Without a doubt the most common contacts I get from this blog/website are buyers searching for waterfront homes on Lake Norman. Most of these buyers want to buy at what appears to be our “bottom”. The good news is that prices are very low compared to our peak of 2007. However, our inventory has also dropped to half the number at our peak so there is less available today. In order to educate you about our waterfront homes I am going to describe what is currently for sale by price range. This should also help some folks who may arrive in Lake Norman with unrealistic expectations of what they can afford.
Before I begin, if you are looking for a bargain on Lake Norman think “COMPROMISE” no matter what your price range. Until you get well over $1million, the rule of thumb is this:
- Chances are your comprise will involve either the lot or the house or both
- Rule of thumb: The better the lot (water, shoreline, views, depth, dock) the lesser the house in any price range.
- If you want good deep water and open views of the lake you are either going to have to consider an older home/a fixer/a home with issues or be willing to pay at least $700,000 and even at that price it is difficult! (Really more like $900,000+).
$185,000 – $350,000
This truly is a price range for buyers looking for small cove waterfront lots with an older small home or Single/Double-wide trailer. There are currently 27 active listings in this price range 12 of which are at least $300,000. Only 10 out of the 27 are in subdivisions and over half of them are located in Sherrills Ford with only 6 in Mooresville/Cornelius. They range in age from 1965 to 2005 (which has no real water but nice home in Statesville) and range in size from 600 – 2900 sq ft. Your best bet in this price range is a “tear-down” as these are basically land value only or small, older homes in small coves. Some of these do not have private docks.
Specific examples: Manufactured single-wide in Sherrills Ford with old dock on a wide cove for $185,000. A 1200 sq ft 1980 ranch at end of cove in Cornelius. A 1300 sq ft 1979 Modular home with 173′ shoreline at end of a wide cove off of Brawley School Rd for $329,000 with dock. I sold a foreclosure on the same street for $305,000 last month.
$350,000 – $399,000
You will begin to find some decent lots in this price range but the homes with the best lots will be 1960-1980’s construction and need work or be tear-downs because they are so dated. Most of these properties are also found north of Hwy 150 on both sides of the lake. The newer homes will have lots with issues: steep, no dock, very end of a cove, shallow water. There are currently 15 active listings in this price range.
Specific examples: 3800 sq ft home built in 2005 in Troutman located at the end of a cove with no dock. A 1973, 2800 sq ft home on an okay cove in Mooresville. Cool, 1995 round home with beautiful landscaping and nice water and dock in Sherrills Ford for $399,000. Again, most of the properties in this price range are in Sherrills Ford or Troutman and Statesville.
$400,000 – $499,000
This is still the entry level price range for Lake Norman waterfront homes just as it was last year when I wrote this same article. Of the 41 active listings today, 23 were built in 1960 – 1989, 14 were built in the 1990’s and 4 were built since 2000. The average home in this price-range is 3 Bedrooms/ 2 Bathrooms. 29 of these are south of Hwy 150 with 16 in Mooresville and 11 in Denver. Many are located in older, modest neighborhoods and about half are not in subdivisions. The rule of thumb continues to apply: The nicer the home the worse the water/lot/location. (I recently listed and sold with multiple offers a 1979 home on an incredible lot in Cornelius across the street from the Peninsula for $451,000.)
Specific examples: Nice, 1999 3/3 home with beautiful water located in the Harbor Watch subdivision in Statesville near the Buffalo Shoals bridge priced at $479,000. A 2000 sq. ft., 2/2 bungalow built it 1974 with 200′ shoreline, floating dock and sunset views in Mooresville priced at $497,000. A small 1967 bungalow with 3/2 with wide cove water, dock, slip priced at $495,000 also in Mooresville. An updated 1979, 2500 sq ft, 3/3 home in the Westport neighborhood in Denver with open water views and a great dock with new roof. A 1978 remodeled A-Frame 2100 sq ft, 3/2 can sail to Main Channel located in Sherrills Ford. Interesting that the ones in Mooresville are fixers and the other three aren’t.
$500,000 – $599,000
There are currently 42 active listings in the $500,000s. Same rules apply as above but now the homes and locations are getting bigger/better but not necessary the water. They run from 1400 sq ft – 4800 sq ft and were built in 1971 – 2008. Only 12 are north of Hwy 150 while the majority are in Mooresville and then Denver. However, once again the properties north of Hwy 150 are newer, larger homes with nice water where as the southern areas offer older homes with decent water or nice homes with end of cove water.
Specific examples: 3400 sq ft home built in 2000 with open water and great views for $549,000 in Statesville. 3400 sq ft home built in 1979 in Mooresville which is a very stated home but great dock and lovely water views. A really lovely 3300 sq ft home built in 2001 home but end of cove with small dock in Sherrills Ford. A dated 2300 sq ft home built in 1989 in Catawba that has great, main channel water but fairly steep lot for $529,000. A 2000 sq ft 1985 very cute cottage with really nice water and views in Cornelius at $500,000.
$600,000 – $699,000
This was a HOT price range almost 2 years ago. Today we have 43 waterfront properties for sale in the $600,000’s. The better the house/location, the worse the water/dock and vice versa is even more evident in this price range. 29 of the 43 are south of Hwy 150. Same basic statistics as the homes in the $500,000’s but subtle pluses. Older homes have better water and are in a bit better condition. We don’t have any of the great bargains on good lots like I sold several years ago.
Specific examples: Two dated but nice 1990’s homes in the popular Mooresville communities of The Harbour at The Pointe and Pine Isle. Both with narrow cove water. Also in Mooresville a 4000 sq ft modular home built in 2000 on a decent cove off the main channel for $670,000. In Cornelius there are several homes in 100 Norman Place in the mid-600,000’s built in 1989 and about 3000 sq ft with nice water views but no private dock. In the Westport neighborhood of Denver a main channel view, 3800 sq ft home built in 1970 with updates at $689,000. And, in Sherrills Ford a lovely, updated 1964, 2800 sq ft home with great water for $699,000.
$700,000 – $799,000
There are 35 active listings in the $700,000s most of which are in Mooresville and Cornelius. Size ranges from 1200 sq ft (great lot) to 5800 sq ft (great house but by power lines and has Hwy 150 noise). All of these homes in Denver and Sherrills Ford are built in 2000 or later so are for the most part very nice. However, even in this price range the nicer the home the worse the water. Mooreville has 16 listings in this price range but most are dated and or have water issues. Same in Cornelius.
Specific examples: 4200 sq ft, 1988 4/3 home with awesome water and dock in Troutman. 180 degree views but dated house. 4600 sq ft 4/3 1977 home with main channel views but dated off Perth Rd north of Hwy 150. Mooresville has mostly dated and fixer homes with decent water. There is one tiny cabin on a great 1 acre lot for $749,000. However, I sold a nice but small older home on an amazing lot with 500′ of shoreline for $730,000 several months ago which makes this lot look way overpriced. In Cornelius there is a nice home built in 2001, 3400 sq ft 4/3 with nice water for $795,000. In Denver there are only 4 in this price range. One is a gorgeous house but tiny cove water. In Sherrills Ford there is a home in the popular Northview Harbour community built in 2003, 4900 sq. ft. for $719,000 but it has end of cove water.
$800,000 – $899,000
Last summer this price range was really HOT and there were some lovely homes in very good locations down Brawley School Rd in Mooresville with great water. This year, there are a total of 25 active listing in this price range and only 6 in Mooresville. This is the entry price point for both The Point and The Peninsula (Last year it was $900,000) but the water is end of cove and in one case no dock. With the exception of 3, all of the waterfront homes in the $800,000’s were built no earlier than 1990. The majority are at least 4 bedrooms.
Specific examples: 2004 foreclosure down Langtree Peninsula in Mooresville at $895,000. It has nice water views on cul-de-sac. Beautiful 1989, 3550 sq ft home with 171′ of shoreline in Cornelius for $875,000. Three homes in Sailview (Denver) and one in Northview Harbour.
$900,000 – $999,000
Finally we reach a price point where we begin to see some really beautiful properties. Of the 28 homes listed in the $900,000’s, 21 are in Mooresville and Cornelius. There are 5 properties in The Harbour at the Pointe, one of which has main channel views for $999,000. There are also two nearby for $985,000 and $925,000 that have lovely newer homes with great water and about 4000 sq. ft. And, one about the same size and age in South Mooresville with main channel views for $950,000. In Cornelius there are several really nice properties, one built in 2005 with nice water for $995,000 and one in 100 Norman Place built in 1987 but updated for $925,000. There is a gorgeous 1998 home in Sherrills Ford with 180 degree views of the main channel with 200′ of shoreline for $995,000.
$1,000,000 – $1,249,000
This is a very interesting price range as the homes and lots are about the same quality but the homes are a bit larger than those in the $900,000’s. There are 26 active listing in this price range. There are a couple of fixers on nice lots that are only 2500 – 3500 sq ft. The rest were built in the 1990’s or 2000’s and range from 4000 to 7200 sq ft. In my opinion some of these homes are overpriced. 11 are in Mooresville and 11 are in Cornelius with just 2 in Denver and none in Sherrills Ford.
Specific examples: 2 very nice, 6000 – 7000 sq ft homes in north Mooresville with not so good water for $ 1.16 and $1.199 million. A cool contemporary 3/3, 3800 sq. ft. built in 1990 with main channel views and private beach for $1,099,000 also in Mooresville. A 4/4 6300 sq. ft. home in The Point with better water than those in the $900,000’s but not great. A 7200 sq. ft. 6/5 built in 1987 but nice condition on Torrance Chapel in Cornelius. Two 1988 homes in Cornelius one 3000 sq. ft. and one 3800 sq. ft. with great water but homes need updating.
$1,250,000 – $1,499,000
There are 17 homes in this price range. The trend continues that the majority of properties are located in Mooresville (Brawley School) and Cornelius. (There only one two outside of these towns). While we still find two older homes, 10 were built in the 2000’s. The homes are consistently more than 4500 sq. ft. and go up to 8,000 sq ft. 5 are located in The Point, 2 in The Peninsula, Two in The Harbour. 12 have walkout basements. In general lots are on wide coves or the main channel with beautiful water views. In general these are our lower-end luxury homes located in the nicest neighborhoods on Lake Norman.
Specific examples: The homes in The Point are 4 or 5 bedrooms, about 5000 sq ft built in the 2000s. One on Quaker for $1,495 has a point lot with great views. It is 4/2, 5000 sq ft built in 2004. The rest are not on such great lots but all but one have private docks and are on wide coves. The homes in Cornelius are older (1972 – 2012), a variety of sizes on smaller but flat lots with good water views. One on Jetton Rd listed at $1490,000 is a completely remodeled 1998 4600 sq ft 4/4 with gorgeous pool and open water views to main channel. There is one foreclosure in The Harbour at the Point.
$1,500,000 – $1,999,000
32 waterfront homes are currently listed in this price range. (Compared to 17 when I did this analysis last year). Again, all but 2 are in Mooresville and Cornelius. While there are a few fixer/land value properties, most of these homes are at least 5000 sq ft and range up to 14,000 sq ft. 15 were built in the 2000’s. The homes on average have 4 to 6 bedrooms and are for the most part located in very upscale neighborhoods. (7 in The Point, 7 in The Peninsula, 2 in Patrick’s Purchase and 1 in West View). What is fascinating is that even in this price range the rule still applies: The better the water the lesser the upgrades and luxury amenities in the house. Some of these properties do not have the great water views as you might expect.
Specific examples: An 8000 sq ft, 5/6, 2003 home/estate in The Point with nice lot and water views but not exceptional water at $1,995,999. A 5,000 sq ft, 5/4, 2004 Craftsman style home located in a small gated community in Mooresville with HUGE main channel views. A more modest 1994, 6700 sq ft home 4/3 for $1,590,000 with great lot and water. A WOW waterfront lot with a lovely but not spectacular 8500 sq ft, 1994, 5/7 home in the Peninsula for $1,950,000. Another great, main channel lot with 5/4, 6500 sq ft, 1999 home in The Peninsula but lot is only .43 acres.
33 waterfront estates are currently for sale above $2 million. With few exceptions these estates have many upgrades and custom architecture, grand rooms with high ceilings, and range in size from 4000 sq ft to 11,000 sq ft. 10 of these are in The Point, 7 are in The Peninsula 2 on Alexander Island, and 2 in Pebble Bay in Denver. I hate to generalize but right now it seems that the more unique and stunning of these estates are in Cornelius rather than Mooresville. 4 of the 33 are on the west side of Lake Norman.
My favorites/Specific examples! In The Point, a 7400 sq ft, 5/5, 2002 contemporary estate with nice views at $3,315,000. A gracious, old world, more modest 5/3, 4800 sq ft home on an incredible lot on Alexander Island, for $2,200,000. An exquisite Craftsmanish style 11,000 sq ft, 2006, 4/3 custom built home at $3,295,000 in Cornelius. (I actually wrote about this home (see link below) and there was a spread in the Lake Norman Magazine about it as well). A stunning Italianish feeling stone-front estate with a Port Cochere which is 7500 sq ft, 5/5, built in 2005 2 $2,595,000. It is on a tight lot as is more typical in Cornelius but such stunning home!
No matter what price range, there is always going to be a trade off between the house and the quality of the waterfront lot. You are most likely going to have to compromise. Which is your priority; a move-in condition home or a better waterfront lot? At every increase in price range you will find slightly larger or newer homes in increasingly improving locations on slightly better lots with some exceptions of course. If you are looking at a Lake Norman waterfront home as an investment first then water and location will always trump the house. Try to buy the best lot and location possible within your price range because when our Lake Norman real estate market turns around, these are going to become the most coveted properties on the lake. There are only a finite number of great waterfront lots on Lake Norman. That said, if you are seeking a waterfront retreat off of the main channel then a quiet cove and well designed home may suit your lifestyle better. No matter what, this is a great time to be looking!