Well it's not here yet, but Mother Nature has been teasing us lately with a few gorgeous days with lots of sunshine, no wind and warm weather. This year is promising to be another great one for Ocean Shores and the entire North Beach area. The entire coast is booming with new towns, stores, homes and more as people are finally realizing what a great place this is.
Vertical rain, 70-mph wind and 30-foot swells don't sound much like visitor attractions, but Pacific coast storm watching is the newest lure for the been-there-done-that crowd. Savvy tourism marketers know they have to offer more than howling wind and rain in your face to lure you to their coasts, so they've concocted storm-watching packages that appeal to nature lovers or nesters. Dozens of high-velocity storms batter the coast between November and March. January and February traditionally deliver the most wicked weather.
Washington state's coastline shoulders up against the Pacific like a bully challenging Mother Nature to give him her best shot. And come winter, she does, sending battering-ram wind, frothy waves and occasional power outages. Kalaloch Lodge, 185 miles from Seattle and 195 miles from Portland, is located between two rain forests, so you're sure to get rain as well as winter storms. The $169 "Storm Catcher" package includes one night in a picturesque cabin (ask for an ocean view), two Kalaloch mugs, breakfast for two and rain ponchos, valid Jan. 2-Feb. 29. Ocean Shores, one of two spots in Washington where you can drive your car on the beach, is 168 miles from Portland and 134 miles from Seattle. Downtown draws families to its carnival-spirited arcades and taffy shops.
The Ramada Ocean Shore's "Storm Watcher" package includes two nights, massage and spacious rooms for $530. Large oceanfront suites with fireplaces and soaking tubs set the stage for the "Perfect Storm" package at Ocean Shore's Quinault Beach Resort and Casino. The $299 enticement includes one-night's accommodations, two half-hour massages, breakfast and dinner for two at ocean-front Emily's.
Real Estate Update
Here are some stats comparing sold properties in Ocean Shores versus current active listings:
* 241 Homes sold in Ocean Shores during 2007 at an average sales price of $209,783. Average price per square foot was $153.46 and the average Days on Market was 178 days.
* Currently, there's 217 Homes on the market at an average price of $275,592. Average price per square foot is $175.62 and the average Days on Market is 214 days.
* 322 Vacant Lots sold in Ocean Shores during 2007 at an average sales price of $54,655. Average Days on Market was 142 days.
* Currently, there's 580 Vacant Lots on the market at an average price of $85,181. Average Days on Market is 233 days.
Summary: There's too much inventory and current average prices are still higher than what buyers are willing to pay. This market is still correcting itself from the dramatic upswing that started in 2003 and ended in 2005. Once the market corrects, values will again rise on the beach.
On an even more optimistic note, Ocean Shores is still the most affordable coastal community in the country and that's why nearly a new home is built everyday here. More and more baby boomers are retiring in Ocean Shores and numerous people move here to work and play while there are still a lot of people coming from Portland, Seattle and Bellevue to invest in property and to buy their vacation getaways. Now is a great time to reinvest in Ocean Shores or buy for the first time while prices are down. Once they go up again, many properties here will no longer be affordable!
Coldwell Banker Ocean Beach Properties is #1
The totals are in and Coldwell Banker Ocean Beach Properties finished out 2007 as the Number One (#1) Real Estate Sales Office in Ocean Shores. We sold more properties this past year than any other office in town. Congratulations and thanks to the customers, owners, agents, employees and friends of Coldwell Banker for making us the top real estate office in Ocean Shores and the entire North Beach Area.
* Antique & Collectible Show - Feb 9-10
The 6th Annual Ocean Shores Antique & Collectible Show will be held February 9th and 10th, 2008 at the Ocean Shores Convention Center. Huge event! Over eighty vendors offer a wide variety of antiques including dolls, glass, furniture, American Art pottery, and much, much more. For a small donation to local charities and nonprofits, you can have your treasures evaluated. New this year will be a certified quilt appraiser. Hourly Door Prizes include a Weekend Get-Away Package for two, provided by the Quinault Beach Resort & Casino.
* Beachcombers Fun Fair - March 1-2
21st Annual event features exhibits, seminars, information booths, vendors, a kids science fair Saturday morning plus beach walks on Sunday morning.
* Razor Clam Festival - March 14-15
Top chefs from area restaurants bring their best clam chowder and entrees for a chance at "The Best on the North Beach!" Vendor and food booths, music and more. A great family event!
* North Coast Folk Festival - April 18-19
John Stewart (original member and song writer of the famed Kingston Trio), Tillers Folly (Canadian Celtic performers), renowned blues artist Del Ray, Tom May and Prairie Flyer (an award winning bluegrass band from Spokane) are just part of the bill. In addition to a great weekend of music, there will also be vendors, food and drink. You won't want to miss this exciting event.
* Great White Shark Hoax
There is a not so funny story that has been circulated on the Internet about a large Great White Shark that towed a vessel backwards after being tail looped and the story says that this happened here in Ocean Shores. The story, a hoax, is posted on my blog at http://oceanshoresrealestate.blogspot.com. The pictures of the Mako shark was captured off the coast of Nova Scotia, NOT IN OCEAN SHORES!
* First Razor Clam Dig of 2008 is this Weekend.
The first razor clam dig of 2008 is tentatively scheduled for Jan. 18-21 on three ocean beaches. That's a three-day weekend, with Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday the 21st. If marine toxin tests confirm that the clams are safe to eat, Twin Harbors Beach at Westport will open for late-afternoon digs all three days, while Long Beach and Copalis will be open Jan. 19 and 20. Digging on those beaches will be restricted to the hours between noon and midnight, according to the Department of Fish & Wildlife.
* US 101 Simpson Avenue Bridge Getting Set to Close
The Washington State Department of Transportation is planning to close the US 101 Simpson Avenue Bridge to all traffic beginning Feb. 19 for 10 weeks. During the closure, traffic will be detoured over the nearby Riverside Bridge. The Riverside Bridge will be reconfigured from two westbound lanes to one lane in each direction. Crews will replace the electrical and mechanical components of the bridge's draw span during the closure. Here is the link to the project web page: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/US101/SimpsonBridgeRehab/. Plan in advance so you don't spend too much time stuck in traffic.
* Voters Will Elect a New Mayor in March
Ocean Shores voters will elect a new mayor and two new City Council members during a March 11 special election. Filing for all three positions is open and runs through Feb. 23rd according to Grays Harbor County Elections.
* The Wave of the Future
The waters off Makah Bay near the tip of Washington's Olympic Peninsula could become home to the world's first commercial wave-energy project. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on Thursday issued its first license for a so-called hydrokinetic energy project to British Columbia-based Finavera Renewables, a company working to develop wind and wave-energy projects in the U.S., Canada, Ireland and South Africa.
"Today is historic as we enter a new energy frontier," FERC Commissioner Philip Moeller said in a written statement. "For the first time, we allow the harnessing of electricity from wave-energy power that results from the gravitational pull of the moon."
To date, Finavera is the only company that has sought an FERC license to move ahead on a project. But numerous companies have applied for permits to begin studying proposed projects. A Seattle-based company, for instance, has applied for a permit to conduct a feasibility study on what would be a massive wind- and wave-energy farm along a 28-square-mile stretch along the coast at Westport and Ocean Shores. Cool stuff!
See You on the Beach!
Coldwell Banker Ocean Beach Properties
749 Point Brown Ave NW, Ocean Shores, WA 98569
1.360.581.9020 (cell) - 1.888.469.3100 (toll free)
PROPERTY SEARCH: http://homepages.com/JeffDaniel/AgentHome.aspx
OCEAN SHORES INFO: http://www.cityofoceanshores.com/
AGENT INFO: http://www.coldwellbanker.com/for/jeffdaniel
OCEAN SHORES BLOG: http://oceanshoresrealestate.blogspot.com/
OCEAN SHORES BLOG: http://cityofoceanshores.spaces.live.com/
OCEAN SHORES BLOG: http://activerain.com/jeffgdaniel
MY KAYAK SURFING BLOG: http://nwkayaksurfing.blogspot.com/