Cooler by a Mile?

Yes, chilly by the beach today!


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Tuesday Morning Views

Feels like summer!


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“Highest Part of the Island”

Selling real estate on the island for 30+ years, I can’t tell you how many home owners proclaim that their property is located “on the highest part of the island”.   I’ve even heard my husband make the claim about our street when talking with neighbors!

For clarification, the Borough of Stone Harbor provides supporting data – a color coded brochure mailed to each property owner (and available on their web site):

The green sections are the true “highest points” in Stone Harbor.  Most are along the beach/ dunes, and in the south end past the Bird Sanctuary.  The white areas are next, and cover most of the blocks between First and Second Avenues.  The blocks between Second and Third Avenues are a mixture of white and yellow elevations.  In my experience, the yellow areas will see standing water in the street during a heavy rain storm/high tide combination.  The bayside of town is mostly orange, with sections of pink (the lowest elevation).  These areas will flood during storms.  Residents are told to move their cars to avoid salt water damage. Flooding may be limited to the street and just over the sidewalk- but potential buyers should be aware of the situation.

The elevation levels in Avalon follow a similar pattern-  the highest sections are closer to the beach rather than along the bay (with the exception of the man-made lagoon area- Pelican, Seagull, Flamingo, and Heron Drives).

Bottom line? When you live in a beautiful community surrounded by water, understanding the lay of the land is just part of the deal :)


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More Flood Insurance Info

A common question from prospective buyers:  ”What is the cost for flood insurance?”

The variables:  elevation of the street (typically, the blocks closer to the beach have a higher elevation than those by the bay), and elevation of the structure.

An elevation certificate is required for an insurance agent to quote a new policy.  The certificate (prepared by a surveyor) will state the elevation at the curb and the lowest floor of the structure, as well as details regarding vents.

Homes built prior to 1974 were not subject to the elevation requirements of FEMA, and may sit lower than required by the current code. This translates to a higher rate for flood insurance.

Newer homes and those elevated (see related blog post) benefit from a more favorable rate.

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Venting = Savings on Flood Insurance

Re-posting this info after a recent conversation with an Avalon property owner. By adding 6 Smart Vents, owner will save $3600 per year on flood insurance

Original blog post-  4/18/13

Worth searching through your shore house paperwork:

Find your flood elevation certificate (the report is supplied by a surveyor; a separate document from the plot plan). If you do not have a copy, your flood insurance agent should have a copy of the elevation certificate on file.

Near the top of the first page, look at line A-8; a).  This is the square footage of your crawl space.  In the example pictured below, it’s 589 square feet (a small cottage).

Compare this number with A-8 c).  In the example, the net area of flood openings is 168 square inches, with no engineered flood openings (vents).

If the property otherwise meets the current elevation standards, yet the venting square inches do not MATCH the crawl space square feet, the property owner will pay significantly more for flood insurance.

Solution?  Add more vents- specifically engineered vents (like the brand name Smart Vents).  The typical metal grate vent may only provide as little as 42 square inches of qualified venting; in comparison, a Smart Vent = 200 square inches.

Quick math with example:  589 minus 168 = 421 square inches of additional venting needed.  3 Smart Vents (at 200 square inches each) solve the problem.



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Bulk Trash Pick Up

Both Avalon and Stone Harbor provide Bulk Trash pick up days in May to help with spring cleaning of your garage, shed, closets, etc.

Specifics from the Borough web site:

Curbside placement of old furniture, appliances and “junk” permitted within 72 hours prior to these dates. Construction debris will not be removed.

In Avalon, bulk trash pick up starts this Friday April 29th, and continues until after the Borough wide yard sale weekend.  All items to be on the curb no later than Monday, May 9th.

In Stone Harbor, curb side pick up is the following Monday, May 16th.




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How did this happen?

After years (and years…and years) of walking the beach and kayaking in the back bay, I can now identify several species of shore birds by sight, and even by sound.

This time of year, I am entertained by the precise fishing skills of the ospreys.

And, I try to photograph the colorful and fast moving  American oystercatchers.









There are at least 6 hanging out near the Point in the south end of Stone Harbor (traveling in pairs).


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Southend Avalon- New Construction

Great opportunity to be involved with selections for this NEW home on 77th Street in Avalon NJ.

Popular floor plan- 3 levels of spacious living and decks…plus a heated pool!  Approximately 3800 square feet.

MLS link- for more information and pictures of a similar home- click here.

$2,195,000 with all appliances included.  December 2016 completion.



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Real Estate = Relationships

OfficeWhile creating a new ad for the office, the agents/staff of Tim Kerr’s Power Play Realty agreed that our tag line should mention relationships.

We are a small office, yet manage to retain an impressive market share.

One strength is maintaining long term business relationships with our owners and tenants.

Yesterday, I tweeted about an emotional goodbye to property owners selling after 34 years in Avalon.  I helped them purchase the home in 1982.  Now I am helping them sell in 2016.  It’s an honor to feel their trust.

Today, a past tenant stopped in with relatives who are now renting with me.  We first met in 1997 when I showed her a small apartment to rent for the season.  Her family rented the same place for almost 10 years.  She thanked me for “changing her life”.  Her summers in Avalon set the stage for enduring friendships.  One daughter married a young man from Avalon.  Her other daughter started a career in fashion from a job at the local surf shop. Wow…the visit made my day.

So, it’s not just sales and rentals…it’s experiences and memories.  We understand that aspect of our job, and work hard to earn your confidence.



2821 Dune Drive, Avalon NJ 08202


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Stone Harbor Beach Update

I posted earlier in the week about the Avalon beaches.

In Stone Harbor, the beaches from 80th Street to the down town area are in great shape (picture of the 88th Street pavilion below).  Use caution when walking along the 84th Street area while the Borough completes the drain pipe removal.

South of 96th Street, the public works department is actively making repairs to the dune paths for better access.  There are still a few in need of more sand to even out the slope (picture of the 108th Street path).

The beach widens again south of Nuns’ Beach (111th Street) and all those paths are in good shape.

Due to beach erosion near the Point, the Borough will not be able to accommodate the Hobie Cats this summer (typically 121st and south to the jetty).

And until all beach access points are repaired, many paths remain closed for safety reasons.


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