Putting Dollar Value on Cottage

Posted by S.M. Givens on Thursday, April 3, 2003.

Putting Dollar Value on Cottage

It's all about money isn't it? The purchase of a cottage is an investment, something that will continue to maintain its value. In fact, the way cottage prices continue the upward spiral, your cottage investment is likely to increase in value.

But it's also about money, because the costs to maintain a cottage can be very large: high property taxes, repairs, decorating, new septic, upkeep of the ground and lanes, not to mention heat and hydro. So what do you do? You share your cottage with others in exchange for some cash, so that you can afford to pay those pesky little bills.

On the other side of that coin, many people are putting off the actual investment by renting a cottage first. By renting, they are learning by trial and error the things they want and don't want, in the cottage they will eventually buy. Once you start renting a cottage though, you realize that maybe renting is better. Think of it this way: you don't have to pay the taxes, maintenance, and upkeep; you don't have to cut the lawn and rake the leaves; you don't have to worry about pipes freezing in winter or septic back-ups.

You can enjoy the cottage during the best months of the year - July and August – without paying for the other months. You're having your cake and eating it too, so to speak. So your money is going directly towards the immediate enjoyment of the cottage. So it's about money. Or is it?

For most people, the summer cottage is about a feeling that can't quite be put into words. The memory of warm sun and sandcastles, shovel and pail. Wind stirring hair as outboard shoots through the waves. A good book leafed under a tree or in a quiet corner of the veranda. Beer with boys and a catch of fish.