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Old 04-15-2007, 12:17 PM
 
5 posts, read 29,946 times
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We are looking into Morehead city area for a small home. If anyone has any knowledge or info about the city, share your thoughts. Love water recreation and would like to have a place near the coast in the south without being too expensive. How is the weather there in winter? crowds? conveniences etc.
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Old 04-15-2007, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Cape Carteret, NC
712 posts, read 3,777,340 times
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I have a website Coastal Paradise that talks about the area though it is weighted towards the area a little to the west of Morehead City.

We live about 17 miles from Morehead City in Cape Carteret.

Map of the area (http://coastalnc.org/generalarea - broken link)

We go to Morehead City all the time. I can be at the shopping center where the Belks, Walmart, Staples, Sears etc is in well under twenty minutes.

There are lots of homes in the area in $200K-$300K range if you don't want to be right on the water. You just have to pick an area and what you want. Here it is often important to decide what kind of water you want.

Deep water is expensive, water view is not bad. I have even seen some very reasonably priced new 3 bedroom two bath homes under fifteen minutes from the beach. They're in the low $200ks.

$300K to $400K can get you in a waterfront community with pool, clubhouse, boat ramp etc if you do a little looking.

We find property taxes and insurance to be about 50% less than it was in Roanoke, Va. Car insurance is more expensive.

This winter which was our first and according to the locals, one of the colder ones, was a piece cake compared to living in the mountains of Virginia where we have been for the last seventeen years. Often the small gas log fireplace in our living room turned on for a few minutes was all I needed for heat.

Another weird thing is that Carteret County water tastes fantastic. It's actually better than the water we get in Roanoke.

I rode my bike every month this winter and didn't miss walking on the beach a single month.

There are great trails in the area which the governments have done a wonderful job on building.

Morehead has more traffic and congestion than our area. The train does run through the town and they have decided that it will do so for the near future.

There are a number of boat access points and marinas. I have a kayak and having been kayaking on the White Oak River. Hammocks Beach Park near Swansboro is a great area for that.

I'm hoping to get a skiff this spring. The dock you see is in the kayaking pictures is behind my house.

Morehead City has everything but some of the top end shops and Best Buy, Target, and SAMs or Costco. I understand that Best Buy and Target are in future plans.

They're building a new Lowe's Home Improvement Center in Cape Carteret and there are plans for a smaller Walmart and another Walgreens as well.

We could use a nice mutliplex theater center, but there are small multiple screen theaters in Morehead, Altantic Beach, and Emerald Isle.

There is a bigger one in Jacksonville (20 minutes from Cape Carteret) which also has Target, Books a Million, Best Buy etc, but we all stay away from there because the traffic is a shock to our coastal minds.

The Morehead City area can also get bogged down by the traffic to Beaufort which has to cross a drawbridge which somehow seems to get raised at the most inconvenient times. I have also been caught by train in Morehead.

Those issues and less expensive housing are the reasons we chose Cape Carteret. The housing cost was the big deal. I recently saw a new brick home on the water near Swansboro for around $450K.

My bias for the area around Swansboro-Cape Carteret-Emerald Isle is hard to hide, but we spent three summers looking in the Beaufort area before giving up and finding this area, and it has turned out great.

Beach access in Morehead City requires going over to Fort Macon or trying to find a spot in Altantic beach with parking. Most people just go on to Fort Macon.

It's more convenient to get to the beach in Emerald Isle most times of the year.

If you want to ask more specific questions, you can reach me at dsobotta@coastalnc.org .

I'm happy to talk about the area because I really love it. There are travel guides to Beaufort and Swansboro on my website that have lots of information.

Access out of this area is usually by US 24 which is far less frustrating than the 50+ stop lights along US70. US24 is four lanes all the way to I40 which has a nice chunk of 70 MPH speed limit. I can be at the Raleigh-Durham airport exit in about 2.5 hours as long as I hit the Raleigh traffic in off peak.

Our other house is 325 miles away in Roanoke, Va about 5.5 hours of driving.

You might enjoy this post if you like fishing, "Not her first choice."

I have lots of pictures of the area at my Picasa Web Albums site.

I am sure you already know, but the seafood, especially shrimp, grouper, flounder, oysters, and tuna are all fantastic down here. The small restaurants here turn out some amazing food.

The area also has a lot of festivals which are great inexpensive fun.

Last edited by dsobotta; 04-15-2007 at 01:24 PM.. Reason: missing word
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Old 04-15-2007, 01:44 PM
 
5 posts, read 29,946 times
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Thank you for all the information and websites. Our idea is to have a home for the winter to go with the small summer cottage we have in eastern Pa., Bucks County. and fishing/boating is a must. we wont be buying on or near water, just too expensive. Thanks again.
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Old 04-15-2007, 10:30 PM
 
Location: NC
60 posts, read 298,376 times
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Default You make me want to get in the car and drive!!

Oh dsobotta....I swear I want to go to the SOBX right now! My mom and step-dad sold their place at Atlantic beach a couple of years ago and bought at Oak Island. I like their new place ok, but there is just something about that area that's not like where we used to vacation. I've been going to Atlantic Beach, Emerald Isle, and Pine Knoll Shores my whole life. IMHO, they are some of the best beaches in North and South Carolina-my dad wouldn't step foot NEAR Myrtle Beach .

What's funny is my dad and step-mom live in Cape Carteret now (well, Newport mailing address) off of 24 and everytime we visit, my husband and I say, "let's just move, let's just do it!" We're so scared we wouldn't be able to find jobs. Moving is scary!

We live in Concord and its just so darn far to drive, about 5 1/2 hours. It's hard with an 8 year old and a 19-month old. We don't get there as much as we like. Your post was great and would make anyone want to move right away. You're a great ambassador for the area. Thanks for brightening my rainy Sunday night!

Nicole
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Old 04-16-2007, 07:37 AM
 
Location: Cape Carteret, NC
712 posts, read 3,777,340 times
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You're welcome. Jobs are the challenge, but I think it is getting better in the area.

I don't know if you have been up to Atlantic Beach lately but they are really making some changes up there.

We're having a ball down here. I just love waking up with the beautiful blue skies. Of course I'm so in love with the place even a rainy day (http://coastalnc.org/rainymorning - broken link) is nice.

Here are some pictures that I took yesterday after the Nor'easter was over.

Dock Couple (http://coastalnc.org/dockcouple - broken link)

Sunset from the Bridge (http://coastalnc.org/topofbridgesunset - broken link)

Nor'easter Sunset (http://coastalnc.org/noreastersunset - broken link)

After the storm (http://coastalnc.org/aftersunset - broken link).

I snapped this beach picture the other day which says it all for me.

Inviting waters (http://coastalnc.org/invitingwater - broken link)

Hope you finally get to make the move some day.
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Old 04-16-2007, 08:01 AM
 
Location: Morehead City, NC
1,681 posts, read 5,818,870 times
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KEEandKV,
I'm a 25 year resident of Morehead City. I own and operate a real estate business downtown Morehead-One street over from the waterfront.
Here's a snap shot of the current real estate market here.

Beaufort sold prices are averaging 20% less this year than last year with Morehead City seeing prices down by 8%. Newport, which had been the hot bed for sales activity is starting to show its popularity. The average price of a home there has increased by 22%. As a result the number of homes sold in Newport have fallen by 37%.

Keep this in mind: Real Estate Prices range dramatically here. Example: The average price of a residential property in Atlantic Beach is $673K. The average price for a residential property in Morehead City is $273K.
The distance between the two is one bridge.

By the way-Here are two great web sites for the area/coast
Saltwater Fishing/Weather: http://www.ncwaterman.com
News/Events of the NC Coast: http://www.nccoastalnews.com (broken link)

Bill
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Old 04-16-2007, 08:30 AM
 
Location: Cape Carteret, NC
712 posts, read 3,777,340 times
Reputation: 543
Bill,

I'm a RealtorĀ® in Cape Carteret. As you have said the prices vary greatly. I've been watching the averages, they also can change pretty quickly if someone buys an expensive home in an area that hasn't had a lot of sales in a month.

You might be interested in the thread on Real Estate Commissions

I posted an experience that backs up what you've said. When we were looking for a house for ourselves, we made an offer last June on a place in Beaufort. I offered a lot more (probably double) than the people had paid for it less than two years prior. They turned down our offer, and we walked.

They ended up selling the property for $25K (7.5%) less than what I offered and it took them another five months to sell.

So you are right about Beaufort prices coming down.
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Old 04-16-2007, 02:38 PM
 
Location: Morehead City, NC
1,681 posts, read 5,818,870 times
Reputation: 1267
Here are the average sold prices over the past few years for the Crystal Coast area residential properties:

2003: $199K
2004: $229K
2005: $288K
2006: $255K
2007: (YTD 3/21) $260K
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