How Much Is Beach Front Really Worth on Vacation?

by Darwin on September 9, 2012

We did our annual vacation at the beach this past week and we got to talking to some different people we met on the beach with kids the same age as ours. A typical conversation piece is where people are staying, how they like the place, and “if you don’t mind my asking”, how much it went for. What we’d been hearing is that a house ON the beach goes for ~$5000 for the week whereas the place we’re renting 2 blocks in is only $1200. Granted, we rent from a neighbor who gives it to us at a discount where it would normally be $1600-$1800 this week I think. But for sake of argument, the different between 2 blocks is roughly $3500.

Benefits of Beach Front

There’s the ability to just walk out to the beach with less stuff, get back for lunch easier and then it’s nice to hear those waves at night or see what’s going on out by the beach without having to walk all the way down there. The houses are usually a bit nicer since the land is so expensive as well.

Why Beach Front Isn’t Worth It

To the contrary, when we’re down the shore, we spend so little time actually AT the house, the having the view, the amenities or the distance to the beach isn’t a huge factor. We’re either there all day, crabbing, at the boardwalk, out to eat or doing something non-house related. If I put a value of even say, $1000 on a nicer kitchen and being able to hear/see the waves from the porch, we’re still talking $2500 to save probably 150 yards of walking. Even if you’re on the beach, you still have to lug your stuff across a sizeable beach to get to the water.

The people we met that rent the beachfront properties tend to be the very wealthy wall street types or large families (isn’t it nice when grandma and grandpa fund the vacation!?). So, paying the additional money for beach front will probably never happen in my lifetime, there are just so many other things I’d sooner use the money for. Perhaps if we were on a tropical island or doing a once in a lifetime trip, but for an annual trip where the ocean is no more spectacular than anywhere else on the eastern seaboard, I’ll pocket the difference!

Have You Ever Rented Beach Front on a Routine Stay?


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Lance @ Money Life and More September 9, 2012 at 12:37 pm

I haven’t but I do live in a townhouse three blocks from the beach. I wouldn’t rent a beach front house but I would consider renting a beach front condo. The views from the 10th+ floor are amazing and we’d probably spend some time just relaxing in the condo if we were at the beach for a week.


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