Just to the left are my featured listings. If you are planning to purchase a property, take a look through these listings to see how they fit your requirements.
A little further down the page are some general thoughts about Mendocino Coast real estate. If you are thinking of purchasing Fort Bragg real estate, Mendocino real estate, or coastal Mendocino County real estate, you may want to review this section. You'll find some historic information as well as current trends regarding the development of the real estate markets in Fort Bragg, Mendocino, and the nearby Mendocino County area.
I'm a licensed REALTOR® operating out of the CENTURY 21® Fort Bragg Realty office. I'm here to help you find that special property you're seeking or to assist you in the sale of property you own.
I serve all of the Mendocino Coast. The majority of my sales and listings originate in Fort Bragg or Mendocino due to the local population and business activities in these areas. There are however many opportunities in the surrounding areas of Mendocino County. I've broken out a few observations for these communities below.
Mendocino was founded in 1852, the first town on the Mendocino Coast, . While attempting to salvage cargo from a shipwreck, the men of the salvage expedition discovered giant redwood trees along the Mendocino coast. Within a couple of years, a lumber mill was set up and operating at Big River. Mendocino City had it's beginnings. Lumber was the name of the game for most of the next century. Just before World War II, the mill closed and Mendocino became a quiet peaceful village. To some extent, it also became locked in time.
In the 1960's and early 70's, artists and other creative people came to the Mendocino coast seeking a peaceful and better quality of life. Others more intent on financial gain and development also arrived. The influx of these diverse groups put pressure on the small community of fewer than 1000 people. Members of the old families and the newcomers banded together in the mid '70's to form the Mendocino Historical Preservation District and Review Board which were charged with the preservation of the architecture and character of Mendocino. Establishment of the Preservation District had an immediate positive impact on property values that continues today. Mendocino and nearby locations are highly desirable places to live, work, and play.
Residential real estate near Mendocino is clustered along the coastline or near several roads that lead inland from the coast. As you would expect, there's a wide range of property values from a one bedroom cabin on a dirt road to a several thousand square foot oceanfront home on a private cove. In the town of Mendocino itself, there are two or three streets of mostly business establishments with the remainder of the town being residential or mixed-use. The town is almost completely surrounded by a state park. As a result, there are no truly oceanfront properties although many properties have ocean views.
There are fabulous coastal properties both north and south of Mendocino with some of the most sought after near Little River to the south. There are several residential communities near the Little River Inn and Golf Course with some residences bordering the golf course. Roads leading inland in the Little River area are lined with redwoods, family ranches, and lots of horses. As a general rule, once you get five miles inland from the coast, residential structures begin to thin out and open land is readily available. This is country living with convenience.
Commerce is the very foundation of Mendocino. At one time, the town was surrounded by a lumber mill. Now, it is surrounded by a state park. The town's new
commerce is tourism with its attendant small business enterprises. From time-to-time, both the businesses and business structures are on the market. Art galleries,
book stores, restaurants, grocery stores, hotels, bed and breakfasts, vacation rentals, real estate offices, and financial institutions are all represented. Mendocino
looks like it's stuck in the 1940s, but it is full of modern commerce.
The City of Fort Bragg was incorporated in the late 19th century having gotten it's start as an Indian Reservation and an associated military post. Both the military post and reservation were abandoned soon after they were formed. Lumber and commercial fishing were the major industries during the 20th century. Around 1920, the city had become a popular place to visit and to settle. By 1970, Fort Bragg was emerging as a diverse residential, recreational, and growing commercial center on the Mendocino County coast. The values of commercial and residential properties began to rise significantly at this time.
Today, the lumber and fishing industries have declined and have been replaced by light industry, recreation, and tourism. The larger lumber mills have closed. The extraordinary, one of a kind, ocean front property formerly occupied by Georgia Pacific is in the planning stages for substantial future development. A new world class Aquatic Center has just been completed. Tourism is booming.
Fort Bragg real estate will continue to appreciate as the renaissance continues. With a history as a "company" town, Fort Bragg has a reputation as a city where business gets done. There's a thriving business section with banks, savings and loans, retail stores, health care facilities, and building supplies. Fort Bragg residential real estate covers the full spectrum of housing. From older manufactured housing to brand new ocean front mansions, Fort Bragg residential real estate is very diverse. In general, Fort Bragg real estate is considered a little more affordable than properties in the Mendocino area.
Just north of Fort Bragg along some of the most beautiful coastline in California are the communities of Cleone and Westport. Cleone is the home of MacKerricher State Park and offers access to 10 Mile Beach Preserve by foot or horseback. Some of the most beautiful oceanfront homes are located in this area. A little further north is the community of Westport. Country living, plenty of horses, clean air, and wide open spaces bring residents to Westport. Just a wide spot in the road for some folks, Westport brings happiness and peace of mind to others. Homes are available along the coast as well as the low lying hills to the east.
Just south of Fort Bragg about half way to Mendocino lies the small community of Caspar. Like most of the other towns along coastal Mendocino county,
Caspar had it's beginnings in the lumber industry. With the mill long closed, Caspar is now mostly residential with a few businesses and a community center.
Caspar residential properties are clustered along the rocky coastline and in the foothills to the east. Some of the coastal properties are spectacular
with names like the Wave House and the hand crafted Dolphin House. These properties are built along the rocky coves and inlets of the Pacific. There's
plenty of available open land in the Caspar area as well.
Just south of Little River is the community of Albion. Albion has a small commercial center, with residential sections stretching along the western ridges of the low lying hills of the coastal mountain range. Some properties in this area have spectacular elevated views of the Pacific. Further south along Highway 1 (Shoreline Highway) and across the Navarro River are the communities of Elk, Pt. Arena, and Gualala. These communities are a little further from the tourism activities of Mendocino and Fort Bragg. The pace of life is a bit slower and simpler. Plenty of larger parcels in this area.
Sixteen miles Inland from the coast lies the community of Comptche. Those interested in rural living, a warm climate, and an accessible Mendocino coast should consider Comptche. Living there, you will have two or three small businesses, artists, small farms and ranches for neighbors. A good life.
If you are new to the Mendocino coast, I hope my thoughts above will give you a feel for the various communities in the area and what they have to offer. Coastal Mendocino is growing but, fortunately, we have the space and infrastructure to accommodate our new neighbors. Please give me a call if I can assist you with your Mendocino real estate purchase or sale.