The smell of salt wafts through the air, and your heart leaps for joy at the thought of eating more fresh fish. You're smitten with the idea of buying oceanfront property in Myrtle Beach. And for a good reason.

Myrtle Beach is one of North America's premier golfing destinations. But it's also an excellent place for families to enjoy time at the beach as well as at parks, including the well-known water park Myrtle Waves. And, of course, you can't beat the seafood.

Oceanfront property is what many people dream of. But do you know how to go about getting your dream one? Here's a rundown of 10 tips for buying oceanfront property in Myrtle Beach -- and anywhere else your heart desires.

Let's get started!

Buying Oceanfront Property

1. Inspect the Oceanfront Property

During your property search, be sure to inspect a potential property comprehensively and carefully. Water can certainly make you feel easy like a Sunday morning. But it can be hard on a home.

For instance, water might be intruding into your potential home's basement due to the area's high water table. Or maybe the home's exterior may be corroding due to the salt air. Or just maybe mold and mildew issues may be plaguing the house due to the higher levels of moisture in the ocean air.

An inspection by an expert will help you to determine what you may be facing. In addition, it may be in your best interest to also have a survey and water quality test done before you buy.

2. Walk around the Property

Take time to walk around your prospective oceanfront property and imagine yourself living there. Is it truly what you want?

In answering this question, don't get so caught up in the structure of the home that you don't pay close enough attention to the property. For instance, is the view of the Atlantic Ocean what you'd expect?

You can always change your house, but you cannot change your location. So, be sure to purchase a property that truly satisfies you inside and out.

Buying Oceanfront Properties

3. Perform an Insurance Check

Living on the ocean can be exciting, but it also carries some risks -- such as the risk of a hurricane or flood damage.

So, be sure to protect yourself by checking your property's insurance requirements. Be prepared to purchase both flood and hurricane insurance separately from your general homeowner's insurance.

Imagine buying the property and then finding yourself in the aftermath of a hurricane -- without one of these insurance policies. If your insurance brokers cannot determine whether water or wind destroyed your home, you probably will not be reimbursed. Ouch.

4. Perform Historical Research

It pays to research the history of the shoreline on which you are planning to buy. After all, beaches are naturally victim to hurricanes and erosion.

If the shore ends up moving and the level of water increases, you might lose your property. Meanwhile, if your water ends up moving away, your oceanfront property may not technically be oceanfront anymore.

But if you're looking in the Myrtle Beach area, take heart. Myrtle Beach completed a beach nourishment project in 2017 to protect the city's beaches and decrease the impact of storm damage.

So, at least in Myrtle Beach, you can find comfort in knowing that the city is taking steps to protect your potential home from potential storm surges.

Buying Oceanfront Property in Myrtle Beach

5. Examine the Local Market

When thinking about buying oceanfront property anywhere, be sure to look at the local market as a whole -- not just the property itself.

If too many homes are being sold for what seems like low prices, this may be an indicator that the market is weak.

Fortunately, in Myrtle Beach, this doesn't appear to be a major issue. Home prices in the city last spring were the highest they had been in a couple of years. And the trend could very well continue this spring as the number of retirees continues to drive up demand.

6. Search for Deals

As with anything else you buy, searching for a good deal when you're in the market for an oceanfront property can be a smart move. After all, the right deal can turn your oceanfront homeownership dream into a reality.

When on the prowl for a deal, simply check your potential home's loan and title status with the assessor's office in the home's county. This may be helpful because a home seller probably won't accept offers that are far from what he or she paid for the home originally.

7. Come up with a Strategy for the Property

Be sure that you fully understand why you're buying the property.

Will it be your primary residence? Or will it serve as your vacation home?

If you plan to use it as a vacation getaway, consider renting it out when you're not there. This will help you to reduce your total ownership cost and also keep the home from being empty most of the year.

8. Look at Lending ASAP

If you're planning to buy your oceanfront property with a loan, start your loan search process early.

You'll likely need a jumbo loan since waterfront homes are generally more costly than other homes are. And with these types of loans, a lender will consider only those buyers who are highly qualified. Plus, the lending process may take longer than it would for your typical conforming loan.

9. Study the Property's Structure

Is your property ready for the next big hurricane? Not that we want one to happen, but we realize it could happen.

Look for homes where extra measures have been taken to safeguard them from the elements. For example, properties with storm shutters for areas that are hurricane prone are a major plus. And so are locks made from stainless steel, which can help to prevent salt air-related corrosion.

10. Choose the Right Agent

One of the most important tools you can have in your arsenal when looking for an oceanfront property is the right real estate agent.

The right agent can help you to navigate the purchase process by knowing what questions you need to ask as well as whom you should involve in your transaction.

Your choice of agent can be the difference between a homeownership dream come true and a nightmarish waterfront property search.

How We Can Help

Our real estate agents have the knowledge you need to find and buy the waterfront property you've always wanted in Myrtle Beach.

Contact us to learn more about how we can help your home purchase process to go swimmingly in South Carolina.