When to Buy?
January 20, 2016

Winter 2016

Joyce Jewell Newsletter

Cape May County Real Estate Notes – 609-780-7131
Winter 2016

CHANGES

I recently celebrated the 1st year anniversary of Jewell Real Estate Agency merging with Atlantis Realty. Atlantis bought the business and office, and after adding a second floor, the entire operation is back at our original 5602 New Jersey Avenue location in Wildwood Crest.

Shedding the burden of the adminis-trative duties of the real estate business has allowed me the freedom to dive head first back into my first love – selling real estate in Cape May County.

It has also let me spend more time enjoying our six children and eight grandchildren. As we age, family time becomes more precious.

ROAD CONSTRUCTION

The big news is that the Garden State Parkway construction at Exits 8, 10 and 11 is finally completed. Gone are those three traffic lights that caused intolerable backups and delays in the summertime. Now you just cruise to your destination.

The only parkway work currently underway in the county is the bridge project over Great Egg Harbor that connects Upper Township to Somers Point and the famous Exit Zero at the end of the road leading into Cape May.

Paving has also been completed on Route 9 in Middle Township and the New Jersey Avenue paving in the Wildwoods is drawing to an end. There are still many side streets in the Wildwoods that are torn up, but a mild winter should allow those to wrap up by Memorial Weekend.

CREST REFERENDUM

Wildwood Crest will be holding a referendum vote on Tuesday, January 26th to decide whether the borough should spend $500,000 to add a median to Pacific Avenue.

A December 4th special meeting was standing room only as citizens voiced their opinions on the project. The proposed median would be similar to that on Central Avenue in North Wildwood.

The city commissioners voted 2-1 to put the controversial decision on the ballot. Proponents cited safety and esthetics. Opponents pointed out that the money could be better spent and the project, which would detour traffic up to nine months, was fixing a problem that doesn’t exist.

MARINA BAY TOWERS

The Marina Bay Towers, located at 6th and New York Avenue in North Wild-wood, continues to be in the spotlight. Opened in 2000, the bayside complex has 142 low income, mostly senior units.

The building suffered damage to most of its units in Superstorm Sandy, render-ing many uninhabitable. The owner wants to renovate the building and allocate the units as 20% low income and 80% condominiums for sale. No current tenants would be affected by changes.

The Towers had its second hearing on December 1st in Superior Court, with another planned later in the month. The project was launched with a 1997 grant, therefore changing the use would be involved. Owner PAC Capital said in a release, “The foreclosure and restructure-ing will clear title and allow substantial repairs and renovation of the property to secure financing and proceed despite insurance carrier delays.”

2015 SALES

Wondering how the real estate market did in Cape May County in 2015? Here a few numbers for the Wildwoods, which includes North Wildwood, Wildwood, West Wildwood, Wildwood Crest and Diamond Beach.

Residential units sold were 176, currently listed for sale are 182.
Condominium/townhouse units sold were 486, currently listed are 612.
Multi-family units sold were 69, currently listed are 87.
Commercial units sold were 12, currently listed are 67.
Vacant lots sold were 24, currently listed are 54.

What does this mean? Here’s my take.

If you are looking to sell a home, condo/townhome or multi-family, you stand a pretty good chance in 2016. The odds get even better if the asking price is at market value. If you are looking to buy one of the aforementioned, you have a good choice.

Commercial is a different story. Other than motels which are still moneymakers, the rest of the commercial market is somewhat stagnant. Let’s face it, internet sales have made retail stores obsolete.

The figures for vacant lots tells us that new construction is picking up. If you’re looking to sell a lot or build a new condo or home, 2016 looks like a good year.

2016 MARKET OUTLOOK

Being primarily a vacation home market, real estate in Cape May County is different than that in the rest of the state. Our real estate market also can’t be compared to the suburbs of big cities, since we are an isolated peninsula that is too far from Philadelphia/New York City/Baltimore to be considered “bedroom communities”.

Our market is driven by the economy. It’s that simple. In prosperous times, sales and rentals are brisk. If not, well…

Right now, the economy is good. Un-employment is low, the dollar is strong, the stock market is up, and the price of oil and gold are at 5-year lows. These factors add up to 2016 looking like it could be the best year in the local real estate market since 2006. If you’re thinking of buying or selling a property, now just might be the time to give me a call.

IN CLOSING

I love to talk about real estate and our island. I am always glad to share my insights, observations, and visions with you.

Stop by our office at 5602 New Jersey Avenue and chat. Or give me a call at 609-780-7131. I answer my phone 8am to 9pm EVERYDAY and you always get a real, live person. That’s service!

www.Joyce-Jewell.com

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