Beach Renourishment Question

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Beach Renourishment Question

Posted By: JimOH

Date Posted: 4/16/2007 2:48 PM

I looked at the pictures of the post beach renourishment results and it appears excellent. What did the beach look like before? Is there an erosion problem on Hilton Head? Have any ocean front houses been lost? I know certain areas of the East Coast have issues with losing beaches to storms, but I didn'trealize Hilton Head Island was one. Is ocean front property a safe investment or risky?

RE: Beach Renourishment Question

Posted By: gotohhi

Date Posted: 4/16/2007 3:50 PM

The renourishment is intended to improve tourism and to protect HHI from hurricanes and storms. I have not seen any houses close enough to the ocean at high tide to be worrisome.

There is one section of beach at the far end of Port Royal Plantation at the "heel" of HHI that is a nesting area for several rare bird species, pelicans and other shore birds. As I understand it, they can't renourish that section of beach and you can't get past it at high tide. Most of the houses at Port Royal Plantation are set way back from the beach.

Mother nature is always trying to push sand from one end of any island to another simply due to ocean currents and wind patterns. HHI is set back and very protected from the gulf stream currents, unlike the Outer Banks of NC. We stayed in Corolla NC last summer, you had to take a two story flight of stairs from the sand dunes to get down to the beach!

As erosion goes on HHI, my personal opinion is that oceanfront property is an excellent investment. There is no land left to build new ocean-front houses. I can't see anything but rising prices for those homes. Many 1970's beach bungalos will be torn down and replaced over the next several years. You'll need $3,000,000 plus to play in that sandbox.

Flood insurance, wind & Hail insurance and property insurance are always a necessity anywhere on HHI.

Just in case.


RE: Beach Renourishment Question

Posted By: IsleBeBack

Date Posted: 4/16/2007 6:00 PM

Those were my photos. I won't repeat what Jeff's covered, but Hilton Head Island renourishment is a [u:fa6d157448]good thing[/u:fa6d157448], not a bad thing. It's heralded as a world class operation. One need only speak to the town engineer who headed up the project (I have) or hear how much care and thinking they put into this to realize this is one more reason Hilton Head Island will continue to appreciate in value.

Also, it's funded by the 2% tax collected on all short term stays on the island. So, it's self funding. Hilton Head delayed it's most recent renourishment a year or two because they didn't want to pay exhorbitantly, as the companies that do this type of thing were all busy in Florida and the Gulf coast.

Check out the Town's web site information on the renourishment project:

And also the cool color photos from Hilton Head Monthly at

As far as investing in oceanfront property, the low end of the range mentioned above is only possible at Port Royal Plantation, Forest Beach, and Folly Field. Why are they less? Well in Port Royal, you can't rent out short term, so folks on the ocean lots live there. With no investor cash flow possible, their relative worth is less. Forest Beach and Folly Field are less because they're not in plantations and therefore less resources, amenities, prestige, and oversight. In Palmetto Dunes or Sea Pines Plantations, O/F lots are $5M and up, whether they have tear downs or not. (On HHI, plenty can still be had for less on Daufuskie Island)

As a result, what most often happens is several investors (such as an LLC) will band together, tear down a smaller house, build a multi-story, multi-kitchen, multi-master bedroom house intended to be rented out to multiple families per week. It's what the lot price demands these days.


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