Blog by Brenda Russell

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Top 10 Tips

Embarking upon the cottage buying process can be daunting. Identifying and narrowing down options are important first steps as is aligning with a reputable real estate agent who knows the recreational area. There are many things to consider, outlined here are tips to keep top-of-mind.

  1. Define your recreational needs (e.g. water sports or no sports, rustic or wired cottage, year round or seasonal)
  2. Determine if the prospective cottage and/or area will satisfy those needs (e.g. big or small lake, rocky vs. sandy shoreline, phone line accessibility)
  3. To really understand the area, vacation there
  4. Educate yourself on the various water systems (e.g. septic tanks, wells, and holding tanks)
  5. Find out what covenants/fees apply (e.g. road access, snow removal etc.)
  6. What is the proximity to amenities (e.g. hospitals, grocery store, marina facilities)?
  7. Are you a north shore or south shore person? Do you want a sunrise or a sunset?
  8. Hire a professional home inspector (e.g. is the cottage's foundation solid, can you build on it?)
  9. Determine what the local bylaws are with respect to building and permits
  10. Spring/summer is a good time to buy because you can see the quality of the shoreline/water, however you will likely pay top dollar. If you buy in the fall, you are likely to get a better price