Cottage Real Estate

Vacation residences are very popular these days, and the cottage is a particularly enduring vacation home style. With the continued growth of the second home market, cottages can be a lucrative investment. Cottages also provide a warm and comfortable space for those who wish to downsize and live in their vacation home year-round.

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Cottage Style: Yesterday & Today

Cottages have a long and honorable history as housing for laborers in the medieval period. The term "cottage" has changed over the years, from the smallholdings of the medieval farmer to a small residence for laborers and textile producers (giving rise to the term, "cottage industry"). Gradually, "cottage" came to mean a small or modest single-family home that was a permanent residence for its owner or occupier.

Today, the word "cottage" can mean different things in different areas. In North America, it is most often used to denote a vacation home in a rural area. In the United States, seasonal homes of this nature are often referred to as "cabins" or "camps".

Despite the connotations of small size and rustic accoutrements, the vacation cottage is a changed creature from the buildings of old that overlooked lonely lakes and hidden rivers. Today, one can find "cottages" that can house several people and offers such creature comforts as indoor plumbing, electricity, water, and Internet access.

Vacation Cottages Prove a Smart Investment

Today's cottage can be a savvy addition to one's investment portfolio. Vacation property is very popular in North America, and tends to increase in value over the years. If you stumble upon a property that needs some fixing up, you can enjoy a jump in equity as the property is restored.

A vacation cottage may also cost less than you imagine. While you likely have to get a mortgage for the cottage, your vacations will be much less stressful. There are no hotel fees, no worries about parking spots, noisy neighbors, or having to book in advance. You get to enjoy your own private holiday oasis year after year.

Renting out your cottage to others can also be a lucrative business or sideline, as rental vacation property can bring in higher rents than other forms of real estate. If you choose your site carefully, the property can be rented out year-round to casual vacationers in the spring and summer months, and to hunters/winter sport enthusiasts in the fall and winter.

Be aware that buying a vacation home is something that requires careful consideration. In addition to the usual checks that need to be done, you also have to consider whether a cottage is going to be a good fit with your lifestyle. If you are lost without a fully-equipped bathroom for instance, you may not be happy with a cottage that only supports an outhouse. If you loathe the traffic that builds up during vacation season, you might not want a cabin that is accessed only via the most crowded highways.

Cottages have been a favorite among second homeowners for many years. Whether you're looking for an investment property, your own personal vacation spot, or a cozy primary residence, a cottage or cabin can be an excellent choice for your next real estate purchase.

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