Waterfront property: Buying agent advice

Published Nov 29, 2019 – 4 mins read

If you are looking to buy a prime waterfront property – on the seashore, beside a lake, along the banks of a river, or even an inland waterway – property search agents are the professionals you might want to consult.

What property search agents can do for you

So, you’ve decided that a priority for the next home you want to buy is a waterfront location. You might want it as your primary place of residence, as a second home or weekend getaway, as a premises you are looking to let to tenants or leaseholders, or as a property investment – the critical issue is its immediate and unrestricted access to the water.

But where do you begin to look for such a property?

Do you stand in front of the local estate agents’ windows waiting for waterfront property to appear or do you ask to be put on their mailing list? Either way, you could be in for a very long wait – if there are any at all, waterfront properties are likely to be few and far between.

And that depends on your making sure you have visited all the estate agents in the area – including those tucked away in the back streets of a town with which you are probably unfamiliar.

That’s not even to mention those waterfront properties that never make it into advertisements or listings on the open market – the demand for riverside and coastal views is buoyant and those properties do get snapped up very quickly.

Property search agents relieve you of any such element of chance or good luck. They are professionals – and they adopt a thoroughly professional attitude to finding precisely the property you want. It is no hit or miss affair for them but rather an exhaustive search using their extensive knowledge of the local property market and a reliance on a broad network of professional contacts, conducted in a completely discreet way that preserves your anonymity as a buyer and cultivates your abiding trust in all that they do.

And all that they do is truly extensive – ranging from the search for suitable properties, negotiating on your behalf, securing any property to which you are committed and following the entire transaction through to its acquisition.

Throughout it all, independent property search agents are there to offer timely advice, including any precautions or reservations you might have about buying a property so close to the waterfront.

Why is a waterfront property important to you?

One of the first questions the property search agents are likely to ask is why you want to buy a waterfront property in particular.

Shore living

If you specify a coastal location, for instance, it might be because you want to live close to the marina where your yacht is berthed. After enjoying a day at sea with your guests, you might want the opportunity of retiring to your residence, where the entertaining and partying can begin.

Or perhaps you want to enjoy Cornwall’s rugged landscape and listen to the waves crashing from a cottage overlooking the sea.

Lakeside living

Alternatively, you might crave for an altogether quieter life – perhaps the nostalgic romantic in you conjures up peaceful riverside settings as illustrated by Kenneth Grahame in the Wind in the Willows for example. Or perhaps you’ve always had a yearning to step back in time to the rural watery idyll painted by John Constable in his iconic Hay Wain.

If it’s English literature that has inspired your love of a lakeside life, perhaps you were won over by The Lady of the Lake by Sir Walter Scott or even Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and Amazons.

The fact is that Britain has a treasure trove of idyllic waterfront settings, along our extensive coastline or beside the myriad rivers, lakes and even canals. And the prices of many of those waterfront properties – which can be as much as 81% higher than comparable inland properties – continue to reflect both past and current demand for the finest examples.

Considerations when buying a waterfront property

Of course, while living by the water seems idyllic, as with buying any property, there are some considerations.

Flooding and erosion

Among the major considerations is the risk of flooding – either from unusually high tides or swollen river courses. You might research the risks yourself by visiting the government website, but property search agents may be able to offer more comprehensive and exhaustive insights into any past, current or future problems.

If you are planning to live on the coast, then researching the shoreline’s history (and understanding its future) too will also highlight whether the property could have issues in the future – either with the property getting closer to the shore if water levels go up. Or, if water levels go down, ending up further from the shore.

And because of high moisture levels, the exterior of the property (and rooms below ground level such as a cellar) need to be inspected carefully for signs of damage caused by salt, mildew and mould.

Second home

If you are considering buying a prime waterfront property for use as a second or holiday home, do note that in some areas of the country, there are restrictions. For example, in parts of Northumberland, a new restriction on new-build properties for use as second or holiday homes has been introduced

Your buying agent will be able to check on these matters for you, and provide guidance and advice.

Call us today

Whether you are looking to buy a waterfront property near the sea, on the banks of a river, the shores of a lake or even fronting a quiet stretch of canal, call us here at Garrington Property Finders to discuss how we can help.