Making Your Cottage Earn Money for You

by admin on July 28, 2012

You may earn some money from your cottage property this summer if you don’t mind having strangers in your home. If you own a fully furnished lakefront cottage with a boathouse, you can earn good money by renting it. Some people are looking for a woodland-setting cabin instead; so, don’t get discouraged if you have a more rustic type of cottage. Plus, it all depends on how you advertise your property. If your cottage is located in a high-traffic area, you can market it as the ideal family getaway. If it is found in a more secluded area, you can present it as a great locale for romantic getaways or you can target the group of retreat-seekers. 

If you are unsure how to go about renting, you can use the services of a holiday rental website. Websites like this offer a 48-hour confirmation period after potential renters attempt to book some property. In this way, homeowners are given the opportunity to screen renters before they allow the booking to go through. Renters, on their part, should offer information about themselves.

Expenses are another important factor to consider. Many rental websites charge a fee to list cottage properties. Speaking of costs, you may need to hire a maintenance person and a cleaning service. Plus, you may have to invest in your cottage to enhance its decor. Don’t forget to move out family heirlooms and anything that is breakable or extremely valuable and scour big box stores and thrift stores for cheaper alternatives.

If your cottage is going to be a money-making venture, there are other factors to consider, including building maintenance, road maintenance, if applicable, taxes, and ground keeping. Other costs include licences, utilities, and monthly mortgage payments. You may want to create an emergency fund and set aside $4,000 or $5,000 in the event of any major surprises.

Insurance is an important factor to consider before renting out your property. There are different types of policies to look into. Some policies exclude damages caused by renters. Other policies allow renters for a short period or have specific conditions.

Once you factor in all costs, you should think of how much of the year you plan to rent your cottage out. This will help you come up with an estimate for the housekeeping costs, though they will also depend on cottage turnover. On the other hand, the initial calculations are helpful so that you can budget for a major cleaning twice a year and for a weekly cleaning. Divide the expenses into the number of weeks you will be renting out the property. This will help you decide how much to charge per night or week. Think of whether the number is realistic considering the location and the features of the property. You may want to find how much comparable properties are charging. If you target a specific niche, think of ways to make your cottage more appealing. You may want to extend the season of availability if the rent is a bit high.

Finally, while there are added costs, most properties rent for $1,000 to $2,000 a week and sometimes more. The return on your investment is worth the money and can be considerable. To this, try to get your listing up in January or February to get the most out of your investment. Many renters start looking for cottage rentals early in the year.

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