Six years ago, Michael and Roberta Joseph spent about $8.5 million to build a modern house on the water in Palm Beach, Fla. But Mr. Joseph, 62, was intrigued by the homes he saw across the Intracoastal Waterway in West Palm Beach. There, he noticed, older homes sat untouched for decades and coastal lots could be had for a fraction of Palm Beach prices.
“I’d say to my wife, ‘Someday people will wake up and say, ‘Frankly, the view is better from West Palm,’ ” said Mr. Joseph, who is president of the real-estate development company Clover Group. “It’s on the water, and it’s way more convenient.”
Last year, the couple acted on Mr. Joseph’s instincts. They sold their home in Palm Beach for around $10.5 million and bought a newly constructed house in West Palm Beach, across the water from Mar-a-Lago. They paid $15.9 million, far more than the property’s last sale price of $3 million in 2016. Still, the couple turned down a lucrative offer to flip the contract about a week before they closed. “We wanted the house,” Mr. Joseph said.