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Country Living

1024 723 Nisha Muire

Whether you call them cabins, cottages or chalets, the weekend get-away place located in the country to which thousands escape all year-round are certainly ubiquitous with Canadian life. Cottage living was typically the reserve of those with unlimited bank accounts, but with the addition of roads in out-of-the-way places, automobiles and inexpensive gas, the field was open to average Joes who wanted to experience a big of the good life.
 
Today, there are hundreds of summer retreats all over the province and, indeed, the country. What to look for in a cottage will depend on the kind of experience you want to have. Whether you prefer a fully winterized get-away located near a ski hill so that you can take advantage of the trails every weekend or whether you prefer a three-season place that will get you from May to October on a lovely lake, will determine where and how much your summer setting will set you back.
 
Naturally it isn’t necessary to buy a cottage if you can rent one. In many instances renting a cottage is actually a better bet as you don’t have to worry about maintenance, taxes or any of the other aspects involved with owning property. You just have to pay and then show up! Just remember that rentals can be costly depending on where you want to rent and during what season. Obviously off season rates will be far more affordable than during peak holiday or summer season, but can be just as enjoyable – especially if you rent a place near trails for hiking or biking, on a lake that supports water sports and/or near villages with lots of fun activities on offer.
 
Of course, if you want your own place, then there are two options – buying a real sale place or purchasing a lot and building your own place. There are pros and cons to both approaches but buying a resale place can be more affordable than building new in many instances. New builds will require you to invest in the installation of a septic system, a foundation and a water system (drilling a well). In many cases you will also have to pay for the soil to be tested and by the time all of these basic costs are covered you are already at nearly $50,000. There are ways of building a less expensive cottage, but it would involve you doing much of the contracting and building work yourself.
 
Buying resale, means getting a house with all of the infrastructure already in place – which is a great benefit. The only obstacle with this scenario is finding a home that is the right mix of old and new so that you aren’t stuck having to update/upgrade immediately after purchase.
 
If you have yet to experience life at a cottage, then know that it is something everyone should get to enjoy at least once in their life. The relaxation and detente achieved when surrounded by nature is second to none.

Author

Nisha Muire

All stories by: Nisha Muire