Waterfront Homes | What to Look for in One | Divco Custom Homes
What to Look for in a Waterfront Home

You’ve dreamt about it for years. You’ve saved up the money. You’re finally ready to take a leap of faith and buy your dream waterfront home. It’s an exciting time in your life, but it could go downhill quickly if you don’t consider all the options and plan before you dive in. This article will bring you through five things you should consider when looking for a waterfront home.

What kind of waterfront home do you want to live in?

Are you a boater or a surfer? Do you prefer the sound of crashing waves or you enjoy a calm river? Sunrise or sunset? When it comes to waterfront homes, you have a lot of options from oceans, lakes, rivers, canals and more. It’s important to ask these questions about your hobbies, preferred weekend plans and your lifestyle to ensure your home measures up to the future you have planned for yourself.

Make sure the home has features strong enough to withstand a life on the water

Once you’ve decided on what body of water you want your home to be on, it’s essential to double and triple check all the features of the home that keep it safe and built to be on the water. Homes on the water take more beatings than any other homes, so before making any purchases, inspect that the home is up for the task. For example, if you have decided your dream home is on a river, lake or canal, inspect the seawall before making any commitments. A damaged seawall could lead to thousands of dollars in repairs if the problem is to become yours. Additionally, without a proper seawall in states prone to hurricanes like Florida, a damaged seawall could lead to losing your home entirely. A future waterfront homeowner should also inspect any docks, boat ramps or lifts, check for hurricane proof windows and shutters and more before buying a waterfront home.

Location, location, location.

Houses can be painted and remodeled, but you can’t change the location of a home. Before buying, you should think of the home as more than just a place to sleep at night. Ask locals about the location, do some research about the swimming and talk to your neighbors. You may find out from speaking to a neighbor that people actually can’t get their boats into the water because there’s a big oyster bed right beneath the water or it’s too shallow. Talking to neighbors and locals will give you insider information about the community or area and how they’re enjoying it. If this is going to be a place where you spend a lot of your time, you want to make sure you enjoy the area and the people around you. Because the location of a waterfront home is so important, buyers should also consider hiring a real estate agent that specializes in waterfront homes. That way, you know they have your best interest at heart and you’re working with an individual who knows the ins and outs of the industry. That way, you don’t find yourself in a scenario where you’re not getting a “good deal” because of a bad location or a damaged property.

In addition to this, the location of the home should also relate to your hobbies and preferred weekend plans. If you deep sea fishing is your passion, living on a lake a 30-minute drive away from any ocean access is probably not the best idea. Be sure to consider the location of your home and how it relates to your hobbies before settling on a location just because it’s on the water.

Hidden costs

Owning a waterfront home is a dream for many not only because of the beautiful views associated with it, but also the prestige of owning one. Living in a waterfront home is not cheap and it’s not for everyone. Before buying, one should consider all the possibilities and hidden costs associated with living on the water. For example, insurance will be more expensive for waterfront homes, especially in locations that are prone to hurricanes like Florida. Waterfront homes also require more upkeep. If your dream home is in a community with a homeowner’s association, the fees may be higher to do the additional work that needs to be done to maintain the home. If your home is not in a location with an association, these responsibilities will fall upon the homeowner and be more costly if you’re new to the area and don’t know which handyman is best. Lastly, if you’re relocating from a suburban area to somewhere more remote, getting your typical amenities aren’t as easy or cheap as they used to be. Getting electricity, clean water, cable, WiFi to your new home and then monthly bills may be more costly than ever before.

To buy or build new?

Lastly, the question every waterfront homebuyer should ask themselves is “To buy or build new?” While you’re searching the market, you may find many homes that check all your boxes… except one or two. If you’re willing to make a couple of sacrifices or have the time to remodel, then you should buy a home that’s already on the market. As long as you have thoroughly done your research on living on the water, it fits you and your family’s needs and hobbies, and you have enough saved up – buy that home!

On the other hand, your dream home should be exactly what you’ve pictured your entire life. If what’s on the market isn’t perfect for you and your family, you should consider building a custom waterfront home. By building new, you’re able to ensure as a homeowner that your home is in the exact location you’re looking for, it fits your lifestyle and it meets your standards precisely. Although this option may be more expensive, at the end of the day the memories you make here will be priceless and a quality built custom home can be used for generations.

If you’re thinking of building a custom waterfront home or remodeling a current home in Southwest Florida, consider doing business with Divco Custom Homes. Divco Custom Homes is a luxury custom home builder that has over 40 years of experience and has completed over 1,200 of Southwest Florida’s most notable luxury homes. For more information on their experience and process, visit the Divco Custom Homes website.