Wisconsin Natural Resources Magazine, nearly 80 % of the land
bordering Wisconsin lakes and rivers is privately owned and
developed. Since the 1960s, the number of homes on Wisconsin
waterways has increased 216 %!
About 80% of Wisconsin's lakes lie north of Highway 29 (Wausau, WI).
75% of all lakes 10 acres in size and larger are already developed!
Of the lakes that remain undeveloped, nearly all are under 50 acres
in size and half are under public ownership. They are owned by state
and county and will never be available for private ownership.
As for the large lakes (200 acres and larger), only 3% remain
undeveloped and available for private ownership. This means that 97%
of Wisconsin's large lakes are developed. If you are waiting for a
large lake you are competing with the majority of property seekers
for only 3% of Wisconsin's lakes! Some are predicting that by the
year 2005 there will be no more vacant waterfront property left!
The average vacant lake lot in Wisconsin is less than 1 acre in
size, has about 100 feet of frontage and a price tag of over
If you are holding out for an existing home or cabin on a large lake
you will need to budget on the average of $500,000 for the purchase!
If you are looking for lakefront property in the southern two thirds
of the state you need to realize that it has been developed for
decades. The Chicago and Milwaukee markets have been buying it up
for years because it is closer to home. The most expensive
waterfront real estate is in the southern half of the state where
less than 20% of the lakes are located.
If it has been your dream to own a beautiful Wisconsin getaway to
enjoy with your loved ones I urge you not to wait any longer. In
1999, the average price of an acre of land in Wisconsin went up 24%!
In the year 2000 land increased again by another 18%! That's a 42%
increase in just 2 years! It is not going to get cheaper! Depending
upon location, Wisconsin's waterfront property increases in value by
as much as 33% per year!
Look at it as if it were a ladder. Each rung of the ladder
represents either your opportunity to make a profit or pay more. The
sooner you climb onto the ladder the more rungs above you allowing
you to make a profit on your investment. The longer it takes to
climb on, the more rungs beneath you adding to the price and the
fewer properties to select from.
Simply put, waiting too much longer will limit your choices and add
substantially to the cost. Most people can not save at the same rate
as property values are increasing. The cost spiral will only keep
you forever saving and not enjoying either the use of or the
increased value of your own property.
If you are going to own waterfront property, you may have to be
prepared to drive farther north and pay more than you thought. But
don't despair! There are opportunities out there, but you must act
upon them when you see them. Waiting will only cost you thousands
more as each year passes by.