Any well-built house that sits directly on the water automatically has much to offer, but the very best lakefront properties go beyond these two essentials. If you're looking to buy a lakefront house, here are some other features to look for.

Water Depth Immediately in Front of the Property

The depth of the water that's immediately in front of your property will partially dictate how you take advantage of the lake. Shallow water is ideal for swimming with young children, as you can go out as deep or shallow as you like, while somewhat deeper water may allow you to jump in if your waterfront has ledges. Water with ledges might also attract fish, in case you're an angler.

If you have a boat to use on the lake, make sure the water is sufficiently deep for anchoring or docking. Even if you primarily keep the boat elsewhere, being able to anchor in front of your house will make picking up and dropping people off easy. Not everyone will have to drive to your boat's primary location, as you can bring the vessel by the house.

Type of Shoreline Along the Property

While you can enjoy the water regardless of what the shoreline along your property is like, different shorelines have various advantages and disadvantages. Which is best for you depends on your preferences.

For example, a sand shoreline is perfect for sunbathing, reading, and building sandcastles, but sand will come into your lake house. Further, you need to be prepared to shower anytime you go swimming and to vacuum regularly. If you have a small boat, such as a canoe or sailing dingy, you can easily launch it on the sand.

A rocky shoreline is less comfortable to lie down on, but you won't have to worry about sand entering your lake house. Rocks aren't gentle enough to launch small boats over either. You'll have to carry any canoe, kayak, or sailing dingy if you want to use one on a rocky shoreline.

Conversely, mud shorelines are easy to pull boats in and out of, and mud doesn't track like sand. However, muddy water can be less pleasant to swim in.

Building's Proximity to the Water

Unless you're purchasing a boathouse, in which case you'll want a building directly on the water, the best lake houses are usually situated a little way back from the water. You want to be able to see and easily access the water, but the house should be far enough back that wakes and waves won't cause any damage.

To learn more about lake house properties, contact a real estate service.