Choosing a Cottage Lot - Pros and Cons
I bought a cottage lot back in 1986 and you know, nothing has
really changed today in 2011.
Of course, everyone's idea of a cottage lot is different. Some prefer to have neighbours around so you can get out and enjoy the company, meet new friends, and if you have kids, it's practically a sin to be isolated from the crowd. Your kids will hate going to the cottage, knowing that there's no one around to play with. You can have all the entertainment in the world just waiting for your kids, like boating, fishing, television, hot dog and marshmallow roasts over the evening fire pit, but without other kids around, your wee ones or teens are going to be pestering you constantly on what time you're planning to pack up to go home. This business of dragging the kids to the cottage each week can become a real challenge and weekly headache.
A cottage is supposed to be fun, relaxing and enjoyable. Crying kids is not my idea of fun or relaxation. Now I realize that a lot of you have kids but I'm past the kids stage --been there, done it! So I'm going to concentrate on what the average normal adult would consider to be a great cottage location. Now I don't drink a lot of alcohol so I guess this narrows it down a bit. I don't want to end up beside some cottage with a bunch of drunken lunatics that think the morning sunrise is the signal for bedtime.
I'm going to narrow this down even more. My idea of an ideal cottage is a place where I can go with my spouse and really, I mean really relax. A place like that would have to be far apart from any neighbour and that means a cottage lot of around 300' wide. Anything wider is a plus for you. The last thing you want is to get up at 5:00am, stroll out onto the porch, do your morning exercises and scratching of the crotch area only to realize that a lot of beady eyes are staring at you from behind their coffee mugs. Not my idea of privacy.
The next thing you want is a waterfront lot. Alright, so I've narrowed my choices down considerably again and lost a bunch of readers at the same time. But look, if you're not going to be happy for the whole time you're there, you might as well just put a pool in your back yard and call that your getaway. Mind you -- today, in 2011, a lot of folks are doing just that without having to pack up the car, drive a long distance and then unpack the car at their final destination. Then you have to do this all over again on Sunday or whenever you're planning on coming back to the rat race. If you're still at an age when you don't mind doing all this, then fine, but as one gets older, the cottage stuff can become a real burden and quite tiresome.
I forgot one item here -- a most important one item -- the cost of an average, everyday common cottage lot. Today, many cannot afford such a luxury item and are therefore relagated to visitor status or company status. But that's o.k. too because a cottage lot can be a very expensive commodity to own and, to put it mildly, is in fact a very expensive commodity. When the building stages are under way, you better hope the influx of money to your bank account is an ongoing weekly event.
The cottage lot I bought back in 1986 was everything I dreamed off owning. The money I was making was decent and there were no problems financially. I bought a section of land that was at the turn in the lake and no one was close on either side of me. My lot consisted of 600' of waterfront along with sandy beach and rocky shoreline. I was in my glory. There was nobody to be seen except for across the lake and that was 1/2 mile away. I got lucky and found exactly what I had been searching for all those years. There was a small island about fourty feet out in the water at one end of my lot and I could either swim or canoe to it. The pickeral and bass fishing was excellent and I couldn't wait to escape there every week. It was my paradise -- my dream come true.
Choosing a cottage lot can take years as in my case. It can be a frustrating thing when something you want so much is either too much money or too far away for traveling to and from each week. The lots can be flat, hilly, rocky, poisonous with Ivy or snakes, on a flood plain, too close to neighbours or too far away from anyone. Do not choose a lot just for the sake of owning one. You will have to live with this decision for quite a while and always think of the time when it comes to re-sell. Will it take an eternity to part with and will you lose money or is it a contender for the buy of the century which will bless you with a substantial retirement income. It's a big decison and one to be made with great care and wisdom. No one knows what the future may bring and to have a lame duck sitting in your lap is not a very trusting ally to have when the cash crunch comes to be and you need financial help quickly.