Owning a summer home is a fun and rewarding experience that gives you an immediate vacation destination where you can get away from the challenges of life. For example, you can put in a private dock that lets you swim, take out your boat, and even hold large and enjoyable parties.
However, preparing your dock for each new summer can be challenging if you aren’t sure what to do. Thankfully, it isn’t as hard as you might think to get it prepared and ready for the day. In this article, we’ll provide nine summer homeowner tips to prepare your private dock for the season.
1. Upgrade Your Insurance
Here’s one of the key summer homeowner tips that helps you no matter what your situation: upgrading your insurance. Talking with your insurance agent about your dock protection can help you better understand what you can do to keep your dock safe.
There are many options here, all of which should cover any non-wear-and-tear problems that could affect your dock unexpectedly over the years.
For example, get ground fault protection for boats to prevent damage in various boating situations. You may also want to upgrade your dock insurance to include things like impact damage from boats, severe lighting storm damage, and much more. Taking these steps can help to ensure that your dock remains secure without costing you a lot of money.
Talk with your insurance agent to learn more about how you can upgrade your insurance in this way. They may add a rider to your homeowner’s insurance that covers your dock.
However, they may also find a dock insurance policy that may work for your needs, depending on your situation. Make sure that you feel comfortable with this process before trying it out for yourself.
2. Clean Up the Trash
One thing that might confuse you every year when you come back to your summer home is the trash that always seems to erupt out of nowhere. This debris may blow over from other neighbors’ homes or simply get left behind by people trespassing on your property. Your dock may experience many of these same problems, including serious surface problems caused by mold and mildew.
For example, you can call a residential trash pickup crew to gather any trash leftover at your home. These professionals will come to your summer home, inspect the grounds, identify where your trash originates, and get rid of it quickly and efficiently.
You can then call a dock cleaning company to scrub away mold and mildew from its surface and beneath its beams and structural elements.
Do you have to take these steps every summer when opening up your summer home and preparing your dock for the season? Yes, most likely. There’s just something about docks that attract mold, mildew, fungus, and other debris.
It’s probably because they sit out in the lake all summer. Even when you store them for the winter, they may still end up affected by these growths, so be prepared to clean.
3. Improve Its Appearance
Your dock deserves to look great and represent your home’s style and fashion. That’s why so many of these summer homeowner tips focus on ways to improve its overall style and look.
Make sure that you do things like paint its surface, stain the wood, add new decorative items, enhance its overall structural appearance, and pay attention to any lingering style issues that may affect its overall feel.
One thing to consider here is a private loan to help pay for these improvements. A personal loan can provide you with up to $10,000 or more, which you can use to repair and maintain your dock and improve its overall appearance.
In addition, many private loans have very fair interest rates and repayment cycles that you can use when taking care of your dock in this important way.
Some people may also work with an offshore private wealth management firm to help prepare for this type of financial help. While this kind of financial support may seem a little excessive for a dock, it may be a great idea to help boost your economic health.
In this way, you can keep your dock strong, stay strong financially, and ensure that your summer home is attractive for years to come.
4. Enhance Its Security
Of all the summer homeowner tips, this option might be the most important but misunderstood. We’re not saying that you have to lock up your dock every year or throw it in a vault.
Instead, it is important to take a few light steps that not only protect your dock but your summer home as well. Doing so can ensure that it stays protected and minimizes any long-term complications you might experience.
For example, consider security camera installation in and around your docks. While this might seem excessive, just think of the benefits it might provide.
It can help you track your summer house all year round, making it easier to spot when people potentially break into your home. It can also help you identify any people who may hang out on your dock or damage it severely.
Just as importantly, you can add things like motion-sensitive lights that can go on whenever something the size of a person moves through your yard. You can change the sensitivity of these lights to avoid constant activation when squirrels, crows, deer, and other animals walk through your yard.
Other security devices you might install include automatic home operating systems in your house.
5. Install Better Tech
Is it necessary to install tech items on your dock every summer? That depends on what other summer homeowner tips you take with your boat. Some people may find that new technology on their dock can help it run more smoothly and minimize any long-term complications.
But what kind of tech can you add to your dock to make it operate better? Let’s come up with a few ideas that may work for you.
What kind of summer homeowner tips fall under this heading? First, add new locks on your dock that only react to your voice or fingerprint. This might seem excessive, but it can keep people from getting onto your dock or stealing anything from it. You can also add better boat-loading devices that provide simple and automatic operations for your needs.
As you can see, these tech solutions can keep your dock operational and improve your overall summer experience. Remember: that’s a big part of these tips. You aren’t just improving your dock and its boats but also making your summer home a better place to live.
You deserve a home away from home that feels comfortable and welcoming and which makes sense for your overall needs as a person.
6. Clean Up the Water
Another frustrating thing you might find when cleaning up your dock for the year is polluted water around its edges that may get worse every year. Unfortunately, this situation often happens on small lakes because pollution has few places to disperse and can start piling up constantly.
Frustratingly, this can mean that your water gets dirtier and dirtier every year and causes your family to avoid swimming.
This public relations disaster can affect your relationship with your neighbors, as they may assume that the trash floating near your dock belongs to you! So, make sure that you clean up your dock and the surrounding water every summer.
Talk to cleaning professionals who can come to your summer home and remove debris and get rid of contaminants like oil, gasoline, and other problematic elements.
Implementing summer homeowner tips like this can help you improve your property, enhance the lake on which you live, and make your dock a more comfortable and relaxing place to be.
Just as importantly, it can give you a fun and engaging summer house that looks and feels great. Pay attention to these simple factors to ensure that you feel comfortable and engaged in your home.
7. Pay Attention To the Boats
While most of these summer homeowner tips focus on your dock and its appearance, stability, and security, you need to pay attention to any boats stored near or on your dock.
These boats may sit for a majority of the year without being used and deserve some TLC. In addition, the steps you take may depend on the boat you own, so be prepared to change these steps to fit your needs in any way possible.
For instance, if you have a wood skid craft, you take it out once in a while and check it for leaks every year. You may also want to install a boat storage area near your dock to help keep it safe. These wooden boats are more sensitive to water damage than others, meaning you can keep them operational and safe by storing them in more protected areas.
You may also want to update and maintain your Johnson outboard motor parts to keep them operating smoothly. Adding additional parts in this way can help your boats run smoothly and minimize damage problems.
It may also help your docks by minimizing any potential damage issues. For example, a poorly operating motor may cause severe damage if it is allowed to run near your dock.
8. Check Your Local Laws Again
Did you know that your city and state have various laws and rules that restrict how you can upgrade, repair, and use your dock? You most likely know about various building codes that you had to follow when installing a dock.
But you might not know about any other rules or restrictions and could end up experiencing real complications with your summer home that may affect you for years to come.
For example, you might discover that your area has very strict dock laws and that you might violate them. Of all these summer homeowner tips, this step is the most important because it might cost you money and affect your bottom line.
How? If you get fined heavily for your dock usage, you might end up having to pay hefty payments that could make your summer home hard to support.
Just as importantly, you may find that your repairs and maintenance could also violate some rules! For instance, most regions restrict how far out a boat can go into a lake.
This means that you may have to shorten your dock or avoid adding too much to its length. These steps are important because they can give you an overall better experience and minimize your potential legal troubles at the same time.
9. Talk to Your Neighbors
Last on our list of summer homeowner tips is talking with your neighbors about your new dock and any steps you might take before implementing them. You are under no legal obligation to do this and could probably just put out your dock without talking to them. But there are reasons you should.
First, it creates a positive neighbor relationship that helps you stay connected and communicative. If you show you care what they think, they may reciprocate in the future. For example, they might tell you about any dock upgrades or changes that they plan on doing for their summer home.
Second, it can help you if you run into any legal challenges after installing your dock. If they try to claim that they didn’t know about the dock changes and that they don’t appreciate them, you can use your conversation as proof that you let them know what you were doing with your dock.
So there you have it, nine simple summer homeowner tips you can use to keep your dock in great shape every year. These tips help prepare your boat for use and ensure that it remains strong for many years to come.
Please talk with your family about this process and make sure they’re willing to help. They can do things like clean the dock surface, look for potential problems, help load and unload boats, and help you handle any other steps that may take over one person.