According to the data from the Multiple Listing Service, the number of lakeshore home sales is 22% higher than the first 5 months of 2015, but the median sale price has declined 7% over the same period. The 2016 sale prices are 3% higher than all of 2015 as prices declined the second half of last year.

  The lowest priced lakeshore home to sell this year was on North Lindstrom Lake; a 2-bedroom condominium with community dock for $78,000. The highest priced lakeshore home sale was on Comfort Lake for $690,000 with a half-acre lot, 139 feet of shoreline and 4,268 finished square feet. The median sale price from January 1st to June 1st was $281,950 for lakeshore homes.

  There are 61 active lakeshore homes on the market in Chisago County ranging in price from $98,000-$2,000,000 and 17 pending sales ranging from $79,000 to $485,000.

  We are seeing 2nd homes or “cabins” being purchased by buyers from Hennepin and Ramsey County as Chisago County is much more affordable than the twin cities. The median sale price for lakeshore homes in Hennepin County is $605,000 and $490,000 in Ramsey County.

  In the north metro Sherburne County has the lowest median sale price for 2016 at $262,500 compared to Chisago at $281,950, Anoka at $293,500, Isanti at $297,450 and Washington County at $482,500. 

  Most lenders are requiring 10%-20% down payment for 2nd homes vs 3.5% – 5% down payment for a primary home, so most of the “cabin” buyers I meet are nearing retirement age and they are looking for a place to relax and entertain family and friends.

  The median priced lakeshore home in Chisago County has 2.84 bedrooms, 2.37 bathrooms with 2,247 finished square feet, priced at $281,950. The median price for all homes in Chisago County, in 2016, was $207,500 with 3.17 bedrooms, 2.24 baths, and 1,917 finished square feet. Most of the lakeshore homes are too small for young families and the larger lakeshore homes are unaffordable for the average buyer in the area.   

  If you are thinking of buying or selling a waterfront property contact an experienced real estate agent to help you navigate the real estate market in the Chisago Lakes Area.

Ask the Real Estate Agent is a weekly column by Cheryl Kempenich of Coldwell Banker Burnet, who lives and offices in the Chisago Lakes Area. Submit your questions to All information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed. For legal assistance consult an attorney.