You’re not alone. Most Canadians who’ve got cottages as their getaway sanctuaries are stressed out about soaring property maintenance costs.
But we’ve got you covered. Read this guide to know how to pay for the best upkeep service without spending a dime.

The Best Way to Manage Your Cottage; Rent It Out:

Yes, this is the only way to ensure your second home is well taken care of without you having to invest in the upkeep from your pocket. And if you don’t have a second home, but are looking to buy one, click here to find out how to do this the right way. If you’ve got a cottage or are going to get one but are concerned about maintenance costs, then renting out is the best way.
We understand it can be daunting to hand over your personal use property to strangers on a regular basis. But, just entertain this thought for a while, and you’ll see more benefits than drawbacks. You may have some concerns about renting out your cottage, like what if I want to go there on a holiday retreat? Well, you always can because we’re not asking you to sign a year-long contract with someone.
We’re asking you to rent it for vacation purposes. So your temporary tenants will be in and out in a few days. Whenever you want to go there, you can, easily.
Think of the number of benefits you can get when renting your cottage. Here are a few advantages to help you understand why it’s the best option:

  • You will not have to pay a penny to manage the place; it’ll be managed from the rental income.
  • You will have a consistent income even after paying for management charges
  • Your property will always be in top condition. Whenever you visit, everything will be available to make your stay as comfortable and pleasant as possible
  • No fear of theft, break-ins, or vandalism because your cottage will be occupied by temporary tenants frequently throughout the year
  • You can get insurance for your cottage, and the rental income will pay for it

See, the idea of renting doesn’t seem so bad now, does it? That’s why we suggest you start considering getting into a vacation rental.

Some Tips for Renting Out Your Cottage:

Set Boundaries:

Being a first-time renter, your biggest fear might be sharing space with someone. They will be sleeping in your bed, using the bathroom, and eating in your dishes – that’s too personal, no? Well, it doesn’t have to be. You can add it in your property listing that you’ll only rent the cottage to a certain group of people like families and professionals. This will ensure educated, and well-mannered people use your cottage.
Secondly, you can get separate linens and dinner sets for guests and have the bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, and other areas cleaned after every rental visit. Furthermore, if you want some areas of property private, you can mention that in the agreement and also lock doors to those places with polite notes informing people they cannot go there.

Get Damage Deposit:

When renting out the cottage, your second concern can be, what if the tenants are a little wild and end up damaging my property? No problem, get a security deposit that’ll be released if the property is free from any damages after the rental term ends. All rental cottage owners do this, so this won’t deter potential tenants from choosing your property.
But what it will do is give you leverage. Tenants will know their limits and that they can lose a good chunk of money if they cross any. You’ll be in peace of mind, no matter how many people come and go.

Get a Manager:

Yes, we know you want to manage your cottage with less spending, and getting a manager is the opposite of that. However, if you don’t want to deal with the hassle of doing everything by yourself, having a manager will help a lot. Plus, the money won’t be going out from your pocket; you’ll still have some savings after paying for all management expenses, including the manager’s salary.
The manager will handle everything from screening the tenants to booking them, assisting with check-ins, and keeping the property in top shape.

Have a Check-In System:

To streamline things and automate as much of the booking process as you can, getting a check-in system would help a lot. There are various online booking and checking-in platforms that allow you to automatically register check-ins and check-outs of your guests.
You can also have a smart home entry system with keypad locks, the codes for which can be provided to guests after booking. This way, you’ll be able to better manage things remotely and have a log of every check-in and check-out.

Understand Tax Laws:

Your rental income will be merged with your total income and taxed accordingly. So to avoid any surprises at the time of taxes, talk to your accountant and ask him about the tax laws of your province.
Property income taxes in Canada are low, and you can show the property management and manager’s salary as expenses, so the tax might only be deducted on the profit that lands in your pocket. This means you will still not have to spend a penny, but your cottage will be managed well. Plus, whatever’s left, depending on how frequently you rent out the cottage, will all be yours.

Get Out There:

This is the last point but holds a great deal of value. You need to list your cottage on popular vacation rental platforms like Airbnb, Cottages in Canada, Vrbo, and more.
You need exposure to get clients. Once your property listing takes off and starts accumulating reviews, more business will come your way; paying for cottage management will not be a problem. Instead, you’ll be banking some serious money.

Parting Words:

What you’ll start as a way to pay for your cottage maintenance and upkeep can end up being a great source for some extra cash.
However, starting can be a little bumpy. Make sure to give time to this business model and provide excellent service to tenants; things will start picking up.

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