by Caroline Kirby
Waterfront property is a dream for many, but it’s not as straightforward a process as purchasing other types of property; in fact, there are some special considerations that many first-time buyers have never even considered.
If you’re looking for the perfect lakefront property to purchase before summer starts, you’ll want to keep a few things in mind. Lakefront property is a great investment most of the time, and having access to endless fun activities is great, but not all that glitters is gold. Here’s a quick look at the special considerations of purchasing a lakefront property.
Things to keep in mind when looking for lakefront property
Waterfront property is a dream for many, and while the price tag itself is enough to scare many away, there are plenty of other variables that can complicate this type of transaction. Don’t make these mistakes when looking for your first waterfront property!
• Consider all the fun stuff in your budgeting: A lakehouse is a lot of fun, but a majority of the activities won’t come cheap. Boating, water skiing, tubing, and all the safety equipment are separate costs that many buyers don’t consider when looking for a lakefront property. Look at the different gear costs and if that works for your budget.
• Ensure the house is built to stand up to the waterfront: Homes on the water take on much more abuse than a regular home. Extra moisture, flooding, etc., can all take a toll on these properties. Keep an eye out for homes that have features like storm shutters and taller foundations that will protect these properties from the weather. Plus, all of the amenities and hobby items will also have wear-and-tear expenses.
• Don’t forget about flood insurance: Depending on where you live, you likely haven’t considered flood insurance when purchasing regular properties. This can be expensive! Get a quote from a qualified insurance provider before making any offers on lakefront property. Additionally, there are real estate agents that specialize in waterfront property who can help put you in touch with the right insurers.
• The land may be leased: It’s pretty common that houses on the water come with a lease. Federal entities like the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers or even power companies often own the property on or around the lake, and they may lease the shoreline where lake houses are built. Buying property in these areas may mean that you’ll inherit a lease of the land.
• Start looking for loans early on: Because waterfront properties are so expensive, you’ll want to start the loan process sooner rather than later. Waterfront home loans are much more different than normal home loans.
• Consider the location: You may think you’ll just be happy to have a house on the water but think about the orientation of the home and what you want. Will you get morning or afternoon sun? Does the deck have sun protection? Does the wind coming off of the lake affect your level of enjoyment? These don’t have to be factors that make or break a purchase, but they are worth considering before making any offers.
There’s a lot to consider when buying any property, but it’s important to recognize the uniqueness of lakefront properties. Take a look at Land Hub’s current lakefront listings to see what properties are out there today!
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