Let’s Talk about Cottages
Cottages are known for all things cozy, comfortable, and a peaceful home life. Occasionally, you need to get away from all the noise if you live in the city and take time to enjoy nature. Perhaps you’ve even had your eye on a little cottage on the lake or a cabin with a spectacular view. If your idea of paradise is a cottage-style house away from the city, here are some factors you should consider while you are getting ready to buy a cottage.
Create a Bucket List - Do you want a relatively new property or a fixer-upper? Do you want a seasonal property or a place you can use any time of the year? Do you want to live on the water, or will you be happier with a place in the woods? Do you want to be close to town or as far away as possible? There are many things to consider when buying a cottage and it’s best to create a list ahead of time to determine your wants and needs.
Find Local Experts - While you may know a real estate agent or handy person near your main residence, you will likely need to find a similar contact closer to your cottage property. A realtor who lives nearby and specializes in cottage properties is ideal as they will be more familiar with the area. If the property you want to buy requires renovations, a local contractor will likely be your best bet since they will know where to source materials and be familiar with local building codes.
Access to Electricity and Internet - One of the most important considerations when you invest in a cottage or a vacation home is electricity and internet access. Before making any decisions, it is so important to do research on what kind of electrical services and/or internet access are available in the area. It may be a good idea to contact the local power company or internet service provider for an estimate of what the monthly costs would be for installing these utilities, if necessary and any other associated fees. Having a reliable source of power and internet will enable you to use all the amenities that come with owning a vacation home.
Empty vs. Developed Lot
An empty lot will likely require more time to build the structures and amenities you desire, while developed lots are usually ready-to-move-in cottages that have buildings already in place. The advantage of purchasing an empty lot is that you can customize the space exactly to your desires. Deciding between an empty and a developed lot depends on your preferences as well as availability within your desired location and budget.
How Much Will You Pay in Utilities and Other Property Costs?
If you have a cottage, it may make sense to shut off certain utilities – such as cable and air conditioning – when you are not there to save on expenses. However, you want to be careful with other utilities.
Winterizing: You will have to think ahead when winterizing your cottage. If you just shut off the heat, the pipes could freeze and burst.
Accessibility: Depending on how rural your vacation property is, you will need to consider road access. Is your cottage located off a paved road, or do you have to take a dirt road to get there? Will the roads be plowed in the winter? Will you need a vehicle that can drive through snow, or will your cottage only be a three-season escape? Is your cottage located on an island that is only accessible by boat?
Water: Many rural properties are not on a city water system, so the water supply to your rustic cottage may come from a groundwater source such as a well. You may even have your own septic system, which will likely require hiring a septic company to maintain it on a schedule determined by how frequently the cottage is used.
Information From a Local Realtor
Before you consider buying a cottage, it’s important to do research and speak to a local realtor. They can provide critical information on factors such as the current market trends, zoning regulations, deed restrictions, and building codes specific to the area you are looking at. Realtors can also help narrow down your search by helping you identify what criteria would suit your needs best when selecting a cottage.
Buying a cottage or a cabin is an exciting and rewarding experience as well as a significant investment. However, it’s important to consider all the factors before investing in one. From determining whether you want an empty lot or a developed one to researching local zoning regulations, there are many things to consider before taking the plunge and I hope you find this information helpful.
If you are ready for country living and want to find your dream cottage, I am a highly experienced realtor and can be reached anytime at 705-323-7781 or feel free to send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Born in Toronto, Ontario, I have been in sales for over 30 years. At the young age of 23, I was a successful store manager for a large well known Retail Shoe Company in Toronto, which led me to work for a large Floor and Wall Fashions Distributor in Warehouse Management and Sales. Beginning in 2004, this valuable experience led me to a successful and dynamic career in Real Estate. I then achieved my Broker's license in 2008 and I am always continuing my education in this exciting field.
I find myself so fortunate to live and work in Lagoon City. Over the years, I have met so many wonderful people who have become my neighbours and friends. I truly believe in creating a better community through connecting people with the right homes. My integrity and honesty will always keep you on the right path and my dedication to finding or selling your home goes beyond expectations.
Richard McGuigan is a professional CENTURY 21® Real Estate Broker, with Century 21 B.J Roth Realty Ltd, residing in Lagoon City, Ontario and providing you with the highest quality service possible. His personal knowledge of the Real Estate market in Lagoon City and surrounding areas is combined with the power of the CENTURY 21 brand - the most recognized name in Real Estate today. Let Richard assist you in finding your dream home in our beautiful waterfront community. Contact him today for a free home evaluation.