“I didn't realize I could actually afford a cottage”. 

I have spent the last few weeks attending local festivals and speaking with people and my biggest takeaway from these conversations is the misnomer that a cottage property is out of reach. 

Yes, this theory holds true where the million dollar properties on big lake chains are concerned, but with a little compromise and some creative thinking, anyone who is serious about living a cottage lifestyle can find a way to realize the dream.

In May 2017, the average price for a waterfront cottage in the Kawartha Lakes region of Ontario was approximately $450,000. While there are fewer hidden gems available in cottage country, there is still plenty of opportunity to pick up a nice cottage on a smaller lake or river for around $200,000. And if you don’t mind driving a little bit further north to Haliburton and beyond, you can find better-appointed properties, on larger parcels of land, for around the same price.

Fractional ownership has become a very popular cottage country option for those who want the lifestyle but lack the budget. These properties are generally new builds with all of the bells and whistles and for as little as $35,000, you can purchase a share in a cottage and own a specific number of weeks to use the property. 

You would be guaranteed exclusive use of the cottage during your set time. This is a great option for someone who wants a cottage lifestyle but would only be able to enjoy the cottage for a week or two during the summer season.

Purchasing your cottage as an investment property is another option that can make cottage ownership affordable. Cottage owners can fetch prices prices around $1,500 per week to rent out their cottages. 

While you may not make enough money during a season to pay the entire mortgage on the property, it would certainly help defray the costs associated with cottage ownership.

However you decide to break into the cottage lifestyle, owning a piece of cottage country is an investment that will only appreciate over time. With a little perseverance and an open mind, you will surely find the property that ticks off all of  your financial, location and lifestyle needs.