Living on H2O

For the past 20 years, Doug has been lucky to live on the water. Brackish water, mind you, which one might not equate with beauty, but when the mighty Atlantic Ocean is pushing and pulling on the body of water in front of your home 24/7, one really ought not to complain.

Currently, Doug lives on the Cape Fear River in downtown Wilmington. Across the river in Brunswick County, he owned a home on the Shallotte River for 17 years. Doug distinctly remembers looking out at the salt marsh and Shallotte River for my first time and thinking that this kind of looks like the swamps of NJ in Meadowlands’ vicinity – home of the NY Giants. He watched an old Sopranos episode recently, and during the intro, those same infamous NJ swamps, where things get lost pretty quickly, are featured.

Neighbors and very dear friends of his in Rivers Edge extolled a salt marsh and tidal river’s value and beauty. They professed that Doug’s backyard was a continual canvas and from sun up ‘till past sundown, the scenery would never cease changing, and boy were they right! And who’d have thought that 3 miles from the ocean that the tides would be so strong and so drastically different?

Doug’s neighbor, Harry, was a high-ranking Air Force officer who spent a lot of time at sea, and he asked him why in the world he would give up views of the ocean for pictures of the salt marsh. His answer was honest and straightforward, as he pretty much said that “the ocean is considerably more boring and that a salt marsh was/is much more colorful.” After living on the salt marsh for just a few months, Doug began to understand Harry’s viewpoint better.

When you have a view from your home that is hauntingly beautiful, the first thing you do almost every time you come home is head to the porch and peruse the magnificent landscape. And this was true of nighttime as well, as starry nights were as welcome as amazing sunrises. And full moons over the swollen river and marsh? OMG – it was simply magical!

In the fall of 2019, Doug sold his east-facing backyard home that sat directly on the 18th green of Rivers Edge, and that gazed out over the river and marsh. The hardest part of leaving that home was saying goodbye to such a good friend – the salt marsh, for he spent countless days and nights gazing in its direction. Leaving was difficult as he knew that view would be hard to replace.

All six of the new homes that Doug purchased or built resided in communities out in the burbs, so at the age of 62, he decided to take on the challenge of living downtown in an urban environment. The #1 factor was securing a view of the water, so he traded in his Shallotte River view for a beautiful view of the Cape Fear River, which lies on the northside of downtown Wilmington. As Doug punches away at the keyboard right now, he peers around his monitor and sees a boat speeding down the river. More than likely, it was out fishing at noon on Sunday, and who in the world would have known that 28 miles upriver from the Atlantic Ocean would we enjoy such a swiftly moving current and habitual and dramatic tidal change 24/7??

Here, Golfers, Egrets, Blue Herons, Blackbirds, and Purple Martins are replaced with sailboats, massive ships gliding upstream or downstream, tons of people walking along the Riverwalk, Jet Skis, and powerboats. As kids say, “the view doesn’t stink!”

If you have a penchant for living on the water, as in a pond, salt marsh, ICW, ocean, a small lake, or small creek, it would be wise to anticipate a 10-25% premium. If you are looking at oceanfront or OCW, you might be a 25-75% premium, so be sure to save well now!! The bottom line, though, is if you have an H20 dream, do all you can do to chase it, for there is something hopelessly intoxicating about living on the water. We here at Carolina Plantations can help you find your dream home with that beautiful water view from your porch today!

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