Buying a seaside home could be a good investment as well as providing a pleasant place to live, according to research by Halifax.
The lender surveyed 100 seaside towns in England and Wales and found that house prices in many have outperformed inland towns. Fifty per cent of seaside towns have seen a doubling in house prices over the last seven years.
Padstow in Cornwall fared best of all, with prices tripling over the period. In 1995, the average home in the Cornish town cost £71,000 and is now £217,537.
Brighton and Falmouth followed, with house prices increasing by 193 per cent and 177 per cent respectively.
The worst coastal performers were Whitehaven, Workington and Barrow-in-Furness, all in Cumbria.
The most expensive place to buy a seaside property is Sandbanks in Dorset, with an average home valued at £343,797. It is followed by Lymington in Hampshire where a seaside home would cost £218,773. Cheapest is Seaham in the North-east at £44,553.
Seven out of 10 seaside properties in Sussex outperformed the country average and six out of 10 in Cornwall. But in Essex only two out of five seaside towns fared better than properties across the county. Worst was the North, where only three out of 11 seaside towns saw price increases higher than inland towns.
There are variations within regions. Blackpool saw prices increasing 40 per cent over seven years while its upmarket neighbour Lytham St Anne's had an increase of 68 per cent.
Halifax group economist Martin Ellis says: “A home by the sea is clearly not only a nice place to live but it could also prove to be a sound financial investment as well.”