This is the year to buy the Maine waterfront. Low rates at the banks, great selection, and oh the fun you are going to have with your family.And consider renting out the place to the same folks year after year who want to enjoy "Vacationland" land, to rent your new Maine waterfront real estate.
So what's to consider on ownership. Like any other property, no big deal in Maine?
Well shoreland zoning that happened back in the 1971 established rules, protections, guides to protect the Maine waterfront resource and wildlife around that lake, and everything that lives in the lake itself.
Before you buy, check with the Maine Shoreland Zoning Regulations. I am president of the Drews Lake Property Owner's Association and we have workshops, try to protect the lake to give to our children a resource in as good or better shape than we were privledged to be able to own. Being a good steward and not hurting the lake and enjoying the four season beauty here in Maine where it is not over crowded. Respect for that resource. Here is a handy ME Shoreland Zoning PDF Handbook to read over.
Local campers educate themselves on why the regulations are needed and dove tail the philosophy into their care in everything they do around the lake, pond, river, stream or ocean they border and have for a neighbor. What are common problems or concerns around a Maine waterway? The 36 page guide talks about, illustrates the danger of a cutting operation in the watershed that dumps in to the Maine body of water you are hoping to invest in. Poorly engineered roads that are overused for the purpose they were designed and lack of camper contribution to keeping those roads properly culverted, rock lined drains kept free of leaves, debris are just part of the real estate owner's responsibility. What is a non-conforming structure? Can I expand and what are the rules? Setbacks, tests or permits needed. What is a grandfathered lot or structure? How about guidelines for erosion control, septic disposal rules, clearing vegetation and timber harvesting? Who do I turn to and is there is local citizen board of property owners for a clear voice, vision, and protection of the water resource.
Does anyone other than DEP, LURC care on the local level? The booklet helps with an explanation of the roles of local boards and state agencies. Get the booklet, do your homework, ask lots of questions if you currently own Maine waterfront property in a shoreland zone. Or if you are thinking about purchasing Maine waterfront real estate, property on a lake, pond, stream, river, the Maine coast. Also, scope out the property being looked at as you kick real estate tires. Is the shed on the back of the lot that looks pretty new, recently installed on the local tax records, or in the self analysis from the Bureau of Maine Property Tax Department's records in unorgainzed areas or in plantations where details are not as easy to obtain on the local level? You inherit problems, and have to correct situations after the fact that are in violaton of local and state Maine shoreland zoning regulations. Saying I did not know or a note from home won't get you off the hook any more. Google the property and see what the aerials show, noting the date of the fly over as you do your due diligence to make sure the new Maine waterfront place does not put you in hot water. Maine shoreland zoning regulations have teeth, need your attention before and after your waterfront purchase.
Ever wondered about how far out can my dock go, what about clearing along the water, what trees can I cut or can not remove and where in that 250 back shoreland zone? Questions needing answers and I am happy to help, offer my two cents on regulations, protecting the lake from non source point pollution. Be kind to your Maine waterfront property.