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The Best Year in Smith Mountain Lake Real Estate Since 2008

If you’ve been wondering how the Smith Mountain Lake real estate market weathered 2017, get ready for some good news. Last year was the best year in Smith Mountain Lake real estate since 2008, and we have the data to support it.

Here’s the Proof

Winter weather hasn’t slowed down the SML real estate market, and data supports ongoing growth. January saw the sale of 22 waterfront homes, versus 14 in 2017. That equates to a 57% increase with an additional 33 under contract and pending sale.

What This Means for Buyers and Sellers

If you’ve considered purchasing a Smith Mountain Lake home, get in now while prices are still under pressure and interest rates are low. Conversely, if you’re thinking of selling your Smith Mountain Lake home, know that buyers are coming back. If numbers continue to perform as well as January, we’re in for a very hot summer.

This Smith Mountain Lake real estate market report compares sales between various properties during the last quarters of 2016 and 2017.

How is the water quality at Smith Mountain Lake?

One of the most frequent questions my team and I are asked is: How is the water quality at Smith Mountain Lake? I’m happy to report that, thanks to the hard work of a large corps of volunteers, scientists and educators, Smith Mountain Lake water quality is among the best of any lake on the East Coast.

Buffer garden at Smith Mountain Lake

A buffer garden along the shoreline helps protect the lake by catching debris and pollutants before they reach the water.

Water quality at Smith Mountain Lake is closely monitored

A healthy lake benefits all who enjoy it and increases Smith Mountain Lake real estate values. Since 1987, volunteers with the Smith Mountain Lake Association have worked in conjunction with scientists at Ferrum College to administer the Smith Mountain Lake Water Quality Program.

At various times throughout the year, volunteers who live on all parts of Smith Mountain Lake measure and track secchi depth (water clarity), concentration of harmful bacteria, dissolved oxygen concentration and other parameters to ensure everything is within a healthy range. At the end of each summer, their work results in a 100-page scientific report, which is available on the Ferrum College web site.

The joint program also keeps residents and tourists informed of Smith Mountain Lake water quality on its Facebook page and via Twitter using the handle @FerrumWaterQlty.

Tips for helping keep Smith Mountain Lake clean

  1. If you own a Smith Mountain Lake home, consider planting a buffer garden along the shoreline. Trees, shrubs and other grass-like plants protect the lake by catching debris and pollutants before they reach the water. According to the SML Association, buffer landscaping:
  • slows and filters storm water run-off
  • protects the value of your property
  • requires less maintenance
  • creates a natural frame for your water view
  • provides a natural habitat for wildlife

For more detailed information on buffer landscaping at Smith Mountain Lake, visit the SMLA website.

2. Avoid raking or blowing leaves into the lake. Doing so reduces oxygen in the water and adds nutrients that assist with algae growth. Both situations negatively affect water quality.

3. When fertilizing your Smith Mountain Lake landscape, be sure and choose products labeled low-phosphorous. Avoid fertilizing in the spring when rain is more likely to cause erosion and leach residue into the lake.

4. Take advantage of the “Royal Flush,” Smith Mountain Lake’s free vessel pump out service. SML is a no-discharge zone so it’s illegal to dump any waste (treated or untreated) into the lake. Luckily, two sanitation trucks are available on Saturdays and Sundays (plus holidays) late May through early September to pump out your vessel at a number of marinas around the lake. The program is a joint effort by the SMLA, Tri-County Lake Administration and the Virginia Department of Health. Boaters are encouraged to call in advance to make an appointment. Find more details on the TLAC website.

If you have a question about Smith Mountain Lake or real estate at Smith Mountain Lake, I’m happy to find the answer. Please contact me at your convenience.


Related info:

Smith Mountain Lake Water Level (updated hourly)

Take Pride in SML Cleanup Day

Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour a can’t-miss event

The Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour, one of the area’s most popular and beloved annual events, takes place each October over Columbus Day weekend.

Petrine Home, Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour

Courtesy of Carla Laseter

Offering visitors a look inside a number of spectacular lakefront homes, the self-guided Home Tour is a can’t-miss event for those who looking for Smith Mountain Lake building, decorating and landscaping inspiration. The event features eight homes accessible by land and water, which makes for a fun fall boating outing. (Volunteers are available at each home to help with docking.)

Proceeds from the Home Tour benefit eight charities in the Smith Mountain Lake region. The non-profit organizations must apply each year to be eligible for funds. Since the Home Tour started in 1991 more than $3.8 million has been distributed.

What can you expect on the SML Home Tour?

It’s best to buy tickets in advance online or at an area outlet, although you can purchase tickets at any of the homes. The tickets are good for all three days (Friday-Sunday) so you can tackle all eight homes on one day or spread the fun out over 2-3 days.

Because the homes are often in different areas around the lake, it’s usually best to take two days. You may start at any of the eight homes and there is no set order in which to visit them. Each ticket comes with a brochure that includes a map and directions by boat and by car. You can also download directions and a brochure on the SML Charity Home Tour website where you’ll also find photos and a description of each home.

I recommend you plot your route in advance and plan for approximately 45 minutes at each home. Volunteers are on hand throughout the interior and exterior of each home to share information about architecture, decorating, collections, special features, landscaping and more.

Snyder Home, Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour

Courtesy of Carla Laseter

Find out more about the Charity Home Tour at Smith Mountain Lake

Read more on the Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour’s 25-year history in the Sept/Oct issue of Laker Magazine. Laker Weekly also has detailed coverage and photos of each home.

Home Tour organizers produce an annual guide with additional details and sponsor information, which you can pick up at all eight homes.

Ready to look for your own Smith Mountain Lake home or lot?

If you’re going to be in town and are interesting in looking at Smith Mountain Lake property, I hope you’ll contact me. I’d love to show you around!


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