Homeowners move entire home away from lakeshore

Rising Waters

PORT SHELDON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Homeowners took moving to a whole new level by moving their entire home away from Lake Michigan to save it from rising waters.

It took about a month and a half to move the Port Sheldon Township home back 70 feet from its original location.

The utilities were removed, the home’s foundation was cut off, then the home was hoisted and put on wheels before being pulled back. A home hoisted in the air is not something that you see every day.

On the upside, this move didn’t require much packing.

The homeowners, who want to remain anonymous, say they’re spending hundreds of thousands of dollars for this move. The total cost will be around $300,000 or more. Insurance does not cover the move. It will be paid out of pocket.

It’s the family’s year-round home and it’s been in the family for three generations. Even though the foundation was still stable, the family didn’t want to risk any further erosion and they didn’t want to build new, so they decided to stay ahead of the rising waters by moving.

“These people were concerned about the lake being so high,” Greg Windemuller, a general contractor said. “And the waves and that kind of stuff and the erosion that was going on, so they wanted to move their house back.”

They’ve been working with Windemuller since April.

“To rebuild the house back further was going to cost a lot more,” Windemuller said. “Saving the house — it’s not going in the lake and they are reusing what’s here.”

The homeowners felt it was their best option.

“That lake water is just so powerful. You can’t control water. It’s one of the most powerful things out there,” Windemuller said.

It will be a few months before the family move back in. They’re hoping they can celebrate Christmas in the house. 

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