Summer is over and the leaves are starting to change color here in Indiana. While you might not think this would be the best time to venture out to the lake for a weekend away, the beautiful colors and the sweet crisp smell of fall creates the perfect backdrop for a weekend away snuggled up in a blanket with a cup of tea out by the quiet water. If this sounds like a dream to you, think about all the ways you could maximize your custom lake house to make the most of it all year long.

Embrace Natural Elements

Depending on your taste, your custom lake house could take on a variety of styles and aesthetics, but one thing to keep in mind is the natural surrounding framing your home. Mixing your personal taste with the beauty around the home is important for making it stand out, but still look like it belongs lakeside or in the middle of the woods. One easy and timeless way to do this is by utilizing natural elements in the design, from the outside to the inside. Consider large beams framing the ornate front door. Or stone steps leading to the grand entrance of the home. Whatever look you decide to go with, think about this home in all seasons and how you want to take advantage of the beautiful landscape around the home and make the two work together harmoniously.

Large lakefront home with white siding and red roof

Live Large With A Wrap Around Porch

Warm summer nights, brisk fall evenings and the first signs of spring, you’re going to want to be outside as much as possible. A large wrap around porch gives you a 360-degree look at everything surrounding the home. Give yourself plenty of views over the water, into the woods, and out over the perfectly maintained front yard. Wherever there is a view to enjoy, give yourself the space to sit down and take a moment to drink it in. Your lake home should maximize the sights and sounds you just can’t get in the city or the suburbs.

Let Light In With Floor to Ceiling Windows

Another way to surround yourself with nature, even when inside the home, is with large, beautiful windows. Consider floor to ceiling windows in rooms less affected by harsh winds or beating rays of the sun. These large windows make it feel like there is little to nothing separating you from the trees and nature all around you. These large windows also give you the opportunity to let natural air inside. Consider windows that fold in or open like doors to give the home that ‘outside-in’ feel, perfect for entertaining guests and hosting large parties.

lakehouse lit up at night over the water

Blend New With Nature

We’ve already talked a little about maximizing the natural landscape around the home. But other things to consider are the existing trees, topography, and natural elements on the plot of land you want to build on. Think of ways you can build the home around the natural plot. If you can, try to leave as many of these natural elements as possible to give your home an established look while protecting the natural habitat that drew you to the plot of land in the first place.

Build Up for the Best Views

We all know some of the best views are from the top. Two story homes really maximize on how far those views span from the inside of the home. Towers, lookouts and roof patios are all show-stopping characteristics of a home built for views. Picture yourself waking up on a crisp fall morning, opening double french doors off of the master suite, greeted by a one of a kind view of the sun rising over the lake from the second floor of your home. Especially when overlooking water, the height gives a unique perspective of the water and landscape surrounding you.

Make Room For Keeping Things Clean

Let’s be honest, a day out on the water is messy. If you have sand access, it’s almost impossible to stop sand from ending up everywhere from the kitchen to the bed sheets. Think strategically about your home plan and include an easily accessible washroom for the family and guests to get cleaned up in the comfort of the home, without tracking it everywhere for you to clean up later. This mess isn’t reserved for warm months. Even a fall night out on the beach enjoying a fire will bring dirt and sand back into the house. Plenty of shelving and a large area for a washer and dryer are ideal for keeping things clean and family and guests happy.

Enjoy Winter With a Wood Burning Fireplace

Most people think of a weekend away at the lakehouse best during the summer months, but a weekend away in a snowy wonderland, far from the hustle and bustle of home life is often the best remedy for the winter rut. To equip your home for all seasons, especially the cold ones, add features to keep the home toasty and homey. A wood burning fireplace adds a touch of rustic charm to the interior, while functionally heating the home without huge utility bills. The sound of a crackling fire is the perfect soundtrack for finally finishing that book you’ve been meaning to read all year. Also be sure to load up on cozy blankets around the house and keep plenty of hot cocoa on hand for the kids.

wood burning fire place in custom build lake house

Create Cohesion with Waterfront Structures

Of course, outdoor-indoor living space is a must for your dream lake house, but what if you could take it one step further? Depending on your budget and proximity to the water, you could design and build an outdoor-indoor living space that lets you entertain while serving as a docking space for your boats and water equipment. Often you see docks or boat slips that look nice, but don’t necessarily match the look and feel of the design of the home. By building these elements together, either attached or detached, you can rest assured the look and feel of your home from the water to the edge of the driveway look cohesive and thoughtful.

Provide Plenty of Parking

Any house is best when shared with others. You’re going to want to have plenty of space inside the home to entertain, and plenty of sleeping arrangements to meet the needs of large gatherings during holiday weekends spent lakeside. One thing often overlooked though, is the parking situation. People might come later, or need to leave early, which means many vehicles coming and going. Don’t intrude on the street in front of your house and be a good neighbor to the houses around you by adding plenty of parking space. Everyone will feel comfortable bringing their car if necessary and can come and go as they please.

How long have you been dreaming of a lakefront home? Your opportunities for making a comfortable and enjoyable space for family and friends are endless. If it’s finally time to build the dream home away from home, talk to our design team and we’ll work with you to find the best design, features, and look to fulfill your dreams and entertain guests all year long.