Ever dreamed of owning your own private island? Now that dream can become a reality — and it's right in the tri-state.
In the back bay off The Wildwoods along the Jersey Shore, a serene and undeveloped island is up for sale. Its name? No Man's Island.
The 19-acre property hit the market in the fall of 2019 on a private islands website, priced at $200,000. It's not reachable by car, and is about a half-mile from a marina that Jim and Debbie Mooers own.
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"It’s a wildlife habitat area, like most of the islands that are around it," Jim Mooers said. The current owner of the island, Omer Fahim, called it "an impulse buy."
Fahim, a software engineer who lives in Queens, has owned No Man's Island since 2017. He said he's gone fishing at the marshy location a during a couple of visits, but is now ready to let it go, saying he has "no use for it" and would rather invest in other things.
While not revealing how much he paid for the uninhabited island, tax records show Fahim paid $7,000. The man who owned the island before Fahim said the property had been in his family for more than half a century.
"We duck-hunted it," Tai Menz said. The real estate agent said his grandfather even once operated a duck hunting business on the land, which is assessed at just over $19,000, and taxes at a palatable $360 per year.
"I tell all my clients there’s an appraisal value and then there’s what you’re willing to pay for it,” said Menz. "There’s a lot more expensive islands out there. You never know what somebody wants to own.”
Anyone hoping to buy the island and build their dream beach home right by the water may want to reconsider purchasing the land, however. Because the area is considered to be highly environmentally sensitive, mapped entirely as coastal wetlands, it could be very difficult to make any changes. Building anything on the island would also require state approval.
Jim Mooers said trying to dramatically change the island or add anything to it would be "next to impossible, just my honest opinion."
Fahim said he rejected a cash offer of $175,000, as he's convinced someone will buy it at a price he's happy with — even if No Man's Island has to remain as-is.
"For the price that I’m selling it as, I think it’s a win for anyone who’s buying it because, come on, it’s a 19 acre private island,” Fahim said.