Other than the distinctive, lakeside residential styles born from craftsmanship that are second-to-none, and regional access to the fruits of trade and industry—from agriculture to winemaking—the Michigan real estate market hosts a number of opportunities for recreational real estate. Dozens of riparian and lake-mass waterways create ample fishing and boating opportunities, while rich, forested pockets throughout—and upper regions specifically—make for fine camping, hunting, and lake homes. It is within this unique sector of recreational real estate, both regionally in Michigan’s lower and upper peninsulas, and nationwide, that Great North Real Estate of Alpena, Michigan works and travels.
“It’s the diversity of the market from a recreational aspect [that is unique],” said Steve Shaw, broker and owner at Great North Real Estate. “You don’t just have a lake house; you don’t just have a fishing cabin—you have ATV trails, snowmobile trails, and some of the best fly fishing in the world. You have world-renowned, big-water fishing for salmon, lake trout, and walleye. It’s very much the diversity of the recreational opportunities that make [northern Michigan] unique.”
Great North Real Estate prides itself on being a one-stop shop for client’s needs, from an initiative-driven approach to service, to searching for properties in a variety of regions to harness the best options possible for clients when it comes to their recreational goals.
The stylistic characteristics that Shaw works within can also bring unique properties to clients relocating in and within northern Michigan; they have more recently focused more on creative solutions for energy-efficiency and bringing the serene outdoor surroundings indoors.
“Log, timber-lodge-style, and chalet shapes are what everybody connects to with northern Michigan,” Shaw said. “Some of the design features that people are going to want in northern Michigan are big, covered porches and attached garages; lots of windows and the ability to bring the outside in.”
Located in Alpena, Michigan, but not limited in scope, Great North Real Estate deals in Michigan’s recreational real estate market, reaching far-and-wide to connect buyers with opportunity. Supported by unique buyer mindsets that favor feeling, lifestyle, and personal hopes for a recreational property over a specific location allow this multi-regional approach to thrive.
“The big thing that we’re dealing in with recreational buyers is they do not have a geographical location in mind, generally. They have this idea in their mind; this situation in their mind: ‘this is what I want this is what I would like. This is the feeling that I want to have,’” Shaw said. “It’s about connecting the buyers with the situation that they have in their mind and finding that place on the ground and that’s why being geographically varied, working in all the U.P., and working all of northern Michigan is very important.”