This year has been a real challenge for all of us. The combination of the COVID-19 virus and uncertain economic times have been incredibly worrisome. With the arrival of Fall, the situation is still uncertain and extremely stressful. During the summer, many of us were dreaming of escaping to a safe and relaxing haven. As many of us will be working from home for the foreseeable future, a cottage is a great idea. Working from your cottage would be the best of both worlds, a great office with a view. The idea of having a cottage has been discussed by many of our friends and family. If you are thinking of buying a cottage, always contact your REALTOR® prior to making any major decisions.
Factors to Consider
The following are some of the factors that you should consider when thinking of buying a cottage:
- Are you looking for a family vacation home and, eventually, as a retirement home? Buying now allows you to acquire a retirement home at current prices
- Will you use it for rental purposes?
- How long a drive do you want to get to the cottage?
- Will you be working from there? More people are working from home or the cottage
- Is high-speed and reliable Wi-Fi or cell phone coverage essential for work and entertainment?
- Is waterfront important?
- Would you consider shared ownership with friends or fractional ownership?
- How many bedrooms and bathrooms, including bunkies, do you need and what kind of indoor and outdoor spaces do you want?
- Do you want a basic cabin or a large modern cottage?
There are many important financial aspects to consider when thinking of buying a cottage. These include:
- Property tax, cost of rural hydro, road maintenance, snow plowing, yearly cottage repairs, insurance, plumbing, roofing, electrical, eavestroughs, furnace and AC maintenance, grass cutting, gardening and tree maintenance, and cleaning if you are renting it out
- You will pay the Ontario Land Transfer Tax and legal fees
- Consider the cost of canoes, kayaks, paddle boats, and water toys
- Buying a cottage is a lifestyle choice and should not be considered as an investment
- Can I get a mortgage on the cottage? Yes, you can, Type A Cottages: have year-round access, are winterized, have a heat source, water, and have a foundation below the frost line
- Type A can be mortgaged with similar terms to your home in the city
- Always check with your REALTOR® for mortgage options. They can help with considering options such as refinancing your principal residence
Having a family cottage is the dream of many Canadians. A place to relax and see all family members have fun and share special family times and memories. A critical factor to consider is the distance from home to the cottage. The closer it is, the more often you will be able to escape to your second home. Cottages close to Ottawa have increased in price. With so many people working from home, many families are considering the purchase of a cottage. Please speak to your REALTOR® and start looking.