Scientists run these dolphin tours as part of their research on these beloved aquatic animals, so you know this will be an interesting trip. Passengers will be able to see how researchers with the Outer Banks Center for Dolphin Research, a nonprofit organization, conduct their research and hear about some of the discoveries from more than a decade of studies and monitoring. Some of the hundreds of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins in the area show up so frequently they’ve even been given names, like “Rake,” “Scarlet,” and “Onion.”
Nags Head real estate tends to be both pricier and in higher demand than other regions of the central Outer and Inner Banks, thanks to the town's limited area, miles of beaches, and longstanding notoriety as one of the best beach destinations along the coast.
Retirees, residents, and vacation rental investors will all find properties for sale in Nags Head to suit their needs, and there's a steady supply of land, residential and even commercial listings available for purchase in this famous beach town.
Newcomers to the Nags Head Real Estate scene will find plenty of possibilities, plenty of ways to find and purchase their dream home, and plenty of North Carolina and Outer Banks-specific considerations to keep in mind along the way.
Finding Nags Head properties for sale
The best way to find current Nags Head Real Estate listings for sale is to search online via the Outer Banks MLS (Multiple Listing Service.) The MLS is a database of all the current available active listings which are entered by the sellers' real estate agents, also known as REALTORs.
The town is home to more than a dozen real estate and property management companies that feature online MLS search engines. Buyers can also peruse national real estate websites as well for current listings, like Realtor.com, which is the official website of the National Association of Realtors.
Visitors in Nags Head can also simply drive around to look for "FOR SALE" signs, or pick up a copy of the Outer Banks' two real estate publications, Homes and Land and Home Tour.
Types and price ranges of Nags Head properties for sale
Nags Head features a wide range of residential listings, which can include single-family homes, condos, duplexes or townhomes, and even co-ops (or timeshares.)
Co-ops are generally found in the $40K to $70K range, while condos are in the $150K to $350K range, depending on location, development, and size.
Single family homes have the widest price range, and can run around $200K for a modest but accommodating 3 bedroom beach cottage or residential home to $750K or more for an exceptional oceanfront vacation rental home. At any given time, there are roughly 200 residential properties for sale.
Land and lot prices also vary, and generally run from about $75K for non-waterfront soundside properties to about $650K+ for prime soundfront or oceanfront properties. There are relatively few land listings for sale in Nags Head, due to area and limited space for new development. As a result, there's roughly about 50 or so land listings for sale at any given time
Commercial listings can include leases, equipment, or the property itself. As a result, property availability and prices vary widely, although there are typically just a dozen or so commercial properties for sale in Nags Head on the MLS.
Buying Nags Head Real Estate
Potential buyers will want to enlist the help of a licensed North Carolina Real Estate Broker or REALTOR. In North Carolina, there is typically no charge or extra cost for buyers to enlist a buyer's agent, and an agent can help newcomers find and view properties that fit their specific criteria.
In addition to assisting with the initial search, a buyer's agent can help tremendously with the following steps in the Nags Head real estate process:
Scheduling a showing - Since the majority of properties in Nags Head are vacation rentals or even year-round rentals, an appointment is often required to view a property in person. A buyer's agent can schedule a showing with a property management company, tenant, or owner as needed, even if the home is occupied
Making an offer - There are plenty of considerations when it comes to making an offer, from the proposed price to the fixtures and furnishings that convey. A buyer's agent can guide buyers to ensure their offer is fair but represents their best interests.
Securing financing - Buyer's agents have preferred mortgage contacts that are adept in working in the Outer Banks real estate market, which is especially key when it comes to purchasing a second or investment home. Buyer's agents can also help buyers obtain a pre-qualification letter, which gives them some additional leverage when making an offer.
Preparing Contracts - The state of North Carolina has a suite of standard forms that are used for making an offer on a property, including the official "Offer to Purchase and Contract," as well as any additional addendums that may be required. Buyer's agents complete these forms as needed, adding all the specifics like purchase price and closing date, which effectively makes these forms ready for buyers to sign without any excess effort.
Completing inspections - Many real estate contracts are and should be contingent upon certain inspections, like home inspections or land surveys, which protect the buyer in case there are unseen issues with the property. A buyer's agent has local professionals on call who can assist with scheduling and completing these procedures.
Settling in - Nags Head buyer's agents are locals, and as a result, will have all the info on the local school system, contractors, services, and even the weekly trash schedule. A buyer's agent is often available well after the closing to ensure the new owners have "settled in" and have everything they need to make their transition to being a Nags Head homeowner an easy success.
Considerations for purchasing Nags Head Real Estate
Every corner of the Outer Banks real estate market is different, from the inland regions of Currituck County to the popular beach towns that border the Atlantic Ocean. As such, Nags Head buyers will want to keep the following considerations in mind when considering a real estate purchase.
- Flood Insurance is required for the majority of properties along oceanside Nags Head. The cost depends on both the size and value of the property, as well as the "flood zone" which determines the probability of saltwater flooding.
- Investment, or vacation rental buyers, will want to check with the rental's current property management company for an overview of past and expected annual rental income, as well as any regular expenses. This can include community fees, estimated utility costs, or "extras" like pool maintenance or Wi-Fi costs.
- Local mortgage companies are adept at providing second home loans for investment homes for vacation rentals, and are a good resource for varying loan programs that specifically address these Outer Banks-specific mortgages. Most local REALTORs have a number of local lenders that they can recommend.
- Vacation rental homes often have a Dare County occupancy tax, in addition to regular annual property taxes.
- Trips to a vacation home can be tax deductible, provided they are for working on and maintaining the property.
- Nags Head is often one of the most sought-after regions of the central Outer Banks, for vacationers and investors alike. As a result, the available properties may be fewer and pricier, but are considered a good investment for the owners as well as the thousands of long-time vacationers who consider the town a beach home away from home.