Throughout the massive Lake Winnipesaukee real estate market, some of the most coveted properties in the area are the beautiful lake front homes found throughout this region. Buyers from all over the country have been flocking to this area for years in an attempt to purchase these beautiful homes either as their primary residence or as a vacation home to utilize in the warmer months. No matter how you plan on using a new lakefront Winnipesaukee home, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to investing in one of these properties.

A waterfront home comes with bevy of different perks, but also a number of different concerns that aren’t typically factors in standard properties, so being fully aware of the intricacies that come with this type of purchase can only help insure you make a smart investment.

Remember, You Can’t Change the Water

As most real estate shoppers know, there is one thing that you can never change about a property, it is its location. In the world of lakefront properties, location is key, especially in Lake Winnipesaukee. Some of the older or more historic properties in the area may need some upgrading or improvements, which can be distracting if you mostly had your heart on a turn-key home. While there are a lot of things that you can do to change a house, there isn’t much you can do about changing a home’s location on the lake. Try to ignore some of the cosmetic features in the homes you look at and focus instead on the water access and location of the property. Open up your mind and see the beauty in underrated properties.

Pay Attention to the Topography of the Lot

When looking at the lot of a lakefront homes, many buyers are noticeably drawn immediately to the water surrounding their property, but it is also important to pay close attention to the land as well. The topography of the lot when dealing with waterfront properties is very important. Many people will only consider flat lots when shopping for lakefront properties, and flat lots do have their value. If you are looking for shallower water access, and plan on mostly swimming or floating, then flat lots are great. However, if you plan on doing more boating, then a steeper lot may be the best option for you. Typically, steeper lots mean deeper water access.

Always Do Your Own Inspection

Even if a home was already pre-inspected, when investing in lakefront properties it is important that you do your own inspection. Make sure to hire someone in the Lake Winnipesaukee region who is an expert on lakefront properties to help guide you through the process. You should always be on the lookout for signs of flooding. While Lake Winnipesaukee isn’t necessarily known for its flooding, it is still an issue for any property along the water. An expert should be able to help you look for signs of water damage and flooding both inside the home and along the property.

As you are carefully inspecting a potential home to make sure it is the right home for you, make sure that you ask about any lake associations that govern the beaches and the water in your area. These associations may have by-laws and may govern what you can do to your property.

Explore the Different Lakes

One of the greatest things about this New Hampshire region is that there isn’t just one main lake to buy property on. While the big lake is one of the most popular, it isn’t the only lake in the region. Keep your options open and explore some of the other, smaller lakes in the region. Many of these lakes offer just as much value and fun as the big lake, and often with a smaller price tag. If clean water is a concern, you can visit the local water quality site. Many are surprised to find that even small glacial lakes in the area have Class A clean water grades.

Keep the Cold Weather Season in Mind

While Lake Winnipesaukee boasts outstanding weather in the warmer summer months, it is important to remember that you can only enjoy this type of weather during a few months every year. During most of the year, the area gets quite cold, so make sure you keep this in mind if you are planning on staying in the property year round. Some lakefront homes are built for year-round enjoyment. Does it have access to storage for your boat? Are you close to the New Hampshire mountains for skiing in the off-season? Think about the big picture when investing in a waterfront property in this area.

Talk to Your Insurance Company First

There are different FEMA laws in place regarding flooding and different insurance concerns that come with buying a lakefront property. If you are planning on investing in a specific home, make sure that you talk to your insurance company before signing on the dotted line. There are different insurance considerations including increased flood risk that may impact your costs and other liability coverages that you may need.

There is so much that can go into buying a new lakefront property. However, in the beautiful Lake Winnipesaukee area, most buyers find it is more than worth it to end up with a welcoming home in one of the most beautiful regions in the entire country.


Linda Fields is a real estate agent serving the Lake Winnipesaukee area in NH. Linda uses her 15+ years experience in Real Estate to help people looking to buy or sell a lakefront home in the Lake Winnipesaukee area of New Hampshire.

*Photo by Robert Clifford Photography