Love it here? Don't put it off - buy now

An immature bald eagle checks out the beach: You should, too!<BR><I>KEVIN HEIMBIGNER photo</i>

The Discovery Coast has been "discovered."

The cooling of the Pacific Northwest's robust real estate market means the best values for buyers in several years here on Washington's gorgeous outer coast.

Best act now: With Washington state expecting to add 1.5 million new residents in the next 15 years, while many babyboomers think of retiring to the beach, Peninsula real estate isn't likely to remain a bargain for very long. People from all over the U.S. are moving here to savor some of the West's most sublime scenery, relaxed lifestyles and moderate climate.

There just isn't any new coastal real estate being created, especially with the kinds of views, access and affordability available here. The past couple of years have seen the relocation to our coast of scores of young "50-somethings" from Seattle, Portland and elsewhere, who are setting the stage for active second-stage careers at the beach before all available land in prime locations is gone.

With the U.S. Southwest and California burning up in more ways than one, this well-watered place will do nothing but grow.

Lighthouse Realty (see ad on page 33) offices are busy, owner/broker Todd Kaino said. "It's our turn," he said. "We're very busy, the market is active and the Peninsula is being discovered. With the Oregon Coast and the Puget Sound area virtually saturated, people are shopping here and seeing good values. They're getting their money's worth."

Other major real estate firms include Pacific Realty (Page 14 and 15), Anchor Realty (Page 21), and Dennis Oman Realty (Page 19). For information regarding the high-end residential development at Coastal Ridge, (see Pages 24 and 25).

Here are some helpful relocation contacts:

Pacific Transit System

The Pacific Transit System, which serves the entire Pacific County area and makes connections with Astoria, may be reached at 642-9418. Schedules and news are available at www.pacifictransit.org.

Driver's licenses

A Washington state driver examining office is at 208 First St. in Ilwaco. Telephone 642-8776; www.dmv.org.

Vehicle licenses

Vehicle license information may be obtained from the Pacific County Auditor's branch office in the County Services Building on N.E. Second Street in Long Beach. Telephone 642-9312; www.dol.wa.gov.

Public schools

The two public school districts serving southern Pacific County are Ocean Beach on the Long Beach Peninsula, 642-3739, and Naselle-Grays River Valley, serving southeast Pacific County and western Wahkiakum County, 360-484-7121.

Job Service Center

A Job Service Center run by Washington WorkSource is at 2601 N. Pacific Hwy in Long Beach, telephone 642-6213.

Health & Human Services

A South County office of the county's Health and Human Services Department, where public health nursing and other services are offered, is at 605 S. Oregon St. in Long Beach, telephone 642-9349.

Timberland libraries

Three convenient community libraries in south Pacific County are part of the Timberland Regional Library Service. Details are available at www.timberland.lib.wa.us.

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