I live in Atlanta and am considering an investment in a South Walton property. Do you have any recommendations for the most productive type of investment? Gulf front condo? Beach house on the gulf? Our budget is $300K.
I was born and raised in Atlanta! Sorry, but a budget of $300,000 is woefully inadequate for a beach house on the Gulf of Mexico!
I recommend a gulf front condominium. I’ve appraised close to 5,000 properties in 13 years here. Most in Santa Rosa Beach, Miramar Beach and Destin and naturally all along 30-A. A condominium is what I recommend.
- Buy an end unit. Because an end unit shares only one common wall, has more windows, more expansive views, and larger balconies.
- Choose one on a lower to middle floor. Preferably lower than the eighth floor. Because fire truck ladders reach only so high.
- I would recommend at least a two bedroom/two bath unit. Larger the better.
- I like older, lower density projects. Because the units usually have some “interior design style” to them and are not “shotgun” units.
- Choose a project that has amenities; gated, pool, gym, bar, etc.
- Buy in an older project. They are usually well-managed. Because they usually have higher reserves. Meaning, if a special assessment is levied, let’s say for storm repairs, the reserves may cover them. Otherwise, each owner will have to pony up. I’ve seen assessments cost upwards of $20,000 each unit. And you can’t finance special assessments.
- The down side to a lower density project is fewer units, higher HOA fees. Fewer folks to share costs with.
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