ICW – How do you know what it’s worth? (Part 2)

When determining the value of Intracoastal Waterway Properties one must take into account many different factors. In my previous post: The ICW In Ponte Vedra Beach: How do you know what it’s worth? I explained the importance of evaluating the land. Today I will be discussing the importance of improvements.

Improvements to the land:

1) Bulkheads

Currently, the Intracoastal Waterway does not enjoy a no wake zone in residential areas; (be sure to idle down for bridges and marinas) so a good bulkhead is essential. Many properties use rip rap to protect their properties from erosion, while others construct bulkheads of wood, fiberglass, or concrete. I still love the concrete bags for standing the test of time. The age, condition, and construction methods used determine the value and longevity you will enjoy. Expect to pay $300 to $400 a linear foot if building one today.

2) Docks

Docks range from simple walkways with a deck for sitting or fishing to elaborate roof top decks with full service bar, summer kitchen, TVs and dining area to accompany the boat and Jet Ski platforms. The value of most existing docks will range from $12,000 to $100,000 with one client investing closer to $200,000 in their dock and bulkhead.

3) Water

Wells are also a valuable resource for 2 reasons. A shallow well enables you to adequately water your 2/3 to 1 ½ acre property which is cost prohibitive on city water. Second, water rationing during droughts or long term to help save our planet, (which will happen) will affect your ability to water your gardens, refill a pool, or wash a car. Most ICW properties have shallow wells and permits can obtained to create new ones.

Artesian wells on the other hand, can also supply precious drinking water and since you can no longer get a permit to dig one have become a valuable commodity.

4) Pools and Summer Kitchens

Swimming pools and summer kitchens along the Intracoastal have become as personalized as docks with many homeowners transforming backyards into adult theme parks. How about complete kitchens, fireplaces, TVs, showers, saunas, hot tub, bath room, mood lighting, mosquito control, and more to go along with the pool. Added value will range from $25,000 to $100,000.

5) Guest Homes

Guest houses can range from an Embassy Suite styled motel room to a 1 bedroom apartment over the detached garage or a separate 3 bedroom 2 ½ bath guest house with a 2 car garage. I have sold all of the above.

With family values making a resurgence, why send a loved one to a rented apartment  or an elderly parent to an assisted living community that might cost $50,000 or more a year when you can create a permanent and private nesting place for them right out in front of your home. The money used to build the guest home stays in the family and can be used by multiple generations and guests.

Zoning for much of the ICW, as in all of Palm Valley, permits the building of separate detached guest houses. It’s not just a great lifestyle for many families with aging parents it may become a necessity. How do you put a price on that?

6) Additional Improvements

Other overlooked items that add $25,000 to $50,000 or more to the real value of a property is paver driveways, fencing, gated entries, landscaping and security systems. A few homes offer surveillance cameras at the front gate. The front and rear of the home as well as the dock.