Waterfront properties cost more than non-waterfront properties. It’s a phenomenon real estate professionals call the ‘water premium’.
No matter how whimsical it sounds, though, the water premium is no figment of the imagination. Time and time again, it proves its existence when waterfront properties sell for exorbitant amounts of money.
Specifically, being by the harbour or the ocean adds a premium of almost 60% to a property’s price, according to Statista. Likewise, a house by the river or lake can expect a 36.8 and 32.7% higher valuation, respectively, than comparable properties.
No wonder the rent in Dubai Festival City is almost twice the median rent in Dubai and more than five times the rent of the more affordable apartments in the city. It’s the water premium at work, perhaps not exclusively but significantly, as Dubai Festival City is a residential and commercial property development on the Dubai Creek with its own 3.3-kilometre stretch of picturesque creek-side coast.
Why are people willing to pay more money for waterfront properties, anyway?
A study in 2011 conducted via an app called Mappiness probably holds the answer. Based on the more-than-a-million responses gathered in that study, people are happier when they are out in nature. The highest increase in happiness when people are outdoors occurred when they were near water.
If you ever needed a sign that renting or buying that flat with gorgeous water views is something you should do, this is it.
A 2016 study published in Environment and Behaviour even found that just staring at a fish tank with nothing but water in it can help lower blood pressure and slow down your heart rate. You can be sure you’ll gain even more by living in a waterfront complex with a gorgeous view of a great watery expanse.
To maximise the wellness benefits of living close to the water, you can try the following interior design ideas.
Make those enormous windows. The best way to enjoy your water views is to install large picture windows to frame your fabulous water view. If standard windows don’t quite do your views justice, you can have custom windows made.
Consult an architect or an interior design consultant. A professional should be able to help you capture the best views from your property and point you in the right direction, especially on where windows would deliver the best sights and thus have the most significant impact on your living space and wellbeing.
If you don’t want to frame select views but want to bring the entire watery expanse into your home, you can install floor-to-ceiling glass walls instead. Aside from letting you have more of the gorgeous view of the water, this will also drastically open up your space and let in so much natural light.
For privacy, install blinds or curtains that you can draw to protect you and other house occupants from prying eyes outside. You can also utilise smart privacy glass that can transition from clear and transparent to frosted and opaque.
Curtains provide not only privacy. The right type of curtains can also serve as great accents to a modern waterfront interior.
You can install curtain rods inside a dedicated recess created by a dropped ceiling to frame your picture windows. You can also just install a traverse ripple-fold curtain rod to use with your curtains, and use wave pleat drapes to dress your windows or your floor-to-ceiling glass walls.
Choose a sheer material, e.g., voile, for your curtain. White is also the best colour.
The best paint colour to go with a waterfront space that gets a lot of natural light is white. This will let you maximise the amount of exposure you’re getting. It is also clean, simple and will not detract from your space’s focus, which is the view outside your picture window or floor-to-ceiling glass walls.
There’s more to choosing white paint, however. White comes in a myriad of hues and shades. White can also be cool or warm. The furnishings and furniture you will add to the room, their colours, shades, and temperature will also influence how white paint looks in your space.
As a general rule, warm white paint should serve your space well. This is not always true, however. It depends on how much light your space is getting and what other colours you’re using.
For instance, for northern-facing rooms that have plenty of light but do not get direct sunlight, a warm white wall with warm accents and temperatures should do great. Southern-facing rooms, which typically get a lot of direct sunlight, will do great with cooler whites and cooler accent colours.
You should study your space and do a paint patch test before you pick your white paint. Sometimes, what’s good in theory does not work so well in practice because of all the other variables that affect how your walls actually reflect light.
Potted plants will enhance any space, but they’ll thrive really well in a room that gets plenty of natural light. Consider adding a pot or two of green leafy plants to your waterfront room.
Alternatively, you can replicate the colours found in your water view in your living space. You can pick the blue of the ocean and use it as a tapestry on the opposite wall. You can also use the blueish grey of the lake as your colour palette when choosing your area rug.
Use splashes of colour to tie in your indoor space to the view outside. Colour accents can also be used to skillfully draw one’s gaze to the focal point, which is the view of the water, of course.
Views of the water can lift one’s mood, increase one’s feeling of wellbeing and make one feel happier. No wonder waterfront properties are in demand and cost a premium to acquire.
If you are one of those lucky enough to live by the water and enjoy expansive ocean, river, lake, or creek-side views, you can design your interiors to enhance your water view. This will let you maximise the benefits of living so close to the water.