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What it's like living in a waterfront home

Tuesday, August 28, 2018   /   by Jiun Liao

What it's like living in a waterfront home

Every year, at least 1,000 waterfront properties in Cottage Country go up for sale. Many families living in Toronto dream of owning their very own waterfront cottage. Others are ready to retire to a less hectic place where they can enjoy more land, more nature, more outdoor activities, and a waterfront home.


Ontario is blessed with having over 250,000 lakes and over 100,000 kilometers of rivers, so finding your perfect waterfront property is more about knowing where to look. Few other agents in the area possess over 20 years of knowledge and experience that the Lake Country Real Estate Team has when it comes to waterfront houses, so if you are wondering where to look give us a call. But what’s it like living in a waterfront home?  Renting a seasonal waterfront cottage is all fun and games in the summer, but permanently living there are two totally different scenarios. To answer this question we first have to talk about what are all the different types of waterfront homes and how they differ.



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Lakefront

By far the most popular option in Ontario, with so many lakes wherever you go, the Cottage Country lifestyle is fueled by embracing the resourcefulness of Ontario’s lakes. With spectacular views, calm fresh waters, and a seemingly endless amount of water related activities, living on a lakefront property might be the dream most people strive for. Ontario lakes can be large and vast allowing you to enjoy anything you want from boat rides and fishing, to water skiing and tubing. Large lakes like Lake Simcoe or Lake Couchiching tend to have larger homes and docks which allows its residents the ability to launch and park their boats on their property. Of course as everyone knows, larger homes equal higher price tags, especially in waterfront properties.


Smaller lakes, on the other hand, provide a cheaper price point but there may be restrictions as to how much you can do. Some small lakes restrict motorized boats, allowing homeowners to only enjoy water activities using canoes or kayaks. Also, if price is a big factor, you may have to drive farther than you think as waterfront homes become cheaper the farther away you are from a big city, and how small the lake is.


One problem that affects all waterfront properties, regardless of size, are mosquitoes and bugs. Expect bugs to surround your home in all seasons, except winter of course. In winter, living on a lake can also be a great thing as some lakes do freeze over. Having a frozen lake opens a lot of winter activities right at your doorstep, ice fishing, snowmobiling, and more! You have to be aware that ice can destroy your dock and your boat; so every fall, waterfront owners have to store their boats above water as well as their docks.



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Riverfront

Next time you are looking at purchasing a waterfront property, ask us to show you a riverfront one as you may be in for a treat. Riverfront property offers many of the same perks lakefront properties but at a more attractive price tag. You can still enjoy activities such as water skiing, kayaking, paddleboarding and more, but you might have more neighbours around you doing the same thing. Some riverfront properties have homes closer together with neighbours on the other side of the river.


Another point worth noting is that some rivers have restrictions on boat speed, requiring you to travel to an open body of water in order to engage in more water activities. If your river is part of the Trent Severn Waterway then it would not be an issue as you can travel anywhere in the world which is a fantastic option for boaters. If you are looking at owning a waterfront property to use your boat, you have to be aware that some rivers are narrow, restricting you where you can launch your boat and how far out you can build a dock. Commonly, you would be required to launch your boat from a marina nearby and sail to your property which means a longer commute and fuel expenses. Some rivers are so shallow that you wouldn’t be allowed boat access. Because there are a higher amount of properties closer together, rivers tend to be busier and maneuvering in and out of it might be a struggle.  


Many of the same issues that plague lakefront can also affect riverfront, including insects and mosquitoes. In winter, boat owners also require their boats be stored above water, but unlike  lakefront properties, riverfront doesn’t allow you the space to be able to store your boat in your own property. Boats would have to be retrieved at the nearby marina and driven to storage.



There are so many nuances with waterfront properties that you need the right people to help you navigate through it all. This is merely an introduction to all the different features that come with living in a waterfront home. Luckily, you have landed on the right team that is ready to take on the task of helping you find your perfect home. The Lake Country Real Estate Team are experts in waterfront properties with over 600 transactions under their belt and more than 45 years combined experience. We look forward to your call: 705-238-6001