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Pros & cons of having Wetlands on my property

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What do I need to know about Wetlands when buying or selling real estate?

We noticed that buyers and their agents, and others, even local, can be a little confused about Wetlands and what they mean for a property.

731R Grove St is a large lot of almost 6 acres which include beautiful Wetlands

Disclosure: For transparency and honesty, please keep in mind that we have a property with Wetlands, at 731R Grove St, Norwell, MA – 02061, it’s for sale, so we could be biased. Please factor that information in when you read the article. However, we knew there were Wetlands before taking it over, and we were very happy to make the deal after doing our research and we will buy again similar lots.

Information in this article: it comes from our professional experience and knowledge not as a Wetland experts, but as real estate investors. As such, we have a definite interest in assessing projected risk and rewards of a potential acquisition with the plan to eventually sell.

Homes for sale MAssachusetts
Wetlands burst with wildlife in a very biodiverse ecosystem

Pros & Cons

Wetlands, like everything else there could be on a property, come with pros and cons whether you already own or you’re considering for purchase such a lot.

The big negative!

Let’s start with the big downside:

You can’t build on Wetlands!

It would be practically hard anyway, but on officially designated Wetlands, laws at all level of government make it impossible to legally build with heavy consequences for violators.

If you have them on your property, you definitely can’t build.

First big positive!

However, here comes the first pro:

Nobody can!

Not your neighbors, not the government, nobody!

That means you won’t see annoying structures being erected on your nearby Wetlands, on your property or not, violating your privacy and affecting the value of your property.

Wetlands are a natural way to control flood events and clean water

List of pros:

Now, a list of other pros not really countered by negatives, just positives with no hardly any downside of Wetlands, large or small:

  1. Wetlands self-manage and maintain themselves, in a delicate, but well balanced ecosystem, so no upkeep of any kind for the landowner.
  2. Wetlands improve water quality; they are the kidneys of the landscape, filtering water by capturing runoff, stripping it from contaminants, pollutants, sediment like nitrates, before releasing them into underground aquifers or rivers, streams and other outlets. They process wastewater and stormwater chemically, biologically and physically in a very cost-effective and natural way compared to multimillion dollar treatment plants.
  3. Wetlands Control Local Erosion; They protect pond & streambanks from erosion. The roots of wetland plants hold soil in place and can reduce velocity of water currents. Filter and control upland runoff.
  4. Wetlands provide Flood Control; soaking up, storing, processing and then releasing floodwater. They mitigate large flood events , like heavy rain and snow melts, in a natural and cost-efficient way.
  5. Wetlands enhance a biodiverse, Safe Habitat for Wildlife, especially threatened and endangered species. Wetlands cover an approx 5% of the land , yet 35% of threatened and endangered species live in Wetlands only. An additional 20% use Wetlands at some point in their life. Over 50% of the 800 species of protected migratory birds in the U.S. rely on Wetlands.
  6. Protection From Drought; Wetlands release stored floodwaters during droughts and soften the impact on nearby land and ecosystem of extended dry spells.
  7. Water Source; Wetlands can enhance water supply, serving as reservoirs for the watershed and releasing retained water into surface water and ground water.
  8. Recreation; Wetlands can become a destination for outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, bird watching, photography, research & education and hunting. Archery, Riding and Walking dogs are more examples of many more that could be listed here. They are all Passive activities, not Active, meaning that they do not impact, modify or transform the ecosystem.
  9. Education; Wetlands protection activities provide meaningful opportunities to educate the public regarding Wetlands science, Wetlands protection, and the value of water resources.
  10. Aesthetic Appeal; Wetlands provide a sure visual value and are often incorporated as features within landscape design.
  11. Social focus; Wetlands can be the focal point of community interest and activities, involving business and individuals.
  12. Wetlands can Mitigate Climate Change. First line of defense from effects of climate change and first affected. They store carbon possibly better than forests.
  13. Added Value; In the end, the sheer peace, quiet and calmness of Wetlands enhance the value of nearby land and dwellings.
  14. Mosquito, Tick, Parasite and Pest Control; undisturbed, not contaminated Wetlands biological dynamics, naturally control the proliferation of unwanted parasites, pests and carried diseases.
  15. Federal funding and various grant programs are available for the preservation of Wetlands. Something worth checking out for landowners with Wetlands on their property.


That’s a total of 1 negative and 16 positives of Wetlands which vary depending on the perspective of private property owned, for sale, considered for purchase or in general as present on the local territory.

Wetlands are a “wet” resource for landowners, neighbors and community, because we all benefit from clean air and clean water!

This cabin was for observing nature and enjoying the calmness & quiet

In the case of 731R Grove St, Norwell, MA – 02061, it’s not a coincidence that professor, naturalist and author William Gould Vinal (Cap’n Vinal) built a personal retreat near these Wetlands in Norwell, MA. By building the cabin in the present location, he created the ideal situation of quiet, inspiration and write, write, write about nature in the many books that made him famous and very respected locally and nationally. That’s why there are streets and schools named after him.

The cabin was in the middle of nature, near a pond, yet not far from Norwell life, on the edge of these Wetlands, with large windows on all sides and the ability to stay for prolonged periods of time, with access to water and a well (now power also) and a powerful heat source like the beautiful stone fireplace built in the center of the 400 sq ft cabin with solid oakwood floors.

This cabin is waiting for the right owner who can use it as needed, but hopefully respecting the historical value and meaning of this fascinating structure.

For more info about the property FOR SALE:

https://www.zillow.com/b/42.175716,-70.821083_ll/ or
Call/Text 617.921.9265 for more info about this home FOR SALE in Norwell, MA