There have been many people who dreamed of living on the seashore, but they sadly concluded their budget would not fit that lifestyle. The biggest block was being able to afford to buy a home in their chosen area, and it has generally been prohibitive when it comes to the cost. Ocean front property often sells far above what the same amount of land and home would go for inland, so those who are determined to own their dream home are often willing to go extra lengths.
It might seem possible to buy an empty lot and build, but many areas now have prohibitions against new construction due to weather or environmental concerns. This leaves those able to buy a home on the beach left with the choices of existing homes that might need updating. It might seem easier to demolish the existing building and start over, but the same prohibitions that prevent new builds often means remodeling is the only option.