As with the purchase of any property, there are many factors to consider when purchasing waterfront property at Smith Lake. Below are answers to many common questions about owning property on Lewis Smith Lake.

Does Smith Lake’s Water Level Fluctuate?

What kind of Boat Dock can I have on Smith Lake?

What are the Building Restrictions on Smith Lake?

Is public water and sewer available on Smith Lake?

How do I obtain utilities on Smith Lake?

How much are property taxes on Smith Lake?

Smith Lake Water Level

Normal summer full pool for Smith Lake is 510’ above MSL (Mean Seal Level)
Normal winter full pool for Smith Lake is 496’ above MSL (Mean Sea Level)
These are the standard water levels as supplied by Alabama Power, but can fluctuate year to year due to rainfall and drought.
Since most docks on Smith Lake are floating structures, a normal fluctuation in water can leave some docks high and dry in the winter.  If this is a concern then you need to consider the water depth under the boat dock of the property you’re considering for purchase. I can assist you in determining the depth of water for a boat dock on any property for sale on Smith Lake.


Docks and Dock Permitting
Most boat docks on Smith Lake are floating structures, meaning they sit on flotation and fluctuate with the water level.  This allows you to take advantage of the water from your dock even with the water fluctuation.

Any structure below 522’ MSL, must be permitted by Alabama Power Shoreline Management before construction can begin, this includes boat docks, boathouses, walkways, piers, boat ramps, seawalls and dredging.

All waterfront structures are to be set a minimum of 15’ from your property line.

Prior to purchasing and closing on any property or home on Smith Lake you should contact Alabama Power Shoreline Management for permitting, 205-384-7385.

The current standards for Alabama Power dock permitting are as follows:

  • –          Lots with less than 100 linear feet of shoreline may be restricted or may not be eligible for a boat dock.
  • –          All waterfront structures should be set a minimum of 15 feet from your property line
  • –          In a narrow slough, no structure can extend over 1/3 way across the slough
  • –          Walkways should not exceed 60 feet in length
  • –          Boatslips and boat docks should not exceed 1024 sq. ft
  • –          The boat dock and walkway may not extend more than 92 feet as measured from the 510’ MSL

You may access the guidelines from Alabama Power Here


Building Restrictions

Most developments on Smith Lake have restrictions on what type of structures and minimum size requirements of the structure that can be placed on lots in the development. These restrictions as well as any other restrictions can be found in the covenants for the development on Smith Lake.

Contact us, if you need information on the restrictions for a specific lake front lot or if you would like to review a copy of the covenants for a specific development.


Water & Sewer

Most properties on Smith Lake do have access to public water, but there are some properties that have a well system and some lots that would require drilling of a well for water.  All properties on Smith Lake require a septic system.  Trent can help you determine what your prospective property would require prior to purchase.


Property Taxes

Since Smith Lake spans 3 counties, your property taxes will be assessed by the tax assessor in the county for which your property is located.  However, the property taxes in Alabama are drastically less expensive than most areas of the United States.  So the cost of the property taxes is usually not a concern for most purchasers.  In fact most purchasers are shocked at how economical the taxes are for property located on Lewis Smith Lake.

If you are looking to buy a lot or home on Smith Lake, contact Lake & Coast Real Estate Co. We can get you the tax information for any Smith Lake property based on the previous years assessment.

Lake & Coast Real Estate has a team of professional waterfront experts who can assist you with all the details on the purchase of your Smith Lake waterfront property. (256) 280-3422 or email: