You eventually have to wake up.
A great deal has changed in the past few years.
During Covid, I was not able to come up from the states (I live in PA) and the real estate market changed incredibly as you are probably well aware. Something like 60 lots were sold, or resold, and many new owners began to build.
Too many for my tastes, as I bought due to the lack of neighbours and people in general (I’m an intense introvert). Also due to the closing of public beaches, 1000s found us on Google and breached the gates in defiance of both our privacy and the public lockdowns, crowding the beaches and putting the word out about our heretofore little secret paradise.
Prices for lots and existing homes have doubled and tripled and even quadrupled as a result. Unfortunately many of the lot buyers were speculators, and perhaps to justify their massive price increase before relisting, clear cut the lots in violation of the restrictive covenants, leaving ugly scarred fields of mud and boulders to wash silt into the drainage ditches and eventually into the delicate wetlands, or wash out the gravel roads, as well as inhibit percolation into the water table. I practically cried when I finally returned and drove through the community. Take a look at the current Google aerial imagery above, and the brown squares dotting the green natural landscape, and the picture doesn’t include some of the more recent tragedies.
Many of the new lot and home builders are openly defiant of other restrictive covenants, operating AirBnBs, some building units specifically for that purpose, moving in mobile/trailer/mini/pre-manufactured (whatever alternate name you want to invoke to claim they aren’t a violation) homes, subdividing lots for resale, or building multiple homes on a single lot, to name a few.
HarbourEdge, the mortgage investment firm that owns it, is still mainly concerned with selling lots to recoup some of their investment, but to their credit has fought some of these to no avail. The violators simply ignore any legal demand letters sent them, which can’t be enforced without legal action which, of course, costs more money in legal fees to the firm, and so they won’t go that far.
It’s still beautiful, if you shutter your eyes from the hideous cleared mud lots, as you drive through to the beach early in the morning, and I still spent many days alone on my beloved beaches watching my dog, George, run free and happy. (Due to the influx of people and a couple incidents ‘officially’ dogs are not allowed to do this any more on the beaches, by acclamation of a loud number of Facebook group members, despite a loud number of dog lovers opposed.)
I don’t know for sure what the future holds for Abbecombec, but experience has taught me that these changes for the worse, in my opinion, will continue to snowball and compound, as new, unforeseen aberrations present themselves. While some might see that as becoming a ‘growing, thriving community’, I see it as the loss of paradise. The dream I had all my life of living near the ocean, with my own uncrowded surf break, surrounded by spectacular unspoiled nature, in quiet solitude—my dream at last fulfilled against all odds—now fading in its last precious moments as a new reality intrudes.