Photo by Miguel Ángel Sanz
Originally Posted On: https://www.actionlifemedia.com/blog/how-to-choose-a-waterfront-property/
People love to live by the water. People love the water so much that they are willing to pay 116 percent more to live by it. This is because waterfront properties are unique.
Where else can you feel like you are on vacation and enjoy both land and water from your own home. Plus, since it is so unique, buying waterfront property can be a good investment.
Are you wanting a waterfront property? If so, keep reading to learn more!
DETERMINE YOUR NEEDS
Not all waterfront properties are the same. Just like any other home, you need to find something that suits your needs.
What activities do you enjoy? Do you want more privacy?
Do you want a boat? If so, you need to determine the boating restrictions on the lake to make sure it fits your boat.
Do you plan to fish from your dock? Are you looking for smaller water to kayak or canoe? This could mean finding something like a river or pond versus a larger body of water.
You also have to think about how often you will be there. Do you plan to live there full-time? If not, do you want to rent the property?
Don’t forget about other important things like school districts, proximity to hospitals, and location to everyday amenities like grocery stores.
SET YOUR BUDGET
It’s important to set your budget before you start looking for your home. You need to think about how much you can really afford. If you plan to rent the house, you need to know the previous rental history or what houses in the area typically rent to see if it can cover your costs.
If this is a second home, make sure you can afford this mortgage if your house is not rented. Always have a solid backup plan for paying in case your house does not rent as planned.
CHECK FOR ADDITIONAL COSTS
You need to know all the hidden costs with a waterfront property before signing a contract. Insurance is typically higher because of the higher risk of flood damage. For beach areas, you also have to think about hurricane insurance.
Don’t forget about other expenses such as dock fees. Water and sewer rates may also be higher in some areas. Make sure you are aware of all of these to avoid surprises.
If you’re considering a condo, you’ll also have to factor in the cost of the homeowners’ association. To get more amenities, you will pay a higher price.
LOOK AT THE ENTIRE PROPERTY
As you start scoping out properties, it’s important to determine what is most important to you. There are different attributes that are more important to some people than others.
For example, you may want to check out the grade of the lot. Finding a flat lot makes it easier to get to the water.
You also need to think about your privacy. If you want more privacy, you probably want to have as much frontage as possible to push you back from your neighbors.
You should also decide how important a sandy beach is to you. Sandy beaches are nice for the elderly and young children. It makes it easier to get into the water, and kids love to play in the sand.
Walk around the entire property, and make sure the view doesn’t blind you. Look for any landscape you would have to upkeep and any other outdoor repairs.
You are buying the land more so than the house when it comes to water property. You can always replace the house, but there isn’t much you can do to the location and condition of the land.
RESEARCH THE AREA
It’s a good idea to take a look at history and find out about the shore. Has the shore moved? Anytime you mix water with dirt, this could be an issue.
If the waterline has changed over the years, be careful how close the property is to the water. Also, see if the water has moved in the opposite direction, which would put your home further away.
An inspector can also give you an idea of how sturdy the home and property are and if you need to worry about any shifts.
CHECK OUT THE BULKHEAD
The bulkhead separates the property from the water; it is a barrier to protect the home. Make sure you inspect the bulkhead because these can be rather expensive to build or repair. A large bulkhead can cost tens of thousands or even more.
If the home is on the ocean, look for hurricane proofing. Adding this protection is expensive, but necessary to protect the home from damage.
LOOK FOR A BARGAIN
Now is the time to start looking for a deal. You may want to consider other areas if this is a second home. Check out sites like Right Casa to find your dream Spanish home or look in various parts of the U.S. or other countries. You may be surprised by what you can afford in different locations.
If you find a spot with a lot of properties for sale, it may be a weaker market and you may be able to get the price down.
WORK WITH AN EXPERT AGENT
Waterfront property isn’t the same as buying a house. There can be structural issues. The market is also different.
Real estate agents can give you advice and help you work through these issues. They will guide you through the purchase process, so you can own the waterfront property of your dreams.
LOOK FOR WATERFRONT PROPERTIES TODAY
As you search for waterfront properties, remember to consider your budget, location, and type of water you want. Think about whether you want to live there full-time or use it as a vacation home.
With the right planning, you can easily buy a waterfront property. Check out our site for financial advice to help you save money to own this property. You can also find helpful information in our Home & Garden section to help make your new waterfront house a home.