Lake Champlain real estate is back in 2011 and prices are more reasonable than ever! I've noticed that sellers are finally pricing their lakefront homes realistically after reading and hearing bad news over the past 24 months even hearing stories at cocktail parties about the neighbor who took a loss on the sale of his home. But was it really a loss? Perhaps not! If you have lived in your home for over seven years, you have gained a profit; the declines only occurred in 2009 and 2010. Like the stock market, real estate investments are cyclical. Prices go up and down, and if you stay in your house, just like owning a stock for 20 years, you'll make some good money. The only avenue to speculate on real estate is through niche property, such as waterfront homes, bought at a good price. And this year, along with the next two to four years, will be an excellent time to buy a property on Lake Champlain or a lake-view home close to Burlington or in the Champlain Islands.
Real Life Success Stories
I had a client that bought a small cottage for $80,000 ten years ago and built an additional small, energy-efficient house on the three acres. Now the year-round property is worth approximately $500,000. The property needed a new septic ($20,000) and construction was about $200,000.
Ten years ago, another client bought a small summer cottage for $125,000 and it is now valued at $350,000. In another prime example, a summer lakefront cottage on Thompson's Point in Charlotte sold for $120,000 in 1996 and sold last year for $550,000 with renovations, but I don't think the renovations were more than $100,000! These opportunities still exist on Lake Champlain and on other lakes in Vermont. And it is a joy to experience a Vermont summer on a peaceful lake. Even if you only make it to Vermont for a couple of weekends a year, the rents on Thompsons Point in Charlotte can be as high as $1,200 per week. A great investment! Another worthy investment strategy is to find a short sale or foreclosure on Lake Champlain.It's a gift to live on Lake Champlain