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Why Water Levels Should Not Impact Your Real Estate Decisions

Posted by Sherry Rioux on September 7, 2017

Remember when everyone was panicking about low water levels in the Great Lakes? Remember the group,  Stop The Drop that had 20,000 members?  It really was scary to see docks in the middle of backyards and, to see the impact on waterfront properties.  Well that was then, this is now.

Stop The Drop’s website is no longer active. Water levels have reached their highest levels again since the 1990’s and are sitting at above average levels in Lake Michigan and Lake Huron of which Georgian Bay is a part. The lakes hit their bottom in early 2014 and started to climb and have been above average ever since September 2014.  By mid-July this summer, we were at 177 meters and water is plentiful, high and clear.  Nobody seems to be selling waterfront properties this year yet demand is as high as the rising water levels.

In addition to things like dredging and diversions, ecological factors such as precipitation may have a greater impact on water levels.  As the chart above shows, water levels in the Great Lakes are cyclical and you can bet after these above average years, they’ll come down again at some point.

The lesson in this?  Don’t let water levels affect your perceived value of a waterfront property either good or bad because within a few years, the opposite conditions will exist.

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