If you are looking to buy waterfront property in Maryland, there are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure that you find the perfect one for all your needs. Maryland is home to many beautiful waterfront properties, but not all of them are created equal. In this home buyer’s guide to Maryland’s waterfront properties, we will discuss some of the key factors you should consider before making that big purchase.
Table of Contents
Location, Location, Location
When it comes to waterfront properties, location is everything. You will want to consider not only the view but also the accessibility of the waterfront. Do you want a property with a private beach, or are you okay with public access? Do you want a home on the Chesapeake Bay, or would you prefer a property on one of Maryland’s many rivers? Depending on your lifestyle and interests, some locations may be more appealing than others.
Because of its proximity to water, flood insurance is a must for most waterfront properties in Maryland. Make it a priority to research the flood zone of any property you are interested in and to obtain a quote for flood insurance before making an offer. Keep in mind that flood insurance premiums can be expensive, so it is vital to factor this cost into your budget.
Waterfront properties require more maintenance than non-waterfront properties. Some of their customers even have to put their valuable furniture in storage due to damage. Saltwater and humidity can be harsh on a home’s exterior, so ensure you choose materials that can withstand the elements. You will also need to budget for regular maintenance and repairs, such as painting, sealing, and replacing damaged siding.
Living by the water does not mean an abundance of clean water in your home. It is essential to research the water quality in the area. Poor water quality can impact not only your enjoyment of the property but also your health. You will want to look into the following things:
- Pollution levels
- Algae blooms
- Any recent water quality tests conducted by local authorities
Boating and Water Sports
If you plan to use your waterfront property for boating and water sports, make sure to consider factors like water depth, access to boat launches, and local regulations. Maryland has a wealth of boating opportunities, but not all properties offer the same level of access. In addition to that, you will also want to research any fees or permits required for boating in the area.
Utilities and Infrastructure
Waterfront properties may have different utility needs than what you are used to. For example, you may need a septic system instead of a sewer connection, or you may need to install a well for drinking water. It is important to research the availability and cost of these utilities before deciding on a property.
Maryland’s waterfront properties can be a great investment or a great second home, but you should also consider the property’s resale value. Factors like location, view, and accessibility can all impact a property’s value over time. Additionally, waterfront properties may be subject to more stringent zoning regulations, which can also impact their value.
Do thorough research on the local zoning laws and regulations before getting a property in an area you are interested in. These regulations may impact everything from the size of your home to the types of activities you’re allowed to engage in on the waterfront. It is imperative to make sure that your planned use of the property aligns with local zoning laws. It would be a waste and rather disappointing to make such an investment and not be able to use it the way you had dreamed of.
Working with a Real Estate Agent
Needless to say, it is vital to work with a real estate agent who has experience buying and selling Maryland’s waterfront properties. A knowledgeable agent can help you navigate the complexities of buying such a property, from conducting thorough inspections to negotiating a fair price.
Additional Aspects to Take into Account
Although living by the water seems exciting and magical, there are several more things to take into account. Think long and hard about all the pros and cons and decide whether you are cut out for it. For instance, there will be several perks but also responsibilities you will face that you may not have been aware of. If you do decide to invest in a property, ensure you engage the right team if you are making a cross-country move to Maryland.
In Maryland, waterfront property owners have riparian rights, which means they have the right to use and enjoy the water and the shoreline. However, these rights come with certain responsibilities, such as maintaining the shoreline and ensuring that any changes or additions to the shoreline are made in compliance with local regulations.
Some waterfront properties in Maryland may be part of a Homeowners Association (HOA), which can have rules and regulations that impact how you use and maintain your property. Reviewing the HOA documents and understanding any fees, rules, and restrictions before making an offer is critical.
Maryland’s waterfront properties are home to a wide variety of wildlife, from ospreys and herons to crabs and fish. While this can be an enjoyable aspect of waterfront living, it is essential also to consider the potential impacts of wildlife on your property, such as bird droppings, crab traps, and erosion caused by wildlife activity.
Maryland’s weather can be unpredictable, and waterfront properties can be especially vulnerable to storms and flooding. Before purchasing a waterfront property, research the area’s history of storms and flooding and consider the potential impact of climate change on the property.
Deciding to Invest in Maryland’s Waterfront Properties
Buying a waterfront property in Maryland can be a wonderful experience, but doing your due diligence before deciding on an offer is something to focus on. By taking these factors into consideration, you can make an informed decision that is right for you and your family. Maryland’s waterfront properties can be an excellent investment, but make sure you research and work with an experienced real estate agent to ensure that you find the right property for your needs and budget.