When you need to find a new hole in the water into which you’ll throw money, the home purchase process becomes ever more complicated. Sure, you can park it in a marina and pay up to or more than $500 a month for the privilege, or up to $150,000 to purchase a slip, but (you have said this to yourself, admit it), why not just buy a home on the water with a dock?
That’s using your noodle! But slow down and consider the following.
1. The berth
The depth and the size of the berth are obviously the most important considerations when looking at waterfront property for boat owners. Beware the agent’s property descriptions for they may not be accurate. So, how do you learn this critical information?
Know to the very last fraction of an inch your boat’s specs, such as the length overall, and have your agent run them by the homeowner to verify the berth is the right size.
2. Consider travel time
Those precious hours you eke out of your schedule to spend time on your boat are wasted if it takes a considerable amount of time to get from home to wherever you plan on enjoying the day. Determine your travel time tolerance before settling on a waterfront home. While you’re checking travel time, looked for fixed bridges in the area. You’ll need to know their clearances if you have a particularly large boat.
The waterfront home buyer with a boat gets a double whammy when it comes to the home inspection. You would be remiss on your due diligence if, in addition to a whole house inspection, you did not have the seawall and dock pilings professionally inspected.
4. Is it legal?
Zoning and other restrictions vary not only from city to city but even within developments in some areas. Prohibitions against motorized boats or size restrictions are very real and you’ll need to ensure that your craft is legal in the area in which you hope to buy. Whether you’re a grizzled seafarer or a nautical novice, choosing a home for both yourself and your boat isn’t a quick process but if you choose the right real estate agent, it can be problem-free.