Life on the water is one of the things we love best about the Eastern Shore. Finding your own slice of waterfront real estate can be a dream come true. But there are some unique challenges with buying waterfront property that are important to understand. We’ve learned a LOT about buying waterfront homes over the past 40 years. Read on for our top advice for buying waterfront property!
1: Take time to thoroughly research the property.
When it comes to buying waterfront, it’s impossible to ask too many questions. If you want to make changes to the property, find out what’s allowed. Environmental regulations may limit your options. This not only impacts your ability to add or change structures on the property. It may also impact your options when it comes to landscaping and tree removal.
Your Realtor can connect you with local, county, and state agencies that oversee the various permits required for any sort of alteration in the critical area. Meet with these folks before you buy the house. You want to do as much of your investigatory work as possible before you put in an offer. If the market is hot and you feel you need to get an offer in before your research is complete, discuss including contingencies that will enable you to back out of the deal.
Finally, don’t forget to research the unique insurance needs of waterfront homes. You may need not only flood insurance, but also special wind or storm insurance as well.
2: When buying waterfront, it’s more important to consider the property than the house.
Not all waterfront property is suitable for how you may want to use it. Think about the activities you’d like to do on the property. Is it easy to get down to the water? Do you need deep water? Is it a good spot for fishing? Think about your lifestyle to determine if a particular property is right for you and your family. Share this information with your Realtor to help focus your search.
3: Look into the utilities available at the property.
Cable and broadband internet may not be available for more secluded waterfront properties. Are you prepared to live without these modern conveniences? Also, consider the condition of the septic system. If a new one is needed, make sure you understand the permitting process and costs involved. Homes in the critical area require special septic systems that are more expensive.
We have true waterfront real estate experts on our team. If you’re interested in finding the perfect waterfront home, message us and we’ll help you get started!