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My friend Joe (whom I’ve never met) is a regular visitor to this site, and also a future log home owner (…if all goes as planned).
I don’t know what I did to deserve it, but he has provided me (and by extension, you all) with some very valuable information that I just have to share.
This mostly pertains to those seeking a lake lot on which to build here in Tennessee…
Joe’s email to me, in full:
My wife and I just got back from visiting Watts Bar, Norris Lake, and Douglas lake. They are all unique and very nice. Lake front property (1/2 to 1.75 acres) with underground water, phone and water (not sewer) are essentially $175,000 to $250,000 depending on the development or deed restricted community. If it is important to the buyer, then you need to know how far to a grocery store, restaurant and emergency room as this cannot be taken for granted as 30 minutes to 1 hour or more is common. Lakefront lots come three ways: level (means water is probably shallow), year round (means lot is probably very steep) and seasonal (water disappears in winter). All the lakes except navigational ones like Watts bar are way down this year. Douglas is down 20 feet right now which is 1 foot above normal winter level. It certainly gives you a chance to see what your “lake front” will look like in winter. Other lakes are down 9 to 15 foot. Many lake front homes could not use their boats this summer as there was no water at their docks.
It tells you everything you need to know about levels and fishing. You must also understand the buildable area on a lot which is controlled by the “flood line” and effects the placement and size of the septic field and home. A 2 acre lot may only have 1 acre buildable. Site inspection for septic is a must as well as title search. Some lots would have to have the ground dynamitted to get a basement in through the rock. I found the agents who took me around to very professional but “buyer” beware. A buyers agent and a sellers agent have different obligations to you on disclosure. The counties tend to have inspections only for electrical and septic and the rest is up to you. On used houses a good home inspector is a must.
THANKS, JOE, FOR THE WEALTH OF INFORMATION! WE’RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER, AND INFO LIKE THIS IS INVALUABLE.
We've gone through the entire process of designing and planning every single detail of our dream log home! We have the blueprints… and the land… and the contractor… and the goal for our log cabin home to be our retirement home. Before you build (or buy) a log home, I have a slew of helpful tips for you — to plan, design, build, decorate, and maintain your very own rustic modern log home. When I'm not fine-tuning the log home of my dreams, you'll find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites).