If you are considering purchasing a waterfront property then you better be ready to do a little homework. While the process can take some time and work, it can pay off dividends in the end when you realize a beautiful home designed by you with everything you could imagine.

Purchasing a waterfront home is one thing, but buying a waterfront lot involves more planning and preparation. Listed below are the six critical features that I recommend my clients to consider when looking at waterfront property:

1. Lot and Site Plan
At Smith Mountain Lake, we have a variety of lot sizes available. Some clients prefer a smaller amount of acreage which they believe equates to less maintenance while others are after a larger lot for added privacy and more space. Whichever your preference is we have a lot to fit the bill.

It’s important to look at a plat map and determine the boundaries of the property. You will find that some properties have marked property corners while others do not. If you can get an overall idea of where the utilities will be run, the house will be built, dock location, etc. then you can have a vision in your head. You don’t want to have an extremely large home on a small lot as it won’t leave much room for expansion or added privacy. Be aware if there are any specific code restrictions or building setback limitations involved within the development.

2. Slope
The slope of the lot can vary greatly from one property to the next, and it does play a factor in a variety of different aspects when you go to develop the land. Some properties will require more extensive excavation (that usually equates to more money spent) in order to prepare the land for building. Erosion control should also be thought of in order to guarantee you won’t run into any issues in the future.

3. Water Location
Consider the lake and its levels. Something to think about when looking at lots is if it is located on the main channel or in a cove. Since the lake was made for creating energy, the water levels do fluctuate, and they also can vary on drought years. Be sure to consider this when not only choosing a property but in also developing the land. You will find that the lake does offer some deep coves which are great for boating, and you don’t have to worry about lake levels as much. Think about the depths required for different types of boating that you enjoy. Also take into account the lots location in proximity to the majority of lake traffic. Some owners prefer action on the lake while others enjoy a more peaceful cove location. Either way there is a lot available to fit just about any preference.

4. Land Location
You can change a lot of things about a lot, but you cannot change the location. My advice to any buyer is to learn the area- walk the lot, meet the neighbors, view it by boat and calculate how far it is from other amenities. Make sure to consider your lifestyle and ensure that the property is convenient to what you enjoy. Focus on what you are passionate about and don’t compromise, is it near shopping, golfing, good water for boating, etc.?

5. Waterfront
There are a variety of factors that go into the equation of having a waterfront location. At the top of my list is the length of shoreline, shoreline type (sandy beach, rip-rap, etc.), water quality and depth of water. Most of these elements will factor into how a dock is placed on the lot if it’s not already existing.

Set the stage for views. Be conscious of how the home is placed in relation to the sun and keep in mind that picture-perfect water views are one property feature that will never go out of style. You own the property year around so it’s important to consider what the property will be like throughout all four seasons of the year.

Whether it’s to build your dream home on or hold on to for a long term investment, I am confident that I can help you find the perfect waterfront home site. Are you ready to begin your quest for the perfect Smith Mountain Lake Waterfront Property? Click here to contact me.