Building a lakefront home is something that most people can only dream about. If you're fortunate enough to be actively pursuing that dream, or have already set up your Adirondack chairs, PATCO Construction can help! PATCO is fully versed in DEP permit requirements, as well as all set back regulations. We're ready with the skill and experience to get you through the special challenges that waterfront construction / renovation presents. PATCO has been building on Southern Maine and New Hampshire waterfronts for over a quarter of a century - that's experience you can trust!
Tear Down or Renovate?
Most waterfront homes were built at a time where building codes were nonexistent, and built with whatever materials were laying around – “It’s just a camp anyways “. In time, demand for waterfront homes increased, and people starting turning cottages and camps to year round homes.
The decision to renovate, tear down and re-build, or add an addition can be a difficult one to answer and depends on several factors. What is my goal? What is the cost? What is my budget? What am I allowed to do by code? What will be the value of the property after the project and what are my future plans for the property? Depending on the project, Tearing down an older structure and building new is the most practical and inexpensive course, and sometimes a simple addition will meet the goal.
When looking at the feasibility of a waterfront project PATCO Construction helps our customers understand the impact of the proposed project , and have been thanked by homeowners over the years even if it resulted in doing nothing. There are some important things to consider, before you start insulating and finishing the inside of your “quaint” cabin by the lake.
First, insure that the bones are adequate. Are the foundation or posts supporting the structure adequate for future plans? Are the walls plumb and level? Are the joists reasonably sized to carry the loads of the proposed and future use? Is the electrical system adequate to meet current load and insurance requirements? All these items should be considered before you replace windows and doors, insulate and complete interior finish. By themselves, each of these little jobs are not expensive but as a whole, if they must eventually be torn out because of underlying “bones” issues, it can be disheartening and expensive.
Finally, in real estate, under all is the land. Most waterfront real estate has high real estate values. Just a glance at most tax bills will prove that the real value of the realty is in the land. Often the “cabin” is worth a fraction of the land under it. When purchasing a new waterfront home, study the value of the land carefully. What are your long term goals for the property? Will the value of the real estate maintain it’s market value if the structures are torn down and replaced? For many folks, this is important. For others however, a cabin by the lake is more than just an investment. The real “return” is the years of enjoyment and memories with family and friends. Isn’t that alone, an excellent return on investment?
For more information on PATCO's expertise in waterfront construction, check out our FAQ and Project Portfolio HERE.