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Waterfront Homes for Sale in Florida

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WATERFRONT HOMES FOR SALE IN FLORIDA


While narrowing down your house search criteria by property type, waterfront homes for sale in Florida tends to make the cut.  Waterfront goes hand in hand with the tropical paradise dream of living in Florida, a dream seeded in minds since the expansion of the Flagler railroad around 1900.  The state of Florida offers 1,700 freshwater rivers and streams, approx. 8,436 miles of shoreline combined between the Atlantic and the Gulf, and over 10,000 lakes.  Waterfront homes for sale in Florida will sit within a few hundred feet of either the Atlantic Ocean, Intracoastal waterways, or inland lakes, rivers, and runoffs.  From swamp to Sea, Florida offers some of the most intriguing, unique, biodiversity in the world.

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INTELLIGENTLY NAVIGATE THE WORLD OF WATERFRONT HOMES FOR SALE IN FLORIDA


Down to the bare bones, MerriamWebster.com defines waterfront as “land, land with buildings, or a section of a town fronting or abutting on a body of water.”  Stemming from this framework,  Florida is in the top percentage of states with the greatest amount of water including a unique variety of ecosystems and biodiversity that draws people from all over the world.  Rising sea levels are a concern for mortgage underwriting, and insurance policies, a huge concern to take into consideration while purchasing waterfront property.  In the last 31 years, the sea level in Florida has gone up 6 inches, expected to go up 6 more inches in the next 15 years.  Throughout this piece, we’ll go over the common types of waterfront homes for sale in Florida you’ll see, and discuss critical issues to address while going into contract.  We’ll also talk about financing options and expected costs correlating with waterfront homes for sale in Florida.  One of our main objectives at Real-ativity is to help educate you, the consumer, to feel empowered and confident navigating the residential world of real estate.  Find more tools, resources, tips, and particulars about all the different aspects of buying a home, selling a home, financing a home, negotiations, and inspections under our SMARTS tab.

INTRACOASTAL, CANAL, LAKES, LAGOONS, RIVERS, AND THE ATLANTIC OCEAN


alt="Aerial view of canal and intracoastal front single family homes with oceanfront condos in the background."The Florida portion of the Atlantic Intracostal Waterway winds along the Atlantic, less than a mile from the shoreline.  It is primarily brackish water, a mix between salt and fresh, the level of salinity varies with the distance from the canals to the ocean.  It is filled with estuaries, spots where the sea runoff meets the inland freshwater runoffs.  In South Florida, Palm Beach County is home to a 20-mile-long estuary, the Lake Worth Lagoon.  The majority of the Florida section of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterways lean toward this intricate part of the ecosystem as a wide range of different sea creatures use estuaries as nurseries, and the inland location and mangrove coverage provide protection for the little ones to grow up.  It is important to keep in mind, that the water levels of the Intracostal go up and down just like the tide- particularly vital regarding boating.  The architecture, design, and styles of Intracoastal waterfront homes for sale in Florida will vary.  From monumental s-tile roof Mediterranean-inspired luxury pool homes to contemporary 3-story beach houses.  Living on the Intracoastal offers great east proximity, blocks to the beach, and close to commuter connectors like I-95 and the tri-rail station.  Enjoy the gorgeous colors of the sunrise on the Atlantic, and the sunsets on the Intracoastal.

Heading inward in Florida, there are also freshwater canal waterfront homes for sale, some on primary offshoots of main rivers such as the designated wild and scenic 7 miles river, the Loxahatchee.  Much of the fresh waterways in the center of the state are a part of the Florida Everglades, showcasing an enormous variety of plants and animals.  The more inward Florida you go, you’ll see less tide variation and more alligators.  Waterfront homes for sale in Florida that are situated more inland on freshwater canals, lakes, and rivers, tend to be more monetarily approachable than Intracoastal or Oceanfront homes, offering more privacy and land.  Homes that are situated on a canal, lake, or lagoon are prone to flooding, especially if it is riverfront property.  If you are planning on docking a boat, be sure the water level variations and depth can handle the size of your water vessel all year round.

CRITICAL ISSUES TO ADDRESS BEFORE GOING TO CONTRACT ON WATERFRONT HOMES FOR SALE IN FLORIDA


RIGOROUS INSPECTION WITH SEAWALL/BULKHEAD, DOCK, AND BOAT LIFT REPORTS

Designed to keep water from infiltrating a homeowner’s land, seawalls and bulkheads are usually not included in home insurance.  In addition to a comprehensive inspection, find a marine engineer or certified seawall/bulkhead specialist to do an inspection.  Be sure the inspector checks out the hydrostatic balance, underwater berm penetration, cracks, rust stains, soil loss, erosion, corroded tie rods, or deteriorating rebar that can affect the integrity of the seawall.  The report should have photos both in and out of the water, cover footings, pilings, panels, bulkhead, and seawall cap, and identify the type of seawall – whether t-pile, coral rock, or aluminum, or wood.  Also, it is important to examine the boat lift and dock.  Find out if the dock and boatlift were permitted,  a  find a certified inspector to have a look at your dock and boat lift.  and be sure the report shows an assessment of anchorage, walkway, handrails, deck, hardware, flotation, concrete or wood pile condition, piling caps, structural integrity, electrical (boxes, breakers, FGCI protection, conduit, ground jumpers), plumbing and all of the parts of boat lifts.  Fixing portions of the seawall, bulkhead, dock, and boat lit can be extremely costly.  Assessing the recurrent physical condition and getting a projection of the life expectancy and repairs that may be needed will help save you from massive expenses later on.

FLOOD INSURANCE ESTIMATES

Flood Insurance is not included in home insurance, so you will want to be sure to get a quote before going under contract on waterfront homes for sale in Florida.  Recently, FEMA enacted Risk Rating 2.0, the first major restructuring of the National Flood Insurance Programs since 1968.  Years in the making, Risk Rating 2.0 is a new methodology based on science, data, and the latest technology to determine a structure’s unique flood risk.  Rate Risk 2.0 impact on FL homeowners has been alarming, as many of been overpaying or underpaying.  Since waterfront homes for sale in Florida typically are in high-risk flood areas, home buyers will need to be prepared to be required to carry flood insurance, and at a greater cost than the current owner as that rate likely will not be passed along to the new owner.

CONSTRUCTION

Waterfront homes for sale in Florida are exposed to dramatic weather such as heavy humid air, direct hot sunlight, and saltwater corrosion, plus, hurricanes causing winds, torrential rain, nonstop lightning, and water sprouts.  It is crucial you find out as much about the home as possible.  Concrete block construction is often considered the most safeguarded construction material, however, some mixed treated wood frames will fair well if done correctly.   Go over the foundation, roof, siding, windows, glass doors, decking, insulation, garage doors, exterior paint, and landscaping to be sure they are all sound and capable of handling the high potential for extreme weather.  Does the home have hurricane shutters?  Impact windows?  fiberglass doors?  Find out the history of the home, has it gone through a hurricane or major storm?  If so, did the home flood or take on great damage?  Many of these particulars will make a difference in home insurance prices and offer a point of reference for negotiating repairs after inspection.

RIPARIAN RIGHTS AND LITTORAL RIGHTS ON WATERFRONT HOMES FOR SALE IN FLORIDA

While searching for waterfront homes for sale in Florida, be sure to order a survey, and have a legal professional review the property description in the deed to confirm the land is indeed a true waterfront property.  In order to utilize Riparian rights or Littoral Rights, the land must be waterfront true and through, not adjacent to or near a body of water. Riparian Rights are granted to landowners with homes situated on a river or stream, where the property line extends to the high water mark.  Riparian Rights allow owners to use the water as they wish, so long as activities do not disturb the neighbors upstream and downstream.  Littoral rights pertain to land sitting on navigable lake and ocean waters, giving landowners unrestricted access to the waters.  The property line of privately owned waterfront land is set at the median high water mark, and any land beyond this point belongs to the government.  Riparian right is commonly used to describe property rights in both categories.

As defined on the Florida Senate website, “Riparian rights are those incident to land bordering upon navigable waters. They are rights of ingress, egress, boating, bathing, and fishing and such others as may be or have been defined by law. Such rights are not of a proprietary nature. They are rights inuring to the owner of the riparian land but are not owned by him or her. They are appurtenant to and are inseparable from the riparian land. The land to which the owner holds title must extend to the ordinary high watermark of the navigable water in order that riparian rights may attach. Conveyance of title to or lease of the riparian land entitles the grantee to the riparian rights running therewith whether or not mentioned in the deed or lease of the upland.”  Although these rights are granted to the general public along with owners, there are special specifics intended for waterfront property owners.  Head on over to our Florida Riparian Rights section to find out more.

BOATING, ROUTES, LOCATION, AND VIEWS FROM WATERFRONT HOMES FOR SALE IN FLORIDA

Location and direction matter when looking for your perfect waterfront home for sale in Florida.  If glorious colorful sunset or sunrise water views are a priority, figure out which direction the front and back of the property face.  Check that views are unobstructed by tropical foliage, as it is illegal to remove certain protected species, such as the native Florida Mangrove varieties.

Waterfront homes for sale in Florida are perfect for boating enthusiasts.  There are adorable pockets of fisherman communities where everybody knows your name nestled within the runoffs, shoots, canals, and mini lakes branching from the Ocean and Intracoastal.  Foralt="Fishing boats docked in a canal with single family homes with private docks." boating, it is crucial to confirm location details prior to signing a contract, so you are able to achieve your waterfront preferences.  There are important topics to take into consideration to ensure a smooth, effortless boat transition.  Find out the depth and width of the canal, plus tidal variations of water levels so you know your boat will remain buoyant at all times.  Check out the regional rules and zoning requirements on the type and size of boats allowed.  Explore a map to determine if the location will allow you to do what you want and go where you want to go by water.  Make sure there are no unpassable fixed bridges. For boating, it is also crucial to confirm location details prior to signing a contract, so you are able to achieve your waterfront preferences.  Many waterfront homes for sale in Florida are governed by an HOAcondo, or co-op association.  These require certain rules and regulations regarding amenities.  Review the community association docs, rules, and regulations, so you know exactly what you are getting into.  Sometimes dock space is rented, or first come, first serve.

EXPLORE WATERFRONT HOMES FOR SALE IN FLORIDA BY CITY WITH BOATING SERVICES:

BOCA RATON   |   BOYNTON BEACH   |   DELRAY BEACH   |   HIGHLAND BEACH   |   JUPITER
LAKE WORTH   |   LANTANA   |   NORTH PALM BEACH   |   PALM BEACH   |   PALM BEACH GARDENS
RIVIERA BEACH   |   SOUTH PALM   |   TEQUESTA   |   WELLINGTON   |   WEST PALM BEACH

While perusing waterfront homes for sale in Florida, under the neighborhood of interest, be sure to scroll down to find out if the community will meet your needs.  There are boxes for “DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION,” “ASSOCIATION INFORMATION,” “NEIGHBORHOOD AMENITIES,” and “EXPLORE NEARBY.”  At Real-ativity, we’ve put all the intricate details for specific communities in one place.  Would you like some assistance while on the lookout for your dream waterfront home in Florida?  We’ll connect you with one of our professional licensed realtors who specializes in waterfront homes for sale in Florida.  Contact us today!

 


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