Tuesday, March 18, 2014 / by Teresa Dipeso
If you are looking for a new home at the Jersey Shore, now may be the time.
The Jersey Shore is seeing a resurgence of new home construction with increases not seen in years.
Cape May County saw a significant increase during 2013. New construction permits totaling 662 were the highest since 2007 when they reached 1,081.Building permits in Atlantic and Cumberland counties also rose to levels not seen since 2010.
“If you drive around on the barrier islands, there are plenty of new homes going up. The trend is the same as it’s been the last couple of years — the higher-end stuff, the new homes in Ocean City, Sea Isle City, Stone Harbor, Avalon, Margate, Longport,” said Sam Phillips, co-owner of Somers Point Lumber, a hardware store and lumberyard.
In Avalon, new-construction permits grew from 69 in 2012 to 76 in 2013. Demolitions also increased, from 48 in 2012 to 73 in 2013.
“We’ve got 50 to 60 homes going right now. We’re back to 2008 right now. We’re going through some boom right here,” Avalon Construction Official John Tracy said.
Expensive second-home and vacation getaways are a big part of real estate in Avalon and other seashore municipalities. “People are finally building their retirement house,” Tracy said. “They have the grandkids now, they’re tearing down the houses they’ve had for 30 years and they’re (rebuilding).”
Real estate speculators are also building new homes with the intention of selling, he said. Thomas Welsh, of Thomas Welsh Builders in Avalon, said last year was one of his best. “I’m finding the niche between $1.5 million and $2 million is really popular. After 2008, even the people who had the money tended to lean toward the under $2 million market.”
Neil Byrne, Sea Isle City’s construction official, said new construction has been steady for several years. About 86 new-construction permits were issued in Sea Isle last year, and Byrne said 2014 is on pace to match that.
There are also exciting new home developments taking place in the area. Ryan Homes, one of the nation’s largest homebuilders, started construction on Seagrove Estates; a 22 home development in Cape May Court House. Future plans also include another development called Sand Dollar Estates, also in Middle Township which is conveniently located just minutes from local beaches.
All in all, signs point to steady improvement for the Jersey Shore real estate market. When you are ready to buy or sell a home, call the Jersey Shore Realty Group and put our team to work for you!