Searching for a beach home? These are the top 10 most affordable towns – USA TODAY

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Anyone who’s spent countless hours on Zoom calls, staring at fake backgrounds, has experienced this fantasy: I should really be working from the beach.

If buying a home on the coastline is tops on your  “you only live once” list, now could be a good time to go for it. With many companies permanently switching staff to remote work, your beach chair office dreams may suddenly be more realistic.

In a newly released report, has determined the most affordable beach towns based on factors like median prices of home listings in more than 1,300 towns alongAmerica’s shorelines.

The report analyzed data from May 2020 through April 2021.

“We then found the places with the most beach-based businesses (like restaurants, entertainment and marinas) using U.S. Census Bureau data to ensure these are places where buyers will want to be,” says Elena Cox, a data journalist at

The threshold was at least 10 beach-based businesses per 1,000 households. Only one town per state was included to ensure geographic diversity.

Here are the top 10 budget-friendly spots that offer access to the ocean:

1. Atlantic City, New Jersey

Highlight:  For those who love the boardwalk and casinos.

Median home list price: $145,050

2. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Highlight: Warm weather, golf and a bigger home inventory than most spots on the list.

Median home list price: $237,050

3. Daytona Beach, Florida

Highlight: Low real-estate taxes and no state income tax. Plus NASCAR.

Median home list price: $239,050

4. Rockland, Maine

Highlight: An artsy scene on Penobscot Bay. And the Maine Lobster Festival.

Median home list price: $250,050

5. Swansboro, North Carolina

Highlight: “The Friendly City by the Sea” with lots of single-family homes for sale.

Median home list price: $310,050

6. Chincoteague Island, Virginia

Highlight: Small town with oyster beds, a national wildlife refuge and feral ponies.

Median home list price: $389,050

7. Long Beach, Washington

Highlight: Homebuyers can choose the calm bayside, or the Pacific Ocean side of the Long Beach Peninsula.

Median home list price: $399,050

8. Matagorda, Texas

Highlight: Population 500; quiet mix of rural and suburban that offers fishing or hunting.

 Median home list price: $399,050

9. Grand Isle, Louisiana

Highlight:  Louisiana’s only inhabited barrier island, known for Gulf of Mexico views.

Median home list price: $399,050

10. Dennis Port, Massachusetts

Highlight: On Cape Cod, “The Port” has sandy beaches and a bustling main street. 

Median home list price: $475,050

Swapna Venugopal Ramaswamy is the housing and economy reporter for USA TODAY. Follow her on Twitter @SwapnaVenugopal