May 9, 2021

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A Beach Bet: Beachfront homes will reap healthy returns

Real estate agents are flocking to talk about the growing demand for beach homes.

It is sheltered between sand dunes and marmalade, and is one of the most desirable homes in the market.

“I recently had a client with £ 3million to spend on one,” says real estate agent Jason Stubbs, whose company covers the coast between East Sussex and Kent.

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“When I told him there was nothing to sell, he said he would go for £ 6m, just to get a position on the beach.”

Stubbs believes the closings have done a lot to boost the value of the beach homes. London businessmen and women are now accustomed to Zoom calls, and have discovered that they can operate from the shore.

Beach homes undoubtedly attract their share of whimsical. Artist Michael B. White – who describes himself as a bohemian and a fun fanatic – used to own the Nepenthi, a converted lookout post from oak and mahogany midway up the cliff in Cliff End Cove between Ray and Hastings.

Then there was the 40-year-old international banker who made a fortune, but one day he decided he could no longer waste his life in airports and conference rooms.

He bought a beach house in Camber Sands to spend time with his girlfriend, playing acoustic guitar and kite surfing. To refill cabinets, he left home for odd days for photographic companies.

Sir Paul McCartney filmed a promotional video there.

It is nostalgia that brings most buyers to the hills in search of a home.

Sara Rogge, 47, fell in love with Sinene Cove in Cornwall as a child, then spent 25 years on vacation with her family.

She aspired to live in the area but the prices were always above her budget. Then I found out that Nest Seekers International was receiving offers for a fairly old house set in the sand dunes.

“Those views across the beach and down the coast to Cape Cornwall were what she sold me,” says Sarah, a self-employed small business consultant in Chester. “I’m going to demolish this place and build a five-bedroom upside-down house with a balcony on the top floor.”

Although beach homes are undoubtedly pricey, renting them during the high season is one way to get rid of mortgage payments.

Sarah expects her new home to cost more than £ 800,000. However, by allowing vacationers, you should be able to make in £ 6,500 a week during the high season.

“At first, I will leave for most of the summer,” Sarah says. “I will be moving here to work from home full time in a few years, having paid off some of my loans.”

Beach house rents are getting amazing returns on the Corniche coast, especially after Covid, as the district is filled with “staycationers”. Lower Saltings is a one-bedroom, ground-floor apartment overlooking Porthmeor Beach, just a short walk from St Ives Harbor.

It’s on sale for £ 930k and makes a net profit of £ 40k per year in vacation rentals (

Other areas are not quite trendy, however the beach houses are equally impressive. In Pagham, near Bognor Regis in West Sussex, a modern three-bedroom beach house is for sale for £ 1.15 million.

It has a rooftop garden and a gazebo that leads directly to Bagam Beach (

You can get more homes for your pound in Scotland. Fishery House, Dumfriesshire, is a modern five-bedroom home with a cinema room, gym and sauna.

The property, which has direct access to Solway Firth Beaches, is up for sale for £ 585,000 (

There are also downsides to owning a beach house. Being open to winter storms, maintenance is a constant chore.

Their placement often means they are within a reasonable distance of the closest amenities. Gardeners will not get much joy from sandy soils.

Even more dangerous is that the house may be subject to coastal erosion. It would be wise to make a survey prior to purchasing.

None of this, however, will deter true beach home aficionados.

“These properties are as exciting and rare as chicken teeth,” says Joe Ashby, manager with estate agents John Bray, who claims to have one of the most exciting beach houses in Cornwall close to coming to market. “Buyers want a new lifestyle and won’t do anything else.”

At the market … by the sea

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