The Most Popular FAQs About Coastal Real Estate

Coastal Real Estate FAQs

When you're considering buying a beach home on the coast of North Carolina, you may have questions about what you need to know when buying coastal property. We can help! We've gathered some of the most frequently asked questions that come up when homebuyers are interested in purchasing coastal property. Maybe you've had these same questions? Let's get them answered so that you can move ahead in the process of making your dream of owning a beach house in Emerald Isle, North Carolina a happy reality. 


Why should I consider buying a beach house in Emerald Isle, NC?

Have you considered buying coastal property or a beach home in the town of Emerald Isle? If you love spending a few weeks out of the year here but find it just isn't enough then maybe it's time you considered a more permanent option. Did you know that Emerald Isle was chosen as one of the best places to find bargain beach real estate? It was. If that isn't incentive enough, there's more.

Here's what Investopedia has to say about buying a beach home in Emerald Isle, North Carolina:


Emerald Isle

Emerald Isle, located on the Southern Outer Banks and part of the Crystal Coast area of North Carolina, has long been one of the most popular family vacation destinations on the east coast of the U.S. The permanent resident population is less than 5,000, but the population swells to as much as 10 times that amount, 50,000 or more, during the summer months.The local government of Emerald Isle works diligently to maintain the island's beauty and popularity with tourists through ordinances and restrictions designed to maintain a high standard of appearance in the city's real estate market. One of the draws for potential real estate investors is the fact that Emerald Isle, which has several seasonal events throughout the year, attracts more tourists, and therefore more potential renters, outside of just the summer months. Local property tax rates are relatively low as compared to many other North Carolina coastal towns.


What do I need to know about flood insurance?Insurance


Your homeowner’s insurance does not cover losses due to flooding. Emerald Isle has participated in the National Flood Insurance Program since 1977 and flood insurance is available for almost any enclosed building and its contents. Maximum insurance on a single-family dwelling is $250,000 and $100,000 on household contents. Non-residential and business properties are also eligible for insurance in varying amounts. 

Flood insurance is mandatory for all federal related financial assistance for loans to purchase, construct, repair or improve any building in the Special Flood Hazard Areas and all lending agencies, real estate offices and title companies are aware of these Federal requirements. Reduced rates are available depending on your lowest floor elevation above mean sea level, plus a variety of deductible amounts. 

Inquire about flood insurance coverage from your insurance agent for further information regarding this most important part of your insurance coverage.



How does erosion affect my coastal property?


Real estate near the ocean or an inlet is at risk for shoreline erosion. The property boundary adjacent to the water is influenced by forces of nature and changes from day to day and year to year. Shoreline erosion is caused by many factors including seasonal fluctuations in the width of the beach, storm induced erosion, long-term erosion, a gradual rise in sea level, and inlet migration/oscillations.

Generally, North Carolina’s beaches are seasonally narrower in the stormy fall and winter months. The mean high water line may move landward temporarily by 75 to 100 feet during the stormy season. This "seasonal" erosion usually recovers for the summer tourist season. North Carolina Division of Coastal Management studies show an average long-term erosion rate of approximately 3 feet annually for the entire coast over the last 50 years. Ocean shorelines near inlets and inlet shorelines usually experience the greatest fluctuations, on the order of 10 times non-inlet erosion rates for a decade or longer.

Sand dunes also provide significant protection from erosion and waves during severe storms. In most cases, the bigger the dune and the farther landward it is located, the more storm protection it offers. However, it is important to understand that sand dunes offer little protection from long-term erosion.  


What can I do to help protect my beach house from storm damage?Storms


Several features can prevent or substantially reduce the likelihood of damage from severe storms or erosion. Piling foundations can raise the first floor above expected flood elevations and waves. Avoiding the storm surge and waves is critical for storm survival. Determine the floor elevation relative to local flood predictions. Higher elevations are safer. Embedding the tip of pilings deeper than five feet below sea level can help a building stand during temporary storm-induced dune erosion episodes. Building code changes in 1986 make it more likely that later oceanfront buildings will have deeper foundations. Purchasers should consider researching the depth of the existing pilings relative to the depth of potential erosion.
Any walls constructed between pilings should be designed to break away when hit by waves without damaging the elevated building. Generally, the enclosed space in the floodplain may be used only for parking, storage or access to the elevated building but may not be used for living area.
The wind resistance of the building depends on good connections from the peak of the roof to the bottom of foundation. The resistance of all the exterior surfaces to wind-blown water is also critical to reduce interior damage. Wind-blown debris damage can be reduced by storm shutters or impact-resistant glass.

Consider hiring an inspection professional to determine if the building meets the present building codes or can be improved to meet them.


Beach House Investing: Best Beach Towns in North Carolina, Investopedia

Purchasing Coastal Real Estate in North Carolina, NC Real Estate Commission


Town of Emerald Isle Flood Information

Are you ready to get started?
Check out all of our Emerald Isle beach homes for sale and let us know how we can help you take the next step.



What is your biggest question concerning buying coastal real estate or purchasing a beach house? We want to know!

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