What to Consider When Looking for a Cottage


With the nice weather finally here, there’s nothing better than escaping the busyness of the city to enjoy cottage country. But not everyone owns a cottage. Let’s say your family doesn’t own one, then what? You’ll need to purchase one, of course! Although a cottage is real estate, it’s a lot different from a house. Here are four important things to consider when looking for a cottage.



How private do you want your cottage to be? Do you want it to be out in the open wilderness or in a vibrant lakeside community? There are pros and cons to each. If you’re looking at your cottage as a getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life, you may prefer the wildness. Just make sure you’re ok with the lack of amenities. The closest general store may be miles away.

Likewise, how close do you want your neighbours to be? If you enjoy the company of others, buying a cottage near other cottages makes a lot of sense. Just make sure you’ll like your neighbours. The last thing you want is to live beside a neighbour who is loud and noisy, just what you were looking to avoid when you left the city for a quiet weekend away.



How accessible do you want your cottage to be? Generally speaking, cottages that can only be accessed by water are typically less costly than those that can be accessed by car. If you’re buying a cottage that you need a boat to get to, don’t forget to factor in the added cost of buying and maintaining a boat. Although, be aware that your cottage may be more accessible some times of the year than others. You may not be able to get to your cottage during the wintertime or you may need to use a snowmobile. Are you ok with that?



When buying a home, we’re often told the three most important factors are location, location, location. To take it a step further, when buying a cottage lakefront access matters a lot. If you have a boat, you’ll want to buy a cottage with a body of water nearby. Just be aware that you’re likely paying a premium for access to the water directly from your cottage. If a cottage with lakefront is out of your price range, you might consider one without lake access, although make sure you’ll be ok travelling to the closest lake to use your boat.



Although you may want your cottage to be in a secluded area, make sure you’re ok with the distance from your home. My uncle once bought a cottage in Elliot Lake, a small retirement community in Northern Ontario. He thought he would love it up there. The problem is that it took almost seven hours to drive there from Toronto. Needless to say he didn’t end up going up there too often. Towards the end before he sold it, he would just drive up there once a year to check the property and make it was ok and the pipes hadn’t burst. Don’t let the same thing happen to you. Choose a cottage where the travel time isn’t so much so that you’ll only visit it once in a blue moon.

Written by Sean Cooper

Sean Cooper is the bestselling author of the book, Burn Your Mortgage: The Simple, Powerful Path to Financial Freedom for Canadians. He bought his first house when he was only 27 in Toronto and paid off his mortgage in just 3 years by age 30. Sean’s helping others with their mortgages as an independent mortgage broker. Get in touch with him for all your mortgage needs. For a free mortgage consultation, email Sean@BurnYourMortgage.ca or call 647–867–3711.


Sean Cooper