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Deep Creek Lake Buydown Program to End October 31

The current Deep Creek Lake Buydown Program will end October 31, 2017. The ‘buydown’ refers to a portion of property that separates the property owned by the homeowner and a section of State owned property below the 2,466 elevation line (also referred to as the 'buffer strip'). While the buydown gives the property owner the ability to legally purchase more land closer to the actual water, the buydown parcel is still subject to a fairly restrictive conservation easement. Tree cutting, access from other properties, and permanent structures are all still under the supervision of Lake Management. 

 

Depending on the situation, there may be a few benefits to purchasing your buydown that extend beyond just the addition of owning more property. If your home uses a septic system, you possibly could use land in your buydown parcel to repair or extend the drain field should your septic ever fail. If your property and the adjoining properties on both sides own the buydown, your property would qualify for a ‘relaxed standard variance’ should you desire to build or make improvements closer to the lake than the existing established setback. It's also helpful to know that while the buydown is taxed, it has not had a significant impact on property owners that have purchased it in the past. 

 

The buydown program first opened in February of 2000, offering the land at 39 cents per square foot plus the costs of closing and surveys. In the 8 years this program was offered, almost 2,000 property owners took advantage and purchased their adjoining buydown parcel. In 2015, the Maryland General Assembly passed legislation that would again offer homeowners the ability to purchase their buydown parcel at the same rate previously offered in 2000. A portion of the proceeds will go the state of Maryland to reimburse them for reasonable costs and expenses. The rest of the proceeds will go to the Deep Creek Lake Recreation and Management Fund, which is managed by the DNR through the Lake Management Office. The program opened October 1, 2015 and ends this fall at the end of October. If you’re interested in purchasing your buydown parcel or want more information, please contact Tanja Rucci, Buydown Coordinator, at 410-767-4303 or tanja.rucci@maryland.gov. Property owners interested in purchasing a buydown parcel must download an "Intent to Purchase Buydown" form from the DGS website and then complete and return it to Ms. Rucci at the specified e-mail address before October 31, 2017.

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