Lighthouses that became cool homes

Rob Bear
By the sea or in the sea, these lighthouses aren't your typical seaside home.
Photos: Zillow

People generally love living by the water, and pay for the privilege, but for the truly aquatically obsessed, there's no better trophy than owning that most livable of navigational aids, the lighthouse.

Whether its on the ocean or a lake, a lighthouse requires that its owner really commit to the whole nautical theme.

Here are four cool, converted lighthouse homes for sale:

Location: 1 Poplar Ave, North Kingstown, RI 02852
Price: $6,450,000

Built in 1831, this New England home is the oldest wooden lighthouse in the United States.

This classic New England lighthouse is, in fact, the oldest wooden lighthouse in the United States, dating to 1831. Since then, plenty of more modern additions have been added to the original structure, forming a four-bedroom main house with over 4,500 square feet. The 1.66-acre peninsula also includes a three-bed guest house and a pool, and a deep-water dock, all overlooking Wickford Harbor in North Kingston, RI. Listed for $6.45M, this is an expensive way to get into the lighthouse business.

Location: 17528 Lighthouse Ln, Jonestown, TX 78645
Price: $845,700

Situated by a small lake, this home incoporates a lighthouse more for style than substance.

Set on a promontory in the middle of Texas, this lighthouse-style manse presides over a small lake. The design is a rarity in these parts, but for a nautically inclined individual sentenced to live in central Texas, this $1M boondoggle could be the solution. That seems like a rare situation, and this towered home sticks out like a sore thumb. Plus, despite looking sizable, the house only has two bedrooms and three baths.

Location: Beaver Island, MI 49872
Price: $3,200,000

This lighthouse sits on a 69-acre private island.

This one, on a 69-acre private island six miles north of Beaver Island, MI, comes fully equipped with separate sailor's quarters, in addition to the octagonal lighthouse tower and accompanying brick house. The interiors have certainly seen better days, though at least the interiors haven't been trashed by a misguided renovation. That means the original doors, floors, and wood paneling remain from the 1892 construction. Priced at $3.2M, the lighthouse is going to need millions more for the restoration.

Location: 56 Shore Dr, Mathews, VA 23109
Price: $288,000

Built on a pillar foundation, this lighthouse has braved storms since 1894--and looks like it, too.

On the Virginia coast lies a dilapidated brick lighthouse, but this one has a slightly smaller lawn. Known as the Wolf Trap Lighthouse, the "caisson style" structure juts out of the water on a pillar foundation that's weathered storms since 1894. Like other old lighthouses, this place is worn out and in need of a complete revamp. The trouble is, with all that water around, getting construction materials and contractors out to the house might be a problem. An expensive problem. At least it's on the market for just $288K, including a waterfront lot on the mainland, and enjoys tax exempt status.