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Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?

Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




We are looking to finally buy a beach cottage of own in the Outer Banks after vacationing here for the past 15 years. Our budget is no more than 500K and we have found that our budget goes a lot further in Corolla, especially homes with pools in the neighborhood of Ocean Sands. We need at least 3 bedrooms (4 would be great, but can go without it), and a private pool is something we would love to have as well, although having access to a nearby community pool would be great.

We always stay in Nags Head when we come during the summer, we have stayed in Corolla twice, both times in the neighborhood of Pine Island, we loved it but we have no idea what the Ocean Sands community is really like.

Any advice or info about the Ocean Sands neighborhood is highly appreciated.


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RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




I can only comment as a renter. I stayed in section O of ocean sands for the week of July 4th in 2018. It was very busy. I was in a very nice 6 bedroom with a private pool. The house was very nice and was built in 2014, so relatively new construction.

My major complaint about that section of Ocean Sands was that it was densely built. Large houses on tiny lots. This led to very little privacy. If I was on a top floor deck of the house drinking a beer, I could easily see in to the neighbors house and watch them change a baby’s diaper. It also was noisy, lots of outdoor stereo systems and partying.

I’m a baby compared to most on this board so I didn’t mind the party atmosphere. But it has a totally different vibe and feel compared to Pine Island.

I like Pine Island way better, but would stay in Ocean Sands again if the price was sufficiently low. It’s a good place for younger families (late 20s-mid 30s) who like to party.

BTW owner of the house I stayed in had it built in 2014 and was trying to sell in 2018 for 800K. He said he wanted to get out before it needed maintenance. House supposedly generated about 70k/yr in gross rental revenue. No idea how much of that went to PM company, utility bills, etc.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




I wouldn't buy a house anywhere I haven't stayed. We have a house in Whalehead and the lots are much bigger than Ocean Sands.

Corolla is also much different than Nags Head. Suggest you stay in Ocean Sands at least once if you are going to buy there. Take your time and do not feel rushed to buy, there always more houses coming on the market.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




A lot to say. First no comparison Ocean Sands to Nags Head. Completely different ATMOSPHERE. Not saying one is better than the other. I personally do not like to pass Beers from your Deck to your neighbors. Questions, do you intend to Rent? Is there any chance of moving here permanently? How important is Beach Access or proximity to Beach Access? $500K Budget, very interesting! Are you looking for fairly new or TLC. Personally I like the Mid Towns or Hatteras. The Northern area doesn't fit my tastes in many ways including Traffic, Restaurant Personalities, Distance to Beach, Lack of Beach Parking and on and on. But you have to understand I'm 75 years old, started coming in 1975 and a Resident since 2000. With your Budget I would checkout Kitty Hawk. You can do "Fronts Beach Road" on an Older House. Good Luck in your Search.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




I wouldn't buy a house anywhere I haven't stayed. We have a house in Whalehead and the lots are much bigger than Ocean Sands.

Corolla is also much different than Nags Head. Suggest you stay in Ocean Sands at least once if you are going to buy there. Take your time and do not feel rushed to buy, there always more houses coming on the market.

BenOBX


I’ve also stayed in Ocean Hill before, and I can attest to the larger lot sizes there. I like the larger lots and the privacy they give you. Much different vibe there than Ocean Sands. Ocean Hill was quieter and more “family friendly” in my opinion.

Don’t get me wrong there TONS of young kids under 10 around in Ocean Sands, but ocean hill didn’t have the music going at night. Although things died down around 11pm in Ocean Sands. Also the only place I’ve smelled weed on the OBX was in Ocean Sands. We would take the dogs for a walk in the evening after it cooled down and without fail someone was dabbin in the neighborhood :P


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




As a Realtor here that has sold many millions of dollars in homes, I hear this question all the time. Hatteras turns off many because the storms are harder on them than farther north and there is just one way in and out. This can cut off rental income for weeks or months. The middle section has more ways in and out - 2. Corolla has just one but they get hammered by storms less than the areas to their south. If you plan to buy in Corolla because you think there will soon be a bridge, then the others that have been waiting for 15-20 years are still waiting and I personally see non bridge in the foreseeable future - believe what you want but the lawyers fighting the Oregon inlet bridge gave up and moved to oppose the Corolla bridge and they are well funded by someone

Normally I see buyers that have already decided where they want to be. Some are still open to this area or that and it is a personal choice THEY have to make, I do not try to influence their choice. I do try to explain the differences. Many people I show homes to in Corolla are not happy that they can't see the ocean and it is a far walk to it and that is a BIG DEAL to buyers. Many of the buyers I see don't like the drive up rt 12 and as I said above I don't think a bridge will be built in my lifetime - so hope I die soon and maybe I 'll be proven right.

Buy where you like to be. If you are not familiar with other areas then go there and try it out. Buying here is a dream come true so lets your dreams come true where you want them to.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




I wouldn't buy a house anywhere I haven't stayed. We have a house in Whalehead and the lots are much bigger than Ocean Sands.

Corolla is also much different than Nags Head. Suggest you stay in Ocean Sands at least once if you are going to buy there. Take your time and do not feel rushed to buy, there always more houses coming on the market.

BenOBX


I’ve also stayed in Ocean Hill before, and I can attest to the larger lot sizes there. I like the larger lots and the privacy they give you. Much different vibe there than Ocean Sands. Ocean Hill was quieter and more “family friendly” in my opinion.

Don’t get me wrong there TONS of young kids under 10 around in Ocean Sands, but ocean hill didn’t have the music going at night. Although things died down around 11pm in Ocean Sands. Also the only place I’ve smelled weed on the OBX was in Ocean Sands. We would take the dogs for a walk in the evening after it cooled down and without fail someone was dabbin in the neighborhood :P

Aliphatic
Bernie Sanders has a house in Ocean Sands. Hence the smell.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




I wouldn't buy a house anywhere I haven't stayed. We have a house in Whalehead and the lots are much bigger than Ocean Sands.

Corolla is also much different than Nags Head. Suggest you stay in Ocean Sands at least once if you are going to buy there. Take your time and do not feel rushed to buy, there always more houses coming on the market.

BenOBX


I’ve also stayed in Ocean Hill before, and I can attest to the larger lot sizes there. I like the larger lots and the privacy they give you. Much different vibe there than Ocean Sands. Ocean Hill was quieter and more “family friendly” in my opinion.

Don’t get me wrong there TONS of young kids under 10 around in Ocean Sands, but ocean hill didn’t have the music going at night. Although things died down around 11pm in Ocean Sands. Also the only place I’ve smelled weed on the OBX was in Ocean Sands. We would take the dogs for a walk in the evening after it cooled down and without fail someone was dabbin in the neighborhood :P

Aliphatic
Bernie Sanders has a house in Ocean Sands. Hence the smell.

robluc


Quite rude of them not to offer to share with me. All I’m saying.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




If you want to rent it look it over and ask yourself if you would be happy there.
If you want to live in it go there IN season and OUT of season and stay in the area and see if you like the traffic or ability to get to amenities and services you would use around the area.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




We vacationed in corolla a lot before finally buying a place. We looked up and down the Northern beaches from Manteo to Corolla. In the end we bought in corolla and would do it again. We looked at a lot of houses in Ocean Sands, Corolla Light, Currituck Club, Villages of Ocean Hill, Whalehead, and Monterey Shores. We ended up buying in Monteray Shores for several reasons. We don’t rent the house and wanted a place with a neighborhood feel, mix of trees and wildlife, possibility for a view, and good price. We’re far enough from 12 that we don’t hear traffic but close enough that we can walk to the beach, we’re also very close to Ace, Food Lion and Timbuktu II.

We like the small community feel of Corolla in the off season. And it’s never overly Crowded during the season. In our neighborhood it’s mostly families during the season so it’s never too loud. Corolla is quiet but you get to know people and where everyone hangs out.

We liked Ocean Sands quite a bit and it meets most of the criteria I mentioned. For us, Monterey Shores was a little better.
The downside of Corolla over Nags Head - church is kind of far, we keep our boat in Wanchese so we drive down the island quite a bit when we want to go offshore, it stinks getting stuck behind someone going 10mph under the speed limit on 12 for 10 miles, and other than that I can’t think of anything. Feel free to DM me if you want more info.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




In the late 80's we started renting in Ocean Sands and we loved it, but the houses are tight together. Recently I've noticed vinyl siding replacing cedar shingles on many of the older homes which really changes the look of the area.

I have a few thoughts that might be helpful:

Buy a house you love, in an area you love
HOA's can be good for maintaining the look of a community, but they can also be a ****-show of narrow minded people on a power trip to enforce their will on others. they can also be expensive.
If you are buying in an HOA ask if they are involved in any past or current lawsuits
Buy the biggest lot you can afford, it will help with resale and possible expansion.
Buy the highest elevation in the neighborhood or avoid the low point of any street, people learn this the hard way when a storm floods their carport or lower level
Ask about prior insurance claims

If the house is 12-20+ years old make sure the HVAC units and roof have been replaced or that you have the budget for it.
Pool heaters are an endless expense, only do it for yourself
Find the top rental company in your area and find out if they will take your house into their rental program BEFORE you buy the house. ( My house is the smallest in my cul de sac but it brings the highest weekly rents because Twiddy is the tops and they have the best clients expecting and appreciating well appointed homes)

If you can find a house with well water buy it after checking the water quality (water bills in Corolla are very high)
Ask to see all the utility bills and review them ( this can tell you a lot about the current condition of a house )
Ask the sellers if you can stay in the house for two or three nights off season and pay them for it. You will learn a lot about the house.

Ask to see a copy of the property survey and check it to see it matches the current property, i.e. lot coverages, fence lines, encroachments etc. You don't need to start with a neighbor conflict because his fence is on your property or vice verse.
Drive by the house at all times of night and day to check noise, spotlights, smells etc.
Examine every house on google earth, make sure there isn't a water treatment plant, power station or something else hiding behind the trees in your back yard.
Ask seller if there have been conflicts in the neighborhood or are there any crazy people living next door.
Ask the seller if they are friends with any other homeowners in the area.

Find your own lawyer and find your own home inspector. Do not take a recommendation from your realtor. A home inspectors relationship with the realtor is more important to them than one homeowner they will never work with again.
Attend the home inspection with the home inspector, you will learn a lot about the house.
Vinyl siding is a very very bad idea at the beach, water gets pushed behind the siding and can rot the framing rather quickly.

Hire an HVAC guy to inspect the units, ductwork, drains etc.

Lastly, Only finance with a fixed rate 30 or 15 year loan always be conservative. Try to have a year's worth of mortgage payments in reserve. Don't count on rental income as the sole means of paying for the house.

Sorry this is a long response, but it's best to learn as much as possible as a buyer and it's also best to disclose as much as possible as a seller.

Lastly, keep asking your questions here on the board, I LEARNED so much from the amazing people on OBC regarding the rental vacation home biz. So many of the original crew here taught me so much when we bought our first house 14 years ago.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




Buy in Nags Head... here's why, and you probably know most of these if you think about it.... 1.) You are minutes from entering Cape Hatteras National Seashore and empty summer beaches with no crowds and traffic. 3.) Traffic in NH isn't half as bad south of MP 10 as north of MP10 in the summer. 3.) Grocery stores are plentiful and easy accesible. 4.) Enough good places to eat out to satisfy most. 5.) You are going to live here? Join the YMCA in NH... great place. 6.) If it matters, hospital is close. 7. Town of Nags Head is well run (not saying others aren't, just sayin'). 8.) 9.) and 10.) Repeat reason #1 smiley Oh yeah, #11... best fresh seafood in Wanchese is close enough to shop daily.

Any house you buy here will need maintenance... how much has nothing to do with location... so get a house inspection. Don't like crowds... again, options all over if you look.


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




In the late 80's we started renting in Ocean Sands and we loved it, but the houses are tight together. Recently I've noticed vinyl siding replacing cedar shingles on many of the older homes which really changes the look of the area.

I have a few thoughts that might be helpful:
...

ish


I'm going to save this post! Thumbs up

John


RE: Where to buy-Corolla or Nags Head?




Buy in Nags Head... here's why, and you probably know most of these if you think about it.... 1.) You are minutes from entering Cape Hatteras National Seashore and empty summer beaches with no crowds and traffic. 3.) Traffic in NH isn't half as bad south of MP 10 as north of MP10 in the summer. 3.) Grocery stores are plentiful and easy accesible. 4.) Enough good places to eat out to satisfy most. 5.) You are going to live here? Join the YMCA in NH... great place. 6.) If it matters, hospital is close. 7. Town of Nags Head is well run (not saying others aren't, just sayin'). 8.) 9.) and 10.) Repeat reason #1 smiley Oh yeah, #11... best fresh seafood in Wanchese is close enough to shop daily.

Any house you buy here will need maintenance... how much has nothing to do with location... so get a house inspection. Don't like crowds... again, options all over if you look.

mdabul


Couldn't agree with you more, mdabul. It's a personal preference, but I'm not the least bit interested in north or south ends of OBX. Way too quiet and/or limited access for my tastes. No desire to live in that isolation/inflexibility. NH, KDH, KH is where I would focus if I were in the market.

Not in the market, and prefer to rent. Not sure OBX will be with us in the next century, or even the next half-century. No need to test that. Happy to pay as I go, as needed.

Crunch






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