Is Long Beach turning (back) into more of a Summer Living Community? And will this effect our quality of life?

summerrentalsA friend of mine keeps saying how she thinks Long Beach is transforming into more of a summer-only community, as many year-round residents that she knows are moving out.

Call it hearsay, but I personally know somebody who is buying a recently raised West End bungalow with the sole intention of just living in LB during the summer months (and could care less what happens here in the winter).

Population always swelled in Long Beach during the summer but when driving around, I feel like I see more dark/empty homes in the winter than I ever did. Not all these houses look Sandy-damaged.

Park Avenue looks desolate; it appears as if businesses are struggling or leaving; the Blue Bungalow being the latest to say they’re closing up shop. I’m worried that a decrease in year-round residents will also mean a decrease in business quality ( I really liked Blue Bungalow!) Is this something to panic about?  Most movement on Park Avenue appears to be sad ending Day Spas [link].

Is Long Beach going Marvel before our eyes (open in the summer, closed in the winter)? And is our quality of life going to suffer if it’s true? –


Am I panicking for no reason? Discuss.


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57 thoughts on “Is Long Beach turning (back) into more of a Summer Living Community? And will this effect our quality of life?”

  1. While I don’t think it’s happening, I would actually welcome it. Why would anyone be upset that people who are wealthy enough to own a 2nd house are buying in LB?

  2. The City wants to decrease the Fire Protection Its time to move to a safer Community . I am moving to Jupiter, FL they have a county paid Fire Department.

  3. if people can afford a second home, more power to them. I think the concern is that summer-only folks might not be community-minded. Also, a decrease in quality of businesses/restaurants as many places might close shop in the winter.

  4. Some areas do feel that way (particularly the West End). I live in the Walks/Westholme area and my neighbor is a part timer (lives in the city but does come to his house on weekends even in the winter). But as a former resident in the West End – while my block was mostly year-round residents, some of the others appeared to be seasonal rental dominant — and during the winter season, it was like a ghost town! (although I notice this year is really not as bad as last)

    While there is a benefit to what BltByKrmn says, I do worry about the lack of community-awareness/mindedness and esprit des corps that makes any locale a great place to live.

  5. Absolutely a valid point. The challenge we face is balancing the value of our homes with the quality of life for half the year. I think there’s a lot to be learned about what has happened in Spring Lake, LBI and even now Manasquan – these towns have turned into summer beach getaways for the upper middle class but are ghost towns in the winter.

  6. Well you’d have to leave long island because nobody else in this entire areas has paid firemen making six figures for what paramedics do for 40k.

  7. Maybe some people are moving out of the state as they are now retired & are on a fixed comment………I would imagine younger couples are still staying only if they can afford the rent, taxes or mortagage…………

  8. Good point. yeah, I mean I said it’s all hearsay, but I do see younger couples moving in. Definitely a lot more now than when I first moved here back in 2007. perhaps there is no reason to panic. I’m just concerned about businesses closing and what they are being replaced with.

  9. That map is really too funny…

    Interesting angle. Homes become too pricy for young people, and the old folks are taxed out of New York. Long Beach is a unique and beautiful place with low demand. That drives prices down, so it remains a haven for snowbirds with a few bucks.

    Let’s see how this all plays out.

  10. I think the gentrification of Brooklyn and Queens is a factor in young and middle aged people not buying year round homes in LB. Taking the subway to work is a HUGE difference than the hour long train ride to Manhattan. The (seemingly) mass migration off of Long Island and out of NY to less taxed states and the FACT that Long Beach is definitely suffering from an overpriced housing market isn’t helping the situation either. After 3 decades I can tell you this- Long Beach is a moody place. It’s gorgeous on the good days and so gray and bleak when you’re feeling down, especially in February.

  11. The after-effects of Sandy and the long recession have hit many communities hard. Long Beach is no exception. The housing prices are not the issue; the taxes are. Our school district ranks low on the list in terms of rigor and reputation, which is why few topnotch colleges and universities recruit here. Fixing the wasteful spending in our schools (beginning with the bloated administrators’ salaries) and raising the bar for EVERY student (not simply the less than 1% of IB diploma graduates) will enable LB to become a recreation and education magnet. If we build it, they will come.

  12. I live in the west end and have recently built a brand new home as my poor bungalow was ruined during Sandy…I had three older neighbors sell their homes/properties after they were destroyed. One died and a contractor bought the land and rebuilt an over priced home that won’t sell. We also lost three younger couples that were renters. Two others are still not back but having their homes repaired. So it’s still complicated it seems. At least my block is. Nonetheless were here to stay and should probably get more involved with our community. We still have three empty lots and I’m not sure what’s going on there as I didn’t know the owners. So I think we just gotta give it time to get ppl back and in these new homes. I welcome part timers but hopefully the slum lords will just stay away. But I would prefer year a rounders that care about the community. I’m enthusuastically waiting to see what happens!!

  13. The City seems to want to make Long Beach safer by adjusting and reallocating our dollars to what we need most — EMS. Whatever your view may be on layoffs or on City mgt, the facts are the facts. We have very few fires and most are put out very quickly by a combination of paid and volunteers. What we do have are an enormous amount of EMS calls. Frankly, we didn’t need an ICMA report to tell us that. But ICMA report provides a lot of other data that you can peruse even if you are for or against their conclusions/recommendations. Then you can also peruse the LBPFF views and draw your own conclusions. I’ve looked at both sides and for me the answer is clear — if we can get more EMS and also get it less costly, that is what the City should do. The City should be providing us the best emergency services they can with the best and most careful use of our tax dollars.

  14. I grew up in Long Beach and now own a ‘summer house’, although I visit year round, 2-10 at a time. I do care about the town, winter an summer as I have a number of family members still living in town, and in my heart it is my home.

    Not all ‘summer people’ are the enemy.

  15. Our schools have a terrible rep, wasteful spending, recession and Sandy, out of control taxes but house prices are spot on? Please, don’t say location, location, location because the conversation is about the desirability of the location and who it is attracting.

  16. If we become a touristy place like LBI, Outer Banks, and other similar barrier islands do we all start renting out our places for 5K-10K a week or more to NYC folks? If I could get 5K a week in July I would rent my house out.

  17. Since Sandy, there has been a steady exodus of long time LB residents. They sense what is coming, both from the flood insurance changes which will affect the ability of people to keep their homes, plus what the political class in LB is doing to the City. Many are moving to other parts of Nassau – they realize that living in LB doesn’t offer much more than being a tourist to LB. What good is having a house here, when on summer weekends you can’t even invite your friends over because the tourists take up all the parking spaces? Tourism is killing residential quality of life in LB, and the politicians who run the City are constantly ramping it up – more events, bigger events, with no consideration for quality of life on the resident taxpayers who pay the bills. And they keep getting re-elected, people see that and they sense its time to get out.

  18. Feel free to organize the lynching after reading this but we need to look at other beach communities that (i.e. Hamptons, etc) have a solid base of year round residents, solid tax base, good schools, the right mix of seasonal and year round businesses and politicians who realize residents come first! Yes, tourism is important but the residents keep this place going.

    I live here because I LOVE THE BEACH. no other community in the tri-state area offers what long beach does with less than an hour commute to the city on a train that, is not perfect, but is light years ahead of the trash and nightmare that is the subway. All I care about is that all the home owners are paying their property and school taxes (which are insane and can be better managed) and the residents quality of life (safety, school, roads, water/sewer) are taken care of. And think about it, if we do have a bit more summer only residents that’s better for the year round residents since those people only “tax” the services and infrastructure three months out of the year, therefore helping to offset us who live here year round. The key is making sure houses are sold and all taxes are being paid. P.S. minimize the size of the government, cause they are wasting your tax dollars.

  19. Hampton’s do not promote tourism.

    If city continues to push us to be a tourist focused community not sure what the quality of life will be for the full time residents.

  20. When a house becomes a “summer only” residence, the owners can apply for a reassessment. Summer homes are in a different tax class and pay substantially lower taxes. For each home that slips into that class, your (our) taxes are increased to make up the loss.

    Since the leaches running this city and school district continue to increase spending each year, this is yet one more cause of higher taxation.

  21. Is there any chance you’ll move out of LB since you hate the direction he city is going in so much????

    We know the answer is no so stop the bullshite. Clean Slate ran with this dumb platform and got about 25% of the vote last time.

    Not for nothing but don’t businesses need out of town people in order to survive? Ask your local restaurant owners how they feel about your comments.

    Oh and didn’t the city of lb and rec dept put on 100 different “resident focused” events last month?

  22. Bennie, That is 100% incorrect, and actually most summer residences would not qualify as a primary residence and would be ineligible for the STAR exemptions so would actually be paying more in taxes than a similar property housing a year round primary residence.

  23. Nope won’t move out, we just need to get the parasites out of city hall And change the direction.

    So according to you running on a platform of “residents first” won’t work. You need help.

    As for the businesses, you must be kidding me, look at many other towns that are not tourist destinations that do just fine on locals with some tourism, RVC, Huntington, etc). You obviously don’t get small town economics with your comment.

    And as for “resident focused events” thats not what we’re talking about! that’s just astroturff. Resident focused means, good roads (not the craters we have now), safety (not the NP violence and drug dealing), maintained water/sewer (not the degrading system we have now), accountability within our politicians and civil servants (not the flagrant disregard and lack of oversight that currently exists). I’ll stop, but the rational people reading this blog get it, now we just need them and their friends to get out and vote to counter act people like you.

  24. Yeah sorry beenie, but you’re sadly mistaken. And even of that were the case then we’d have to.change that!!! Cause if you have enough money for a summer residence then you better make sure you have enough for the full taxes.

  25. Im reading a distain regarding the current party in the Long Beach office…I’m afraid to ask but I will anyways…is it true to assume that there will always be issues or things to be desired no matter whose in office? Hasn’t there always been issues even if the people we want are in office? I agree that one must get out and vote to make a change but is simply voting enough? Just because you are republican and vote republican does that mean you will always agree with what that republican does in office? I understand a Republican will largely have Republican ideals but I tend to look at individuals and past track records (which often times is inflated BS…I tend to believe that most politicians do it for notoriety and personal gain not the improvement of a community or nation…just my personal opinion of course it doesn’t apply to everyone) but nonetheless I’m just curious about the “parasites” in the city council now and the ones before them…I would like to note that I’m so out of the loop regarding politics in general let alone the ones that govern my property taxes (I know very irresponsible…I’m working on it). Please don’t assume my voting party or record as I did not provide that much of my personal info in this post purposely (I don’t like some of the attacks made by online trollers or sh*t stirrers). I’m simply curious as to the above questions thank you.

  26. In my opinion, the last time politicians really worked to better the town was in the late 70’s, early 80’s when Ed Eaton first became city manager. The LB Coalition (Rep and Dem) was formed to rescue LB from being the dumping ground for NYs “undesirables”. It was a massive undertaking that required putting aside grudges and working together. Al Domato (R) and Larry Elovich (D) were instrumental in building the Waldbaums shopping center and setting LB on the road to financial success. Since then the “superblock” has become the focus of real estate interests that control the city council and every time one of the political parties takes control of the city council from the other party previous plans get scrapped and new ones get forged, over and over again.

  27. Wow so it’s that long ago!? I’ve only owned in this town for about 6 years and I’ve rented about 8 years before that. As far back as I can recall people have always said that the administration is crappy and that they are thieves. Ive always heard people say how Long Beach is one of the most corrupt city’s and here I am buying a house here but I didn’t understand how or why they were saying that. I never pushed to know more because those conversations can get ugly. So with that said it’s just an observation for one to assume that no one party (democrats, liberals, republicans, etc) but maybe all parties have been involved in some poor management of this city. So maybe they need to go back to that time when the party’s worked together to better the LB. But again I’m not sure how realistic that is…But thank you so much for that info! I truly want to know more about my community maybe I need a trip to the library!

  28. I must once again correct Captain Obvious on his claim that a summer-only home pays muchhigher taxes than a year round residence.

    Summer only is Tax Class 260, Year Round is Tax Class 210. A 260 home’s taxes are about 40% less than that of a Class 210.

    The STAR savings on a Owner Occupied home assessed at 350K is $810. Clearly, the Summer Home will pay about $6400 in taxes, wherein the same home for Year round use would see a tax bill of $9700 with the STAR discount deducted.

    This is from the NC Assessor’s Web Site.

  29. Small town politics I guess. If you google Long Beach NY Superblock you will find NY times articles back to the mid 90’s. Same ol’ same ol’. Around the time urban renewal in LB really started to take off.

  30. Once again???

    Eddie while you are correct that a house in Tax Class 260 does pay less in taxes, you must realize that anyone building a new house would not build a house to meet the codes of 260 (inadequate insulation, heating, etc.). And just because as Bennie stated “a house becomes a “summer only” residence”, the owner would not remove the heating, insulation etc.

  31. Long Beach is demographically incapable of electing anyone else. All the talk in LB politics about a “third party” – that “third party” party would be even further to the left of the current Democrats, they would turn LB into Havana, you’d see them proposing a resident income tax to build an even bigger government structure here. Long Beach is a lost cause politically – the best option on the political track would be fiscal default on all the bonds, followed by the City losing its charter and being absorbed into the County.

  32. I think we are in a state of transition including the business community which needs a boost from its people and out of towners. The homes once finished and those who donot lift will give everyone an indication of whose living here year round vs just summer and weekend residents.

  33. So apparently, the local foot and back rub places are not the only ones that give happy endings! Seems lbhs is also in on this… seems we need more change than just in city hall.

  34. if it’s any consolation, my partner and I moved out of NYC because we loved the beach and really wanted to give LB a try. Only been here for a short time, but enjoying it as renters, and definitely considering buying. So while it might be trending towards a summertime retreat-type town, know there are a few of us citydwellers who find LB a very desirable place to live!

  35. But then again…if the city keeps damaging the boardwalk everytime that it snows our $44 million dollar “investment” won’t be worth anything. The damage this time is between Lafayette and Washington.

  36. Well Kkia1234, the local GOP has worked across party lines and was effective. However, every time zapson regains control he undoes anything that was started. If local democracts want to see real change they have three options, in order of ease, 1.) Just work with the GOP who has always been a bit easier to work with. 2.) Remove zapson and retake the local Dem party 3.) Start a third party. #2 is being tried but does not seem to be gaining traction and even if you get rid of him you also need toget rid of the other henchwomen that think the way he does. #3, which has been discussed ad nauseum on this blog is a HUGE undertaking that should have started last year if you want to impact the election this November.

  37. I’ve gained such a better insight to the issues of this community from the site. Thanks for the info.

    Does anyone know if there is a forum much like this blog but in the community setting to discuss the City? To talk about the issues in the community. I would love to go to a town hall meeting but I would be a little intimidated as I have to be honest and admit I know nothing about the politics in this City (I know it’s sad and irresponsible of me). I’m one to believe that ALL politicians are crooked and it’s pointless…however I still go out and vote. Also everything is driven by wealth and although we do good for ourselves we are far from wealthy. I no longer want to sit around and watch my community crumble when my one vote or voice could make a difference. I do know that we need people in that office that want a better Long Beach. I guess the problem is what’s “better” to one person or party is not “best” for “another person or party.

  38. Just wanted to give my insight here since I am one of the top rental brokers here in Long Beach, NY. ( The amount of people I speak to on a daily or weekly basis would blow you away.. These are all people looking to move in LB on a year round basis. Given, some of them are not familiar with the cost of renting here which I agree is not cheap, however I also believe LB is one of a kind when it comes to Long Island. I can’t ever see LB turning into purely a “summer rental” destination for many reasons.. Lets not forget about the groupie law which would prevent just 3 friends wanting to rent a place here for the summer and also the fact that by city code you can only rent memorial day- labor day and not by the month. Yes, this always happens anyway but if we were to become a summer only rental place these laws would be enforced more. The reality of it is we need to figure out a few things we can have going on for the winter to make the vibe a little better. Remember its not just the summer that’s beautiful here.. May, September and October are some of the best months here since the weather is nice and its not super crowded. #LOVELBNY

  39. GSTQ, Zapson’s firm represents istar (correct?) and he’s the chairman of the LB Dem party and so decides who the candidates will be. How are they trying to remove him? He’s got his hands in EVERYTHING.

  40. Somebody above brought it up so here are the facts

    Southampton Town Pop Growth (this is year round)

    Remember they are 75 miles east and are seeing year round growth! Now for a couple of articles that show year round businesses make it out there, is it easy, NO, but what business is!

    And guess what they focus on RESIDENTS FIRST!!! So “Really???” needs to get his/her/its head out of his/her/its butt and look around cause the LB residents are kinda fed up.

  41. They should be there now. Anytime somebody comments with 2 or more links, it automatically goes to PENDING COMMENT. It has nothing to do with censorship, it’s all about controlling spam. My blog blocks over 1000 comments of spam a day.

  42. The spamming is insane on pretty much every blog, but luckily there are some good tools out there that control it. You should see how many fake users this blog has… some of the names are hilarious.

    The tool ‘Akismet’ has a giant database that checks every comment if it’s spam before it is posted. That’s why there is a slight delay after you submit a comment.

  43. Ok I see it as a couple of things happening here.

    First there are two parts to the summer community thing. Our city for reasons that I don’t understand wants to attract and has been aggressively marketing to a day-trip/tourist crowd which is one half of it. In my opinion this does nothing for the city in the long term as it only brings profits to a small percentage of the population that runs our bars, restaurants and delis and does nothing to increase the city’s coffers in tax revenue or revenue to the city as we all have learned the beach is operated at a loss every year. There definitely was a time when this may have been appropriate in the immediate aftermath of the storm as the city was doing whatever it could to get businesses up and running and a little extra profit would definitely have helped but is this influx of day-trip/tourist crowd still necessary and at what cost (both financial and aggravation) to the residents and homeowners who pay the taxes to keep the city running and make it such a nice place to live as well as visit.

    Then you have the summer home crowd. This is an entirely different animal. These people would own their home pay taxes on it while only using it part of the year meaning they are only using many city services for part of the year and most likely not using schools at all. That hopefully could reduce the tax burden for all. I know it was mentioned before but I will repeat it; a “Summer Home” unless it has no heat or insulation and is not “suitable for year round living” is taxed the same as a year round home so there is no loss of tax revenue. I also believe that the owners of a summer home having a significant investment in LB will take an interest in what is happening in town and would demonstrate a greater respect for their neighbors, neighborhood and the city due to that large investment they have here and a desire to keep that investment appreciating instead of depreciating.

    While making LB more of a summer only destination may have an effect on businesses there has always been an ebb and flow of business with the seasons. I don’t think the impacts there would be that different then it is now and has been for decades. Most places close for a day or two a week or shorten hours instead of staying open all day, 7 days a week, during the winter but they seem to get buy and keep the lights on and the doors open till the summer season kicks off. Yes some businesses fail and some thrive but that is the nature of business. The ones that do thrive and remain profitable show that it can be done.
    Finally the real estate marketplace is in a very weird state right now in my opinion. You would think that houses would be flying off the shelf as it is clearly a buyer’s market. Lots of inventory from new construction, recent renovation or fixer-upper (Thanks again Sandy). Mortgage rates are still near historic lows but it looks like very little is selling when you look at MLS. Maybe it is a function of price as many developers came in after the storm planning to make a killing by scooping up destroyed homes and flipping or building new. (Now I am speaking about West End mainly on this as that is where I live and keep track of). Prior to the storm the “standard” FEMA home, 2 stories above a garage, with two decks, on a 30×60 lot was selling for about $650K. Now there are probably close to a hundred of them that have been built or in the process of being built that don’t seem to be moving even at prices around or just below the $600K mark. I can’t see these developers who bought lots around the $200K mark, then had to knock down a house and build a new house for at least another $300K and have had over two years of carrying costs making much of a profit if any on these houses unless they can get back to that $650K mark or more.

    So the question is why aren’t these properties selling? Maybe it’s the uncertainty of what will happen with LB due to all the tax, borrow and spend that is going on. Maybe it’s that nobody wants to drop $600K plus on a house next to a vacant lot or derelict home. Maybe it’s just that the prices were/are too high and nobody can afford it except that person who has the high disposable income that can afford a “summer home.”

    On the bright side it may be changing over the last year or so; a home at 96 Minn sold for $691K at the end of summer, another new construction at 97 Penn. Sold for $710K and one at 92 Ill. Sold for $645K, 31 Tenn for $700.

    Maybe, this signals the turn of the tide and this spring will be a good real estate season. But the question remains are these going to be year round or summer houses?

  44. All I can tell you is that I had to move out of my building last year , my rent went up to $4200.00 a month.
    These landlords are getting so Greety that you can’t aford to live here any more.
    And on top of that, they only give a one year lease, so that they can give you an increase every year.

  45. Kind of late but….
    What can we all expect from an administration comprised of tourists? Think about it, most of our current city management team are just tourists. Getting whatever they can from The City by The Sea and then going back to where they are really from…. Sad but true. I think most gripes and complaints from the previous two administrations would have been from a slightly different angle if the people chosen to lead the city “understood” the Long Beach allure, understood why it is the best little city within an hour of Manhattan. You cannot teach people what makes Long Beach special, they have to “know” for themselves. Our only hope is to at least have people in charge who “get it” and will make decisions based on Long Beach’s best interests. Not Republican, Not Democrat, Just manage the day to day. Manage the potholes, manage the sewer, manage the crime, manage the city… nothing more, nothing less……

  46. All five council people do. You can’t be on council if you don’t. City manager lives in west end or westholme which is where I think most of his cabinet lives.

  47. I guess what Love This City was saying that the people running the city weren’t born an raised here…I’m not sure… But he/she wrote that the administration was “comprised of tourists” so I assumed that they did not live here but thank you for the clarification.

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