How To Find The Right Lake To Live On

By Frank Eaton

Living on the lake provides a great life style. But which is the right lake to live on?

The lake should be clean, odorless, and environmentally 'friendly'. The water should be safe to swim in. Ideally, it should be managed and patrolled with emergency services in place. But not all lakes are.

Ask the county agency or homeowner's association that oversees the lake properties about the quality, conditions, laws , restrictions, and management of the lake.

Some lake communities control weed and algae growth.

When you are thinking of buying a home on a lake, visit the area in the summer, walk the perimeter, and look closely at the water. Algae growth is highest in the summer, so if a lake is prone to algae, this is when you'll spot it.

If you go lake house shopping in the winter, the lake will look clean, and you will have no way of knowing whether algae forms in the warm weather. Also during summer, note the color of the water; some algae treatments tint the water blue or greenish, which many people find unappealing

Spring-fed lakes are considered 'naturally formed' and man-made lakes are made through digging and use of dams. Spring-fed lakes are often cleaner and clearer, with less stagnation to cause excessive plant growth and possibly attract mosquitoes.

Lakes can flood and go dry. Man-made lakes with dams control the water levels to periodically lower the lake level for dock maintenance, prevent floods, and collect water from streams and rivers.

If you live on a lake where the water level is periodically lowered for dock maintenance, you could be looking out on a drained part of the lake, depending on location of your home. Areas toward the ends that are shallow can become completely drained. This is less likely if you face the deeper middle of the lake.

If lakes allow power boats it means fun to the boat owner but also noise and pollution from engine oil and gas. Some lakes have banned gasoline powered boats and personal watercraft to protect the drinking water and swimming qualities.

Some lakes allow private docks, boats tied to the docks, and may require a dock permit.

Choosing the right lake depends on what you want and desire out of the lake. It should be clean, environmentally safe, and provide a life style for humans and wildlife to enjoy.

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