Fall is in full effect. Summer activities are on hold as we move towards the colder and longer Canadian winter. For some cottage owners, the winter weather will not stop them from continuing their routine of going up north. For others, the drop in temperatures may prevent them from making the trip. Either way, it’s a good idea for cottage owners to winterize their cottage before the season starts.

What are the benefits of winterizing your cottage?

By winterizing your cottage, you will be protecting your investment and minimizing the potential damages the harsh winter season and snowstorms may bring. It can also deter criminals who see an empty home as a target. Preparing your cottage ahead of time ultimately saves you money on insurance which won’t cause your insurance premiums to be  affected The more you prepare for risk, the lower your premiums can be.

Get a head start: As the seasons change, people aren’t in a rush to leave the cottage. With the gap between summer and winter sports activities, most individuals  aren’t willing to  make the drive up to the cottage. Ensure you begin your winterization process before it gets too cold! Canada’s early fall months could drop to freezing temperatures and increase moisture and ice around your seasonal home. We recommend you begin in early October to ensure you don’t fall victim to unpredictable weather changes.

Look outside first: Secure what’s on your lawn and surrounding your cottage. This includes bolting, tarping down, and securing anything that could cause damage if moved by wind or be lost in a storm. For example: Swing sets, play gyms, trampolines, lawn ornaments, barbecues, outdoor tables, lawn chairs, boats, bicycles, toys, tools, etc.

Let alarm systems be your backup: Make sure your fire alarms batteries are changed months before you’re  away from your seasonal home. Ensure you have a quality home alarm system installed and that it’s up and running to protect your home from burglars. Shut the blinds and remove valuables from sight or take them home all together.

Plumbing protection is number one: If you’re leaving your cottage vacant for the entire winter season, drain your entire water system. Leftover water could freeze, expand and cause damage if it explodes. It’s important to remember to shut off your water valve to risk coming back to a water disaster. To protect your plumbing, remember to pour antifreeze solution down the drain before temperatures drop. When you return for the next season, you won’t find any blocked pipes.

As we all bundle up and adapt to winter elements, it’s important to winterize your cottage. Follow these tips to get you on the right track. Contact our licensed brokers at Oracle RMS if you have any questions about insuring your cottage or updating your coverage to prepare for the winter season.