If thinking of buying a waterfront home this year, there are some things to consider. There are many benefits of owning a waterfront property. They allow you to watch the sunrise over the water, go for a run on the beach, and enjoy the serenity of hearing the waves crash on the beach. Whether you are looking to buy a second home on the Cape and overlook the ocean this summer or would like to move to a home on the Charles River, there are additional inspections, insurance, and maintenance obligations to keep your home in shipshape condition. Here are five pieces of information I wanted to share with you.
Doing your due diligence on a waterfront home is of the utmost importance. You do not want to waive your traditional home inspection. Instead, you should also consider hiring a structural engineer to look at the home and even possibly a coastal engineer to look at the seawall. Waterfront homes are subjected to constant moisture, because of this an environmental inspector should check for mold as well. If the property has a dock, this should be checked as well to ensure that it is structurally sound.
Again, doing your due diligence is key! Be sure to investigate whether or not there are any easements or rights-of-way on or near the property. Easements that allow the public to access the water on the edge of your property might affect your use of that home.
3. Higher Insurance Prices
Flood insurance is required if your home is in a hazardous flood zone. If you are paying cash for your home, flood insurance can still be a very wise investment. On Martha’s Vineyard and around the Cape insurance companies are pulling back causing a fast escalation of prices.
4. Continuous Maintenance
Due to your home’s possible exposure to wind and water, waterfront homes take on more wear and tear than your average home. If on the ocean, the saltwater in the air is highly corrosive and can affect the wood, windows, and even synthetic materials your home was built using. Homes that are on bodies of freshwater are also subjected more to the natural elements. Maintenance is needed throughout the year to stay on top of your home’s needs.
5. Professional Management
If unable to check on your waterfront home during the winter months, it might be a good idea to hire a property manager. Having a property management company takes some of the stress out of owning a waterfront home. They can take care of checking on the house and grounds, proactively scheduling maintenance, and help to ensure your home stays in the best shape.
-As seen in The Boston Globe