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Tips & Considerations for Building Homes on Lake Lots

Building a home on a lake lot is a dream for many people. But building a custom lake home requires a certain level of expertise. To ensure success, you need to find a builder that has built homes on lake lots. 

If you are considering it or you’re ready to start planning, Heartland Builders is ready to be your resource. With 25 years of experience building homes on your land in Grand Rapids/West Michigan, we have plenty of tips to help you through the process. 

Should I Build a Home on a Lake Lot?

With so many inland lakes in our area, it’s no wonder that Heartland Builders specializes in lake lots. These unique and often narrow lots are the perfect base for a custom home. But there are important details that must be considered before you purchase a lake lot. 

When searching for land for your custom lake home, make sure that the property is suitable for building before you set your heart on it. Even if the description says it’s buildable land, research the property. Some wetlands are protected, which means there may be restrictions on where you can build. 

land for lake home graphicIf you have a parcel of land picked out, get in touch and we’ll come out to take a look. As an experienced “On Your Land” builder, Heartland understands that every site we build on is different, and every home we build is unique. Because of that, we take the time to understand the nuances of each site, including:

  • Topographical analysis
  • Soil conditions
  • Utility costs (water, sewer, gas, electric)
  • Tree clearing
  • Municipality requirements
  • Impact on the environment & neighboring properties

There are conditions that are beyond our control, such as the depth of your well and the soil conditions, but we will do our homework to understand what may exist underground and provide you with our best guidance.

Finding Lake Lots For Sale

It can be daunting to find just the right piece of land on which to build. Heartland Builders can help you evaluate the ideal property, design the right home, and guide you through every other step in the lake home building process.

It may sound basic, but when choosing a lake lot, you need to ascertain if the lake is your kind of lake. For example, if you’re dreaming of boating, fishing, jet skiing, or swimming, you’ll want a lake that allows the kinds of water recreation you enjoy. But if you’re more interested in a quiet place to appreciate nature, a recreational playground is not your kind of lake. 

Building & Designing Your Lake Home

Once you have your lake lot, Heartland Builders will help you design a home that perfectly fits your site. People usually build lake homes with the idea that they’ll be able to enjoy great views from all over the house. But in order to accomplish this feat, you need to make sure that you can build in the right spot AND orient your home in just the right way. 

At Heartland Builders, we can let you see your new lake home BEFORE it’s built. We can show you how the outside of your house will look, and how your home will sit on the land. And we do it in 3D. We apply the analysis we did of your site (permitting, utilities, topography, etc.) so that you can see exactly how your home will look from all angles. 

lake house plans graphicThis is when we can consider the view from every room. Do you want to be able to see the lake from the main living areas? Do you want to go to sleep with the sound of the water lapping at the shore? Are outdoor entertaining areas (screened porches, decks, patios) a non-negotiable feature? 

As you think about the desired layout of your new home, you can go through our portfolio of plans and completed home gallery. Or you can give us a plan you already have. Or we can custom design a plan. People come to us with plans in all different forms and we work with them all. We’ll help you design and build the perfect home for your lifestyle. 

75% Planning & 25% Construction

Building a lake home is exciting, but it’s important to take the right steps to ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible. From making sure you find the right piece of buildable land to finding an experienced builder, planning will go a long way in saving you time and money when building your new home. 

considerations building on a lake lot graphicBefore you talk with our team for the first time, there are a few things you can think about:


Talk to a bank about getting pre-qualified. We will work with you to determine which kinds of plans will be a perfect fit. 


Think about what kind and style of home you want, how many rooms, and which features. Our team will ensure that your vision comes to life as accurately as possible.


Write out a list of questions or concerns. Don’t worry about coming in with a long list — our job is to make sure you feel completely confident!

Hopefully, these tips can help ensure that your custom lake home offers stunning views and a comfortable vibe. When you’re ready to take the plunge into lakeside living, contact us at 616-202-3583.