If you’re considering investing in real estate near the beach, you might be wondering whether to buy a beachfront property or a commercial lot within walking distance of the shore. This decision can have a significant impact on your investment, and it’s important to understand the pros and cons of each option, especially if you don’t have a technical background. In this article, we’ll break down the key factors to help you make an informed choice.

The Appeal of Beachfront Properties

Beachfront properties are often seen as the ultimate dream for many investors. They offer stunning views and easy access to the beach. However, there are some important considerations to keep in mind:

  1. Setback Requirements: Beachfront properties typically come with setback requirements. In many places, including the Philippines, there’s a setback of 50 meters from the high tide point. This means you can’t build within this zone. While this might seem like a limitation, it’s actually a good thing for the long term. It ensures that your development takes into account the effects of climate change, which is crucial for the sustainability of your investment. However, if your property is small, this setback can significantly affect the usable area.
  2. Public Access: Another factor to consider is public access. In some areas, a bike lane or pedestrian path might be planned near the beach. This is great for the community and visitors but may not be ideal if you want an exclusive space for your guests. It’s important to check the local master plan to understand the potential impact on your property.
  3. Development Limitations: Beachfront properties may have restrictions on the type of improvements you can make. In many cases, only movable, non-permanent, and lightweight structures like huts and beach umbrellas are allowed within the first 50 meters from the high tide point. This means that if your property is small, you might have to wait a considerable amount of time to see a return on your investment. You won’t be able to develop larger, permanent structures like restaurants or resorts with more rooms to reach your break-even point faster.
  4. Permanent Structures: To build permanent concrete structures, you often need to be at least 100 meters from the high tide point. If your property is only 120 meters deep from the beach, this means you have just 20 meters for permanent construction. Keep in mind that if there’s a road behind your property, you might have to sacrifice an additional 5 meters due to setbacks. This can limit the scope of your development.

While these restrictions may seem daunting, they actually have a positive side. They make beachfront properties more appealing and well-planned, ensuring that the area maintains a relaxed, natural ambiance. If you have the budget to buy a sizable beachfront property that can accommodate these restrictions and regulations, it’s a prime investment.

The Allure of Commercial Lots Near the Beach

For investors without a technical background or those looking for alternatives, commercial lots near the beach can be an attractive option. Here’s why:

  1. Affordability: Commercial lots near the beach are often more budget-friendly compared to beachfront properties. This means you can buy a larger piece of land for your investment.
  2. Development Opportunities: These lots usually come with fewer restrictions and more developable areas. You have more freedom to design and construct your project according to your vision. This flexibility can be a significant advantage.
  3. Fewer Restrictions: While beachfront properties have setback requirements and limitations on permanent structures, commercial lots near the beach are generally more lenient. This allows you to start your project sooner and with less red tape.
  4. Walking Distance: Commercial lots near the beach are typically within walking distance of the shoreline. This means you can still offer your guests easy access to the beach without the higher costs and restrictions of a beachfront property.

Making Your Decision

Ultimately, the choice between a beachfront property and a commercial lot near the beach comes down to your budget, goals, and the scale of your investment. If you have the financial resources to purchase a larger beachfront property and the patience to work within the setback and development restrictions, it can be a rewarding choice.

However, if you’re looking for a more affordable option with greater development flexibility, a commercial lot near the beach might be the better fit for you. It allows you to create a unique space that caters to your guests while still enjoying the beauty of the beach.

Remember that real estate investments near the beach can be highly profitable, but they require careful planning and consideration of the local regulations. If you’re not sure which option is right for you, it’s a good idea to consult with a local real estate expert who can provide guidance tailored to your specific needs and goals.

Whether you choose a beachfront property or a commercial lot near the beach, both options have their advantages and disadvantages. It’s essential to carefully evaluate your goals, budget, and local regulations before making your investment. With the right choice, you can create a unique and appealing destination for beach lovers while ensuring a sound financial return.