5 Things to Consider When Buying a Cottage + Bonus Tip


Now that the weather is warming up, cottage season is upon us. Vacation properties have become a red hot market driven by the allure of short-term rental investment properties to those who are looking for a quiet place to relax outside of the city. Before dipping your toes into the market, or into the lake, there are 5 things you must consider to protect yourself, and your dream investment from becoming a nightmare:

  1. Property and Surroundings

Start the process by visual inspection of the property. Look for things like missing shingles, holes or damage on the roof, cracks in the foundation, and damage to porch screens, decks or chimneys. If the property is on a lake, don’t forget to check docks, lifts and boathouses.

  1. Water Supply

A reliable water supply is critical. Ensuring that the plumbing is in order and testing water potability, gives you the peace of mind that you will have a reliable and safe water supply for the cottage season.

  1. Septic System

Take note of potentially strong odours, water pools or damp spots around the septic tank. This also includes gurgling sounds in the plumbing system and slow draining bathtubs, showers and sinks. The last thing you want to be surprised with is water or sewage coming up your toilets, drains and sinks. Pay close attention and engage a professional if you see any red flags.

  1. Mold or Mildew

Check for mold and mildew around the sills. Remember that bathrooms are often a hot spot for growth as the conditions often provide the perfect environment for mold and mildew to flourish. If you find any mold or mildew be sure to never touch or disturb it, as even a small amount may be a health hazard.

  1. Ease of Access:

If you intend to make regular use of your vacation property, look for one with unencumbered access by road. Remember, Cottages that offer access by water only, may cost less, but you must also factor in the added expenses of operating, parking and protecting your boat. Being isolated by water also provides yet another opportunity for potential intruders to go unnoticed.

Bonus Tip

Lastly and most importantly, remember that title insurance coverage is one of the greatest tools you have to protect against potential losses arising from issues like encroachment, zoning violations, fraud and more.

That’s it. By exercising the precautions above and ensuring you have protected your investment with a title insurance policy you can ensure that your dream property does not become your worst nightmare. Click on the link to learn more about our seasonal property endorsement.


Chicago Title offers comprehensive coverage for your cottage.  Contact your lawyer for more information on our coverage today!


Tags: ,