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Lakefront living in Denver, NC

Lakefront in Denver

Welcome to North Carolina’s Premier Waterfront Community

North Carolina has no shortage of scenic sights, but Lake Norman is indisputably one of its most picture-perfect attractions. A marriage of human ingenuity and nature’s artistry, this locale is a world-class destination for leisure seekers. And the best part? You can call it home by purchasing a lakefront home in Denver, NC. Denver is a fast-developing area that’s located on the less busy and more laid-back side of Lake Norman. Given the small population, Denver has a decidedly small-town feel that makes it an ideal place to raise a family. But what Denver lacks in size it more than makes up for with convenience. Everything you need is right in town, whether you’re looking for a fully-stocked grocery store or a posh pet groomer. Speaking of convenience, this lakeside town is just a 25-minute drive to Charlotte and its vibrant culture and thriving job market. And the clincher? Lakeside living in Denver doesn’t have to cost a fortune, as Zillow.com puts the area’s typical home value at $378,000—well within the national median price. If you’re looking for peaceful and luxurious living, Denver is the perfect place for you. Read on for our comprehensive guide to this scenic lakefront community.

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All about Lake Norman

A lakeside home is a major investment, so you likely want to know more about Lake Norman and the lifestyle it offers. If this area has piqued your interest, here are some must-know facts about it:
  • It’s a man-made lake —The lake was created between 1959 to 1964 by the Duke Power Company, which built the dam across Catawba River to bolster the area’s supply of electricity. It took over 700 days to fill the 32,000-acre basin that would form the lake.

  • The lake borders four counties —Lake Norman has over 500 miles of shoreline that span across four counties: Mecklenburg, Lincoln, Catawba, and Iredell. As such, buyers have plenty of neighborhoods to choose from, depending on their needs, lifestyles, and budgets.

  • You can enjoy all four seasons —Residents around Lake Norman have the privilege of enjoying all four seasons. Summer temperatures peak at around 90℉, while winter temperatures range between 30℉ – 50℉. Fall is the most picturesque season, however, as the foliage turns a dramatic red.

  • Getting around is easy — Although Lake Norman provides a tranquil environment, it’s just a 20-minute drive to Charlotte, the most populous city in North Carolina. This is made possible by Highway 16, one of the main thoroughfares that service the area.

  • There’s plenty of job opportunities — Lake Norman’s proximity to Charlotte opens up a lot of professional possibilities. Many Fortune 500 companies have headquarters or outposts in the country’s 15th largest city, including Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Duke Energy, Amazon, Lowe’s, Corning Inc., and Honeywell.

Enjoyable activities Lake Norman

A beautiful view is far from the only thing that Lake Norman offers. With a wealth of recreational activities on offer, living here is like taking a permanent vacation. Some of the residents’ favorite activities include:
  • Fishing — Imagine living right next to a nationally renowned bass fishing lake! But that’s not all, as avid anglers also visit Lake Norman for a chance to catch prize-winning catfish, crappie, and white or yellow perch. Fishing is open year-round and the Visit Lake Norman commission hosts various annual fishing tournaments.

  • Boating — Exploring Lake Norman by boat is one of the best ways to enjoy the beautiful scenery. Luckily, many shops rent pontoons, kayaks, and paddleboards, among other watercraft. If you own a boat, there are also docks where you can anchor your vessel.

  • Swimming — Lake Norman State Park boasts an excellent beach that stretches 125 yards. Visitors will have access to amenities such as warm showers, changing stalls, and lockers.

  • Hiking and biking — If you love hiking, head over to the town of Davidson, where the Kincaid Trail originates. This three-mile course is part of the Carolina Thread Trail system, a regional network of greenways and trails that connects several counties. Cyclists will be glad to know that many of the trails in the system are also bike-friendly.

  • Scuba diving — To build the dam that created Lake Norman, townsfolk had to be relocated. However, the towns they left behind remain intact underneath the lake’s placid water. If you go scuba diving, you’ll find a cotton mill, a Georgian-style plantation house, and even an old airplane beneath the lake.

  • Food and drink— Beer lovers will feel right at home in Lake Norman, as the region is home to elite craft breweries: Lake Norman Brewery, Royal Bliss, D9 Brewing Company, Primal Brewery, Ass Clown Brewing Company, and Eleven Lakes Brewing. You’ll also find plenty of world-class restaurants here, such as The Blue Parrot Grill, Kindred, and Lancaster’s BBQ.

Lakefront homes in Denver, NC

Real estate site Niche.com classifies Denver, NC as a suburban-rural community. It’s a place where people put down their roots, too, with over 65% of residents owning their homes. Given the town’s proximity to scenic Lake Norman, homes here command a premium, with Realtor.com pegging the median list price at $364,000. This is about 50% higher than the state average and about 25% more than the national average. Luckily, a broad range of realty types allows buyers to be part of this ideal community, regardless of their budget or life stage.
  • Condominiums — The ideal starter home, these cozy homes have petite price tags but big perks, including quick access to the lake, easy maintenance, and premium amenities.

  • Townhomes — Want more space but not yet ready to buy a single-family home? A townhome provides the perfect compromise. Spanning two to three levels, these properties provide more than enough room for growing families.

  • Single-family homes — For those who need greater privacy and freedom, a single-family home is the ideal choice. These properties often come with expansive yards and stunning views of Lake Norman.

  • Luxury properties — The most coveted properties in the area, luxury homes are located in the most exclusive lots and offer amenities that rival those of resorts. These deluxe houses do command hefty prices, however, with many being listed for seven figures.
Most properties in the area take advantage of Lake Norman’s scenery, so large windows are a common architectural feature. The typical home here has three bedrooms and two bathrooms, with an average floor space of about 2,000 square feet. Properties here represent the best of North Carolina architecture, and you’ll see houses built in the Georgian, Colonial, Plantation, Farmhouse, and Bungalow styles. Of course, you’ll also find homes constructed in a more contemporary look.

Neighborhoods that offer lakefront real estate

Spanning 34 miles, Lake Norman is home to many great neighborhoods that offer scenic lakeside living. To help you narrow down your options, we’ve curated the most in-demand communities for you:
  • Norman Pointe— This 58-acre waterfront development is one of the newest luxury developments in Lake Norman. It’s a custom-home community, where each property is a unique marvel of architecture. Fittingly, the developers offer larger home sites to give you ample space to build your dream home. Phase One of the development has been completed, while Phase Two is currently underway and offers more attainable price points.

  • Governors Island — If it’s prestige you’re after, there’s no better address than Governors Island. Accessible by a small bridge across Lake Norman, this enclave is home to a cluster of luxury properties that let you enjoy exquisite waterfront living. With just over 200 residents, the community has a tight-knit feel that all buyers look for. Governors Island is situated on the quieter side of the lake and has easy access to world-class golf ranges.

  • Norman Estates — Located at one of Lake Norman’s most coveted shores, this community is a place where luxurious living comes standard. Here you’ll find estate-style homes right on the water’s edge, giving residents some of the best views of the lake. Norman Estates is ultra-exclusive, too, as it is tucked away at a secluded section of Lake Norman. There are only a handful of houses here, but each one is a marvel in its own right.

  • Sailview — Buyers looking for a family-friendly neighborhood that encourages an active lifestyle should take a look at Sailview. A multi-phased development, the community has many excellent amenities, including a community pool, sand volleyball courts, tennis facilities, and a clubhouse. There’s also an eight-acre park that features a playground and exercise stations, as well as walking paths that lead to the community boat slips. Speaking of which, many of these docking facilities are attached to homes or located at the clubhouse.

  • Pebble Bay — This deluxe subdivision has five phases, several of which are gated. Buyers can take their pick of expansive homesites where they can build their custom-designed dream homes. All residents get access to convenient amenities such as community boat ramps and day docks. Many of the properties also have direct access to the lake and come with their private docks. It’s also home to The Village of Sherrills Ford, a new mixed-use community that features top-notch restaurants and a convenient shopping district.

  • Ashley Cove — Ashley Cove is an established neighborhood where families can enjoy all the perks of lakeside living. Several of the homes here are situated on spacious acreages and come with deeded boat slips and lifts. The streets are lined with leafy trees and the surroundings are peaceful and safe. Its proximity to highly rated schools makes it the ideal neighborhood for buyers with young kids.

  • Webbs Chapel Cove— Webbs Chapel Cove provides all the space you want in a community that’s close to nature. The gated community offers expansive wooded home sites that bring nature right to your doorstep. There are also prime lots that sit on the edge of Lake Norman, giving residents a front-row view of its majesty. It’s the perfect place for people seeking privacy, leisure, and convenience.

  • Westport — Located at the western portion of Lake Norman, Westport is a census-designated place that’s home to around 4,000 residents. Several properties have access to exclusive beaches, giving you your own little slice of paradise. Golf enthusiasts may also sign up for the Westport Golf Club, which boasts an 18-hole course designed by Porter Gibson.

Guide to purchasing a lakefront property in Denver, NC

Few properties boast the same prestige as lakefront houses. With their scenic location and tranquil surroundings, they are the epitome of leisurely living. Of course, desirable properties command a premium price, which is why careful consideration is required when buying waterfront homes. To help you make the right decision, take heed of these tips:
  • Location, location, location — Cliche though this adage may be, location remains the foremost consideration when buying real estate. That said, don’t just fixate on how good the scenery is—hone in on the more pragmatic aspects of a given locale. If your lakeside property will be a vacation home, make sure it’s no further than two hours from your primary residence so visiting it doesn’t become a chore. Your home should also be fairly close to major cities so you have easy access to grocery stores, banks, hospitals, and shopping districts.

  • Size matters— Chances are, you plan to entertain family and friends at your new waterfront home. As such, it’s important to get a property that gives you ample space to do so. A three-bedroom house is a good place to start, but you can always get a bigger property depending on how many guests you’re welcoming. Likewise, make sure the house has storage space or amenities for outdoor equipment such as boats or jet skis. Do note, however, that the bigger the floor space, the bigger a home’s price tag will be.

  • Ask about the neighborhood— When it comes to acquiring real estate, remember that you’re not just buying a house—you’re buying into a lifestyle. And who better to tell you about lakefront living than your future neighbors? If you can get the opportunity, speak to current residents in the area you want to buy in. Ask questions about the area’s boating scene and what activities are held during holiday weekends in the spring or summer. First-hand information like these gives you valuable insight into how desirable a lakeside location truly is.

  • Don’t forget about the water depth and shoreline — You wouldn’t want to buy a lakeside house only to discover that the water isn’t suitable for boating. When looking at listings, be sure to inquire about the amount of water frontage, the water’s depth at the dock, and where the 760 line is, as these influence your dock design and boat selections. Don’t forget to ask about docks and dock permits, too. A real estate agent who specializes in waterfront homes can help you identify factors that buyers usually fail to consider.

  • Take note of restrictions and mandates— Given a lakefront home’s unique location, they usually come with certain restrictions that don’t apply to standard homes. For example, the municipality can limit the height of your home so it won’t block out the sun, which can prevent you from adding another story. If there’s a homeowner’s association, it might also impose rules on what renovations you can or can’t do to a property.

  • Know the hidden costs— There are no two ways about it: owning and maintaining a home on the lake costs more money. To begin with, it costs more to maintain your house because it’s exposed to the elements year-round. Utilities are often pricier in lakeside locations because it’s harder to lay down power lines, water pipes, and septic systems in such areas. You may also have to pay bulkhead fees, which help maintain the retaining walls that prevent soil erosion.

  • Get an inspection— Even if a property looks perfect on paper, have it checked by a professional inspector. This is because there are defects that aren’t outright obvious that only the trained eye of an inspector can spot, such as electrical wiring issues or plumbing problems. They will also check for concerns that are specific to waterfront homes, such as corrosion, excessive moisture, and flooding due to a high water table.
Ready to settle into lakeside living? Be sure to work with real estate agents whose expertise is waterfront properties, such as Christopher and Lauren Sheridan. As the principals of The Christopher Lauren Group (The CLG), they provide end-to-end realtor services to clients, giving them a seamless and hassle-free buying experience. And as residents of the Lake Norman area since 1999, they have unparalleled knowledge of the local real estate market. Whether you’re looking for a primary home or an investment property, Christopher and Lauren Sheridan are committed to helping you find the perfect lakefront house. To get your home search started, give The CLG a call at 704.299.8296 or send an email to christopherlaurengroup(at)gmail(dotted)com.