Home Owner’s FAQ
What is LakeSmart?
LakeSmart is an education and reward program for lakefront property owners who maintain their homes in ways that protect lake water quality and property values. LakeSmart is a Program of the Maine Lakes Society, partnered with your local Lake Association.
What’s the Matter with Storm water?
Storm water runoff ruins lakes! Erosion and sedimentation from shoreline development and camp roads are the major cause of smelly, cloudy water, algal blooms, fish kills, and water you wouldn’t want to swim in.
What Does It Cost a Homeowner?
The visit is free, non-regulatory and completely voluntary. LakeSmart is the most cost-effective strategy that homeowners can use to protect their lake, their property’s value and their recreational activities. Many home/property Improvements can be “Do it your Self” or with your local Youth Conservation Corp assistance.
How long does it take?
The LakeSmart visit takes less than an hour. A trained volunteer will assess four areas of your property, starting at the driveway and working toward the shorefront. You will be informed right away of the observations and you’ll receive information about lake-friendly land practices and relevant web links. Your evaluation is then sent along to the Maine LakesSociety for final review.
If you wish to see what is being evaluated please look at the LINK: “Home Owner Self Evaluation Form”
Tell Me More about the LakeSmart Evaluation Process?
After final Maine Lakes Society review of the submitted evaluation; if your home scores well in all 4 categories and all criteria met, you will get the prestigious ‘LakeSmart Award’ & two handsome blue and white signs for posting at the roadside and lakefront. If you pass in 1 to 3 LakeSmart categories but not all criteria met, you will receive a ‘Certificate of Commendation’, helpful suggestions, and our thanks for caring about the lake. Whatever the outcome, you’ll learn how to become more lake-friendly, and that is just as important.
How Can I Participate?
Contact your local Lake Association to inquire if they have a LakeSmart Program. If they do, they will connect you with one of their trained volunteers who will assess your property. He or she will come to your home, evaluate its ability to prevent run-off and inputs of pollution, and report back to you. During the evaluation you will be able to walk the property with the volunteer and you’ll be given information on how to capture and infiltrate storm water. LakeSmart is entirely voluntary, so you are free to take some of the recommended actions or not – it’s completely up to you.
What if there is no local Program?
Have your local Lake Association contact the Maine Lakes Society at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be pleased to work with you and your Lake Association to provide training and guidance in developing a program. It can start with you!
What’s the Payoff?
Research has shown that LakeSmart properties are as protective of water quality as undeveloped land. The benefits of managing the LakeSmart way are many:
- Clean, clear, healthy water
- Outstanding recreational opportunities
- High property values
- Abundant wildlife on land and in the water
- Successful local businesses
LakeSmart is a Program of the Maine Lakes Society