South Jersey's. Veteran real estate agents in the south tell me they have been seeing more well-heeled New Yorkers in their market, looking for bargains.

Of course, none of them would acknowledge, on or off the record, that their houses are overpriced. After all, if there are plenty of people willing to pay those prices, how can they be considered out of line?

Much of what is going on at the Shore is second- or vacation-home buying, which means people with large amounts of disposable income are coming from elsewhere to buy property.

So if you look at sale prices in Stone Harbor, for example, you'll find that there is little on the market for under $1 million.

Houses in Stone Harbor and Avalon have long been the most expensive of Jersey Shore houses, but five years ago it was possible to find a house for one-third that price.

A few weeks back, I received an e-mail from the Wyndham Financial Group in Connecticut ranking 250 resort communities in housing affordability. Avalon was No. 25, Cape May 41, North Beach Haven 44, Sea Isle City 49, and Surf City 50."


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