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Old town has numerous options available regarding accomodation, most long term tourists opted for less expensive rooms in town that were not on the beach but fairly close such as the Posada Lily, Posada Roger, Eloisa, Yasmin, Casa Franca. If you elect to go this route there are numerous places to get a spot on the beach along with a palapa if you get lunch or a drink at one beach bars or restaurants on Los Muertos such as the Cuates y Cuetes, Langostinos. El Dorado, La Palapa, and Fidencios. There are some hotels in the same area such as the Tropicana, San Marino, Emperador, Playa Los Arcos which are right on the beach and in a very good central area close to the Malecon. Even cheaper Budget hotels can be found on Francisco Madero, east of Insurgentes.
Travel using specials. Hotels like the CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa, have very good prices (such as the Sand Dollar Special, where every 4th day is free, and a $50 resort credit is given every day, code S29) at the last part of October. This is a nice time where it's still a little hot, the hurricane season is pretty much over, and the prime time rates haven't started yet. The prices usually start going up about the 1st of November. The prices are available earlier than that, but you will have to deal with more storms.