Building a Dock on Texas Waterfront Properties

Waterfront homes with docks are highly enticing to buyers! Buyers can imagine waking up, walking out to a dock, and drinking their coffee while overlooking the water. Or buyers look forward to conveniently going out to a dock and untying their boat to go fishing. For these reasons, Texas waterfront homes with docks have huge advantages for homeowners. However, buyers often have to build the dock. So outlined a few items to consider when building a dock.

Contingency Point in Sales Contract

If buyers are planning on building a dock directly after buying a waterfront property, it should be a contingency point within the sales contract. Buyers want to make sure that building a dock is a viable option. Buyers will need to clearly communicate with your real estate agent so they’re able to speak to the seller’s agent and correctly compose the sales contract.


Permits vary based on your state, the body of water, and property location. For example, if a property is located within a Home Owners Association, the homeowner will likely need approvals and permits from the city and the HOA. In general, when submitting an application for a permit, homeowners can expect to submit proof of property ownership, maps, plans, drawings, descriptions, and various specifications for the dock. Owners should also expect to pay fees associated with submitting the application and receiving the permit.

Building Process

Building a dock can present multiple challenges. The builder will need to consider the property boundaries, lake bed, shoreline structure, water depth, runoff, waves, and sediment movement. Builders will need to be careful not to disturb the surrounding ecosystem and lake bed.

Calculating the minimum water depth is very important. Even during the dry season, the water must be deep enough to handle a boat. Oftentimes, adding 2-3 feet to the draft of your boat will provide a minimum water depth.

Dock Removal

Depending on your location, homeowners may be required to remove their docks during the winter months. Floating docks are the best option for owners that must remove their docks. Now, if docks can remain in the water year-round, a stationary dock will work.

Material Requirements

Depending on the body of water and location, there are specific building materials that can be utilized. Pressure-treated wood and composite decking are the most common materials. Pressure-treated wood works well at preventing insect infestation and rot but can become weathered. Composite decking requires minimal maintenance. However, the decking does require regular washing.

Docks are highly beneficial if constructed correctly. Make sure to speak to an expert in your area about local requirements.

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